1. Welcome to TalkBass, the Premier Bass Player Community and Information Source. We've been uniting the Low End Since 1998!

    We're glad you've found us. Register a 100% Free Account to post and unlock tons of features.

Bridge upgrade question

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Gorn Captain, Feb 13, 2013.


  1. Gorn Captain

    Gorn Captain Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2011
    Location:
    Queens
    I picked up a used MIM Fender jazz. I assume the bridge is fairly cheap.

    1) Is the one that comes on this crap?

    2) What exactly will a new, better bridge do for the sound of the bass?

    3) Any suggestions on exactly what I should replace it with?

    4) How difficult is it to do for someone who's not the least bit handy and only owns a hammer and a few screw drivers?

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Lo-E

    Lo-E

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2009
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    There's nothing wrong with the stock bridge and replacing it will make only the slightest of differences, if any. I wouldn't bother messing with it unless it's actually giving you trouble.
     
  3. tkonbass

    tkonbass I'm just one of the out-of-focus guys. Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2012
    Location:
    Alabama
    "There's nothing wrong with the stock bridge and replacing it will make only the slightest of differences, if any. I wouldn't bother messing with it unless it's actually giving you trouble."

    ^^^ This will likely be the most common answer you'll get. I'll agree that if there is nothing wrong with the original bridge then you really won't notice much difference if any when you replace it. BUT if you want to change it, go for the one you think will offer the adjustability you want and/or the one you think looks best on your bass.

    I personally like a more substantial bridge than the stamped Fender. Hipshot, Babicz, Leo Quan and others make direct replacements that will more or less screw in to place of the old one. They all have their fans and their haters. Just search Tb and you'll see.
     
  4. unclebass

    unclebass

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2012
    Location:
    Southwest Louisiana
    I agree that you will not hear much difference if you replace the bridge. Only reason that I have found to replace bridge is if you are a very aggressive player and have problems keeping saddles from moving side to side. If that is the case, then look for something that is a direct bolt in no drill replacement with saddles that are held tight in place. I have a Blacktop Jazz bass which has a heavy solid bridge and that may be a possible solution.
     
  5. Register to disable this ad
  6. Gorn Captain

    Gorn Captain Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2011
    Location:
    Queens
    I could give a poop about aesthetics. If it won't make it sound better than I'll leave it alone. Thanks for the opinions.
     
  7. Dean N

    Dean N

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    +1 on the "leave it" vote.
     
  8. rubbadubdub

    rubbadubdub

    Joined:
    May 8, 2012
    Location:
    UK
    Yeah.. I'm with the leave it vote unless it's giving you tuning or intonation problems or maybe you catch your hand on the height adjustment screws. The only bridges I ever had problems with were a Schaller roller bridge which i noticed was contributing a slight fizzing sound to the highs and a bridge on a JayDee Supernatural where the saddles rocked from side to side slightly. I couldn't hear any side affects from the latter and sold the bass on because it was too big and heavy for me. I have a badass that I will be selling on because I thought it looked wrong on my p bass and didn't make much if any improvement.
    I dont attack my bass like a maniac though. A punk player may have more issues with stability and tuning.
     
  9. Bobster

    Bobster

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2006
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    One thing you will frequently see endorsed on TB is moving to vintage threaded saddles.

    They won't much (if any) difference in sound. But will allow you to have better control of string placement, and help you use leverage to hold the saddles tightly together to maintain string spacing.

    The would replace the current saddles on your existing bridge. Simply unscrew the old saddle using the intonation screw and replace.

    All the best,

    Bob
     
  10. JMimbs

    JMimbs

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2012
    Location:
    Central Florida
    I changed bridges only because the stock MIM bridge saddles kept dropping and throwing my intonation off. I got a Babicz bridge because the saddles locked. It looks cool, arguably increases sustain, and is very comfortable to rest your hand on. But if your stock bridge is working fine, you might as well leave it.
     
  11. wraub

    wraub

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2004
    Location:
    ennui, az
    Disclosures:
    I'll have an IPA, please.
    +1
    This is what I did also, simple, cheap, and quick, and nice on a Jazz bass as it allows you to center each string for each polepiece pair.
    Didn't notice any change in tone, fwiw.

    wraub
     
  12. Gorn Captain

    Gorn Captain Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2011
    Location:
    Queens
    Based on what I'm reading, I'll leave it alone. The strings stay put, and surprisingly for a used bass, the intonation is spot on. I'll leave it be.
     
  13. Batmensch

    Batmensch

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2010
    Location:
    Chester, Pa.,USA
    I hate to be the cliche guuy, but, ...
    "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."
    I would only change the bridge if it wasn't working right.
     
  14. wraub

    wraub

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2004
    Location:
    ennui, az
    Disclosures:
    I'll have an IPA, please.
    Yep. Enjoy your new bass. ;)

    wraub
     
  15. all_grown_up

    all_grown_up

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2004
    Location:
    San Jose California
    Funny, doesn't that look like the bridge on Jaco's bass?
     
  16. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    Blimp City USA
    +100,000,000
     
  17. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2004
    Location:
    Fort Collins, Colorado
    I think you'll be fine with the stock bridge.
     
  18. bherman

    bherman Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2009
    I need to do this for a bridge but am having trouble finding a source for the replacement threaded saddles; do you recall where you purchased them? I am finding sources for the whole bridge, but just want to replace the slotted saddles with threaded ones.

    thx!
     
  19. mpdd

    mpdd neoconceptualist Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2010
    Location:
    LA
    i wouldn't mess with it if you can intonate and your strings are pretty stable
     
  20. bumperbass

    bumperbass

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    Bump for this. Where is everybody buying JUST threaded saddles?
     
  21. bumperbass

    bumperbass

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012

Share This Page