Socket wrench

10 mm socket wrench specially ground for replacing tuning machines

Most modern hurdy-gurdy builders use mechanical tuning machines in place of the traditional tuning pegs. The most common machines in use are designed for the banjo, made by Schaller or Gotoh. There's a small complication to using these machines: they were designed for banjos, where the back of the machine rests against a flat surface, and the nut which holds the machine in place is easily tightened with a standard flat wrench. The profile of this nut is designed to be as thin as possible, to improve the look of the banjo. In a banjo, it's OK that it's thin, because the flat wrench still has plenty of surface to grip when tightening or loosening.

In a hurdy-gurdy, this nut is hidden deep inside the peghead. Tightening it with a flat wrench is out of the question. Instead we use a socket wrench, and that's where the trouble starts. Socket wrenches are designed to tighten and loosen nuts that are quite a bit thicker than the nut on a banjo tuner. To make it easier to get the socket onto the nut, the edges of the socket are relieved or angled, so that the mouth of the socket is wider and guides the socket onto the nut. On a banjo tuner, this means that very little of the surface of the inside of the socket is actually in contact with the metal edges of the nut.

Also, the standard depth socket doesn't fit over the tuner's post, so we need a deep socket wrench. If you need to replace a tuning machine and you use a regular deep socket on it, the chances are very good that the socket will either just slip off or (worse) will slip off and deform the metal of the nut. The machines are made of brass plated with gold or chrome, and in a contest between brass and the hardened steel of a socket, the brass always loses.

To address this problem, we strongly recommend using a deep socket which has had the rounded lip ground off. If you have a grinder, you can do this yourself. If not, you can purchase such a modified deep socket from us, along with the driver (which looks like a screwdriver handle). If you have our Orca model, you should get this set with a universal joint, because there isn't a straight shot at the machines from underneath the peghead.

The price of the set of the modified deep socket and driver is $40. The set for the Orca, with the universal joint, is $55. Shipping in North America is an additional $5. Shipping outside North America is $12. To order, please call or email us.

Beati illi qui in circulum circumeunt, fient enim magnae rotae.

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Alden and Cali Hackmann
Olympic Musical Instruments

Beati illi qui in circulum circumeunt, fient enim magnae rotae.

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