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Vernon Hughes
Aug-15-2011, 7:48pm
Just picked up an old pumpkin top A and it has a one piece ebony bridge with a patent date stamped on it..Very faint but reads "pat. sept. 21 '09"..I'm familiar with the "regular" one piece bridges but this one seems odd..Also has a forward and rear flat spot with the compensations raised above it in short sections,also has the pickguard hole..Any info out there as to when and what this was used on?

Big Joe
Aug-15-2011, 8:23pm
It is hard to tell what might be different without a pic, but the patent date on the one piece bridge is correct. It is possible the bridge has been worked on at some time in its history as well. Again, without being able to see the bridge it is really hard to know if it is different from "regular" bridges from the era. Sounds right.

Vernon Hughes
Aug-15-2011, 10:05pm
Here's a pic..I looked closer at it and see that the compensation is actually in a channel.

Bernie Daniel
Aug-15-2011, 10:34pm
I'm sure someone will prove me wrong but I think that is a very good reproduction bridge -- and that includes the added patent date. It looks exactly right for an early 1900's compensated, one-piece, Gibson bridge but I have never seen one of those made of anything but ebony and that one looks like rosewood or bubinga?

Ray(T)
Aug-16-2011, 3:29am
Just what I was thinking Bernie - looks like someone has tried to imitate the bridge (with slot in saddles) which came with my '15 A.

danb
Aug-16-2011, 4:23am
Looks original to me. Normally it would be polished with India ink as well, hard to tell from the photo though

Vernon Hughes
Aug-16-2011, 5:54am
The pic came out with a red tone for some reason..The bridge is actually dark black ebony..mando serial # is 12215, I think from 1911-12..Definately not a repop,I think the strings I just took off it were 80 years old!

Ray(T)
Aug-16-2011, 10:01am
You mean more like this -

75401

Looking at it more carefully - rather than a quick squint on my laptop - I can see the channel you mean. I take it that you can slide out the three saddle pieces? In which case its much the same as the one I have and I would agree with DanB (who would dare to disagree with DanB!)

Darryl Wolfe
Aug-16-2011, 10:28am
My blackface H2 Mandola came with a similar bridge. That was the first time I had noticed the pre-adjustable bridge Patent Stamp. The bridge has the compensation pieces is a slot...probably the subject of the Patent

Vernon Hughes
Aug-16-2011, 2:00pm
Ray..Yes,thanks for taking the red out,thats more the color..I haven't tried sliding the piece out as I have no need to and don't want to break it..Just curious what years they used this bridge..I guess they couldn't beat the old solid ones or this was an earlier version that didn't fly..Though I haven't yet compared it to a regular one piece (I have one around here somewhere) It seems smaller lengthwise..

Bernie Daniel
Aug-16-2011, 4:45pm
My blackface H2 Mandola came with a similar bridge. That was the first time I had noticed the pre-adjustable bridge Patent Stamp. The bridge has the compensation pieces is a slot...probably the subject of the Patent

I agree now that I see it is actually an ebony piece I would say it is identical to the bridge on my 1911 H-1. I recall that I spent a long time trying to figure out how those 4 pieces of the compensated saddle were supposed to slide back in. First time I change strings they fell out on me.

danb
Aug-16-2011, 4:59pm
Here's a fun one from 3376.. See if you can hunt down the correct patent date & reference :)

http://www.mandolinarchive.com/images/3376_patent_stamp.jpg

There were quite a few variants of these. I kinda like the sculptural quality of the early ones, though they're pretty short and don't really come with the right break angle for the necks on these old birds!

danb
Aug-16-2011, 5:01pm
(who would dare to disagree with DanB!)

Lots of much smarter people with better memories than me do. I think my main contribution in this field has been obsession and note-taking, on conclusions I seem to do less well :)

Darryl Wolfe
Aug-17-2011, 9:33am
I can't find a very good pic of mine

MarkELynch
Aug-17-2011, 1:34pm
Google Patents is a wonderful thing. I can remember the old days when a patent search required a day or two at the Crystal cIty, Virginia USPTO.

Here is the link to the 1909 bridge patent with the compensation inserts.

http://www.google.com/patents?id=1GBNAAAAEBAJ&printsec=drawing&zoom=4#v=onepage&q&f=false

I recently bought a Gibson with the first adjustable bridge it has a narrow saddle and the aluminum top. The patent is also available for this. I have seen mention of a second set of thumb wheels on the top of the bridge presumably to lock the bridge top in position but this is not mentioned in the patent drawings. Is there any evidence that Gibson shipped them with the extra thumb wheels or is it just conjecture at this point?

Best Regards,
Mark

MarkELynch
Aug-17-2011, 1:42pm
Let me try the link again.

http://www.google.com/patents?id=1GBNAAAAEBAJ&printsec=drawing&zoom=4#v=onepage&q&f=false