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Bearzwud

First Time Builder, Bridge Anchor Question

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A brief introduction, I am a skilled furniture builder and a musician of many years, but first time guitar builder.

I received a guitar kit via the internet to try my first build. Its an SG kit.

When I was test fitting all the pieces, the bridge and tail piece anchors fit loosely in their pre-drilled holes.

I can install them and remove them freely.

Now I'm pretty sure they should not be that loose.

So, question being, what can I do to fix this problem?

I am assuming as a craftsman I can,

1. Fill the holes with dowel material and re-drill the holes.

2. Epoxy the anchors in their hole.

3. Exchange the guitar body for another one from the manufacturer/seller.

Thanks y'all

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I would just use a little glue to hold them in place .Second way is to shim them with a small piece of tape.I am sure there will be more answers to come ,hahaha .Good luck on your build.

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Hi Bearzwud and welcome to the forum

My prefered way of handling this is to return the body as it obviously is flawed. If that isn't possible you can try to find larger bushings (anchors). That might also mean you need to use a different bridge and tailpiece as the threads might be different. But thats probaly not a bad idea anyway as on most kits the tuners, pickups and bridges quality are so-so. Third option is to fill the holse and redrill them. Most likely it will not be too vivible even under a clear finish (as is is a SG it is mandatory to make it brown, ask Agnus Young). However if you do an opaque finish you can just go ahead and fill/redrill as that is probably the most convinient and fastest solution. However it is not a good solution to epoxy them in place. We can debate the tonal effects of that until the world ends without coming to a consensus. However it makes future repacement a PITA. And if you really like the result of your first build and would like to change out the probably not so good bridge in the future you probably need to be able to pull the bushings

EDIT: Dean beat me to it. But I must say that tape around the bushings is a bad advice. Really bad. The tape will compress on the neck side and the tuning will not be stable, the bridge will most likely not stay in place, so generally a bad idea

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I like Sweed's first solution use larger bushings you can always use the parts you have left over later on

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I'd vote for larger bushings as well.

I've come across this problem a few times, usually when doing alterations for people. Plugging the holes can give surprisingly crappy results. No matter how well it's done, there is a great chance for it to muddy up your tone. I didn't believe it at first, but I've experienced it first hand. In theory, making plugs with horizontal grain (probably on a lathe), as opposed to dowels, then lining the grain up with the body grain should help the problem. YMMV.

In contrast to that, it always seemed like a bad idea to glue them in to me, but I've had amazing results that way. If I do that, I like to attach strings and tighten them just a little right after applying the glue. That way it sets in the right position and won't shift or come undone when you string it up.

It still* seems* like a bad idea to me, but it really works and won't kill your tone.

But, like Swed said, it can make future repairs and alterations a pain.

And like Swed also said, we could go around and around about the tonal effects. My experiences are just my experiences. Others could have done the exact same things with opposite results.

So, back to my first comment, larger bushings are the way I'd go if possible. I like to go for larger ones in general, even without this issue, so it's win/win in my opinion.

WDMusic is a good source for parts like that. WDBiz.com is their wholesale/discounted store. You need to be in business (retail, manufacturer, or repairs) to get an account, but you might be able to with some clever wording. Then you can get all those kinds of parts ridiculously cheap.

Edited by NotYou

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WDMusic is a good source for parts like that. WDBiz.com is their wholesale/discounted store. You need to be in business (retail, manufacturer, or repairs) to get an account, but you might be able to with some clever wording. Then you can get all those kinds of parts ridiculously cheap.

Thanks for the tip. I haven't found their wholesale page before. Need to register right away.

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Most people haven't, it seems. Most parts I buy on there are 50-70% off retail. It's pretty amazing.

They also have a lot of parts I've never seen before. They have a couple styles of knurled brass knobs that I'm love with. I've been using them quite a bit lately:

They have long shafts that are more narrow than the top, so they're perfect for sinking into the body almost invisibly.

knobs_1.jpg

I stripped, distressed, and aged these, but this is (was?) the other type of brass knob. Smaller with a flat top:

photo2np.jpg

Anyhow, that's nothing important. I'm just always excited to find new stuff I've never seen before and they have plenty of that.

Edited by NotYou

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This is soooo OT, but anyway...

They also have a lot of parts I've never seen before. They have a couple styles of knurled brass knobs that I'm love with. I've been using them quite a bit lately:

They have long shafts that are more narrow than the top, so they're perfect for sinking into the body almost invisibly.
knobs_1.jpg

I have been looking for a different design for knobs and this seems to be something in the direction I had in mind, those low, big, recessed knobs. OK with you if I steal this idea?

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Yeah, I gave up on that design a while back. I'm back to all clear finishes and natural looks. I still use the knobs and recess them, but not with that sleek look.

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Great, thanks!

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Welcome to the board, Bearzwud. I agree that the kit should be returned otherwise you could pursue a partial refund due to some of the items not being fit for use as sold. This should cover the bother of additional work carrying out a modification to fix the issue. A lot of retailers would rather go down this line than pay for more shipping to ping kits back and forth, seeking credit from their sources or being left with a faulty kit to pine off onto somebody else. Don't ask, don't get.

Are your inserts "lipped", ie. possess a small ring around the top that covers the oversize hole? If so, dowelling and redrilling is no big deal and will be invisible in the long run. It's just a pain that you have to do it in the first place.

As long as they are re-drilled undersize so that pushing the inserts in compresses the wood immediately surrounding it, you will get good coupling. Under normal circumstances I would describe the bare minimum of force required to tap these into place being something like my fret hammer (385g rubber/plastic head). In this situation I would want a bit more oomph to make these inserts more part of the body but not to the point of cracking it apart! Using the drill press as an arbor is acceptable.

Whilst I agree with NotYou and SwedishLuthier's takes on this, it is impossible to compare what the instrument would sound like if this issue did not exist and how it could sound when repaired. I am of the opinion that it is common for people to attribute all manner of things to issues that they perceive which might not actually have any basis in reality. In fact, a lot of the marketing in aftermarket guitar parts is based on this very perception. The mind is a powerful and quite prone to convincing itself of things that don't exist.

Wait, how did we get into this again? <_<

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Thanks everyone for the advice. I figure at this point, either larger bushings (didn't know they come in different sizes) but apparently they do. Or fill and re-drill. Which in that case is not that much of a big deal. I've had to make furniture repairs by filling and re-drilling.

However, thanks again for the advice y'all.

Bear

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Using the drill press as an arbor is acceptable.

Thats what I do. I use a carriage bolt with the slightly domed head downwards to push the bushing down

Whilst I agree with NotYou and SwedishLuthier's takes on this, it is impossible to compare what the instrument would sound like if this issue did not exist and how it could sound when repaired. I am of the opinion that it is common for people to attribute all manner of things to issues that they perceive which might not actually have any basis in reality. In fact, a lot of the marketing in aftermarket guitar parts is based on this very perception. The mind is a powerful and quite prone to convincing itself of things that don't exist.

Thats pretty much in line with my view too.

Wait, how did we get into this again? <_<

I dunno. Don't blame me :blush

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Keep us in the loop here, Bearzwud. I've been thinking of documenting a kit build for the main Project Guitar site so knowing more about the variance in what is out there helps feed into this aim. Cheers!

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