Tagged: Machine Head

A machine head (also referred to as a tuner, or gear head) is a geared apparatus for tuning stringed musical instruments by adjusting string tension. Machine heads are used on mandolins, guitars, double basses etc., and are usually located on the instrument’s headstock. Non-geared tuning devices that are used on violins, violas, cellos, lutes, older Flamenco guitars, ukuleles etc., are known as tuning pegs.
Traditionally, a single machine head consists of a cylinder or capstan, mounted at the center of a pinion gear, a knob or “button” and a worm gear that links them. The capstan has a hole through the far end from the gear, and the string is made to go through that hole, and is wrapped around the capstan. To complete the string installation, the string is tightened by turning the capstan using the tuning knob. The worm gear ensures that the capstan cannot turn without a movement on the knob; it also allows precise tuning.
Banjos usually employ a different mechanism using planetary…