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Bridge Attachment Question

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So a co-worker friend of mine asked me if I'd set up his Takamine Gs330s. This particular guitar appears to have a solid cedar top. He told me the strings seemed a little high and in the 9 or so years he's had it, he would only change one string at a time, as they broke :D . I get it home and take a look. Besides being hammered, bruised and beaten, the bridge is starting to rise off of the top. First thought was to put it back in the bag and return it to him. But instead I did a little research on possible reasons for this and what's involved to repair it.

The top doesn't look to be bowed, but it does have a few cracks. Is this more common with cedar tops? I know someone else with this exact guitar and it's top has a crack also. I got a mirror and looked at the bridge plate for cracks and it looks fine. I will say it looks very thin to me at about 1/8" thick. While looking in there I see what looks to be the tips of two screws poking through. The bridge has two "plugs" atop these possible screws. Could that be how this bridge is attached?

I'm still not sure I want to get involved. On the other hand I'm pretty sure I wont be able to resist trying. I also don't think I could hurt this thing much more than it already has been either. I'm gonna try and post some photobucket links. Any thoughts and opinions are welcome. Even suggestions of taking a match to it.

Thanks, lowrider.





Edited by lowrider
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I have two mop dots just behind the string holes on my Tanglewood, which I assume are covering two bolts or screws, the strings however do come from the rear of the bridge like a classical which would make sense.

The bridge in your pics are are pins, which wouldn't really need any extra anchoring in my opinion, that's not to say they aren't screws or bolts. On the surface of it, it seems like a striaght bridge gluing job. But on the other hand when you start to take things off, that crack may go a little further as it depending on the rest of the glue joints inside the guitar. But if it's unplayable and no resposnibilty on you if it goes pear shaped then give it a go.

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Well I took the plunge, drilled a tiny hole in those plugs to reveal screws under them. One wasn't doing a whole lot either. After scoring the front side of the bridge with a razor along the top, it pretty much came right off. I removed the thin layer of cedar and old glue from under the bridge. Hopefully all I'll have to do is lightly sand the top where some cedar no longer lives, get some better screws, and re-screw with some glue. Clamping it would probably be a good idea too. If I feel like being really nice I might even replug those holes with some dowel. Thanks for the reply jaycee.

Edited by lowrider
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A couple of wooden plugs glued into the screw holes may help if the screws have been pulled out.

Something I have wondered about is if you can get a bolt and bush small enough to use in situations like this? They are used when fitting kitchen units, where you bolt two together albeit a larger size.

Hope it goes well

Edited by jaycee
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  • 2 weeks later...

I thought those Taks had a lifetime warranty.

I have one of those GS330 Cedar topped ones -- love its sound.

Does the bridge match the dome of the top?

Many guitars have flat bottom bridges glued onto domed tops.....

I tried clamping them down flat.... which took some big clamps.

In my thinking -- those will be trying to pull apart from the second you unclamp...

Some tips I was told about Rosewood or any other oily woods....

1. Sand back to fresh wood right before glue time. This is good practice for any joint....

2. Scrub down with Acetone to remove Rosewood oils. Mine left the rag Maroon from the oils....

3. Allow to dry before glue up.

On a recent build, I sanded the bridge to match the soundboard contour...

I guess I will have to wait 5-10 years to see if it helps.

Good luck


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