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Epiphone Viola question - bridge too narrow

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by buldog5151bass, Oct 25, 2018.

  1. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    I have an Epiphone Viola (Hofner copy). At the nut, the width is normal (about 1.6"), but the strings run down the neck almost parallel - at the bridge, they are only about 1.75". As a lifetime user of Fender and Fender style basses, I find this very difficult and uncomfortable to play. Does anyone know of a replacement bridge for this instrument?

    Many thanks.
  2. GIBrat51

    GIBrat51 Innocent as the day is long Supporting Member

    Mar 5, 2013
    Lost Wages, Nevada
    Epiphone Viola Bass. Are you referring to one of these? If so, then I'm afraid you're out of luck. Your problem's not caused by the bridge; it's caused by the tail piece, and AFAIK, all those bass trapeze tailpieces are pretty much the same width. Hofners and all the Hofner clones are all in the same narrow boat, string spacing-wise. I'm afraid that the only solution - other than getting rid of the bass - is to just get used to it, or learn to do what I do with my 2 Hofner clones- play them with a pick...:cool:
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2018
    buldog5151bass likes this.
  3. JKos


    Oct 26, 2010
    Torrance, CA
    Also, keep in mind that as you widen the spacing at the bridge, the strings approach the edge of the fretboard. It can only be so wide for given neck

    - John
    buldog5151bass likes this.
  4. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    That's what I was afraid of. I may try filing a groove in the saddle and see if I can move it the get a little more room. It's just too #_&#$-in tight after 35 some odd years playing P necks.
  5. fermata


    Nov 10, 2015
    Mountain West
    Yeah, not sure if there's a fix. Play it enough, and you may get used to it. (After overcoming some initial alienation, narrow violin bass string spacing is now what I prefer.) If not, you might be interested in the Lakland Hollowbody 30.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2018
  6. Ross W. Lovell

    Ross W. Lovell

    Oct 31, 2015

    NO! NO! NO!

    Slot the tailpiece. The new string spacing might mean modifying the wood bridge but those notches and string tension will keep the string from moving in the tailpiece slot.

    Take it to a luthier/tech it should be no problem.

    This was NEVER an unworkable problem.
  7. InternetAlias


    Dec 16, 2010
    The neck is very narrow, you can't really make the string spacing wider.
    Instead, get used to it. And reap the benefits of a tight spacing - learn to be more efficient with your right hand. After all, the shorter scale certainly makes your left hand movements more efficient :)
    Babydave likes this.

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