Results 1 to 22 of 22

Thread: Bruce Weber bridge

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    12,062

    Default Bruce Weber bridge

    Has anyone tried this? Thoughts?

    Ebony Traditional Bridge By Bruce Weber
    https://www.mandolincafe.com/ads/123949#123949

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Helena, Montana
    Posts
    2,872

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    First off, this bridge was designed by Vern Brekke, who makes the bridges for Bruce. That said, I have one on my Yellowstone and it is a great design. It does everything Mary has in the ad, I highly recommend it.

  3. #3
    Orrig Onion HonketyHank's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Beaverton, OR, USA
    Posts
    1,318

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    I have one and am very happy with it.
    New to mando? Click this link -->Newbies to join us at the Newbies Social Group.

    Just send an email to rob.meldrum@gmail.com with "mandolin setup" in the subject line and he will email you a copy of his ebook for free (free to all mandolincafe members).

    My website and blog: honketyhank.com

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    12,062

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Thanks for the feedback. I'm thinking of replacing the 20-year-old bridge on Gilchrist Model 5 and looking at options. I want a full-footed bridge (no gap in the base) and am leaning toward a simple trad design. The Weber/Brekke bridge, although looks like a quality piece, is a bit too 'bulky looking', with that special saddle design and larger post hardware. It's not terribly important to me to be able to raise/lower under full string tension, so that is less of a benefit/concern. I know Cumberland bridges are held in high regard. I would have the bridge fitted and slotted by a pro luthier.

  5. #5
    Registered User Billy Packard's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Grass Valley
    Posts
    494

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    I am the odd man out here.

    I replaced this contraption with a conventional design by Siminoff and my Weber Fern just leaped to life. Way better volume and so much more tone, it was night and day. A much broader range of dynamics are available as well. The Brekke bridge made for a quiet, one dimensional instrument.

    Billy
    Billy Packard
    Gilchrist A3, 1993
    Weber Fern, 2007
    Gibson F4 Hybrid #1, D. Harvey 2009
    Gibson 1923 A2
    Numerous wonderful guitars

  6. #6
    Orrig Onion HonketyHank's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Beaverton, OR, USA
    Posts
    1,318

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Billy, are you thinking of the older Brekke design that needs an allen wrench or the newer one with thumbwheels (and can accomodate mini open-end wrench)? I have used both and I greatly prefer the newer design, for exactly the reason you state.
    New to mando? Click this link -->Newbies to join us at the Newbies Social Group.

    Just send an email to rob.meldrum@gmail.com with "mandolin setup" in the subject line and he will email you a copy of his ebook for free (free to all mandolincafe members).

    My website and blog: honketyhank.com

  7. #7
    Mandolin user MontanaMatt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Bozeman, MT
    Posts
    792

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Quote Originally Posted by AlanN View Post
    Thanks for the feedback. I'm thinking of replacing the 20-year-old bridge on Gilchrist Model 5 and looking at options. I want a full-footed bridge (no gap in the base) and am leaning toward a simple trad design. The Weber/Brekke bridge, although looks like a quality piece, is a bit too 'bulky looking', with that special saddle design and larger post hardware. It's not terribly important to me to be able to raise/lower under full string tension, so that is less of a benefit/concern. I know Cumberland bridges are held in high regard. I would have the bridge fitted and slotted by a pro luthier.
    The bridge from Weber is smaller than a "regular" bridge. The post hardware is smaller than standard thumbwheels, as it is primarily adjusted with a small spanner wrench, though you could twist it with your fingers, just not under pressure without the wrench.
    The saddle is much smaller than a loar style, as much of the strength comes from the brass under saddle, which hides under the ebony cap. Pretty sure Bruce would make a full contract base upon request.
    It's hard to make size comparison without a side by side, but the Weber Traditional bridge is less material than a loar, quite refined look, and great functionality.
    2007 Weber Custom Elite "old wood"
    2017 Ratliff R5 Custom #1148
    Several nice old Fiddles
    2007 Martin 000-15S 12 fret Auditorium-slot head
    Deering Classic Open Back
    Too many microphones

  8. #8
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    S.W. Wisconsin
    Posts
    5,039

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    I like the wrench idea, but I can raise my saddle using only my fingers on the adjusting wheel under full tension. I made my own saddle and the fit to the wheels is all important to be able to move them easily. A little wipe of wax will act as a lubricant if you need.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

  9. #9
    Registered User Billy Packard's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Grass Valley
    Posts
    494

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Hank, it's an older version. My Fern has an '07 manufacture date and that's the bridge that came with the instrument. This is the mandolin Bruce Weber re-graduated in 2012 that I've described elsewhere here in the forum.
    Billy Packard
    Gilchrist A3, 1993
    Weber Fern, 2007
    Gibson F4 Hybrid #1, D. Harvey 2009
    Gibson 1923 A2
    Numerous wonderful guitars

  10. #10
    Phil Goodson Philphool's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Statesville, NC
    Posts
    3,077

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    [QUOTE=AlanN;1651359..... I know Cumberland bridges are held in high regard. I would have the bridge fitted and slotted by a pro luthier.[/QUOTE]

    Alan, I had Ward Elliott fit a full contact Cumberland to my Henderson mandolin last year and I like it.
    Seemed to help the tone & volume a little.

    I had one of the Brekke Traditional bridges on a mandola a few years ago. It worked fine. No complaints.
    Phil

    “Sharps/Flats” “Accidentals”

  11. #11
    Registered User Ivan Kelsall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Manchester - Lancashire - NW England
    Posts
    14,187

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Hi Alan - That's the 'standard' Trad. bridge fitted to almost all Weber "F" styles, & as George Lane says,it's a design by Verne Brekke. It's the one bridge where the saddle is almost 100% guaranteed not to crack / break. The 2 threaded rods are part of a metal reinforcing that fits into a slot underneath the saddle.

    As a bridge,i rate it first class - i do have a minor quibble re.the hex.nuts,but no problems 'sonically' speaking,
    IvanClick image for larger version. 

Name:	Weber Trad.Bridge.JPG 
Views:	28 
Size:	19.4 KB 
ID:	167363
    Weber F-5 'Fern'.
    Lebeda F-5 "Special".
    Stelling Bellflower BANJO
    Tokai - 'Tele-alike'.
    Ellis DeLuxe "A" style.

  12. #12
    Registered User Billy Packard's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Grass Valley
    Posts
    494

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Ivan, in my experience I have to disagree,

    The Brekke bridge is so much metal, hard mass metal, posts, bars and such---it reduces the information coming from the strings. A wooden bridge is so much more transformative and transparent.

    When I had the Brekke switched out for a standard Loar-type bridge the resulting sound from the mandolin was markedly warmer AND brighter in addition to being louder, by 30% I'd say...

    Billy
    Billy Packard
    Gilchrist A3, 1993
    Weber Fern, 2007
    Gibson F4 Hybrid #1, D. Harvey 2009
    Gibson 1923 A2
    Numerous wonderful guitars

  13. The following members say thank you to Billy Packard for this post:


  14. #13
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Culpeper, Virginia
    Posts
    203

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    I have one on my Yellowstone HT F and am very happy with it. I have tried others but keep coming back to this bridge.

  15. #14
    Bridger Products
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Bozeman, MT
    Posts
    125

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    "The Brekke bridge is so much metal, hard mass metal, posts, bars and such---it reduces the information coming from the strings. A wooden bridge is so much more transformative and transparent."

    The only material difference between the Loar style bridge and the Weber bridge is the bar that goes between the screws (the drawing doesn’t represent the newer Weber bridges that have a three piece construction – two screws and a threaded bar. The bar is 1/8 inch x 1/8 inch x 2 inches). The additional weight of the bar (approx. .135 oz) is small in relation to the total weight of the bridge.

    The Weber and the Loar bridges both have: two screws, two adjusting nuts (of varying sizes and weights), a wood saddle and a wood base. The Weber bar does allow the wood saddle to be smaller/lighter than the Loar style. It’s hard to compare weights because the Loar style bridges are all over the place depending upon: the maker, the design, the quality of the wood (density), adjusting nut size and saddle dimensions. Both connect the saddle to the base with metal screws and nuts.

    There is another adjustable bridge that is as close to a solid wood bridge as you can get if you believe "A wooden bridge is so much more transformative and transparent"

    The most important consideration that I have experienced, over the 20 or so years of having this discussion, is the fit of the bridge. If a bridge has been on an instrument, that has been used and played in different environments for any length of time, the fit of the bridge to the top will probably have changed as the top has matured and changed (the changes may not always be obvious). When a new bridge is correctly fitted, the instrument suddenly sounds better than it did with the old bridge ...

    Vern Brekke
    Bridger Products

  16. The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to VernBrekke For This Useful Post:


  17. #15
    Mandolin user MontanaMatt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Bozeman, MT
    Posts
    792

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Thanks for your great design Vern. We live in the same valley, but I have yet to meet you...I hope that changes soon
    Come hear how great your bridge and armrest/tailpiece design sounds at my weekly gig with The Bridger Creek Boys at Red Tractor, Thursdays 7-9. MT Bluegrass, MT Pizza, and MT Beer...the trifecta!
    2007 Weber Custom Elite "old wood"
    2017 Ratliff R5 Custom #1148
    Several nice old Fiddles
    2007 Martin 000-15S 12 fret Auditorium-slot head
    Deering Classic Open Back
    Too many microphones

  18. #16
    Registered User Ivan Kelsall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Manchester - Lancashire - NW England
    Posts
    14,187

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    My Weber 'Fern' has had a Brekke 'Trad.' bridge on it as standard right from it's birth, & it sounds as good as most mandolins i've ever heard. Comparing it to my Ellis "A" style,tonally of course it's different, as are all mandolins,but the clarity & volume are easily the equal of the Ellis. IMHO - No way does Verne's design detract from the overall tonal quality of my Weber,if it did,it would have gone
    10 years back !.

    One other thing that i like so much about the Brekke bridge,is it's neatness. Compared to say a CA bridge,possibly the best 'Gibson style' bridge construction,it appears less bulky - all told it's different,but totally excellent,& i do like the rounded off saddle ends ,

    IvanClick image for larger version. 

Name:	Brekke Trad.bridg e.jpg 
Views:	51 
Size:	273.5 KB 
ID:	167391
    Weber F-5 'Fern'.
    Lebeda F-5 "Special".
    Stelling Bellflower BANJO
    Tokai - 'Tele-alike'.
    Ellis DeLuxe "A" style.

  19. The following members say thank you to Ivan Kelsall for this post:


  20. #17
    Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Helena, Montana
    Posts
    2,872

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Quote Originally Posted by MontanaMatt View Post
    Thanks for your great design Vern. We live in the same valley, but I have yet to meet you...I hope that changes soon
    Come hear how great your bridge and armrest/tailpiece design sounds at my weekly gig with The Bridger Creek Boys at Red Tractor, Thursdays 7-9. MT Bluegrass, MT Pizza, and MT Beer...the trifecta!
    Matt,

    Vern is one smart cookie and a nice guy. His bridge has been on my Yellowstone for 8 years and sounds great. I plane on having one on my next mandolin. Vern, I guess I have to bring over some Parrot chocolates to thank you.

  21. #18
    Bridger Products
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Bozeman, MT
    Posts
    125

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Thanks George and Matt, I'll probably see you at Bruce's shop sometime.

    Vern

  22. #19
    Registered User Buck's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    KY
    Posts
    312

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Years ago when MC was doing the Guest of the Month (or was it Week?) and Bruce was the guest, I submitted a question about the Brekke Traditional bridge. It was new at the time and I hadn't seen one. I was curious how he thought it would change the sound of my '99 Big Sky. Bruce generously offered to give me one, either send it to me if I could fit it or send him my mandolin and he would fit it for me. I asked him to send it and I could fit it, which I did.

    After fitting the new bridge I thought the mandolin sounded stronger - better bass, but really stronger overall including thicker trebles. That particular mandolin was good enough to have caught my attention from the first time I picked it up at FQMS, but this bridge made it even better. It's been on the mandolin ever since, and it has remained my #1.
    Todd Yates

  23. The following members say thank you to Buck for this post:

    AlanN 

  24. #20
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    12,062

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Vern and I are in touch and I have been educated on the features and benefits of the trad Brekke bridge. This looks like it will be the deal. Thanks to all for the feedback.

  25. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to AlanN For This Useful Post:


  26. #21
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Kernersville, NC
    Posts
    2,546
    Blog Entries
    3

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Alan, post back the details once you get it fitted.

  27. #22
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    12,062

    Default Re: Bruce Weber bridge

    Well, here they are, Mark...14 months later .

    I picked up the Gilchrist from Skip Kelley today. One word: Amazing! The mandolin SCREAMS. I actually have to tone down the attack, at times; it has made that much of a diff in its sonic presence. It replaced the original bridge (21 years old) and boy, am I pleased. And Skip's work was awesome - fast, affordable and perfect - no surprise there.

    YaY!

  28. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to AlanN For This Useful Post:


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •