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PeteyBass
04-01-2009, 03:56 PM
Saddling information.

In doing research for more Guild parts for my site I traded emails with Karl E Hagstrom Jr!

I had assumed that Guild made the rosewood saddles (of course you know about assumptions). Karl said all Harp saddles that shipped to Guild had the rosewood saddles in-place and that Guild never produced them. That would explain the dizzying inconsistencies from saddle to saddle being slightly different in shapes and heights.

I have also noticed that 60’s bridges have a strait front, where as 70- ish and on have the harp front. Karl tells me that the strait fronts have a different length adjustment screw.

If any Guild Form members need a set of saddles let me know. I’ll kill the shipping and handling fee and give you a free single saddle.

Peteybass

P.S. Could someone please tell me how to post a photo? I’m not feeling very smart today.

fronobulax
04-01-2009, 04:26 PM
Saddles. Saint Louis. You're the guy making and selling saddles on eBay, right? If so congratulations. I am amazed at the price you are getting but real pleased someone is making saddles. And when I break the next one, your price won't seem nearly as high as it does now :wink: (And, for that matter, I notice the market seems to be setting your price so I have no grounds to complain).

Feel free to tell us about the SF I you are keeping as well as whether the refin you just sold is one that survived Katrina but really needed the refin afterwards.

Neat that you came in contact with Karl H. Next time ask him about the bi-sonic PU.

On bridges - the curved bridge was introduced sometime in 1967. I have never seen a straight bridge later than 1967 nor a curved bridge earlier. Hans Moust has rather patiently explained to me that during the '60's Guild produced instruments in batches and it is not guaranteed that a lower serial number left the factory first. Nevertheless, as noted here (http://www.letstalkguild.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=4746&hilit=pictures+but+not+mine) every serial number I have seen less than BA-145x has had a straight bridge and every serial number greater than BA=147x has had a curved bridge. The tone (a.k.a. "suck") switch seems to have been introduced with the curved bridge as well.


Karl tells me that the strait fronts have a different length adjustment screw.

Is it just the screw length? Having one of each it, might be fun to measure, in the interest of documenting the physical object.

The short answer to a including a photo is to host it somewhere and then place the URL between the image tags (press the Img button) when composing the message. LTG doesn't host photos which tends to confuse people. There is at least one good thread/tutorial here on how to post images. It really should be stickied. Alas my search-fu is not finding it, at least when I am multi-tasking.

billbass1
04-01-2009, 04:50 PM
Excellent info Peter and Frono .

Peter, did Mr Hagstrom mention if they made the saddles or the bridges themselves ?
I ask because, I beleive they had the Bisonic PUPS made by someone else, contracted out,
for Hagstrom.



In regards to the straight and harp shape bridges.............
It has been my own personal expeirence that while the harp bridges
may look nicer, it is the simple straight ones that are more funtional, since they intonate much better.
In particular for the low E string.

hieronymous
04-01-2009, 06:35 PM
Very interesting! I am very tempted to order a set, as I have two old Guild basses. So far, they haven't needed new saddles, but you never know! I lemon oiled the fingerboard of my fretless yesterday, and realized that maybe I should oil the saddles too, to keep them from drying out?

As for posting pictures, I use ImageShack. It's free, you upload the pictures there, then copy the code/URL and insert it between the image tags as Frono mentioned.

Anyway, welcome aboard!

mellowgerman
04-01-2009, 09:39 PM
I've been debating getting a spare set, just in case something happens to my current saddles... How much is one set going for? (feel free to PM me the answer to that one, if you prefer ;))

PeteyBass
04-02-2009, 12:50 AM
Thanks guys for the support. Getting the site up and the saddles made was a little more challenging than I expected. I hope the "offered" discount helps.

As for my Starfire that was sold on the bay, it came to me by way of Portland, OR and was not a LA hurricane casualty.

The re-fin on the back (I didn’t do it) was sanded through in spots showing bits of the maple. The mahogany tops must be super thin. So if you’re going to sand BECAREFULL!

I was relieved when the guy payed the following morning. In fact he took delivery today in CA. It made me crazy watching two zero feedbackers bid, but it all worked out.

The bass with just little re-touching is the lead photo on my site. The mahogany really looks great.

My guess about the saddles are that they were made at the old Hagstrom factory, they did so much wood work I can’t see any reason they would have farmed it out like they would for electronics. I'll have to ask.

THANKS for the photo info I will some up in a day or two.

hieronymous
04-02-2009, 04:30 AM
I didn't realize you had a website until your last post. I like it! Great pics of the basses and saddles.

bassmyf
04-02-2009, 09:11 AM
[/quote]
I was relieved when the guy payed the following morning. In fact he took delivery today in CA. It made me crazy watching two zero feedbackers bid, but it all worked out.
[/quote]

If it makes you feel any better,I was the other zero feedbacker that lost, and I assure you you would have had no problems with that deal either..

PeteyBass
04-02-2009, 01:59 PM
Thanks for the note Bassmyf. I have actually had good luck with first time buyers, in fact I have yet to have a problem with one.


Another Saddle question…how many of you have trouble intonating your E string because you can’t get the saddle far enough back for the reason that the adjustment screw stops it?


Petey

Default
04-02-2009, 02:40 PM
Thanks for the note Bassmyf. I have actually had good luck with first time buyers, in fact I have yet to have a problem with one.


Another Saddle question…how many of you have trouble intonating your E string because you can’t get the saddle far enough back for the reason that the adjustment screw stops it?


Petey

Petey, I don't remember what the adjustment screws do on that bridge. I assume that the bridgeplate itself is threaded?
If it is, you might be able to use an Allen screw. You might have to play around with the lengths or notch the saddle on one side to get it to fit over the Allen screw, but that might be what you're looking for.

http://www.paintball-online.com/sites/paintball/images/fullsize/MT18PLUG.jpg

gilded
04-02-2009, 02:53 PM
Another Saddle question…how many of you have trouble intonating your E string because you can’t get the saddle far enough back for the reason that the adjustment screw stops it? Petey

Petey,

First of all, good luck with your saddle biz.

I have two Guild basses, one with the old-style bridge w/ plastic saddles, the other with a harp bridge w/ wooden saddles.

It's been a year or so since I put the 'Steve Austin, Six-Million-Dollar-Man Bionic Eye' to those bridges, but I seem to remember that you can take the bridge off , turn (one or more of) the metal saddle pieces around 180 degrees and get more backwards adjustment if you need it. Of course, my memory could be faulty, but I thought I'd throw the idea out for your consideration.

As well, since the bridge plates are usually set at a slant (depends on the usual neck set/neck dive variables), the further back you go with a bridge saddle, the lower the string will sit in relation to the fingerboard, but hey, I hear there's a guy who makes wooden saddles now! Maybe he could make slightly 'taller' ones for the needy? :mrgreen:

Secondly, if, in your discussions with Mr. Karl E Hagstrom Jr, you find out anything about the old black plastic saddles, I am sure that there are a lot of people here who would enjoy hearing about it.

On the subject of the original Bisonic pickups, I think folks have tried to find out information before, only to run into a dead end when they get to Hagstrom. Not that the folks at Hagstrom aren't helpful, just that it's been a long time since the events took place and the information has slipped away. If you find out differently, we'd love to hear about it.

Again, good luck with your biz. I appreciate the convenient links that you provide on your website, too. Say, if you can put your website address in your signature line, why don't you do that?

Here it is for people who want to look up your product:

http://www.guildbassparts.com

Harry aka gilded

PS Default, the screws in the saddle pieces actually use the head of the screw as a 'pressure fit' against the face of the bridge-plate, to keep the saddle in place. I don't think a headless allen screw would work........

Default
04-02-2009, 02:59 PM
PS Default, the screws in the saddle pieces actually use the head of the screw as a 'pressure fit' against the face of the bridge-plate, to keep the saddle in place. I don't think a headless allen screw would work........

Ok, I thought that it was the two tilt screws in the middle of the bridgeplate that were the problem. It looks like the bridge wasn't individually adjustable originally when Hagstrom was using it.

http://www.hagstrom.org.uk/manfredgraeder.htm

fronobulax
04-02-2009, 04:06 PM
Another Saddle question…how many of you have trouble intonating your E string because you can’t get the saddle far enough back for the reason that the adjustment screw stops it?


Petey

Not I, said the little red poodle, er...Hen!

The JS, which is stock with the curved bridge, still has some wiggle room.

The Starfire has replacement saddles that are taller than the originals. To get them to work, the bridge plate is almost as low as it can go but as a consequence there is also a lot of room to adjust.

mgod
04-07-2009, 06:31 PM
I'll be interested to know when you branch out. Ebony could sound good.

DS

PeteyBass
04-07-2009, 11:37 PM
[/size) mgod, I was just talking about a few ebony's. In fact I have a piece of wood in-hand. I also am waiting for my first set of brass saddles. My buddy in the machining biz keeps promising them, but it could still be a few weeks. I do expect to offer them in the next 60 days. I think they could substantially change the sound.

What do you guys think???
[/size]

gilded
04-08-2009, 02:22 AM
I wonder if ebony would be a little brittle. I guess there's one way to find out!

Brass sounds interesting, too.

fronobulax
04-08-2009, 08:54 PM
I have no experience with saddle wood so I'd be real interested in knowing if anyone can hear the difference between ebony and rosewood saddles and, if so, what the difference is. Ditto for brass although I can imagine buying ebony saddles but not necessarily brass simply by appearance.

billbass1
04-10-2009, 12:12 PM
I bought a set of the rosewood saddles from Peter at http://www.guildbassparts.com
and received them yesterday.
Outstanding workmenship and almost excact detail to the originals.
I bought them as backups for my three Guild basses.
I just tried one of the saddles out.
Used my 67 Starfire I and removed the saddle on the G string and
installed one of Peters.
The first thing I noticed was that the slot on the replacement was slightly
larger then the original.
I tuned the string up to pitch and played for several minutes with no problems.
I later contacted Peter and asked him about the diffrence in saddle slot width.
Apparently on some Guild basess, the little paddles on the bridges,where the
saddles attach, were bent at the factory, thus the need for a bit of extra
width on the replacement saddles.
Peter did assure me, if I was not satisfied with the width on the set he sent to me,
he would replace them with another set with narrower slots.
I do not see any potential problems myself so I am going to keep the current set.
The string tension should keep the saddles right in place.
The only suggestion that I humbly make, would to be able to determine
if your bridge paddles on your particular Guild are straight or bent, and
then ask Peter to cut your replacement slots accordingly while ordering.
I strongly get the impression that Peter takes pride in his product
and wants to please his customers..... :D

fronobulax
04-10-2009, 02:35 PM
Apparently on some Guild basess, the little paddles on the bridges,where the
saddles attach, were bent at the factory, thus the need for a bit of extra width on the replacement saddles.

I'm not sure I follow what you are saying. Perhaps it is because all my paddles appear the same and none appear bent. My paddles all seem to be perpendicular to the bridge plate.

Thanks for the report/endorsement, BTW.

PeteyBass
04-10-2009, 03:02 PM
Thanks Bill your kind comments. I wanted to share the information that I sent to Bill regarding his question about a slight amount of play in his saddles.

I've changed the slot width twice. I found when I made them exactly the same size for tight fit many of the buyers found the paddles were bent and often the saddles would not fit without being widened by a file. You can bend the saddles back with a pair of small vise grips, its pretty easy to do. So far I haven't the found the play is a problem. And I have also found several original vintage saddles are slightly wider so...

You can

1 Leave them I think you'll be happy, Its cool if you change your mind later and if they don't keep tune I want to know! .
2 Put a tiny cut of black electrical tape on the paddle, one side should do it. This really works perfectly, not unlike shimming a neck in a Fender.
3 You can bend the paddle slightly (I hate doing that)

4 Or I'll make a new set to the exact spec

It's hard know for sure if the paddles were sometimes bent at the factory because of the variation in the saddle width from Hagstrom or from expanding and contracting from years of weather changes and then later changed by luthiers. But I have found the slots on vintage saddles vary by up to a 1/64”. Realistically they can swell in a humid environment, or contract in a dry one. Where I live in St Louis it can be pretty humid even when its cold. I oil the saddles three times before they are sent out.

The first set I made was using the specs from my plastic saddles off my 66 Starfire. I have received several warm comments from buyers that once installed, you would have absolutely no idea they are replacements.

Guys your comments are welcomed and helpful.

billbass1
04-10-2009, 03:04 PM
Apparently on some Guild basess, the little paddles on the bridges,where the
saddles attach, were bent at the factory, thus the need for a bit of extra width on the replacement saddles.

I'm not sure I follow what you are saying. Perhaps it is because all my paddles appear the same and none appear bent. My paddles all seem to be perpendicular to the bridge plate.

Thanks for the report/endorsement, BTW.

Yes, mine are straight also, on the 67 Starfire and 73 M-85.
On my previous 71 JS II they were straight to.
I recently acquired a 68 Starfire II ,and on that one the saddles are very
snugly in place. I did not try pulling them off since they appear in excellent condition.
Perhaps the reason they are so snug is because of bent paddles ?
Or, since the bass is overall just about mint, they were just never removed
before, and with 40 years of time have just clung on ?
I am just passing along what I was told and what I do know.........

fronobulax
04-10-2009, 04:12 PM
Thanks. I get it now. Somehow when I first read "slot width" I was thinking of the notch the string goes through. That could vary based upon the string gauge and even the "elevation" of the bridge since the bridge travels in a slight arc and not just straight. I've got it now and understand how the width of the "paddle slot" is important and how it relates to bent paddles. Kind of cool, too, that we have name for another bridge part.