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 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Keith D Tuners What are the applications for the different sets?


Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link: http://www.banjohangout.org/archive/394129

Slaminsam - Posted - 11/23/2023:  17:56:14


From what I have seen most use the 2nd and 3rd string set on a typical bluegrass banjo. I have seen them used in songs. Not considering the technical differences, what are the applications for using a 1st and 4th tuner?



I am a newbie, so if suffer my ignorance please. I have searched but the question does not seem to pop up in my searches.


Edited by - Slaminsam on 11/23/2023 17:56:57

Culloden - Posted - 11/23/2023:  21:19:26


First and fourth string tuners can be used to play songs like Auld Lang Syne. Bill Keith used all four tuners on that one.
The fourth tuner can also be used to drop the string down to B on songs like She'll be Coming 'Round the Mountain.

rvrose - Posted - 11/23/2023:  21:53:55


Depending on the neck, changing the 2 and 3 tuning can also affect the tuning of the 1st and 4th strings. If you use all 4 you can hopefully be able to retune quickly if all are set up for 2 tunings.


Edited by - rvrose on 11/23/2023 21:54:30

Ira Gitlin - Posted - 11/24/2023:  07:24:28


Write your own tunes!

youtu.be/2wfhmS8PMFM?t=164

Jack Baker - Posted - 11/24/2023:  07:38:57


Further proof that you can just anchor the pinkie and make it work. Very Nice Ira...Jack


Edited by - Jack Baker on 11/24/2023 07:39:21

BobbyE - Posted - 11/24/2023:  08:23:13


Didn't, or doesn't, Keith sell tuners that are bought just for the quality of the tuner itself, and different from those that allow for d-tuning a note when playing those BG songs needing that feature, or has another senior moment entered my brain?

Bobby

Culloden - Posted - 11/24/2023:  09:52:56


quote:

Originally posted by BobbyE

Didn't, or doesn't, Keith sell tuners that are bought just for the quality of the tuner itself, and different from those that allow for d-tuning a note when playing those BG songs needing that feature, or has another senior moment entered my brain?



Bobby






Keith makes regular tuners as well as D tuners.

arnie fleischer - Posted - 11/24/2023:  12:44:16


quote:

Originally posted by Slaminsam

From what I have seen most use the 2nd and 3rd string set on a typical bluegrass banjo. I have seen them used in songs. Not considering the technical differences, what are the applications for using a 1st and 4th tuner?






Bear Tracks: youtube.com/watch?v=C0yI9aCwQtU

tdtowns77 - Posted - 11/24/2023:  22:00:59


The first and fourth ones are normally just quality standard tuners, not d tuners. I once bought a set of 6 gold Keith d tuners off a guy from his electric guitar, it was said that it made the headstock very heavy and unbalanced the instrument.

RB-1 - Posted - 11/25/2023:  01:01:13


Here's one of mine, with tuners on 1st to 4th: Half A Turn



This is what happens, first the introduction of the tune, then, after the mandolin break the them again but only played  with the tuners.....





RB3 - Posted - 11/25/2023:  08:35:02


I believe that Jack Baker was a friend of Roger Sprung, so he may be able to confirm my recollection about Sprung's banjo. I remember him having Keith tuners on strings 1,2, 3 and 4 and he also had cam tuners on strings 2 and 3.

Culloden - Posted - 11/25/2023:  10:58:39


quote:

Originally posted by tdtowns77

The first and fourth ones are normally just quality standard tuners, not d tuners. I once bought a set of 6 gold Keith d tuners off a guy from his electric guitar, it was said that it made the headstock very heavy and unbalanced the instrument.


 




Keith also makes D tuners for the first and fourth strings. Both have a large shaft instead of the one smaller shaft like regular D tuners.

Fathand - Posted - 11/25/2023:  12:05:15


You usually use the ones with the thick shafts if you are setting up to change a full tone, the thin shaft ones if you are setting up to change a semi tone. This balances the amount of rotation between different tuners, where possible.

waystation - Posted - 11/25/2023:  12:19:04


quote:

Originally posted by RB3

I believe that Jack Baker was a friend of Roger Sprung, so he may be able to confirm my recollection about Sprung's banjo. I remember him having Keith tuners on strings 1,2, 3 and 4 and he also had cam tuners on strings 2 and 3.






I'm pretty sure I recall Roger invented a stop tuner for the fifth string also. I haven't seen one in years. Maybe the only one I actually saw was on Roger's banjo.

waystation - Posted - 11/25/2023:  12:31:54


I used four Keiths for a number of years, not to play tunes (although I did that) but because it gave me an easy way to switch tunings mid-set. We did many shows where I asked the band to group tunes according to tuner settings, and I'd reset the tuners during intermission.

For even longer, I used three Keiths (standard tuner on the first string) but then the mandolin player in the band I was in at the time wrote a tune that needed a first string E to D retune, so the fourth one went on. I used the tuners enough that I had to send them back to Bill (and then Martin) every couple of years for overhaul.

I found if you use graphite to lubricate the string slots on the nut and bridge that the tuners would set accurately without much fussing - the trick is to fine-tune all the strings for each tuning, even the ones you're not actually changing. For example, if you switch from standard to double C you'll have to touch up the first string, so you'll have the stops set on that as well but the upper and lower stop will be a fraction of a turn apart. The only string you end up having to pay attention to is the fifth, really just like fine tuning after putting the string under a nail. Otherwise you can switch tunings during a fast segue and jump in to the next song without even checking tuning first.

I still keep four Keiths on my Nechville in case I need a quick change, but I've switched most of my banjos to Rickards because the 10:1 ration makes it a pleasure to tune accurately and lessens the need to preset tunings with the Keith stops at the beginning of a show. I rarely do tuner tunes onstage anymore as a result, but I have the Nechville if the need arises.

Jack Baker - Posted - 11/25/2023:  14:11:56


Hi Wayne,


No, I never knew Roger Sprung. He hung out with different crowds than I did back then. I came to NYC in the late 60s and Roger was already pretty much out of NYC by then. I remember him as a good player but didn't pay any attention to his tuners...Jack




Originally posted by RB3

I believe that Jack Baker was a friend of Roger Sprung, so he may be able to confirm my recollection about Sprung's banjo. I remember him having Keith tuners on strings 1,2, 3 and 4 and he also had cam tuners on strings 2 and 3.






 

Ira Gitlin - Posted - 11/26/2023:  07:21:53


quote:

Originally posted by waystation





I'm pretty sure I recall Roger invented a stop tuner for the fifth string also. I haven't seen one in years. Maybe the only one I actually saw was on Roger's banjo.






Having known Bill, I have to believe that he at least considered designing a fifth-string "Keith peg", even if he never actually made one. What do you think?

RB-1 - Posted - 11/26/2023:  13:19:42


quote:

Originally posted by Ira Gitlin

quote:

Originally posted by waystation





I'm pretty sure I recall Roger invented a stop tuner for the fifth string also. I haven't seen one in years. Maybe the only one I actually saw was on Roger's banjo.






Having known Bill, I have to believe that he at least considered designing a fifth-string "Keith peg", even if he never actually made one. What do you think?






I agree.



Having met Bill many times when he was over here in the Netherlands, we talked just as much 'engineering talk' as we did about banjo and the world in general.smiley



So yes, if anyone, he would have been able to compose a 'stopper' variation on the planetary Five Star like on my RB-1.



By the way, Ira, whats the name of your super cool yes 'four tuner' piece?



A few years back, I demo-ed 'Half a Turn' at an informal gettogether at the Banjoree in Germany. It's my RK-75, I wasn't happy with this setup, so took it apart, and built it from the ground up. After that it was fine.



While playing, I realized, there was no mandolin around for the second break and made something up on the spot. Just got through by the skin of my teeth.....blushwink



youtu.be/QKwy_4H-SvI

Ira Gitlin - Posted - 11/26/2023:  15:12:54


quote:

Originally posted by RB-1

By the way, Ira, whats the name of your super cool yes 'four tuner' piece?



 






Glad you liked it! It's called "Bradford". The low-D tuner started slipping toward the end. You can hear that a liitle, and they had to cut off the final chord because it sounded God-awful for that reason.



I liked your tune a whole lot, too!

Jack Baker - Posted - 11/26/2023:  15:27:50


Hi Ira,

Yes, my 2nd string Keith tuner doesn't keep the pitch when I use it, it goes a little flat. It slips and is also a little tight to turn. Not sure who repairs these things these days...Jack


Edited by - Jack Baker on 11/26/2023 15:28:29

cheatinheart - Posted - 11/27/2023:  08:09:17


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