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Howard Roberts III Tailpiece ?


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I was wondering if anyone with some experience of the HR finger tailpiece has found a difference in sound after adjusting the break angle over the bridge ? What result should I be getting in tone and/or volume by either increasing or decreasing the break angle ?


I've just got this guitar, my first Gibson and am very impressed with it's jazz / blues capabilities.





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Congratulation with the HR III, i have one also. i wish i could be of more help to you, but i can't say i know much about the tailpiece, i keep mine cranked down a bit to keep the feel of the strings a little tight. i use 12 - 52 flat wounds on it and has a good feel and tone for jazz.


i think loosening the tailpiece gives it a spongier feel on the strings, maybe less sustain. but as you know this guitar with the pups and the center block has probably the most sustain of any arch top, and reduced feedback. i think it is a very undiscovered guitar for jazz, blues, fusion etc.


i always lay a polishing cloth underneath the tailpiece when i change strings to prevent the fingers from moving around and contacting the top. not that you need it but if you adjust the fingers recheck your intonation, because it will slightly affect it.


mine is sunburst. best of luck and enjoy it. if you discover anything new post it.




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  • 10 years later...

Forget the break angle, it has no effect on tone, it's movement is minimal and provides just a bit of fine tuning useful whilst holding a chord. 

Here's a video I made on the tuning effect (which was documented in the patent "claims") on my HRF.



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