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Replace this bridge?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by dbthump, Mar 24, 2009.


  1. dbthump

    dbthump

    Mar 20, 2009
    Tampa
    I've recently purchased this bass from an old band mate. It's a Fernandes 6 string, but that's all I know about it. There's very little on the net about a 6 string from Fernandes. So far I love it, but it has its' issues I think, so I wanted some advice. If 8x6 pics are too big I'll resize them.

    First, the bride is not 100% functional. Notice the image. The saddles are made of two pieces and move freely when not locked; I'll call them the saddle and housing for now unless educated with proper nomenclature. Each saddle adjusts for height with the screw you see next to the string, and each "housing" also has a locking screw on the side opposite the height bolt. I did raise the "A" saddle and noticed that if you don't lock it down the entire unit "jumps" out of the groove it sits in. Of course I locked it down but then noticed that at least 3 of the locking bolts are stripped but locked.

    BridgeCrop3.

    Here you can see that the locking bolt threads on the "C" saddle housing have been drilled out for whatever reason, so I can't raise the saddle and it rotates in the housing if pressed. You can see that it's all the way down as well. Sounds fine as far as I can tell at this time.

    BridgeCrop1.

    Notice under the "G" string, a small "pimple" that's caught the flash. That's a neck screw poking up. Nice huh. The screws seem to be original, but likely not I guess since I can't believe they'd ship it out like that.

    Fernandesbodymed.


    Fernandesheadstock.

    Rergarding the bridge, which is really my main issue with this bass. The facts and opinions voiced here about changing them resonate "if it ain't broke and/or is from a quality bass manufacturer then don't mess with it. I don't know if either applies here. I'd like to lower the action as much as I can but I'm not going to mess with this bridge. I'd like to change it, and I've noticed that 6 string necks are kinda tough to find. String to string is 17mm dead center if I measured correctly.

    I'm not messing with the neck other than to put a shorter screw in the back where it touches, unless otherwise advised. I might consider new pickups later on as well.

    Let me know what you think. I'm quite pleased with it. Thanks for looking.

    db
     
  2. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Functional but problematic if you're tweaking your action on a semi-regular basis. If mine, I would have no problem adding an aftermarket "budget" bridge. Have you checked AllParts?

    Riis
     
  3. dbthump

    dbthump

    Mar 20, 2009
    Tampa
    Allparts, is that the full name plus .com? I've googled "bass bridge 6 string" and get ebay items, but I'd like to see some well made ones first before I buy a "generic" from ebay.

    *edit*
    Man they got some pricey bridges!
     
  4. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
  5. Low Main

    Low Main Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2004
    Massachusetts
    The thing to do is buy Allparts parts from a dealer, not from Allparts themselves. Their direct retail pricing is absurd.

    That bridge is the original Gotoh stock bridge for that Fernandes, and I think it was still a prototype when first used on that bass.

    Essentially, it's a nice bridge, but if yours has been altered, I guess that's not good.

    If it's possible to repair the existing bridge, I would try that first. Then go through a set-up and see what you think.

    The protruding neck screw is an easy fix. No worries there. But if you pull all the neck screws, label them and put them back in the holes they came out of, in case they are not original and someone didn't use the same size and length screw throughout.

    Your 6 will sound different than the 5 and 4 string versions of this model, which shipped with J pickups instead of soapbars.

    Usually with these basses, the wood selection is excellent. So I think you got a good 'un. 34 scale, right?
     
  6. dbthump

    dbthump

    Mar 20, 2009
    Tampa
    I'm still doing my research to be sure I get the right bridge regarding proper dimensions, and the link to allparts is very helpful. ty

    Originally a Gotoh? Sweet! It seems like it would be a unique and highly functional bridge if it hadn't been damaged. My first thought is to simply buy new allen bolts, swap them out, and see what comes from that. I have also considered tapping a new hole for the C string as well, but I want to keep playing it at the same time so I'd need a backup bridge (or bass) in case things go bad, and I have neither.

    So is it possible that there are two short and two long neck screws, and someone put them in backwards, causing the protrusion? It's not a huge concern really since I don't think it affects the sound and it's secure.

    I will research the difference in pickups. My first thought was to get replacements of the same shape, assuming that's all I can do. I don't think I should be creating a larger hole for different shape or size pickups, right?

    I think it's a 34. That's 24 frets, correct?

    ty
     
  7. dbthump

    dbthump

    Mar 20, 2009
    Tampa
    *update*

    My bass was made in the late 90's and as suggested the bridge was made by Gotoh. I contacted them to confirm this and they first suggested a replacement from their current offerings, a compromise to the original. A few days later out of the blue they told me they could make me an OEM bridge; a perfect match! I gotta say that their customer service and follow up has been stellar thus far.

    So now they're going to send me a bill via paypal and they say I'll have it in about 2 weeks. I hope things go as planned. I kinda feel like I'm sending my money into space, since there's is not store and the product isn't in their catalog. Anyone else have this kinda of experience, a "custom" job from an OEM?
     
  8. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    alpha-music.com
    that's my guess too. the thing is, you would then also have at least one screw that's too short for its hole, thus not grabbing the neck properly. i would sort them out so they all went where they belonged.
     
  9. dbthump

    dbthump

    Mar 20, 2009
    Tampa
    Two are short and two long. Someone didn't notice before putting them back in. Bet they were pissed when they figured it out.
     
  10. dbthump

    dbthump

    Mar 20, 2009
    Tampa

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