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Heaviest brass saddles for $30 or less

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by 63 vibroverb, Nov 30, 2018.

  1. 63 vibroverb

    63 vibroverb Tele-Holic

    647
    Nov 4, 2014
    Lititz, PA
    Looking to put some beefier saddles on my Baja's stock bridge. The stock brass saddles from Fender feel pretty light/flimsy. Would appreciate some recommendations on some heavier saddles at $30 or less. I've been looking at Gotoh's and Wilkinson's compensated saddles.

    On a sidenote, is it common for Teles to sound thinner when you raise the saddle heights? I raise the pickup heights to accommodate, but for some reason the tone still thins out.
     
  2. bo

    bo Friend of Leo's

    Mar 17, 2003
    Arlington, VA
    I don't know if they're heavier than the set on a Baja, but the Stew-Mac compensated set for less than $20 have improved my 50s Classic profoundly.
     
    harleytech likes this.
  3. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity

    Age:
    59
    Mar 2, 2010
    Maine
    I have a bunch of different brand brass Tele saddles and none are particularly heavier.
    Raising the saddles shouldn't thin the tone, but it's possible you didn't raise the bridge pickup quite up to where it was when it sounded fatter before raising the saddles.
    I presume raising the saddles went along with shimming the neck?
    It's hard to get exact same pickup heights, I sometimes use a caliper to measure if I'm changing the guard or bridge but not the action height.
    Or feeler gauges if I am changing the action height.
    For fattest tone I like the bridge pole piece pretty much a dimes thickness from the high E fretted at the higest fret.
    Low e pole gets more space to keep the bass from being too loud.
     
    Mugs likes this.
  4. 63 vibroverb

    63 vibroverb Tele-Holic

    647
    Nov 4, 2014
    Lititz, PA
    How so? Bigger and fatter sounding?


    I forget the reasoning, but I remember reading about Roy Buchanan putting a penny under his saddles to raise his action without thinning the tone.
     
  5. rigid650

    rigid650 TDPRI Member

  6. ndcaster

    ndcaster Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Nov 14, 2013
    Indiana
    Or Cesium!
     
  7. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Telefied Ad Free Member

    Could you selenium?
     
    DuckDodgers likes this.
  8. ndcaster

    ndcaster Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Nov 14, 2013
    Indiana
    if I had a nickel or two
     
  9. ndcaster

    ndcaster Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Nov 14, 2013
    Indiana
    that’s a helluva interesting chart, thanks!
     
  10. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Telefied Ad Free Member

    I see you already have a bismuth plan.
     
    DuckDodgers likes this.
  11. ndcaster

    ndcaster Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Nov 14, 2013
    Indiana
    I steel think it could work
     
  12. 63 vibroverb

    63 vibroverb Tele-Holic

    647
    Nov 4, 2014
    Lititz, PA
    I decided to spend a little more on the Gotohs, will see how they do. I have the Wilkinsons on my other tele and they work great, maybe the Gotohs will be even better.
     
    El Tele Lobo likes this.
  13. Gary in Boston

    Gary in Boston Friend of Leo's

    Apr 17, 2003
    WALTHAM MA
    Interesting, I have a Classic 50's

    I ordered Fender brass saddles to replace the steel ones.

    The set of saddles that came were these really small, flat bottomed brass saddles.

    Seriously, they were so frail looking I thought there has gotta be something wrong. I thought they'd snap under the strain.

    I sent them back and about a month later I ordered again from another vender, again Fender brand saddles.

    These come and they are not flat bottomed and larger in diameter.

    These made sense to me and they are what are on my guitar.

    Gary
     
  14. TimTam

    TimTam Tele-Meister

    415
    Jun 4, 2010
    Melbourne
    (my italics / underline)

    That's really the problem isn't it. We don't know whether it's better to have high acoustic impedance in a bridge or low in a solid body electric guitar, or even if that is a relevant property. So much of guitar physics is barely-informed supposition and folklore, aided by manufacturers' smoke and mirrors.
     
    W.L.Weller likes this.
  15. 63 vibroverb

    63 vibroverb Tele-Holic

    647
    Nov 4, 2014
    Lititz, PA
    The Gotohs are working great. They feel beefier than the stock brass saddles and I sense some more body to single notes (low mids, bass). Pretty big difference actually. Strings intonated with little effort and the resonance is wonderful. I compared all this while using the same strings that were on the guitar.

    I may replace the Wilkinsons on my other tele with these Gotohs, but its not urgent.
     
  16. Ian T

    Ian T Tele-Holic

    519
    Jan 11, 2013
    Tampa Bay
    The height of your saddles does effect string tone as it changes the break angle, which changes the downward pressure of the saddle into the bridge plate. Higher saddles are pushed more to the neck, and lower saddles are pushed more downward into the bridge plate. Some guys feel that saddles should be very low for best tone, and that you should shim the neck to achieve this. However, if you are a top loader, higher saddles are better.

    Bigger saddles are not always better. They have more surface area contact with the string, while the slimmer saddles have a smaller string footprint which may make the tone just a tad crisper. Glendale sells thin saddles as well as fat saddles as some players prefer these.

    You can add heavy tuners and bridge parts to a tele and it may increase your sustain but won't necessarily improve the tone. Leo had it right.
     
    jrblue and Zeonoid like this.
  17. Zeonoid

    Zeonoid Tele-Holic

    551
    Dec 17, 2008
    Slovakia, EU
    sorry mate theres no point in changing saddles for what you described in baja tele
    just waste of time and money..your sound and anything else important will not change in any way
     
  18. 63 vibroverb

    63 vibroverb Tele-Holic

    647
    Nov 4, 2014
    Lititz, PA
    Not sure if I understand the reasoning/physics behind that explanation, but I guess it's something to experiment with. I would have thought raising the saddles would put more of a break angle on the strings, and put more force into the bridge plate. I always thought that's why top loading gives such a slinky feel because there's even less break angle there.

    So if I like high action, I should shim the neck (raise the angle on the headstock side) instead of raise the saddles?
     
  19. 63 vibroverb

    63 vibroverb Tele-Holic

    647
    Nov 4, 2014
    Lititz, PA
    Sorry, but I’ll have to disagree. It was a much bigger difference than I expected.
     
    El Tele Lobo likes this.
  20. bo

    bo Friend of Leo's

    Mar 17, 2003
    Arlington, VA
     
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