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archtop bridge


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Hi Improvise,

As Drak said, the bridge is loose on an archtop.

One thing that you might want to check is the distance between the 12th fret and the bridge. It should be the same as the distance between the nut and the 12th fret.

Take care,

Guitar Ed

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If you ever actually -did- do that, the only thing I would use is the blue Form-A-Gasket, because it easily peels back off and shouldn't mar the finish any, and I would use 2 -TINY- dots of the stuff, one under each bridge foot. -Just- enough to hold it in place and no more.

But I still wouldn't do it really.

I remember on my old '57 ES 225TDC (think Thorogood), when I would do large bends, when I would make the little E kiss the big E (as Buddy Guy liked to say it) the bridge would slide back and forth and it would bug me a bit, but I later learned that was because I waxed the guitar so often. If you roughen up the small area under each foot with a bit of sandpaper, it will stay in place somewhat better. But only when you have it perfectly placed and intonated. :D

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So how do you keep the scale length constant when changing strings?

On my archtop I make sure the bridge is in the right position first then I make a very faint outline of the bridge base on the body of the guitar with a sharp pencil. If your pencil is sharp enough you can make the line right against the base of the bridge and it won't be seen. Don't press hard enough to damage the finish but just enough to see the outline when the bridge is off the guitar so you know where it goes.

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  • 2 weeks later...
In theory, it is actually best to change the strings one at a time so that you keep the neck under tension, rather than subjecting it to a wide variety of stresses.

And if you have a Bigsby or an other tremolo, you don't have to retune the entire system

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