Help with Hipshot contraptions.
Hi all, I have an American Standard Tele with a bunch of Hipshot stuff on it, three drop tuners, and the B bending mechanism as well as the G lever. I like it OK, but I can't seem to get the bridge (also Hipshot) set up properly with it.
I can set the radius and intonate it, but the saddles rattle. I have gone through it and I just can't get rid of it. It seems like the string, when plucked, makes the saddles rattle.
It does not seem to happen with the one string that is not altered by any Hipshot product.
I don't like the Hipshot bridge, and I really don't like the Hipshot saddles. They are cheap and flimsy, and you can see in the pictures that on the high E I used a Fender saddle, since that one rattles the worst. It's not a lot better.
My suspicion is starting to be that I'd either need heavier strings (I use .09 and .10 gauges), or raise the action up a lot higher for these to work right. But if I do that, then it becomes a guitar that I don't really enjoy playing much.
I am also wondering about getting a superior bridge, and am talking to Bill Callaham about their bridges, which are heavier and better constructed (most likely), and also have barrel saddles, which would be an improvement in this case.
I also suspect that the break angle of the string over the saddles is part of the problem here, that there just isn't enough pressure on the saddles due to the angle and the light strings. I'd rather address the break angle and hope the the light strings can stay, so I'm talking to Bill about drilling holes in the bridge a little lower.
I know a lot of folks on here use benders with barrel saddles and simply cut a groove into the top of the bridge, I'd rather not do that, but it makes me feel that the break angle with barrel saddles is less of an issue.
Or, I could be barking up the wrong tree. I thought I'd just throw this out there and see if anyone has any thoughts that I haven't considered, or can verify anything I'm suspecting. It's possible that I just suck at setting up this style of bridge in the first place, but I am not incapable of setting up guitars, and with this one I just go 'round and 'round and never get anywhere. But if people tell me that they have the same setup and have no problems with it, then I'll just accept it and take it to a pro or something, after having a more thorough whack at it Sunday.