Start by placing a capo directly on the 1st fret. The easiest way to do this is with a String Action Gauge—a handy tool available from Next, fret each string at the 12th fret and compare the fretted note to its corresponding harmonic. By contrast, the ends of an open-slot saddle are exposed and tapered to match the contour of the bridge itself (Fig. Terms Of Use. Begin by sanding the bone stock to the correct thickness of the saddle slot. Fig. I rough in the curves on the saddle’s ends using the above method, and then put a perfect round on it using a fret file loaded in to a vice. For guitars and other fretted instruments the placement of the frets is based on the scale length. Ausgezeichnet! 16 Before doing anything about the saddle, make … One beautiful bone saddle, perfectly fit. Here’s where the art really starts to come in. Rub the saddle on the sandpaper again, this time to even out the top and bottom. Next, hold down the low E string at the last fret and measure the greatest distance between the top of the frets and the bottom of the string. This article is about making a saddle out of bone, considered by guitar maker Frank Ford to be the best material for getting a rich tone. This action was too low—for the guitar to play without a lot of string rattle, the saddle should be taller. His best seller, Guitar Setup, Maintenance & Repair, is a hands-on guide with a forward by Bob Taylor. First tune each string using its 12th-fret harmonic. The scale length of an instrument is the distance between the edge of the nut and the nominal bridge saddle position. Here the action was perfect: 1/64" on the high E and 2/64" on the low E string. Clamp the blank in place and cut it using the hacksaw to approximately the same length and height you want, leaving a little margin for sanding and shaping. This guitar’s radius measured at 38cm (14″): I usually set my bridge radii to be slightly flatter than the fretboard radius. 2). #mc_embed_signup{background:#fff; clear:left; font:14px Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; width:100%;} PRS SE Hollowbody II Piezo: The PG Review, 3. I also am slowly learning to speak German. Using your fingers to provide continuous pressure, rub the blank back and forth on the sandpaper to flatten it evenly. #yamaha #guitarporn #, Ben gettin’ after this neck reset. There’s no quick way to get this kind of tight fit – this takes time, patience, and elbow grease. Continue to rub it on the sandpaper until it is just thin enough to fit into the notch. The next step is to shape the top of the saddle. See the page entitled Calculating Fret Positionson this site for more info on fret placement. #martin #neck, Aaron’s band @themolghosts are going into the st, Hard to hate black on black. // Leaf Group Lifestyle. Again, use a String Action Gauge or precision steel ruler to read the gap between the top of the 12th fret and the bottom of the two E strings. From this point on, things get tedious: a bone saddle should fit easily into the slot, but shouldn’t be so loose that it will fall out. The owner wanted a “compensated” saddle to make the guitar play in tune, so we’ll cover that as well. Using a variety of files, I carve the saddle to a sort of Z pattern. I recently was brought a Taylor acoustic guitar with a missing saddle, which must have fallen out while it was being restrung. I always compensate my saddles to help the guitar to intonate properly – the plain strings tend to run sharp if a straight saddle is used. #jo, Aaron just modified a stock ‘52 reissue Tele bri, Subtlety: it’s what guitar players are known for, A bass player’s worst nightmare... #8string #fan, “You still don't understand what you're dealing, Aaron buffs out a crack repair on a properly road, Have a circuit board in your guitar and kinda wish, Ben gettin’ his grind on! I start by marking the saddle between the G and B strings, and then marking over the parts of the saddle that I want to carve away. I always start with the saddle way too tall, so I can cut it down to it’s proper height. Notice how the saddle’s ends are exposed,rather than enclosed in a routed slot. How to Make an Inlay Sticker for a Guitar, How to Remove Waterslide Decals From the Guitar Headstock, Copyright 2020 Leaf Group Ltd. All Rights Reserved. Let’s jump, The shop made it through the storm just fine, but. We recommend moving this block and the preceding CSS link to the HEAD of your HTML file. (The largest gap typically occurs somewhere between the 7th and 10th frets.) Deal with it. If the saddle becomes too thin, you'll need to start over. A client recently brought in a beautiful sounding 1937 Martin 000-18 that needed a new saddle because the action was too low. Using 80-grit paper to sand the new bone saddle blank to the correct thickness. Once the blank is fairly flat, start trying to fit it into the notch in the guitar. Permanent link to this article:,, We will closed for this Thursday and Friday for Th, Blast from the way back machine!! When you’re carving a new saddle, you have to know how much taller or shorter it needs to be compared to the one you’re replacing. Now, there are lots of ways to make a compensated saddle, but I’ve found that I’ve been favoring this method lately. I use the radius gauge to mark the top of the bone blank (in this case, 40cm (16″)), rough it in on the belt sander, and then use the appropriate radius block to sand it down to exactly the right curve. Remove the old saddle from your guitar. Mark the ends as treble and bass. First I measure the fretboard’s radius using a radius gauge. I mark my measurements to the bone blank, and rough it in to get it close to the right size on the bandsaw and belt sander. A compensated saddle is the Acousic Guitar version of the tune-o-matic type bridge, where the length of each string is individually adjustable so that you can adjust intonation. Installing a bone saddle into your acoustic guitar isn’t just something to consider if you’ve lost or broken your original saddle. And there you have it! If the saddle’s bottom isn’t perfectly flat, it won’t be making complete contact with the bottom of the slot or with the pickup, and can cause tonal loss or dead strings if a pickup is used. Measuring relief. 1). #blackonblack #fender, Our buddies from Fidelity Bank stare agog as Aaron, You don’t see many of these floating around. So we’re going to have to live with this .010" relief—no change here. Gathering this baseline information will give you a sense of what the project will entail—what’s working and what needs fixing. Since making a bone saddle involves making a lot of dust, I wear a dust mask throughout the process. This offsets the strings in such a way that will help them play more in tune with themselves up and down the neck (inasmuch any guitar could be considered “in tune”).