Other Equipment

Grover Imperials

1

I felt I had to share a great experience I just had with the folks over at Grover, the people who make the Grover Imperial tuners on my White Falcon. I busted the G string (treble side) tuner, banged it accidentally, so that it is wobbling on its shaft, and difficult to tune. I struggled to find a replacement, even though the folks at Fender were very helpful. Most Falcons have the Grover Imperial 150G tuner, but for some reason, my Falcon has the 151G. The only difference is that the 150 has a flattened top, while the 151G is a pyramid at both ends (see pic). The 151G is virtually unobtainable on-line, as far as I can tell, from the 3rd party vendors, and would require buying a whole set of 6 anyway.

Anyway, Grover not only identified the part, but are sending me a gratis replacement tuner. Turns out, Grovers are warranted FOR LIFE, even though I broke mine through sheer negligence. Grover are definitely a class act - they are shipping to me free of charge, to Canada. Not only are the tuners great (and cool looking), but they stand behind them 100%. Well, they have one more loyal customer now, I'll definitely choose Grover when I need to replace tuners.

Larry

2

That's great to hear. They have a customer for life, now.

Both my 400JV and 3140 (and soon to be Astro Jet) have the common Flat-top 150's.

3

Nice to see another company who stands behind their products.

4

Jeez, I've got to contact them. I've got exactly the same problem with my low E on my Falcon.

5

That's absolutely great to hear. But I wish they'd give those Imperials a make-over, because they're pretty cheesy tuners compared to the originals.

6

The folks at Grover are really great. We used to deal with their MI distributer Grossman, and back in the late '80s they still listed Melita Bridges in their wholesale catalog. Wish I'd bought up all they had!

7

I have to agree with the positive comments on Grover. I have at least 4 different varieties on guitars and all function at a high level. My D18 has the original (1976) Rotomatics it came with and once tuned seems to hold tuning forever. Good to hear that it is a good product built by a company that backs it up.

8

I bought a set from a vendor in CA around 3 years ago to change out the cheap ones on my acoustic and I just checked and they're the 150's too.

Back in the early 90's when I had my '63 CG - the one with that odd 1.5" wide neck - it had the Imperial Stairsteps and two of them were worn and didn't move smoothly. Back then Grover was not producing these tuners and hadn't for many years. I even contacted Duke Kramer and he happened to have a used set but no single units and the set was very expensive. I heard from George, the owner of the Guitar Clinic in Hamilton, Ont that Grover planned on making these again. Awhile later Grover sent him one of their prototypes and he called me to look at it. Unfortunately for me, the re-issue was going to have the thicker post and my CG stairsteps had the thinner version so I was out of luck and never did change them.

The set I have on my acoustic are beautiful, perform perfectly and not 'cheesy' in any respect. I wouldn't hesitate to put these on another guitar if the chance presents itself. With the thicker posts this version looks more substantial to me than the originals and actually makes them better suited being on a larger style headstock. These tuners look odd to me when put on smaller headstocks - they sort of overwhelm the look of the guitar, but perhaps that's just me.

9

That's absolutely great to hear. But I wish they'd give those Imperials a make-over, because they're pretty cheesy tuners compared to the originals.

– WB

I don't think they are cheesy. I think the plating technology may have changed, which gives them a brighter look, but the actual tuner construction is probably much better than the original, given the advances in material technology over the past 40 years. There are no metal flashings anywhere, the tolerances are high, action smooth, and combined with the Tru-Arc bridge, my Falcon stays in tune well, even with lots of Bigsby work. The tuners have a big role to play there.

My Imperials are still shiny and new, but a few years of use will probably dull them a bit.

10

Larry, I used to have a set on a guitar, and the damn things would fall apart. The tuners buttons kept getting unscrewed. When I finally lost a button in mid-gig, they had to go.

11

WB, I'm having a silly visual thought here --> what kind of high-energy music would rattle the screws out of your tuners?

12

WB, I'm having a silly visual thought here --> what kind of high-energy music would rattle the screws out of your tuners?

– Larry_Lion

I'm with there bro! I saw Hendrix live in Toronto from the edge of the stage and his was about as 'into it, high energy' as I can imagine and don't recall him having any equipment issues. Mind you, Strats don't use Imperial Stairsteps but still.....

13

UPDATE: My free replacement Grover Imperial tuner 151G arrived, and is a perfect drop-fit. Thanks Grover!

14

WB, I'm having a silly visual thought here --> what kind of high-energy music would rattle the screws out of your tuners?

– Larry_Lion

They fell apart, what can I tell you? I think there are too many parts in the "reissue" Imperials, the fact there is that piece of metal between the tuner housing and the knob is what made mine go wobbly and eventually fall apart.

16

They definitely stand behind their products, I had a set on an old super strat that had one break, they sent a new no problem.

17

OH, OH? So did Grover send you a 150, or a 151? Looks like if you replace the busted 151, with the 150, the old screw hole location might show? The top is not only "Flattened", but appears to have a hole location closer to the post center-line? I have a set of the 150G's coming from ebay, for $85 clams! They are to go on my recently "Resurrected" G6122 62 GENT Build, so I could use either. Might even go for the Wilkinson's at $30, and stick a set of "Imperial" knobs on 'em? So many choices, so little time!! Gb bg


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