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1960 ES-125T

#1 User is offline   GuitarrGuyy13 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 06:34 AM

I recently acquired a 1960 Gibson ES-125T and I was wondering what angle the bridge should be set at, it has a wooden bridge similar to modern tune o matics but without adjustable saddles. The bridge itself sits on the guitar body and is very sensitive to movement, I believe originally it was glued to the body but for now I have thread sealant between the bridge and the guitar body. That seems to be working well but is only temporary. For the time being I have the bridge set "straight" after looking at different pictures of it online, but it just doesn't seem right, one because it doesn't feel right and the inotation is off, and two I've notice almost all Gibson bridges are set at an angle and I don't understand why.. a lot of pictures online of this particular guitar has the bridge set straight. So if anyone could give me instructions on how this process works that would be great, I'm very experienced when it comes to things like this but not with vintage instruments. This is my first vintage guitar.

#2 User is offline   Versatile 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 06:48 AM

Hi and welcome to the forums....

Very nice guitar !!

Intonation on a guitar like this in original form will be somewhat of a compromise

Archtop bridges often end up at an angle for this reason...depends how accurate you want it vs straight for aesthetics...

An electronic tuner is essential

And depending on string gauge, the bridge may be left floating...

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#3 User is offline   GuitarrGuyy13 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 07:31 AM

Thanks (=
And about string gauges, whenever I hit the A string it makes something vibrate and I'm not quite sure what it is. It's not fret buzz but it sounds exactly like that and it can really drive you nuts.. But I've experimented a little and when I put my finger on the saddle the string is sitting on, pressing the string in between my finger and the saddle, not palm muting it, it stops.. Wierd huh?
It's a hollow body of course and at first I thought it was something on the inside vibrating, like a wire up against the body or loose electronics but I have my doubts now after trying that. Any suggestions?

#4 User is offline   pfox14 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 07:49 AM

Please do not use sealant or any kind of adhesive to hold the bridge in place. It is supposed to be floating on the top and the string pressure is what holds it down. You will find with the adjustable height bridges with the wooden saddle pieces need to be at a slight angle in order for the intonation to be right. The low E side will be slightly farther away from the fret board than the high E side.

#5 User is offline   GuitarrGuyy13 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 07:54 AM

Thread Sealent.. Like you use in plumbing..It's white and comes in the form of tape, that shouldn't hurt it. Right?
I just needed something that had a little more friction to hold it in place rather than the bare wood.

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 08:16 AM

welcome to the forums.i am new here too.Posted Image

#7 User is offline   Versatile 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 09:12 AM

I've had several archtops and semis with random vibrations

Usually only audible acoustically

IMO not worth bothering about...playing when amped will divert attention away

Agreed on not using sealant tapes etc...the string down force will hold the bridge in place

Enjoy the guitar and remember to post a sound clip [thumbup]

V

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Fiddling at the Pearly Gates
or somewhere
Lower and Warmer....

I like kayaking....it really floats my boat

I dig most stuff.......Anon(gardener)

#8 User is online   L5Larry 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 09:42 AM

View PostGuitarrGuyy13, on 21 March 2012 - 07:54 AM, said:

Thread Sealent.. Like you use in plumbing..It's white and comes in the form of tape, that shouldn't hurt it. Right?


It may not hurt the guitar, but it will affect the sound. The contact between the bridge base and soundboard is designed to be wood-to-wood. This is how the string vibration is transferred through the bridge to the soundboard and body of the guitar to make sound.

I've been playing floating bridge archtop guitars for many years, I've never experience a bridge movement under proper string tension. These guitars were not/are not designed for light gauge strings such as 8's or 9's. Probably the lightest gauge strings I ever had on one of my archtops is 11's, and there was no problem at that gauge.

A couple of other notes:
There are no aesthetics involved in setting intonation, the guitar must intonate (or be somewhat close), and the bridge will have to be angled to do so. I'm also assuming you have a "compensated" wood bridge, and it is generally thought that the position of the saddles is for a medium to heavy gauge string set with a wound third. I'm not sure I agree with this, but the fact of the matter is that the Gibson wood compensated bridges will not intonate perfectly across the neck with modern strings (wound third of not). You have to find a "happy medium". I have found by setting the bridge location for proper intonation for the 2nd string (treble side) and the 5th string (bass side) is generally as good as it gets, and acceptable.

After everything else is setup properly on the guitar, then go chasing your rattles. As you suspect, it could be almost anything, wiring, knobs, pots, tailpiece, pickguard, pickup, braces, etc. Do this last.

#9 User is offline   GuitarrGuyy13 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 10:13 AM

Yeah but I really like playing it without an amp, almost acoustically so you can see why it would drive me nuts. xD
But you are right you don't notice it when playing with an amp. But anyway, thanks for the help guys, I'm sure I'll have more questions in the future. ^.^

#10 User is offline   GuitarrGuyy13 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 11:07 AM

And thank you L5, I just read it. (=

#11 User is offline   GuitarrGuyy13 

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Posted 21 March 2012 - 09:23 PM

Thank you guys so much, took me about 30 minutes but I finally have it.. acceptably inotated. E octaves are almost perfect. Sounds and feels soo much better. (=
Still rattles though.. Gonna have to work on that some more.. =/

#12 User is offline   modoc_333 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 02:17 AM

your buzz could be sympathetic to certain frequencies. if this is the case, make sure everything is tight. if the tuning keys have screw in bushings, makes sure they are tight. this is the most common. it could be a tuner button too... or the thumbwheels on the bridge. check everything. you will eventually run across the culprit.
1932 Gibson L-00 "Penny"
1935 Kalamazoo KG-31
1996 Squier Japan Vista Series Jagmaster
2006 Gibson 1958 Reissue Les Paul
2010 Gibson Advanced Jumbo
2012 Gibson Custom built L-00
and a small pile of other stuff.... not mentioning all of the beautiful pieces I practiced "catch and release" on!


-Keith

#13 User is offline   GuitarrGuyy13 

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 08:55 AM

I think it may be the thumb wheels on the bridge like you suggested. Thank you. (=

#14 User is offline   modoc_333 

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 12:37 AM

View PostGuitarrGuyy13, on 26 March 2012 - 08:55 AM, said:

I think it may be the thumb wheels on the bridge like you suggested. Thank you. (=



you're welcome! if the thumbwheels won't stay up against the bridge, try adding a little bit of clear nail polish to the threads on the underside. remove it from the guitar before you do this to make sure none drips on the finish.
1932 Gibson L-00 "Penny"
1935 Kalamazoo KG-31
1996 Squier Japan Vista Series Jagmaster
2006 Gibson 1958 Reissue Les Paul
2010 Gibson Advanced Jumbo
2012 Gibson Custom built L-00
and a small pile of other stuff.... not mentioning all of the beautiful pieces I practiced "catch and release" on!


-Keith

#15 User is offline   GuitarrGuyy13 

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 08:56 AM

Thanks, I'll do that. (=

#16 User is offline   GuitarrGuyy13 

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Posted 16 April 2012 - 08:08 PM

Good news, I finally figured out the source of my rattle.
Turns out there was a copper wire pressed against the body on the inside, so I just gently pushed it out of the way and all is good now. (=

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