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At what point does one replace a bridge?

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by IMadeYouReadThis, Sep 18, 2020.

  1. bondoman

    bondoman Tele-Holic

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    I've been known to change them simply because they were cheap chrome plated pot metal. Although it wont make as big a difference on a TOM as it will a Stop Tail and weather or not you'd even notice the difference I've always swapped them out with brass bridges, usually Schaller or Hipshot. Besides the fact that they're machined 100 x better and problem free they tend to add a bit of sustain and depth. Or at least to my ears.
     
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  2. radiocaster

    radiocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I like Norlin too, and harmonica bridges are cool, but not worth plugging and re-drilling.
     
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  3. Collin D Plonker

    Collin D Plonker Tele-Afflicted

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    Tune o matic bridges sometimes collapse in the middle. Check the radius against your neck with a proper radius gauge. Then fix the wire issue, and do a complete setup to eliminate other variables. If you still have issues, change the bridge.
     
  4. 1 21 gigawatts

    1 21 gigawatts Tele-Meister

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    It looks like you can get more travel by flipping the whole bridge (so the adjustment screws are facing back). You would probably have to raise the tailpiece to clear the screw heads, but that is no big deal.
     
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  5. TwangerWannabe

    TwangerWannabe Tele-Holic

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    Thats because you spent money on a new bridge. Who wouldnt believe in their mind that the guitar sounds better after they shelled out money for parts that they probably didn't really need?!
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2020
  6. Jlwctn

    Jlwctn Tele-Meister

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    I have a G400, and I love it!
    That being said, if the el-cheapo bridge starts giving me trouble, I'll put a newer, higher quality unit on there.
    I'm not disparaging the G400, but it's not like it is an "original 1961 Les Paul/SG".
    Put a new part on it and enjoy it.
    +1 on Top Wrap.
     
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  7. Jim622

    Jim622 Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    When it falls into the gorge?
     
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  8. TwangerWannabe

    TwangerWannabe Tele-Holic

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    Looks like there's quite a bit of travel left on the G string. Also, as others have mentioned, check the intonation and tuning at the nut first when comparing the open strings to the strings fretted at the first fret. If the notes fretted at the first fret are noticeably sharp you need to address the nut FIRST before you do anything else to the guitar. Get the nut slots filed properly. This will usually fix tuning and intonation issues in the first position, make actually playing the guitar int he first position MUCH easier and more enjoyable, AND translate to better intonation up the neck.

    It's better to start in the proper order and rule things out before randomly replacing parts. Now, if you're just looking for an excuse to spend money on parts that may or may not made a real difference (compared to a perceived difference, which is usually what most people experience because most usually won't be honest with themselves if they just ended up blowing money on a part the dont need) you're welcome to do that, too!

    Most players ignore their nut slots simply because they don't know any better, and/or they think it's just easier to replace another part on the guitar that they can just swap out on their own and don't want to pay someone to dial in the nut properly for whatever reason. Either they just dont think it's important or dont want to be without their guitar for a week or so while it's at the shop. So they'll just order some parts and think it will fix the issues, and once parts show up they can just drop them in and swap them out. they'll think it's an improvement, but quickly realize the issues are still there. Then they might take it to a tech and end up spending more in the long run. Eventually they'll put the guitar up for sale and think hey can recoup from all of these (upgrades) that really made little to no difference and then post threads complaining about all the lowball offers they're getting on their upgraded guitar.
     
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  9. kookaburra

    kookaburra Tele-Afflicted

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    ,
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2020
  10. JuneauMike

    JuneauMike Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yes, a dial caliper or feeler gauges. But those when used correctly will only tell you the string height above the first fret (important information, but not especially useful if you aren't really experienced in setting up a nut.)

    If you've got a guitar tech in your area that you trust you'd do well to take it in for a new nut and just let him set it up perfectly. If you still have problems after that, then you could get a new bridge.

    Conversely, you could do both just because you want to. A new bridge won't hurt the guitar and is likely to actually make it more enjoyable to play. The third possibility, and probably the best one, is to just buy the bridge you like and give it all to the guitar tech to install while he's cutting a new nut for you. If he's good he'll return the instrument to you with a perfect setup at both ends of the strings. Win-win.

    Buying new stuff for old guitars is fun.
     
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  11. gregulator450

    gregulator450 Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    My knee-jerk response was going to say something about not being able to cross the creek.

    In all seriousness, bridges are relatively inexpensive. Just get a new one. There will be plenty of good suggestions in the thread already
     
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  12. JRapp

    JRapp Tele-Meister

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    'Thats because you spent money on a new bridge. Who wouldnt believe in their mind that the guitar sounds better after they shelled out money for parts that they probably didn't really need?'

    Um, no. They play better and sound better. An ABR has a more focused tone with less of the sloshy low-midrange those cheapo bridges have.
     
  13. IMadeYouReadThis

    IMadeYouReadThis Tele-Meister

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    The G saddle is indeed all the way back, just trust me on that one. I just checked the nut and intonation at the top of the neck seems fine. I remember needing to fight with the truss rod and bridge height to keep it from buzzing, though. I don't anticipate selling this guitar anytime soon, so I intent to replace the nut eventually just because it's plastic.
     
  14. IMadeYouReadThis

    IMadeYouReadThis Tele-Meister

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    If I'm not mistaken, the bridge on my SG is an ABR (albeit a cheap one). Am I missing something here?
     
  15. JRapp

    JRapp Tele-Meister

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    This is an ABR1 bridge...[​IMG]
     
  16. TwangerWannabe

    TwangerWannabe Tele-Holic

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    Ok.

    I bet if you spent even more than you did on a more expensive one it would have sounded even better!
     
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  17. JRapp

    JRapp Tele-Meister

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    Thanks ever so much for your unnecessary supercilious post. Stick to Telecasters. As far as expense, the whole switcheroo cost less than 50 bucks. I'm sure most of the whizkids here spend more on a cigar, cargo shorts, and the ever-elusive Dakaware Bakelite switch tips of yore.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2020
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  18. Stanford Guitar

    Stanford Guitar Tele-Holic

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  19. Teleguy61

    Teleguy61 Friend of Leo's

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    When it falls in the river?
    Oh wait.
    Never mind.
     
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  20. RockinforJesus

    RockinforJesus Tele-Meister

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