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Today, I learned about floating bridges.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Jonithen, Jan 21, 2021.


  1. Jonithen

    Jonithen

    Dec 3, 2012
    Seacoast NH
    While changing strings, I had the brilliant idea to condition the fretboard. No sooner than I removed the strings, I heard an odd clunk.

    Once I realized the bridge wasn't where I expected it to be, I had an absolutely emotional experience. After a moment I sorted out that this was actually ok and began work on getting everything back in order. Several tune up, test, detune, shift, retune cycles later and all is well again.

    Cheers, TB folks.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. JIO

    JIO shaken - not stirred Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jun 30, 2010
    The Mission SF/CA
    musician/artist/owner - Gildaxe
    It's a very old design for acoustic instruments and as you've discovered - that's the way it works. :)
     
  3. GretschWretch

    GretschWretch Supporting Member

    Dec 27, 2013
    East Central Alabama
    This is a very prolific example of dropped tuning.
     
    dbsfgyd1, gg22, tepperware and 31 others like this.
  4. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Ah seed whut you did thar! :roflmao:
     
  5. hypercarrots

    hypercarrots

    Jan 28, 2009
    california
    some people put low tact tape down to mark where the bridge was while doing maintenance
     
    DJ Bebop, Mastermold, B-Mac and 5 others like this.
  6. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Yup. Blue painter's tape works great to mark the location.
     
    Engle, DJ Bebop, B-Mac and 2 others like this.
  7. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Violins! Replace 1 string at a time.
     
  8. Mustang Surly

    Mustang Surly

    Jul 10, 2013
    Yep: one-at-a-time or painters' tape markers, depending on why you're removing the strings. I usually put another, short piece of tape at a right angle to mark one end of the bridge for immediate, side-to-side location. Kind of overkill, since the bridge tends to to "find center" as the strings are tightened anyhow, but I'm kind of compulsive.

    Gretsch pins some of their "floating" guitar bridges at the factory.
     
  9. RSBBass

    RSBBass

    Jun 11, 2011
    NYC
    With violin family instruments that is as much because you don't want the soundpost to drop as for the bridge placement. Finding the right place for the bridge is pretty easy. Getting the soundpost out and re-serving it is a royal pita.
     
    Luigir, dkelley, JIO and 7 others like this.
  10. Phlipper

    Phlipper

    Feb 5, 2013
    Fayetteville, NC
    Endorsing Artist: Old SS Peavey Lead Sleds and Peavey tube amps
    I've owned a couple Gretch guitars with floating bridges and always used two-sided tape to set them after sanding the feet to perfectly match the top.

    Thank God my last one had a pinned bridge.

    And a treble bleed. I was sick and tired of soldering a cap onto the volume pot of my G&Ls and Gretschs. In 40 years Ive never met anyone who thought treble roll-off was a good thing.
     
    DJ Bebop and Jonithen like this.
  11. sleddogn

    sleddogn

    Sep 8, 2013
    Kentucky
    I think some people end up having them pinned, as mentioned earlier gretsch started pinning some guitar and bass models a few years back.
     
    Jonithen likes this.
  12. Phlipper

    Phlipper

    Feb 5, 2013
    Fayetteville, NC
    Endorsing Artist: Old SS Peavey Lead Sleds and Peavey tube amps
    I dunno how Gretsch basses are lately. But the last Electromatic White Falcon copy I had was literally perfect in every way. The first two, purchased ten years ago, were poopiee. Had to have new nuts cut to get them to intonate. The pickups were mud and had to be replaced. Treble roll-off was horrid. Lots of crap like that.
     
    Jonithen likes this.
  13. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    And yet Eddie Van Halen had Ernie Ball Music Man pot a knob labeled "tone" on the volume pot for the signature guitar they made for him.
     
    Jonithen likes this.
  14. Eli_Kyiv

    Eli_Kyiv

    Apr 7, 2020
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    Spring 1982, a college gig. A bridge of this kind flew from my bass mid-song. A very embarrassing memory.
     
    Jonithen likes this.
  15. Esteban Garcia

    Esteban Garcia bassist, arranger, aelurophile Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2018
    Portland, OR
    You've got to make sure the sound post doesn't fall over when you do that, then just make sure to align the bridge with the notches on the F holes... oh wait, this is a bass guitar ;)
     
  16. CK McLaughlin

    CK McLaughlin

    Nov 5, 2019
    Gibson 3-point bridges can be especially nasty when you break a string at a gig. The individual saddles are held in place by string tension only and will immediately fall to the floor without the string in place. I have not so fond memories of crawling around on stage looking for the errant saddle while my bandmates stood by impatiently.
     
  17. B-Mac

    B-Mac Just like Aretha Sang... R-E-S-P-E-C-T Supporting Member

    :laugh::roflmao::laugh::roflmao:
     
    Jonithen likes this.
  18. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Colorado
    ya ... that kind of bass the intonation can be iffy as you go up the neck
     
    Jonithen likes this.
  19. micguy

    micguy

    May 17, 2011
    One of my clients had me set up his jazz box guitar so it never sounded like it was on "10" - the opposite of a treble bleed circuit - he definitely wanted treble rolloff - all the time.
     
    Rabidhamster and Jonithen like this.
  20. Phlipper

    Phlipper

    Feb 5, 2013
    Fayetteville, NC
    Endorsing Artist: Old SS Peavey Lead Sleds and Peavey tube amps
    And if you read the EBMM forums you'll find discussions about cap values and whether or not to use a resistor to fix the roll-off on the EVH model. :laugh:

    EVH wasn't human, anyway. Us mere mortals need a treble bleed. :cool:
     
    Jonithen likes this.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
    Mar 4, 2021

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