Install Tuning Machines on An Electric Guitar
After Step 1 of building your own electric guitar, Attaching An Electric Guitar Neck, you’ll be installing the tuning machines into the headstock. To complete this step and follow our video, you will need:
- The electric guitar neck you chose for this project
- Kluson SD9105MN six-in-line tuning pegs
- Kluson MB65N-L US large hole adapter bushings
- Plumber’s tape
- Electric drill with thin drill bit and screwdriver bit
Once you have everything, simply follow the instructions in the video and see the additional tips in the video transcription below it.
Hello my name is Noah from Ant Hill Music. Welcome to Step 2 of our Build Your Own Guitar video series, where you will install tuning pegs into the headstock of your electric guitar. We are using Kluson SD9105MN tuning machines (pegs) on the vintage stratocaster neck we attached to the guitar body in Step 1. One great thing about these particular tuning machines is that they have “Safti String” posts, which are open split-shaft pegs that make it easier to string and restring your guitar later.
The peg holes in the stratocaster necks are about 3/8″, too large for the Kluson tuning pegs, so we’re also using Kluson adapter bushings MB65N-L US and some plumber’s tape to get a tight fit. I like to bunch up the tape around the busing spline to take up as much room as possible. Use a twisting motion when inserting the adapter bushings so that the tape doesn’t unravel and stick out of the peg hole.
Turn the neck over and arrange the tuning machines into the holes, taking care to ensure the first and last tuning pegs are in their proper locations. Use a straightedge or ruler to ensure the alignment.
The next step involves drilling pilot holes into the neck to prepare for the tuning machine mounting screws that come with the tuning machine set. Always choose a drill bit that’s slightly thinner than the actual screw. Before drilling, attach a piece of tape to the drill bit to indicate the depth of the mounting screw, to ensure that you don’t drill too deep. Hold the ruler against the tuning machines as you drill.
When mounting the tuning pegs, don’t drill the screw in all the way at first. Go slowly across all the screws to ensure that the tuning machines become tightly mounted in the exact positions they were aligned in when you began mounting them. Take your time! This video is easy to follow but you certainly don’t want to have to re-drill your guitar neck as your “practice” holes might be visible on the headstock.