New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

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Larry Mal
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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by Larry Mal » Sun Feb 03, 2019 6:04 pm

Yeah, it looks good, but personally I would not buy a rocking bridge of any kind- that was the only reason I bought a StayTrem at all, frankly, was because they came out with a way to make them fixed. I don't believe that the rocking features adds anything except hassle and reduced sound.

Also, that bottom adjust looks like a nightmare- you have to slacken the strings, pull the whole bridge, for every minute adjustment when getting the intonation dead on? No way.

It looks a little over-engineered from that standpoint, like you've decided on form over function a bit.
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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by kimson » Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:49 am

Count me in! Love the looks and the "set and forget" intonation adjustment - even if might take some extra effort at first.

Maybe also include nylon sleeves for those who want their bridges non-rocking?

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by Shadoweclipse13 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 2:02 am

I love the look of it, but I do kinda wonder about setting the intonation. Since the screws for locking them down are on the bottom, and you'd have to remove the bridge to lock it down, that would mean that your intonation could easily get back out of place.
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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by Deed_Poll » Mon Feb 04, 2019 4:34 am

Thanks for your thoughts everyone! It seems like the intonation adjustment thing might be a problem!

Possible solutions:

1) belt and braces approach - put another set of intonation screws in the normal place to set the intonation, keep the screws in the back to tighten it down once that's set

2) make the locking screws much smaller, try and get them with a hex adjustment from the tip, and reach in through a hole in the saddle to tighten

3) keep the same design but get intonation screws with a little malleable rubber cap under the screw head so you can more easily get them into that movable but not loose state

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by MechaBulletBill » Mon Feb 04, 2019 4:47 am

I think you should try to come up with a way to incorporate 6 adjustment points (screw/hex/whatever) with the saddles you've got. could you thread a hole on the post between top and bottom of the saddle and feed an adjustment screw from the back edge? (kind of like a nashville TOM bridge)

but I really think you're onto something ace here!

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by nelsongeets » Mon Feb 04, 2019 5:35 am

First off - hats off to you for the work you've already put into this bridge. It looks incredible! I really enjoy the simplistic approach to the overall design, and man does it look sleek. I'm a sucker for brass saddles.

I agree with some of the others that the tightening of the intonation screws at first seems like a bit of a hassle, but at the same time it is more or less a set it and forget it adjustment. I think as long as the saddles do stay put and don't move on you when you flip it over to do the final tightening then it's really not a deal breaker. Would it be easier if it could be tightened from the top? Of course, but for the few times you have to adjust intonation it may be something you can live with. I'm really curious to see how that goes once you get your hands on a prototype.

I'm sort of indifferent to the rocking vs fixed bridge concept. In theory I understand the benefit of both. I'll be honest and say I do not have enough personal experience with the rocking type vintage bridges to comment on their functionality. If I had to I'd probably say I lean slightly toward the fixed bridge camp just out of the fact that I have more hands-on experience with them. Would it be possible to just offer the customer 2 bridge post options - 1 that allows for rocking, 1 that is a snug fit into the thimble? So, when it comes time for purchasing perhaps there can be options for the different set bridge radii as well as rocking/non rocking.

I'm very excited to see where this goes!

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by Larry Mal » Mon Feb 04, 2019 7:01 am

I do like the saddles very much, I also like the overall low profile of the bridge, which might reduce the need for shimming for some.
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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by Squirrel » Mon Feb 04, 2019 7:19 am

I'll agree that the intonation screws would be kind of a pain in the dick, speaking from experience as I have an old Danelectro with a bridge that uses a similar system. The problem is trying to remove the bridge and then adjusting the screw without inadvertently changing the position of the saddle. Otherwise your idea looks great though, I really like how robust it looks!

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:15 am

Could you not just use the idea of having the saddles on threaded runners, similar to the Staytrem, so the guitar can be intonated from the back? I suppose that'd be simply re-shaping an existing design.
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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by Rgand » Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:19 am

I think this is a beautiful design. My only concern is setting the intonation. It would be better if it could be done without removing it. That would mean some kind of adjustment screws somewhere accessible from above, though.

I can see it offered with a set of shims to change the radius or have it available with different radius options from the factory. You could offer kits to change that in the future.

All said, I like it a lot.

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by Telemnemonics » Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:43 am

Seems like a nice option for a bridge, but maybe not the favorite for obsessive tinkerers!
Personally I prefer to set and forget, not one who feels a need to tweak intonation with every new set of strings.
Here, leaving the nuts loose and adjusting the location of the saddles, then taking the strings off to lock them, wouldn't be as much trouble as making a new nut, and in the end it might be really good for the thing we hopefully spend the most time doing with a guitar.

If anyone has ever adjusted the valves on a buckets and shims DOHC engine, they will find this bridge to be a breeze.
With buckets and shims, you measure all your clearances, write them down, remove both cams, then do the math and change the thickness of the shims to what your numbers say will provide the desired clearances, reinstall the cams, and measure your clearances again.
The tradeoff is that it stays adjusted pretty well for a good long time.

My issue would be the price.
I don't mind spending my time on setup, but I don't want to spend too much of my money!
We all got our priorities...

Anyone with more money than time could always pay a tech to set the intonation, if they get frustrated by this sort of design but want to try it anyhow. Unless we change string gauge it should stay where it's set.
There was a time when a guitar tech could make a player happy with a one saddle bridge.
I sometimes wonder if the current issues players have with intonation is more related to the internet, than to guitars.
No matter how much we tweak the bridge according to the nut and 12th fret, the whole rest of the neck will never be dead on.
Satisfaction and exhaustion are very similar states of being, and I'm certain that there is never a point where we have tweaked a bridge enough to make a fretted guitar play all notes in tune.

Just sayin'!

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by gishuk » Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:16 am

I love the look of it, while as others have said it wont be the fastest bridge to set up, thats something I tend to do once and then never again so it hardly seems like too much of an issue.

Definitely can see myself using one of these on something I build in the future if you go ahead with manufacture!

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by Deed_Poll » Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:45 am

Thanks for all the comments guys!

Good news - I think I've cracked it.

By using a cone tipped screw at 45 degrees, lined up so it hits the edge of a deeper saddle pocket, I think I can make this work and adjust from the top - and have the locking screw follow the saddle along as well, so with no major surgery to the saddle (which was taking away quite a lot of the vintage flavour of the design when I tried it before).

I recall seeing a system like this on some single-string bridges I got a while back, they locked in real tight. It does feel a bit counter-intuitive though tightening a bolt down like this from the top! Seems like it shouldn't work, but it does.

Image

So far it looks normal...

Image

... but when you turn it around, you can see the locking screws - do those bad boys up and you'll lock the bridge in place. Undo them and you'll be able to freely move the saddle under string compression.

Their path passes through the centre of the saddle sphere, and the tool will not interfere with the next string along when adjusting it. It should also be basically invisible when playing, and is on the opposite side from your palm, so it won't irritate you the way height adjustment set screws on original offset and Strat bridges sometimes do.

Image

It's meant I can remove the screws from the back, so now I could even do away with the edge chamfer on the underside and make this another 1/16" thinner than a standard bridge! That's a bonus on some guitars, as Larry says. I've seen enough Jazzmasters in my time that are set so close to the pickguard they could really use and extra 1/16". The only thing preventing me from doing that at the moment is that I want to see how deep I have to do the press-fit cups in the bottom to get the internally threaded 'posts' well and truly tight.

Image

and here's a little exploded diagram to show how it all goes together. The whole design is symmetrical, so it will be the same unit exactly for left-handed and right-handed players. you just flip the thing over - and you still get the benefits of the saddle set screws being on the opposite side from your hand ;)

Hey Nelson, yeah I can certainly do a broader post to fill out the thimbles and do a fixed design. I guess this would be better with a different string slot angle though - right now I have it 60°, which I believe is the angle of the thread on the original Jazzmaster saddles. That's because I really want it to grab onto the string. Maybe a shallower angle like 100° or 120° and a polished surface would be better for a fixed low-friction bridge?
Last edited by Deed_Poll on Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by higgsblossom » Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:53 am

Wow!
"500€? That's the price of a J Mascis Jazzmaster!"

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Re: New Offset Bridge Design - the Toughset

Post by Telemnemonics » Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:54 am

So, does the locking screw thread into a nut underneath?
Doesn't look like there's any nut in there.
Or does the set screw wedge the saddle in place to lock it?
And without pushing the saddle up when tightened?

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