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Bone saddle and pins installed J-35


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So today I installed the bone saddle and pins I got from Bob Colossi. I first installed the pins with the tusq saddle still installed as I was curious if the bone pins would make any difference to the sound. I really couldn't notice any difference between the bone and plastic pins other than the bone looks better. Onto the saddle which I spent a long time sanding down to the right height. However it was worth it, the difference in sound was very noticeable. Strummed a few chords and there was a noticeable difference in clarity and sustain, I did a bit of fingerpicking and notes which before seemed damped and muffled just rang out cleanly. So it is a worthy upgrade to an already fantastic guitar.

Before

0b0de037c18800c2c02bcffb42cc1849.jpg

After

1635921f79eaf0a55a0a80c38dea5b21.jpg

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Nice. I'm a fan of bone and Colosi. A few years ago bone and Colosi were very popular here. Seems lately there's a surge in appreciation for plastic pins, and plastic saddles. I dumped a tusq saddle. While it comes highly recommended for A/E saddles, to my ears it makes for muddy/muffled acoustic sounds. So I'm with you on that.

 

Glad your new bones are working for you on your J-35. She's a beauty. . B)

 

 

.

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Thanks, yes I agree sounded muddy before. I have put bone saddles in a few other guitars I have owned but none seemed to make such an improvement to the guitar like it did on this one.

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Yes, I also found a positive impact of a good boning.

 

Better sustain, clarity and balance ... except on the HB TV when the tone became too clear with bone pins, lost the nectar just with this adjustment. Plastic pins back on again and the honey flows once again ...

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Looks good, did your saddle fit pretty loose in the saddle slot? mine sits a little loose and the saddle leans a bit. I put one of bobs in mine too, and theres still a bit of play in the saddle slot. yours looks really good.

 

thanks

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I had to do some sanding on the ends to round them off but it fits quite snuggly in the slot no play at all. Always been impressed with Bobs work and he is really helpful with any issues you have.

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I had to do some sanding on the ends to round them off but it fits quite snuggly in the slot no play at all. Always been impressed with Bobs work and he is really helpful with any issues you have.

 

 

mine fit loose with the saddle it came with too. is the bone one you got compensated as well? Hard tell from the picture?

 

thanks

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mine fit loose with the saddle it came with too. is the bone one you got compensated as well? Hard tell from the picture?

 

thanks

 

Yes it is hard to tell from the pic but it is indeed compensated.

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I'm glad the upgrades helped your sound. I've found bone pins hit and miss with some of my guitars. One one, the bass was diminished??? On one, the sound was too bright. But on most of the changes, they have been successful like in your case....It's all about the SOUND, man!!!

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no it came with a tusq saddle as most of the standard line do. I agree they should come with a bone saddle already but its a cheap upgrade.

Oh ok, well I think you made the right choice with a bone saddle. I like the sound of bone. I find tusk on some of my guitars gets to shrilly and unfocused. Bone seems to produce true clarity of tone. Good luck on your J-35..it sure is a beautiful guitar! LOVE the pick guard!

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There wasn't a bone saddle on this J-35 when you bought it??! That would be unbelievable for that price. Even my $499 Masterbilt has bone nut and saddle.

 

If these come with an undersaddle pickup, bone is not the first factory choice because of unpredictable density across the saddle.

 

A man made material can have more uniform density, equating to a uniform saddle pressure across the entire pickup.

 

...at least that's what I've been told....

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Seems lately there's a surge in appreciation for plastic pins, and plastic saddles.

 

I've not seen anyone lobby for plastic saddles. Where saddles are concerned, imho, bone = tone. I'm not a believer in anything heavier than bone (fossilized ivory, for example) for a saddle. And I don't know how anyone not in the presence of a guitar can compensate the saddle for that particular guitar (really, you need to figure the best compensation for each string on that guitar). But I do think that bone is the best choice for saddles (excluding amplification issues).

 

As for pins, I believe that, on average and subject to exceptions, less mass is better. Thus, on average,I prefer plastic pins to bone pins. It helps to remember that Gibson originally designed these guitars for bone saddles and plastic pins.

 

Mileage and ears differ. We all should make these choices according to our personal sonic preferences.

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I did try the bone pins with the tusq saddle first and really didnt hear any change. However I did not try pairing the bone saddle with the plastic pins. I will try that at next string change just to see if there is any difference.

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I've not seen anyone lobby for plastic saddles. Where saddles are concerned, imho, bone = tone. I'm not a believer in anything heavier than bone (fossilized ivory, for example) for a saddle. And I don't know how anyone not in the presence of a guitar can compensate the saddle for that particular guitar (really, you need to figure the best compensation for each string on that guitar). But I do think that bone is the best choice for saddles (excluding amplification issues).

 

As for pins, I believe that, on average and subject to exceptions, less mass is better. Thus, on average,I prefer plastic pins to bone pins. It helps to remember that Gibson originally designed these guitars for bone saddles and plastic pins.

 

Mileage and ears differ. We all should make these choices according to our personal sonic preferences.

 

I have found that bone pins on the high 3 positions (strings 1,2 and 3) make a noticable difference. Brighter, more clarity and volume.

 

Bottom 3 I prefer plastic. Warmer, more pronounced bass and punchier. I played around with them alot and tried Ebony and Buffalo horn too.

 

I havent changed the saddle. I couldnt wish for anything more, it just seems perfectly balanced and alive as it is right now.

 

I did the same thing with my LG2, except it has a factory fitted bone saddle.

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I have found that bone pins on the high 3 positions (strings 1,2 and 3) make a noticable difference. Brighter, more clarity and volume.

 

Bottom 3 I prefer plastic. Warmer, more pronounced bass and punchier. I played around with them alot and tried Ebony and Buffalo horn too.

 

I havent changed the saddle. I couldnt wish for anything more, it just seems perfectly balanced and alive as it is right now.

 

I did the same thing with my LG2, except it has a factory fitted bone saddle.

 

Interesting, maybe I should do some more experimenting.

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  • 11 months later...

I've read nothing about the effects of these bone saddle changes on the Element pickup response. As michaeljohnr pointed out, the density of bone can vary and possibly effect the sound of the pickup and balance. Also, the Element is already a VERY bright pickup overall, so I'd imagine a bone saddle could possibly emphasize that brightness. Has anyone made any before/after comparisons plugged in after switching to a bone saddle on the J-35?

 

Personally I can't wait to dump the Element and install a K&K or JJB.

 

JAddison, how do you like your LG2? Is it the AE?

 

DC

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I've read nothing about the effects of these bone saddle changes on the Element pickup response. As michaeljohnr pointed out, the density of bone can vary and possibly effect the sound of the pickup and balance. Also, the Element is already a VERY bright pickup overall, so I'd imagine a bone saddle could possibly emphasize that brightness. Has anyone made any before/after comparisons plugged in after switching to a bone saddle on the J-35?

 

Personally I can't wait to dump the Element and install a K&K or JJB.

 

JAddison, how do you like your LG2? Is it the AE?

 

DC

I also have a bone saddle from colossi and bridge pins but have abalone dots on them. my saddle is snug not sloppy at all. huge improvement over the tusq. try thomastik strings they really sound great on the guitar.

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