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Bridge height vs. fingerboard height-mismatch

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by emblymouse, Feb 25, 2014.

  1. emblymouse

    emblymouse Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2006
    Lakland Artist Endorser
    I just put a Tony Franklin fretless neck on an 80's Tokai P Bass body. Had to slim the heel to fit the pocket, all well and good.
    What I had not figured on was the bridge height relative to the fretboard. I've had to max the height adjustment screws which causes the saddle intonation screws to be sticking up at an angle almost to string height. This gets in the way when I mute back there with my hand.
    The fingerboard height relative to the body looks right, you can just see the side dots above the body at the end of the neck. I don't think lowering the pocket is the answer due to this, I would sooner leave it as is. That leaves me with only one other idea, and that replacing the vintage Hipshot bridge with something that sits taller, like with a thicker plate on the bottom (Gotoh 201?). What would you do?

    Take a look...

  2. tangentmusic

    tangentmusic A figment of our exaggeration

    Aug 17, 2007
    Yeah...Your height is maxed out. Remove the shim in the pocket. It's making the neck sit higher than it should. Thicker bridge plate or shave the heel of the neck down some is another option.

    Thicker bridge is easier. BAII perhaps?
  3. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    If the intonation screws getting in the way is the problem, the solution is getting shorter intonation screws.
  4. 96tbird

    96tbird PLEASE STAND BY Supporting Member

    That's what I would do if there's no shim in there. I'd cut them off with a Dremel leaving 1/4" sticking out.
  5. emblymouse

    emblymouse Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2006
    Lakland Artist Endorser
    Yeah, could cut those. I could also put a bridge cover over it!
    Do you see any problem otherwise with such a high adjustment? The action is good and it intonates fine.
  6. Turnaround

    Turnaround Commercial User

    May 6, 2004
    Toronto Canada
    Independent Instrument Technician, and Contractor to Club Bass and Guitar - Toronto
    If there's a shim in the end of the pocket nearest the bridge, remove it. If there's no shim, add a thin one at the end of the pocket furthest from the bridge. That will change the neck-to-body angle slightly causing the strings to sit higher over the fingerboard. Then you can lower the saddles to a good height and get those intonation screws down.
  7. Would putting a riser under the bridge work? (like on skateboard trucks)
    That would raise the height of the bridge some.
    Seems pretty easy to make as well. Get some pickguard material, cutout a rectangle and match up the holes.
  8. Remus_Redbone


    Dec 27, 2010
    Western AR
    ^ ^ ^
    This is the easiest and fastest way to solve the problem.
  9. emblymouse

    emblymouse Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2006
    Lakland Artist Endorser
    OK, no shim in place. I put one in forward position and got it back together, this did allow for about 1 full turn lower on the saddle screws. Improved but not dramatically, I will be trying a Badass if this is not enough. Thanks for the tips!
  10. Bobster


    Mar 27, 2006
    Austin, TX

    A Gotoh 201, or Babicz will also give you a thicker plate, along with others, and be much easier to track down than a Badass II.

    The Gotoh's can be purchased at Warmoth pretty reasonably. http://www.warmoth.com/Gotoh-201-4-String-C718.aspx

    All the best,