First thought by most people upon seeing the title of this article:
“Dear God, man… WHY would you do that?”
Good question, and I have a good answer.
Certain players have cheap bass guitars that they don’t feel like putting money into and want to do the “blackout” hardware thing, so they get the bright idea that maybe painting certain hardware black will get the job done.
No, it won’t.
Here is exactly what happens when you paint tuners black.
1. At first, the job will come out pretty good. You pat yourself on the back for a job well done.
2. A few weeks or months later, the gloss of the paint is gone for wherever you touched the tuners with your fingers.
3. Finally, the paint chips and flakes right off.
Here’s a TalkBass thread on what happens to painted-black tuner hardware (and it’s where the photo at top comes from.) Not advisable. Not at all.
Sure, you could powdercoat the tuners to get the paint to actually hold and not flake off, but for the time, effort and money it takes to do that, you’re better off just buying a black set (you’ll see the black options on that page.)