Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Bridge pick poles up not directly under strings.

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by CIVENGR, Jul 23, 2012.



    Dec 5, 2010
    Ruston, Louisiana
    So I just finished my first build yesterday. I'm very pleased with how it plays. However, the high e string is very quiet in the amp while the bridge pickup is selected. So I checked to see if the pick up needed to be raised.... Sadly, it needed to be moved as the pole is directly between the E and the B. The pole under the low E is centered. So my understanding of geometry leads me to believe that the bridge (which holds the pickup) is rotated slightly about the pole under the low E. This is very scary and I'm afraid that there is no fix. Someone please ease my fears and tell me how to fix it. I'll post a pic this evening. Thanks.

  2. Ed Mo

    Ed Mo TDPRI Member

    Mar 31, 2011
    towson, maryland
    I don't think anyone can answer a question about your own build. What is the spacing of the strings? What is the angle of the bridge pickup? If you got a body that already had the bridge pickup routed, I would say you may just have a pickup that is not spaced for your string spacing. Over the years, the string spacing has gotten narrower (down to 2 1/8 on the moderns, I believe.) "Vintage was wider. But, if you bought the body with string holes already drilled, measuring those will tell you what the spacing is.

    If you did our own drilling and routing, I am afraid you may be on your own.

    It really helps to do your first build by having a manufactured tele to compare with.




    Dec 5, 2010
    Ruston, Louisiana
    My spacing at the bridge is 2 and 1/8. The pickup spec is the same. So the spacing is not the issue. I'm hoping its not my routing. I was extremely cautious with that part considering I only had one block of wood. I did buy a cheap six saddle bridge off ebay.

  4. clayfeat

    clayfeat Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 19, 2005
    bloomington, in
    Maybe that is it. Send us pics when you can.



    Dec 5, 2010
    Ruston, Louisiana

  6. Rod Parsons

    Rod Parsons Friend of Leo's

    Sep 26, 2009
    Winchester, Va.
    Are there groves in the sadles to keep the strings from sliding?That whole bridge assembly looks kind of weird to me. I think that if were mine, I would try another assembly, just to see if the one in the picture is "off" somehow. I'm wondering why all the saddle screws are slanted to the right and are up against the right side if the bridge. I have a Fender Pat Pend 3-saddle bridge and the saddles are brass. With mine, I can move the strings maually over the pole pieces and the brass holds the strings in place. After awhile, small groves are formed where I place the strings and the grooves, though very, very tiny, do hold the strings right where I want.:D



    Dec 5, 2010
    Ruston, Louisiana
    Ok, I think I've got it. It must be the bridge. The low E string comes through the body almost directly under the the saddle screw. This happens for each string. The tension of the string puts a force tangent to the screw pushing it sideways. The high E string does not make contact with the saddle screw. But by then all the other saddles are pushing it off course. I'll test this idea by making sure the saddles aren't touching each other and post back.

  8. Bartholomew3

    Bartholomew3 Friend of Leo's

    Dec 8, 2010
    I would put a piece of steel or something in beside the top E saddle to prevent it from shifting to the right like that.

    Then they would all be in the proper place.

  9. Greg.Coal

    Greg.Coal Tele-Afflicted

    Aug 23, 2009
    You've got "offset" saddles in a bridge for which the string-through holes are centered on the saddle screw. I would say that's in correct.

    That kind of bridge (which I've just removed from a guitar) is meant to be about 1/8 to 3/16" off center, also. Maybe, for one thing, you've centered it. And, like I say, the string through holes should be offset from the saddle screw hole.

    I would recommend you get a different bridge with centered saddles like this one from GFS which also has their well-thought of stainless saddles in it. Or at least a correct saddle/bridge combination.


  10. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Telefied Ad Free Member

    These saddles are wide enough, they're gonna force the strings to land wide of where they're supposed to go. Left that way, the volume on the B and especially the little E string will be extremely low.

    If you moved the saddles down in where they're liable to fall if the guitar is intonated right, the problem will be less evident. You could shove the saddles tight together, shove the saddles over to the left, but the spacing will be very wide not only for the bridge pickup, but even more for the neck pickup (assuming it isn't an Esquire) and won't line up on the neck correctly, either. The little E will hang off of or at least play off of the edge of the board.

    But I'd ditch this bridge, and use another form of 4 screw hole bridge in its place. IMO this bridge offers too few advantages in exchange for a smorgasbord of faults and problems. There are a number of bridge plates that are meant for 3 compensated barrels and they work so much nicer and won't force the strings to fall where they do not belong.

  11. clayfeat

    clayfeat Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 19, 2005
    bloomington, in
    I think the saddles are too wide. The string holes in the bridge appear to line up with the pickup polepieces.

  12. H. Mac

    H. Mac Friend of Leo's

    May 26, 2012
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Yep. It sounds like with the exception of the problem bridge, your first build turned out really well, so congrats and happy new guitar day. The good thing is that there are a lot of good bridges to chose from, that aren't too pricy, and that will result in better alignment with your strings being properly over the poles.

    A lot of folks (including me) like the Wilkinson bridge with 3 compensated brass saddles that goes for about $20. Just a suggestion though.

  13. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Telefied Ad Free Member

    These saddles in my experience will not fit on the existing plate that the O.P. has shown, as they're dead centered (which is good normally) while the holes on that plate are offset. Also, the string will hang up IME on the underside of the back portion of the saddle on its way through the block saddle and then over the top of the saddle (the break point) because of where the through holes are located on the O.P.'s bridgeplate. Thus the saddle and string are woven together like chain mail and this IMO sounds like rubbish (even through the speaker).

    But, the bridge shown is a good copy of the existing bridge on the Squier Tele Standard if you have that "2 top screw over 3 very low mount screw" mounting configuration and through hole configuration that we see on many overseas T models but not on any USA T guitars I can think of.

  14. LarsOS

    LarsOS Tele-Holic

    Oct 24, 2011
    +1. The saddles seem to be all over the place. They're certainly not straight. The low E is not that bad, the A looks OK, but after that each string is slightly worse than the previous. You could try some other saddles, or grind them down to make them a little bit narrower.



    Dec 5, 2010
    Ruston, Louisiana
    Thanks yall. I've discovered that when aligning the neck I was off as well. That contributes to the problem I'm sure. Neck aligning is probably the hardest part of the process for me. I will look into a new bridge as well.

  16. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Telefied Ad Free Member

    Yeah, you will want some freedom in mounting the neck, and the 3 barrel bridges provide that in abundance. You can move the strings around, even notch the barrels for the strings once you are set, and have the neck aligned right with the strings all nicely spaced up and down the neck. Sometimes the 6 saddle bridges just so happen to align but in a home assembly, you don't want to be heavily dependent on luck in that area.


  17. JimmieT

    JimmieT Tele-Meister

    Apr 12, 2005
    Seattle, WA
    the bridge mounting looks right but those saddles are mounted on the bridge wrong. Get a new bridge .

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