Re: thinning the bridge?
Thinning as the OP describes will reduce the surface area contacting the top, and in turn effectively increase the pressure exerted on the top (?). So many factors at play here than mass alone.
Like Stephen pointed out, on an adjustable bridge it also reduces the area of transferral through the thumbwheels. As to opinions about what effect this has I will bow to the knowlege and experience of the likes of Stephen and Dr Dave.
Last edited by Ben Milne; May-22-2012 at 10:32pm.
Hereby & forthwith, any instrument with an odd number of strings shall be considered broken. With regard to mix levels, usually the best approach is treating the mandolin the same as a cowbell.