Grestch Strap Buttons

Discussion in 'THE Gretsch Discussion Forum' started by TeleKing, Aug 29, 2021.

  1. TeleKing

    TeleKing Electromatic

    Jan 28, 2016
    I have 5 different Gretsch guitars, but mainly the same model but just different colors. It's just the sound that I like what for what I do. I play the Gretsch 5125-5129 guitars with the Dynosonics and I just love the sound for what I do.

    However, the strap buttons are making me want to move back to telecasters. Played a show on Friday and the strap buttons came loose and my strap came off in the middle of a song while I'm singing. Saw it pop off, had to use my elbow and hip to hold it up and try to finish the song.

    I have some that actually screw into the body, and my 5127 has an actual post coming out of the body for the strap to go over and then the screw tightens on that.

    Truly the absolute worst design for any guitar I've ever had.

    I would love to just glue them in so they don't move, or just replace them with something completely different. I can't have my strap coming undone during songs, and since I start most of the songs, and I sing, and I have to tune on some songs, I have too much to worry about in between songs, I don't always remember to check to make sure they're tightened.

    Also, the ones that actually screw into the body, they're almost stripped now and I worry they're going to just pop out for good and I can't screw them back in.

    LOVE these guitars. The strap button issue is making them almost unusable for me live.

    I've looked into this before and nobody seemed to have a really good suggestion on how to solve the issue? Any ideas?

    nickurso and mrfixitmi like this.
  2. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    Love these, solves the problem.


    Schaller "S"
    O Riley, nickurso, MrBurnside and 7 others like this.
  3. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    I agree . I use the same as @G5422T above on all my guitars
  4. TeleKing

    TeleKing Electromatic

    Jan 28, 2016
    Are the screws bigger than the Gretsch screws? Because I think you'd need them quite a bit bigger to re-groove the screws into the wood?

    Also, what would I do with the 5127 (my favorite and the one the button came off of) as there is a post coming through the wood with a screw coming out of it and then you screw the button on the screw coming out of the wood?
  5. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    Yes, there size is fine for existing hole.

    If a stud/post is stuck in the body, I use vice grips and screw them out.

    You'll be good to go.
    Randy99CL likes this.
  6. Randy99CL

    Randy99CL Country Gent

    Feb 17, 2020
    I'm cheap and use the Dunlop strap locks on all my guitars including my G5129. It's been a while but I don't remember any problem installing them on it.
    The locks work perfectly, no complaints. STRAPLOK® STRAP RETAINERS TRADITIONAL - NICKEL - Dunlop (

    On sale I've found them for as little as around $10 per set.
    The idea is that I can use any strap on any guitar and I only need a couple of straps. Saves money.
    Now I only buy the buttons for $6 per guitar.

    Edit: the screws that come with the Dunlop locks are slightly larger diameter than those that most guitars use and I believe they are hardened (stronger) also. I remember they were a good snug fit in my 5129 and I always wax screws that go into wood. They work perfectly.
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2021
    Gregor and MrWookiee like this.
  7. gtttrrr

    gtttrrr Country Gent

    Dec 7, 2011
    United States
    Yep, lock em down….on all of my stable FBD9A590-4951-4412-A28E-AAC84E0035B2.jpeg
    MrWookiee likes this.
  8. wabash slim

    wabash slim I Bleed Orange

    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    Yes, the Straplocks screws are larger. You actually might want to enlarge the hole a tad, or at least use soap to lube the screw. As as the Gretsch strap hangers look, I've replaced mine with the Schallers. My guitar didn't get damaged, but my heart skipped a beat when it dropped with no warning.

    Gretsch needs to use Schaller Straplocks as stock, Tru-Arc or Compton bridges, better pots, and jack plates. Also, they should all come with cases.
    gtttrrr likes this.
  9. mr coffee

    mr coffee Country Gent

    Oct 7, 2009
    I've actually got mine staying put pretty well. For a long time, they really seemed to want to come out all the time and I'd have to check them periodically. I eventually pulled the studs, crammed the holes full of glued up toothpick pieces before driving the studs back in. I leave the strap on my 5120 so I just used a drop of blue LocTite to keep the buttons from backing off the studs. I bought some straplocks for another guitar and found that I really hate them, they just feel wonky and like the strap is further from the body, and I really didn't like that. The few guitars that have normal strap buttons get a rubber washer, that's been adequate, the rest get my usual preferred Dimarzio Cliplock.

    gazzie likes this.
  10. section2

    section2 Country Gent

    Dec 21, 2016
    Can you clarify what you mean by this? All of the Gretsch barrel knobs should work the same. They have a post that screws into the guitar and stays there, and then a metal knob that screws onto the post.

    I could be misunderstanding your description, but it sounds like the post is coming unscrewed from the wood on some of your guitars. That shouldn't be happening. When you unscrew the knob, the metal knob should unscrew from the post, and the threaded post should stay in the guitar.

    If the post is coming out of the guitar, you'll want to fill the hole with toothpicks and wood glue, wait for it to dry fully, and drill a new pilot hole. Unscrew the metal knob from the threaded post, and then screw the post into the newly drilled hole. Then screw the knob back onto the post.

    If the post is staying in the guitar, but the metal knob is coming unscrewed from the post too easily, just add a dab of blue LocTite to the threads of the post. The LocTite will stop the knob from coming loose accidentally. (Just be sure to use blue LocTite, not red. The red LocTite will create a permanent bond.)

    Alternatively, you could just install Schaller (or similar) strap locks. But you might want to give the above tricks a try before modding your guitars with new strap locks.
    mbkri, CKC411 and Gregor like this.
  11. radd

    radd Country Gent

    Dec 27, 2017
    Santa Cruz
    I’ve replaced the Gretsch locks on almost every one I’ve owned. I have used Schaller and Dunlop and they both works well. My favorite is just standard strap buttons and beer bottle washers.

    Quick comment: no need to sell the guitar, the problem is easily fixed. Actually, strap locks don’t come on most brands and strap locks are probably the most common guitar upgrade.

    The only problem with the washers, you have to be cool enough to use them…. :cool:

    Here they are on my Tele

    9D7E6378-D112-44FE-9619-05D6E5CE70A5.jpeg EE1300CD-314A-4E04-881A-55ECD5C42037.jpeg 3E57392F-01EE-4E38-BF98-1FEE7FB6D936.png

    Some Fender ones on my thinline

    Last edited: Aug 30, 2021
  12. Trash Kidd

    Trash Kidd Country Gent

    Dec 14, 2015
    London U.K.
    Totally agree!
    I have Schaller strap locks on both my Gretsch guitars & had them on others I’ve owned in the past.
    The Gretsch strap buttons look cool but are no good at all to a gigging guitar player…
    calebaaron666 and G5422T like this.
  13. Dana Rudd

    Dana Rudd Country Gent

    Nov 26, 2019
    Greybull, WY
    I've got Dunlop's on all my electrics.
    Screw is larger but they tell you the size to drill to.
  14. swivel

    swivel Country Gent

    May 13, 2018
    You can use the Gretsch threaded body part to put Schallers on. Just get the apprriate screw thread... 8-32? not sure. Works great and totally reversible.
  15. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Friend of Fred

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Another Schaller user here.

    First gig I played with my Falcon I saw the gold button was working it’s way off, and that woulda been devastating had I not caught it when I did.

    I now put Schaller locks on my any new Gretsch that comes into my possession.
    Trash Kidd likes this.
  16. T Bone

    T Bone Country Gent

    First, a lot of people hate them and replace them with strap locks. Also, a lot of us love them (and I actually hate strap locks).

    Next, you don't have any that actually screw into the body. You have some that the stud is securely tightened into the barrel and needs to be separated.

    Once you have the posts separated, or when you go to remove others, check the ends of the posts. They should have slots for either slotted or Phillips screwdrivers. Use those to secure or remove the stud.

    Caution: Some of the studs I have seen are left hand thread (into the body), others are not. Hope some of this is helpful. I tend to check mine frequently, only once I recall finding one surprisingly loose. But if you really don't like them, you may just be in the camp that would prefer strap locks.
  17. swivel

    swivel Country Gent

    May 13, 2018
    mrfixitmi likes this.
  18. bigjohnbates

    bigjohnbates Gretschie

    Jun 15, 2011
    Schaller S on every guitar and strap. That's honest experience from thousands of one-nighters around the world right there. But ya still need to make sure they are tight (screw in the guitar and the nut on the strap) because everything fails if you let it.
  19. j.s.c

    j.s.c Country Gent

    Aug 19, 2008
    The Rubber grommets can also do the job with traditional gretsch pins... I made this with rubber plug then screwed it tight, then the pin moves as the strap but comes back in place. Works well even if it's not as secured as a schaller's strap locking system.

  20. fsdphcorrigan

    fsdphcorrigan Gretschie

    Aug 30, 2019
    Lake Oswego, Oregon
    I use Schallers on all my guitars. The screws are larger than the Gretsch screws, so I enlarged the holes. I use felt washers under them. You can get a pack of ten from Amazon for about $6
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