Thread: Carbon Tuners ?
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Old 07-31-2017, 09:42 AM
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Acousticado Acousticado is offline
Tommy CanAm
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Snow & Sun belts
Posts: 13,663

I can speak to this.

I held out for a long time on my new, soon-to-arrive Chimaera 6/12 doubleneck order while in discussion with both Heart-Sound and Alistair in the hope to have the best weight-balanced guitar. This is based on my experience with past Chimaeri which were equipped with the lightweight Gotoh Stealth tuners (11.4g ea.) and very well balanced, especially the best-balanced first generation before Emerald began installing truss rods, but Alistair stopped offering the Stealths due to failures (not mine), likely pushed their max. tension rating of 44 lbs. I have been concerned that the Gotoh 510s (33.2g ea.) that Emerald is now using might be too heavy, especially given my past experience with lighter versions. Alistair has believed that the H-S tuners (7g ea.) are a great solution based on his experience with a sample set and has really hoped they could work, but sourcing from the Italian manufacturer has proven dodgy and there is an aesthetic issue.

For my latest coco Chimaera, Alistair did arrange to get 18 of the H-S tuners from the Italian company to install on it. I could have had them if I wanted them, but as I mentioned, their aesthetic is an issue when it matters to the player. Let's just say that they have a 'raw grey/black' look and although Alistair has experimented with buffing them out, they still don't complement the otherwise beauty of Emerald guitars. The H-S company has told me they have no plans to offer anything other than what they do now.

So, Alistair recommended that I not go with the H-Ss because they are untried and that he can't guarantee I will be satisfied with the best he can do with the finish. I think these H-S tuners will work well on satin finish guitars, especially in a grey/black finish. If I was going for an Opus Chimaera (black) with the crystal ice finish, the H-Ss may look great.

IMO, the only reason to opt for the H-Ss on a guitar is where neck dive is an issue and for most 6 string acoustics, this isn't really much of a problem. As Emerald is the only builder of 12, 18 and more strings, H-S tuners would be a great option if they can ever produce a more aesthetically pleasing product.

I should have my new Chimaera sometime this week. Admittedly, I am anxious about the weight-balance issue. Alistair has advised me that those with 510 installed tuners do not seem to be having any problem with them...though unlike me, they haven't experienced the best balanced among the three generations of the Chimaera. My fingers are crossed.
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Wood: '02 Taylor 814c | '18 Taylor 214ceDLX | '18 Taylor 150e-12 | '79 Ibanez Dread (First acoustic) | '02 Fender Strat-American '57 RI (Replaced vintage 58)
Carbon: '18 Emerald X20 Custom | '08 Composite Acoustics Cargo RT

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Last edited by Acousticado; 07-31-2017 at 04:17 PM.
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