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ZAMAK vs Aluminum TOM Bridge

#1 User is offline   SocProf 

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Posted 02 January 2018 - 08:53 PM

I plan to swap out the stock bridge on my SG Faded T with a TonePros. However, after communicating with customer service I learned that I'll have two options after NAMM 2018: ZAMAK (a zinc alloy and their current standard) or aluminum.

I'm not foolish enough to ask "which would sound better" because that would be entirely subjective. But I wonder if anyone here has experience with different bridge materials who could say something about qualitative differences in tone between heavier and lighter bridge metals. Also, does heavier lead to more sustain, or is the issue more complicated?
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#2 User is offline   merciful-evans 

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 08:21 AM

Good question. I've often wondered the same thing myself.

Logic suggests there would be a difference between bridge materials. After all that's why traditional archtops use wooden bridges (though they are acoustic of course!).
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#3 User is offline   Farnsbarns 

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 11:55 AM

Zamak is about the cheapest and nastiest metalic alloy in the world. It's very light, but that's because it full of air bubbles. It's incredibly brittle and generally not useful for load bearing components. I would never fit a zamak bridge, or indeed a bridge made by anyon who had previously marketed a zamak bridge. It is the metaphoric pig iron of today.

I think you need to say why you're changing the bridge for anyone to form any idea as to what would suit you best. I'd be aiming for nickel plated brass. All that said, I'd be surprised if you could hear a difference (until the zamak bridge collapses. You'll hear that.)

This post has been edited by Farnsbarns: 03 January 2018 - 12:36 PM

I'm not drunk, you're blurry.

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#4 User is offline   pippy 

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 01:52 PM

View PostFarnsbarns, on 03 January 2018 - 11:55 AM, said:

Zamak is about the cheapest and nastiest metalic alloy in the world. It's very light, but that's because it full of air bubbles...

I had a 1973 Porsche 914. The 914 had very stylish door-flip-handles which were made from cast Zamak. They failed, structurally, to an alarming extent.

Zamak is just a different way to spell C.R.A.P.

Pip.
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#5 User is offline   SocProf 

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 08:37 PM

View PostFarnsbarns, on 03 January 2018 - 11:55 AM, said:


I think you need to say why you're changing the bridge for anyone to form any idea as to what would suit you best.


Many people report better sustain with locking systems. I figured I would try one out and see for myself.

The basic tone of the stock aluminum hardware is okay with me, so maybe I'll go with TonePros' new aluminum bridge. GuitarFetish offers brass locking bridges and tailpieces as an alternative. Faber offers a third alternative.
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#6 User is online   rct 

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Posted 03 January 2018 - 09:44 PM

View PostSocProf, on 03 January 2018 - 08:37 PM, said:

Many people report better sustain with locking systems. I figured I would try one out and see for myself.

The basic tone of the stock aluminum hardware is okay with me, so maybe I'll go with TonePros' new aluminum bridge. GuitarFetish offers brass locking bridges and tailpieces as an alternative. Faber offers a third alternative.


It's good to try things. But keep in mind that the stew that is this thing called "sustain" is made up of about 50 ingredients, and the mechanics of the bridge are probably negligible compared to everything else.

All the players I learned my legendary sustain [laugh] from didn't have locking bridges on their Les Pauls and SGs and Explorers. It's more what you do and how you do it than what you do it with.

rct
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#7 User is offline   merciful-evans 

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 09:38 AM

View PostSocProf, on 03 January 2018 - 08:37 PM, said:

Many people report better sustain with locking systems. I figured I would try one out and see for myself.



why not. Good idea. Let us know how it goes.



BTW I am trying out ideas to reduce sustain on my Gibsons (without losing output). Yes really. [biggrin]
Hagstrom Deuce / Fylde Acoustic / Variax Standard / Gibson ES-339 / Gibson LP Less+ / PRS SE Custom24 / Hofner HCT-J17 / Camps Spanish / Jackson Soloist / Rickenbacker 650 /Squier Esprit
Miele S5 Power 2200w Vacuum Cleaner
Makita BO3710 Finishing Sander
Verdict 6" vernier scale calipers
Whittard of Chelsea Florence blue teapot
Spear & Jackson 1712PF/INS12 trenching fork

*
Posted Image put the kettle on
I sometimes think; therefore I am intermittent
*
my band BLOWN OUT
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#8 User is offline   jdgm 

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Posted 04 January 2018 - 09:42 AM

View Postmerciful-evans, on 04 January 2018 - 09:38 AM, said:

BTW I am trying out ideas to reduce sustain on my Gibsons (without losing output). Yes really. [biggrin]


Try Picato flatwound strings!!! [biggrin]
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#9 User is offline   merciful-evans 

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Posted 07 January 2018 - 10:23 AM

View Postjdgm, on 04 January 2018 - 09:42 AM, said:

Try Picato flatwound strings!!! [biggrin]


Hey that's not a bad idea actually, except for the unwound ones of course.
Hagstrom Deuce / Fylde Acoustic / Variax Standard / Gibson ES-339 / Gibson LP Less+ / PRS SE Custom24 / Hofner HCT-J17 / Camps Spanish / Jackson Soloist / Rickenbacker 650 /Squier Esprit
Miele S5 Power 2200w Vacuum Cleaner
Makita BO3710 Finishing Sander
Verdict 6" vernier scale calipers
Whittard of Chelsea Florence blue teapot
Spear & Jackson 1712PF/INS12 trenching fork

*
Posted Image put the kettle on
I sometimes think; therefore I am intermittent
*
my band BLOWN OUT
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