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Thread: Source of bone for bandolim bridges

  1. #1
    Registered User Doug Hoople's Avatar
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    Default Source of bone for bandolim bridges

    My father-in-law, Sam, who some of you here might remember from his visits to the Symposium, the eccentric Scotsman with his eccentric mandolins, has built a few Brazilian-style bandolims, mostly at my urging.

    They’re pretty true to the models (I have a Mauricio Barros 8-string and a Pedro Santos 10-string, both excellent instruments).

    But the one thing they don’t have is a bone bridge. Bandolims generally have fairly long one-piece bridges made of solid bone. These are big enough that they’re hard to source from the people who have bone for nuts and saddles.

    After much experimentation, I’m arriving at the conclusion that the bone bridges are.a key contributor to their magnificent sound, especially that ringing singing chiming quality. Thus the need to find the material

    Any thoughts on where we might find some of theses?

    Thanks.
    Doug Hoople
    Adult-onset Instrumentalist (or was that addled-onset?)

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  3. #2

    Default Re: Source of bone for bandolim bridges

    Sterilized cow bone from the pet store. Should be under $3, and one will be enough to make many bridges, or at least a few if they need to be taller. Cutting them can be a challenge. I usually cut them lengthwise to see where the medullary (hollow) space is located, then superglue it to a piece of wood to hold it stable for the more precise cuts.
    martinjacobson.com - Jacobson mandolins

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  5. #3
    Registered User Doug Hoople's Avatar
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    Default Re: Source of bone for bandolim bridges

    Quote Originally Posted by Marty Jacobson View Post
    Sterilized cow bone from the pet store. Should be under $3
    Too easy. Thanks, Marty! And thanks for the detailed tip on how to work it.

    I'm off to the pet store this afternoon, and should have results by the weekend.

    Fingers crossed!
    Doug Hoople
    Adult-onset Instrumentalist (or was that addled-onset?)

  6. #4
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    Default Re: Source of bone for bandolim bridges

    I've used bone many times to make non-adjustable bridges.. Mine set in a piece of slotted ebony or rosewood.. I also get my bone at pet stores and Tractor Supply Center stores.. And yes, bone does give out a different sound
    kterry

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