I'm working on the headstock for my latest build; I want to do three-in-line on the tuners, with each peg lined up so the string comes off the peg and across the nut and down the neck in a straight line. 

I've determined the angle at which they need to be laid out, but I'm wondering if there's a standard distance for the top string between the peg and the nut? I know I don't want to be too close - is this something that can just be kinda eyeballed, or are there any real considerations?

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A three-on-a-strap tuner for an acoustic guitar has post spacing of around 35 mm ( 1 3/8"). Classic guitar tuners have post spacing of 39mm ( 1 17/32).

For what you are trying to accomplish I wouildn't worry too much about tuner spacing (withing in reason of course). Just remember, if you want the strings to run straight it is not the center of the post that has to be in the line you want but the edge of the post (usually the inside edge based on normal string winding conventions).

Good luck with your build.

Distance from post to nut can complicate the issue of getting a proper break over the nut.

I discovered this the hard way on an early build by miscalculating the height of the post relative to the nut combined with having the post distance a little too close to the nut. 

I made it work by carefully wrapping the string down the post and allowing a few extra turns from what I would normally do. But it was close.

I'd suggest careful planning of the height, combined with a little more distance than you might expect to need, which should minimize the chance of this being an issue. 

Other than that, sounds like your on the right track. I appreciate a straight pull design, and prefer a design with no "trees" or gizmos.

only real consideration is if the angle is too steep you can break strings. too shallow and you might have tuning stability issues.

A fellow builder told me he had asked me the same question and I replied 7/8".,.,I have no recollection of ever saying anything of the sort.,.,.so i say "eyeball it".,.,

I'm with you on the straight string ethic, so I've adopted a tapered headstock shape as a kind of signature.

Given a head back-angle of between 10 and 15 degrees, I reckon on a minimum of 40mm (say 1.5") between the nut and nearest tuners.  Any less than that, and there might not be enough of a break angle as the strings pass over the nut.

The height of the tuner posts can vary with their manufacturer, and can be a factor here.

On an earlier build, I didn't have enough of a break angle, and had to fit a guide bar over the strings (behind the nut) to force them down a tad.



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