Replacing high mass G&L bridge for more woody tone

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by JKessell, Aug 10, 2020.

  1. JKessell


    May 12, 2017
    I’ve seen a few people on here suggest high mass bridges produce a more metallic tone and lower mass produces a more woody tone.

    Would be interested if anyone has replaced their G&l bridge with a vintage style and noticed any such change in tone?
    zortation likes this.
  2. ugly_bassplayer


    Jan 21, 2009
    Don't do it.
    G&l high mass bridges have a big chunk of metal going into the body for increased stability.

    Your gonna butcher your bass.

    The change in tone will be impossible to hear in a mix. Just play it and practice.

    But it's your bass.....throw it in a wood chopper if you so desire.
    jbrew73, Crispus, One Way and 4 others like this.
  3. 2saddleslab

    2saddleslab Supporting Member

    May 30, 2003
  4. My bass has a very high mass bridge installed on it, I havent noticed a different between the stock low mass and the one thats on there.

    Not too sure what a “Woody” or “Metallic” tonal quality sounds like though, my bass is (to my ear, very thumpy, bass and mid heavy along with an adequate amount of bite to the tone) so im not sure what to go on being that I only really have one bass.
  5. TheArchitect


    Aug 4, 2009
    You will get a lot more mileage out of finding a string that gives you what you want than the rather impractical operation you are considering.
    TomB, Crispus, One Way and 3 others like this.
  6. JKessell


    May 12, 2017
    I wasn’t aware this would be a destructive operation. Are you saying switching back is not an option?
  7. ugly_bassplayer


    Jan 21, 2009
    I don't see a reason to do this.
    If it ain't broke....don't fix it.

    Especially for such a complex procedure with such a minimal even negligible effect on the sound.

    Like I said, i wouldn't do it. But its your bass.
    Do whatever you want to it.
    Crispus likes this.
  8. ruju


    Dec 9, 2017
    These claims will always be subjective. There really is zero truth to them.
    I'd start with different strings, different EQ, before changing hardware.
    One Way and Vinny_G like this.
  9. Arie X

    Arie X

    Oct 19, 2015
    i wouldn't say that you'll "butcher" your bass by removing the saddle lock bridge, but you'll have an empty rectangular pocket underneath whatever you replace it with. this could be problematic.

    i might suggest different string or possibly saddle options first to highlight the fundamental tones before the screwdriver comes out.
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2020
  10. woodyng2

    woodyng2 Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2015
    Oregon Coast
    A couple of things i’ve observed with my 2 gl basses.
    My lb100 with the factory roundwounds sounded horribly metallic to me when i got it.
    I replaced them with chromes and also left the bridge tightening screw loose. Major improvement in sound.
    I think it might sound better still with a softer flatwound, like ghs or labella.
    My JB2 had DR flatwounds on it when i got it. They sounded fine, but I didn’t like the stiffness/tension.
    I replaced them with Labella low tension flexible flats,and once again left the bridge tightener screw loose.
    That combination yields a very woody clear tone that i love.
    I don’t think the high mass bridge is your enemy,but that screw that locks all the saddles together contributes to too much of a good thing soundwise, in the overall design.
    I’ve noticed the same thing on a Spector bass i own that has the saddle lock bridge. Leaving the screw Loose sounds a bit more natural to me.
  11. Vinny_G


    Dec 1, 2011
    The bridge has a mechanical function, it's not there to modify the sound. For this you have the EQ of the bass, an external preamp or an amp. You can also change the type of strings, you would be surprised how much this changes the sound of your instrument.
    woodyng2 likes this.
  12. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Snaggletooth Inactive

    There are a few things I would change about G&L, but never the bridge, that's one of the best things about their instruments!
    That & the MFD pickups are part of what make G&L great.
    Crispus and Zooberwerx like this.
  13. GIBrat51

    GIBrat51 Innocent as the day is long Supporting Member

    wooden bridge.jpg I tried one of these on my ASAT Bass for a little while. A real pain to intonate, and to tell the truth? Much woodier than I really wanted. I went back to the stock one...:whistle:
  14. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I wouldn't touch the the pick-ups or bridge but I would consider swapping-out the stock preamp. Speaking from experience and input from others, my first choice would be an EMG BTC as they complement the stock MFD pickups.

  15. zortation


    Dec 26, 2011
    Toronto, ON
    I would love to see a bridge option for G&L, even an aluminum version of what they already use. Not a fan of heavy bridges.
  16. TomB

    TomB Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2007
    I changed many bridges way back when. Waste of time for the most part, in my experience. I’ll echo that G&L’s bridges are a strong feature of the brand.

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