Grestch Strap Buttons

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

  1. Back in Black

    Back in Black Country Gent

    Jun 22, 2020
    Ontario Canada
    Hi Folks...

    Lots of helpful/thinking out of the box ideas here. I especially like the red rubber porcelain beer cap washers.

    Truthfully, I've been playing a guitar since 1965, and have never had this problem...period!

    I have never used/purchased strap locks, wouldn't even know what to look for.

    Guitars' like so many other ''tools/equipment'' need to be checked/inspected ''frequently''...the more frequent the use, the more frequent the inspection.

    It sounds to me, as though worn out straps, and lack of frequent equipment inspection, are as much to blame as anything else.

    Gretsch strap button studs, have a very small recessed Phillips head, they are screwed from the factory, into either solid mahogany in the solid body models, or into a solid block in hollow body models...and unless they've been removed, and the hole fiddled with or modified, they will not loosen or strip out, and as @mrcoffee has already stated, a drop of Loctite will more than secure the button.

    In 2020, I removed the Gretsch strap buttons, when I built the Malcolm Young Jet relic replica. and replaced them with Fender style strap buttons, as Malcolm did on his original. the studs were so tight, they squeaked coming out. The chance of these studs loosening off was slim to none and the buttons, were secured from the factory, with blue Loctite. I had to wrap the buttons with paper towel, and use small vice grips to loosen them. They weren't going anywhere either!

    Being an avid scuba diver, diving with a rebreather, equipment inspection is my life...and I follow that philosophy through, on everything I own.

    On a slightly side-bar topic...

    Those of you who know me, know that I have been absent, due to my wife's stroke recovery, Although I've made a few posts in recent days, I'm not really back...just in desperate need of a little wife's recovery is not going as hoped.


    gazzie likes this.
  2. gazzie

    gazzie Electromatic

    Nov 10, 2010
    I agree with everything you say! A piece of matchstick or toothpick glued in the hole sorts out any issues with the strap "stud" getting loose, and then you just get used to subconsciously checking the buttons are tight, I do it automatically after all these years. Played countless gigs and never had an issue. I had strap locks that were supplied factory fitted on a recently bought G6112 Jr - I absolutely hate them for the reasons you say and also the horrible metallic clonking sound and the strap seems to get tangled all the time, it has a life of it's own - a bit like the dreaded cables that go away after gigs beautifully wound up, and come out in a mad tangled mess ! I took them off and replaced with the standard Gretsch buttons. Also highly recommend the rubber washers/beer bottle top washers that I use on every guitar I own. Job's a good 'un. Lovely jubbly!
    mr coffee and Mr Twangy like this.
  3. gazzie

    gazzie Electromatic

    Nov 10, 2010
    Yes! The only time I ever used a guitar with strap locks at a gig (a Les Paul donkey's years ago), I was guesting for only 3 songs with a friend's band, and this exact thing happened - the nut on the part of the strap lock that attached to the strap came undone and I only just saved the LP from dropping neck first to the floor - and we know what would have happened then!? SNAP!
    loudnlousy likes this.
  4. G5422T

    G5422T Country Gent

    May 24, 2012
    loudnlousy likes this.
  5. nickurso

    nickurso Gretschified

    Dec 24, 2012
    New Orleans la.
  6. nickurso

    nickurso Gretschified

    Dec 24, 2012
    New Orleans la.
    Strap locks. Why are you playing gigs with your guitar and don’t have strap locks on your guitar?
  7. mbkri

    mbkri Country Gent

    Sep 22, 2012
    As @afire and @Back in Black have said, not really a problem per se, just not as failsafe as, say, Schaller straplocks which seem to be , if anything, somewhat over engineered!
    I put the Schallers on my Fenders because Fenders all seem to come with a very rudimentary button, but i have never encountered a problem with the Gretsch strap buttons in thirty years of playing and Gigging Gretsch guitars. And i am (or cetainly used to be) a somewhat animated performer.
    The key to Gretsch buttons is to ensure they are tight, and i do it almost without realising it EVERY time i put a guitar on to play, between songs, during songs if i have a passage with nothing to do, on and off all the time. Its just a movement that i make. I hardly even grip the button. Its more of a check than a tightening. Its like tuning up, or tapping my foot. Its second nature. Its part of playing. I dont even know im doing it.
    30 years. Never dropped a Gretsch. They are knurled buttons, designed to be touched!
    section2, Back in Black and Mr Twangy like this.
  8. GAMBLER1234

    GAMBLER1234 Gretschie

    Jan 18, 2018
    Henderson Nevada
    I agree. They suck. I replaced mine right off. On the other hand they do make for pretty cool switch tips.
    Trash Kidd and G5422T like this.
  9. rockinstephen

    rockinstephen Electromatic

    Hmmm...I've never had a problem with the knurled strap buttons on my 6196 CC. They stay screwed on and the strap can't slip off...
    Henry and mbkri like this.
  10. O Riley

    O Riley Synchromatic

    Call me the one person who absolutely love's the Gretsch "threaded barrel type".
    I've never had any problem's on my Falcon. Just snug it up and off to the race's.

    Although I do have chrome Schaller strap locks on one of my Les Paul's.

    And use the Beer Washers on my R8. ,.;)
    Henry and mbkri like this.
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