Removing Wittner geared pegs once fitted.
I have a cheap electric violin which has had Wittner geared pegs fitted. It is a terrible job ; the ends look like they were chopped off with a hack saw. If possible, I would like to remove these pegs and clean them up with a view to fitting them to a new acoustic violin.
I live in Cairns (Australia) and there are no luthiers within a thousand miles.
Assuming that the pegs were not glued in ( always a horrible possibility) how can Wittner geared pegs be safely removed ?
NOTE : I am worried about damaging the pegs as they are worth more than the violin.
Wittner geared pegs are designed to be pushed out from the end, not pulled out by their heads, which will damage them. If they are not glued in, then you should be able to push them out with a bit of pressure and make sure that they have a soft place to land when they pop-out.
I read somewhere that if they are glued in (likely if the installer was as stupid as you're alleging) then you can soften the adhesive with a heat gun. Obviously that creates serious risk for the violin but you don't seem to care about that.