Positioning a bridge - saddle travel

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Slowtwitch, Feb 4, 2019.

  1. Slowtwitch

    Slowtwitch Tele-Meister

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  2. Slowtwitch

    Slowtwitch Tele-Meister

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    I'm pedantic about this since I'm the owner of a LP with a bridge that cannot adjust far enough back on 1 or 2 strings. It would have been great if the bridge was positioned 1 to 2mm further back to get perfect intonation and it's too little to try and remove bridge bolts plug and redrill
     
  3. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

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    .

    Did you go from 9s to 10s on that guitar? Sometimes you run out of travel.
    Some players cut the saddle screw spring in half to get that extra 2mm of back set.

    .
     
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  4. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I move my saddles about 85-90 % forward and place the apex of the E saddles on a measured and drawn scale length line that is perpendicular to the center line. That gives a little wiggle room for human error in installation.


    protractor.jpg
     
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  5. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    deleted a post meant for the other current thread.....:(
     
  6. AAT65

    AAT65 Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    You should be safe to run the saddles as far forward as possible — in practice most people will go for 85/90% of the way forward!
    Compensation for intonation always involves making the string longer than the scale length. That’s why, as Stew-Mac say, the high E — which needs the least compensation — pretty much has the saddle at the nominal scale length and everything else is longer, ie the saddle pulled further back.
    Setting the midpoint of the saddle at scale length loses some of the available adjustment length.
     
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  7. eallen

    eallen Tele-Afflicted

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    As Marty and ATT65 said. I tend to like a little more than SM 1/16" SM shows in the drawing just incase of some unexplainable need to go towards the neck. Even when I have had to mount more centered for a reason I have never come close to running out of back adjustment either.

    Eric

    Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk
     
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  8. Slowtwitch

    Slowtwitch Tele-Meister

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    Thx I like the 85-90% approach, makes sense to allow for error
     
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  9. Slowtwitch

    Slowtwitch Tele-Meister

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    I use 10's, not sure what the Epi's are designed for. I can actually intonate it but def on the G string the saddle is tight against the back and an extra 1mm would have been great.

    I have thought of skimming some material off the saddle, but with the saddle flipped i.e. breakover point closest to back as shown below, there's basically no material to be removed
    Screenshot from 2019-02-05 08:26:24.png
     
  10. LuckyJinx

    LuckyJinx TDPRI Member

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    I don't remember seeing TOM bridges with springs in the adjustment screws.
     
  11. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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  12. Vizcaster

    Vizcaster Friend of Leo's

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    Difficult to tell from that photo, but it might be a hybrid type bridge. Sorry if I'm misconstruing the situation, but if it's a vintage "ABR-1" style tune o matic bridge, then the saddle screws should face the pickup and in that case in the photo they're all forwards, not pushed back. It appears to have E-clips on the screws so you should be able to reverse the position of the saddles and get some extra travel. The normal position would have the takeoff point closer to the neck with the vertical face in front and the slant running down behind; if you flip the saddle then the vertical face goes to the back where it can snug up closer to the back edge of the bridge and eek out a bit more intonation travel.

    It might be a hybrid or modern bridge (there seems to be a retaining wire so it looked like somebody's version of the ABR-1). TonePros made some nice ones with more travel than the vintage Gibson ABR-1. you'll still see vintage ABR-1 style bridges on historic reissues and Memphis Customs (hollowbodies). On ABR-1 style bridges its not unusual to see the lower two or three saddles flipped around to get more intonation travel.

    A Nashville bridge, used in production guitars from the GibsonUSA factory (non-historics) since about 1974, has a much wider body and allows greater compensation range on the saddles, but they attach with those big honking threaded studs and threaded anchors, and the wider bridge body usually prevents you from dropping the tailpiece all the way down tight to the deck (so I don't like them). You mentioned Epi so maybe it's an import bridge with the large sockets and some hybrid design that mounts like a Nashville but has flippable saddles like an ABR-1 (I believe Epi called that a "tone lock" bridge, it's got screwdriver slots in the studs to adjust the height and they're much larger diameter than a Gibson ABR, plust they go into threaded sockets).
     
  13. Slowtwitch

    Slowtwitch Tele-Meister

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    Now that I have my bridge, I set it out and something looks screwy compared to the drawing dim's :confused::

    My bridge is 5/16" further back than the 3.730" from the heel.
    I use a Wilkinson short bridge, set the saddle travel approx 90% forward and placed the apex on 25 1/2" from nut. All good and ready to drill. But....

    This means my screw holes are 5/16" further back than the Tele drw indicates, and I'm sure the Wilkinson bridge is not that much different from a Fender Tele bridge (pencil shows theoretical position)

    Should I just stick to my guns and drill, it seems correct from first principles, but not to the drw??

    IMG_20190425_072334.jpeg
     
  14. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I'd just go by what's in front of you..... the actual bridge....
     
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  15. trev333

    trev333 Telefied Ad Free Member

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    about here, as measured from 12 fret on my tele...... treble E looks about 1/8" longer than 251/2.. :)

    tele bridge placement.jpg
     
  16. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Tele-Afflicted

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    This is an absolutely incredible tool for calculating the amount of compensation needed for any string at any scale length for any kind of instrument for any action (which is saying a lot if you ask me)

    https://www.liutaiomottola.com/formulae/compensation.htm

    Its worth while running the calcs on an instrument that you have in front of you and comparing the amount of compensation that you have put in by another method (usually comparing fretted 12th fret note with harmonic).

    If you position the bridge such that you can get this amount of compensation for each string and have some adjustment, plus being able to change to a different string gauge and/or change the action, you should be fine.

    Here is another really handy formula - if you have a guitar with the intonation slightly off an you want to know how much to move it this will tell you

    https://www.liutaiomottola.com/formulae/saddle.htm

    The other formulae on his page are worth exploring too.
     
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  17. old wrench

    old wrench Tele-Holic

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    That's an excellent resource, Freeman. Thanks for the contribution :)!

    I just spent an enjoyable and educational hour or so looking through Mottola's site.

    That compensation calculator is a classy piece of work.



    Best Regards,
    Geo.
     
  18. Treadplatedual

    Treadplatedual Tele-Holic

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    Pretty much my process as well.
     
  19. Mr_Q

    Mr_Q TDPRI Member

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    Question for those who do this regularly...If I'm working from the T. Downs drawings, am I safe to go ahead and drill, or is it prudent to lay out the bridge and measure before making assumptions. (And we know about assumptions.)
     
  20. guitarbuilder

    guitarbuilder Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    It's probably smart to wait until you get your bridge in front of you.
     
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