10:1 Rickard Cycloidal Tuner

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10:1 Rickard Cycloidal Tuner

Rickard10:1 Cycloidal TunerG99997060
RICKARD 10:1 Cycloidal Banjo Pegs

The smoothest, strongest, most positive banjo tuner now available!

Solid brass construction, in nickel plated finish or natural brass. Choice of ebony or boxwood buttons.

They require a 3/8" diameter hole, so they're a drop-in replacement for most standard 4:1 planetary pegs.

Because these tuners work perfectly on so many different instruments, they are priced individually rather than in sets of 4, 6 or whatever.

A bit of background:

This one is personal for me - the first successful banjo tuning peg suitable for use on guitar.

In particular, Martin style OM-18 and OM-28 instruments made around 1930 were originally equipped with banjo pegs. Those low-ratio geared tuners need to be adjusted so tightly that they're difficult to tune or keep in tune. Around 2004 I decided to embark on a project that became more of a journey than I expected.

Unless you've been living with me, you probably are unaware of the many hundreds of hours I've spent tinkering on "non-gear-driven" banjo peg designs. My first efforts were with preloaded ball bearings in a planetary arrangement. I went through quite a few iterations over the first few years, developing a 9:1 drive tuner that worked very smoothly. It worked well on banjo strings, but just wasn't strong enough to handle the high tension of guitar strings.

In 2010, I finally hit on the idea of using a completely different mechanism, and made what I believe was the world's first banjo tuner with a cycloidal reduction drive. Unlike other designs, the cycloidal drive is super strong, smooth and positive.

Some health issues intervened, and few years later I shared my efforts with one of our favorite banjo makers, Bill Rickard. I'd heard that he was in the process of improving the "conventional" planetary 4:1 banjo tuners. After a number of discussions on the phone, I convinced him of the need for higher ratio tuners for the guitar community.

Ultimately, I gave him my prototype with the hope he might be inspired to perfect the design and actually bring a solid and useful product to market.