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Danelectro Longhorn bridge loose

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by JEBassman, Jul 11, 2018.

  1. JEBassman

    JEBassman Supporting Member

    Jun 25, 2008
    Hello bassists,

    I have a '58 Danelectro Longhorn reissue bass. Until now I've played it with its' factory strings. Today I removed those strings and was preparing to put the new ones on, when I saw it: A quality flaw too silly to be true. The bridge has three screws, and only one of them is loosely attaching the bridge to the bass! The other screws, out to the sides, don't have heads wide enough to hold the bridge down. Those side screws allow the bridge to just come up and over them. The center screw is holding the bridge.

    I would like to restring the Longhorn tonight and resume playing it. What would you do with the bridge? Any suggestions for a quick fix?

    I imagine my options are:
    1) Leave the bridge as is, restring and hope for the best.
    2) Find a quick way to attach the bridge better, without changing the string alignment or getting too complicated.
    3) Bring it to my local tech and wait for days until he can fix it.

    Any suggestions? Your help is truly appreciated.

    Attached Files:

  2. I could be wrong but I believe the two screws in the front are like that so you can adjust the height of the bridge to set the action. String pressure holds the bridge on the screws.

    This is about the original Dano instruments but the new bridges should be similar.

    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
  3. JEBassman

    JEBassman Supporting Member

    Jun 25, 2008
    Hi Matt,
    Thank you for writing. I appreciate the link to the Dano bridge article.
    My issue is that on my particular Longhorn, those screws and bridge mounting holes are reversed. In stead of the screws being larger than the holes, and therefore being used to adjust the bridge, the proportions are the other way around. On my bass the holes are bigger than the screws, so that the screws are completely useless.
    The one good screw is at the center of the bridge, and that one is fairly loose. I can't adjust the bridge, and I don't like having all of my string tension hanging on that one center screw.

    I contacted my tech and he will look at the bass for me. We'll see what he recommends .

    Is there a lightweight bridge that would be a good replacement for the Longhorn? I've seen some Dano bridges with adjustable posts. That would be one upgrade possibility. I want to keep the bridge weight low, so that the bass' balance doesn't get thrown off.
  4. James Collins

    James Collins

    Mar 25, 2017
    Augusta, GA
    I think you could also use two or three washers. Would probably cost $1.
  5. Allparts has the same style of bridge you have:

    Danelectro Longhorn Bass Bridge | Allparts.com

    They also have an intonateable one but it says out of stock:

    Danelectro Adjustable Bass Bridge | Allparts.com

    Those prices went way up from what I remember a few years ago. Maybe try eBay. The issue, IIRC, is that the spacing at the bridge is fairly narrow. If you want something different you will have to measure your current spacing and see what will work. You might be able to to take the bridge to a hardware store and see if there is a bigger screw that will work like it is supposed to. Around here, Ace hardware and TruValue have a decent selection of chrome and stainless screws.
  6. JEBassman

    JEBassman Supporting Member

    Jun 25, 2008
    Hi guys,

    I thought about washers and new screws. I don't like the appearance of washers on the bass. After further thought I decided I'd just feel better having my tech double check the setup.
  7. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    There is nothing to fix.

    String tension holds the front of the bridge down on top of the front screws. They are for height adjustment only. That is how that bridge has been made since the 1950's.
    James Collins likes this.

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