Cracked bridge... Now what?

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by bassfacer22, Dec 12, 2016.

  1. Hi guys,

    So this is great, I was trying to tighten my adjuster too tight and put a crack in the side - shown in the picture..

    I was going to put super glue on the bridge to try to keep it from cracking more.. Is that ok?

    What should I do??

    image.jpg image.jpg
  2. Steven Ayres

    Steven Ayres Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2007
    Northern Arizona
    'Super glue' will do nothing useful here.

    If you really love that particular bridge and need to fix it, you could dowel across the crack, and redrill and tap for the adjuster.

    Me, I'd just put it back together and use it, being a little more careful when knocking it into place when changing strings. String pressure by itself won't likely hurt it any more.

    If it really bugs you, it's time for a new bridge.
  3. Ortsom

    Ortsom Inactive

    Mar 23, 2016
    IMO superglue will help. Impregnate also from the inside, and re-tap (in exactly the same thread as original!). It's the easy fix, not necessarily very good. If you put grease on the threads previously, so that the wood is impregnated with it, CA won't hold, but then nothing will. Then indeed it's time for a new bridge. Otherwise a small patch/graft on the outside, across the crack, might help too.

    The thread may open the crack on string pressure (or the crack may open if the bridge crest creeps upward). You can consider to open-up the cracked threaded section & glue a threaded sleeve in (not necessarily the same thread).
  4. Ok well thanks for the responses.

    I kinda liked the bridge as it got the cut on top pretty well. Or, I mean I like the distance between strings and all that..

    I wouldn't mind a new bridge at all, But I'm traveling all around New Zealand and Australia,and I don't see the time to make a new bridge.. How long does it take? 2-6 months??

    I imagine I'd have to leave the bass with the luthier and I kinda need it to play..

    I'm thinking what is the quick glue up method to prevent this crack from getting bigger and can last me another 2 months playing.. Everyday playing..

    (I can try to have a new bridge made - maybe when I'm at home in February..)

    So basically I just should put some glue to hold the outside from cracking more.. That's all I can think..

    I don't have grease or anything on the threads and here is the kicker, it's the full circle adjusters!
  5. Greg Clinkingbeard

    Greg Clinkingbeard Commercial User

    Apr 4, 2005
    Kansas City area
    Black Dog Bass Works
    Use thin super glue and clamp it tight. You will probably need to retap it.
  6. 1st Bass

    1st Bass

    May 26, 2005
    Forest Grove, OR
    Unless there is a long waiting list, there is no reason a bridge should take long at all. There are a number of competent Bass luthiers in your area of the world (Assuming you are in NZ or Oz, now). Call and ask for an estimated time and cost. Where are you now?
  7. Michael Eisenman

    Michael Eisenman Supporting Member

    Jun 21, 2006
    Eugene, Oregon
    If the quick glue fix doesn't hold, another possible option is to have a luthier cut off that part of the bridge leg and graft on a new piece. The Full Circle adjuster going through both pieces should help, as well.
  8. Im at Australia and New Zealand listed below:

    Tauranga, NZ
    Wellington, NZ
    Dunedin, NZ
    Dusky Sound ,NZ

    Melbourne, Australia
    Sydney, Australia (but it may be Sunday so the luthier may be closed etc ..)

    Also go to Tasmania and New Caledonia and Fiji islands.. (Guessing there is no luthier there)
  9. 1st Bass

    1st Bass

    May 26, 2005
    Forest Grove, OR
    Matthew Tucker is in Sydney: Give him a call and ask about arrangements. (Bresque Basses)
  10. Matthew is a wonderfully inventive luthier who does brilliant work and a very cool guy to boot. I'll facespace him a link to this thread.
  11. Yes please put his email or whatever contact here.. I don't use a phone in Australia.. Only Internet..
  12. i think you can live with a crack like that. Put some superglue inside. you may want to open it a little to have more glue inside but then you have to clamp it immediately after. I had the same crack on my bridge that looks very much like yours. at first i was very surprised cause i actually thought that was a pictrure of my bridge that I took off recently. I only changed it when i decided to get rid of adjusters, so the glued chack holded up for many months. it may be safer to have the new bridge made but if you dont have more than a cm of an open thread on the adjuster i dont think its going anywhere.

  13. 1st Bass

    1st Bass

    May 26, 2005
    Forest Grove, OR
    It appears that his website is down for maintenance: here is the phone
    six one 4 one 4 549 one 74
    Good luck with it.
  14. ill see if I can get to him
  15. bengreen


    Jan 26, 2016
    San Diego
    Maybe I just lucked out, but my luthier in LA, if I called ahead and set up an appointment, would do the work while I waited, including a new bridge. He knew I was driving up from San Diego and was kind enough to save me an extra trip.

    If you can't work something out with Matthew (and yes, he's very inventive and a great mechanical improviser so can probably fix the one you have), it might be worth calling luthiers along your route and explaining you're touring. Maybe you can find someone who can do for you what Jon Peterson used to do for me.
  16. Anton Avis

    Anton Avis

    Dec 13, 2016
    Be honest; was it your fault? If so you will have to solve it yourself. If it wasn't your fault then you could try to get the people who made your contrabass to fix it. If this isn't productive or if it was your fault then do this. I would buy a new bridge and attach that. Superglue won't help. It may be temporarily good but it will inevitably break again.
  17. Yes it's my fault..

    But the luthier told me he will cut out a hole and put a pin in it, then glue it so it's still just being glued anyway.

    I'll have to have a new bridge made later..
  18. robobass


    Aug 1, 2005
    Cologne, Germany
    Private Inventor - Bass Capos
    I had a bridge fall when stringing up Eudoxas (be careful. Guts stretch!) and it broke across the heart. I glued it with a two component urethane casting resin, which I'd previously discovered to my detriment was the strongest adhesive I've ever come across. That was about fifteen years ago. I still haven't changed the bridge. And, let me tell you. Few basses got the playing time this thing got for the first ten years after the repair. I don't play it much these days, unfortunately.
  19. Ortsom

    Ortsom Inactive

    Mar 23, 2016
    24 Years ago I made a bridge consisting of 5 horizontal strips, glued with PU too. It's been tensioned-up all that time, and used frequently. It will break if overloaded, and probably on the seam through the heart, but so far it has not given me any issues.
    However, these are quite different glue jobs from bassfacer's, which might be a small dowel (pin?) across the crack. Wouldn't worry me, I would just keep it like that (until something else happens).
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2016