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Vintage bridge plates all about the same?

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by shutterbiker, Nov 17, 2012.

  1. shutterbiker

    shutterbiker Tele-Meister

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    I have the Wilkinson bridge and compensated saddles on my MIM Standard.
    I am happy with the sound of the bridge, but I sometimes think about replacing
    the plate with a Fender pat pending plate. I also think about trying the vintage saddles. Has anyone done this switch or have any thoughts on this?

    Thanks,

    Steve
     
  2. Rod Parsons

    Rod Parsons Friend of Leo's

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    I put the Pat Pend bridge and saddles on my '91 American Standard and I like it. I had to take a tiny bit of wood out underneath the plate to do it, but I think the old style plate looks better, and the sound is a bit more full or brassy, seeing that the saddles are brass. A slight compromise had to be made in setting up tuning as is almost always the case, but not enough to make a difference to me.
     
  3. '56Teleman

    '56Teleman Tele-Afflicted

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    Steve, I don't think you're going to notice much, if any, difference between the Wilkinson and Fender bridges and the compensated saddles on the Wilkinson will give you better intonation.
     
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  5. shutterbiker

    shutterbiker Tele-Meister

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    I'm sure you're right about the difference between the two bridges. The Wilkinson really is a good bridge.

    Steve
     
  6. '56Teleman

    '56Teleman Tele-Afflicted

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    Wilkinson
    [​IMG]

    Half Wilkinson
    [​IMG]

    No complaints with either of them.
     
  7. shutterbiker

    shutterbiker Tele-Meister

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    '56Teleman,

    Have you done any aging on the Wilkinson on the natural tele?
    I guess I've been looking at a lot of reliced bridges lately. My
    Wilkinson is super shiny and new looking, but so is my tele.

    Steve
     
  8. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Telefied

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    Heck, all the Pat Pending plates are not even the same.

    I buy batches of ten, and practice dropping them on a hard tabletop and listen for the way they ring out. They'll tend to fall into one of 3 categories. I use the clear ringers whole, cut the others down into half bridges.

    The Wilkys are not my favorites; the first one I ordered, the chrome was bubbled around the Wilkinson imaging on the plate. I actually like that Stew Mac #0099 plate (with other saddles; I set the included ones aside) amongst the inexpensive non Fender ones.
     
  9. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Doctor of Teleocity

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    After mucking around with other plates, I'm back to
    the original.
    I find all the thicker, more "perfect" plates impart a metallic
    brightness.
    The original plate, and 3 brass compensated saddles do it all, for me.
     
  10. '56Teleman

    '56Teleman Tele-Afflicted

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    No, I haven't. Brass saddles tarnish quickly without any help and I'm guilty of not cleaning that one very often, plus it's never in a case...ever. It gets played too often to be put away.
     
  11. shutterbiker

    shutterbiker Tele-Meister

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    Now that you mention it, mine are beginning to tarnish a bit. Mine's in the case when not being played (keeps my grandson from relicing it for me).
     
  12. sacizob

    sacizob Friend of Leo's

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    "Hey, that's exactly the same as I do"
    :D:D:D
     
  13. shutterbiker

    shutterbiker Tele-Meister

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    Just wanted to update. I went ahead and purchased a Fender pat. pend plate. I got it from Arkasas Music Works (actually their ebay site-pitchperfectmusic). The plate looks great and was marked as made in usa. Anyway, I used the Wilkinson saddles on it. It sounds as good or better than the Wilkinson (which sounded fine, but I like the looks of the Fender plate better).
     
  14. Colt W. Knight

    Colt W. Knight Doctor of Teleocity

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    I really like the fever bridge plate.
     
  15. Suzi Uki

    Suzi Uki TDPRI Member

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    If you're concerned about intonation over the three vintage saddles you should try using a set of strings that has a wound g. As well as generally sounding better, more focussed and longer lasting than a plain g; you don't have to have such a compromise when intonating that D and G string saddle, as the two strings behave in a more similar manner.
     
  16. SixShooter

    SixShooter Friend of Leo's

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    I really dislike the large Wilkenson logo on their plate. On the other hand I dislike the rough corners on the Fender Pat. Pending plate. On my last build I picked up either a Squier or MIM plate. No logo, smooth corners, nice chrome. It's steel and about the same gauge as as the Fender plate.
     
  17. SixShooter

    SixShooter Friend of Leo's

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    I think these are pretty nice for a vintage style plate:

    Squier Bridge.jpg

    Smooth corners compared to the Fender:

    100_1260.jpg

    Fender still adds the vintage style scratch marks on the side:

    100_1261.jpg
     
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