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Thread: Bridge parallel to the top or the strings ...

  1. #1

    Default Bridge parallel to the top or the strings ...

    Say You have a carved top mandolin where the top is not parallell to the strings at the bridge.

    Is it more/less correct to fit the bridge parallell to the top (A), or strings (B) ?

    To me (not a builder/luthier/repairman) 'A' makes more sense ... ?

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  2. #2

    Default Re: Bridge parallel to the top or the strings ...

    Just looking at my Bitterroot A5, diagram B is correct.

    Dave H
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    but that's just me Bertram Henze's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bridge parallel to the top or the strings ...

    Both diagrams ignore the fact that the strings form a break angle at the bridge. In a perfect world, the break angle should be exactly halved by the bridge, and the bridge should be perpendicular with the top. In reality, the bridge will have a foot fitted to the top, and the best angle is the one providing the best contact.
    the world is better off without bad ideas, good ideas are better off without the world

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    Phil Goodson Philphool's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bridge parallel to the top or the strings ...

    Well.... the 'best angle' is STILL the one which bisects the break angle, BUT the foot should be fitted to make this happen.

    In the real world, 'close' is apparently good enough.
    Phil

    “Sharps/Flats” “Accidentals”

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    Default Re: Bridge parallel to the top or the strings ...

    There are many who prefer to have some tilt backwards to keep the bridge from moving or tipping forward from string pull and from tuning.. I would do A.
    THE WORLD IS A BETTER PLACE JUST FOR YOUR SMILE!

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    Registered User fscotte's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bridge parallel to the top or the strings ...

    I'm not sure it matters... As long as it's stable.

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    Lurkist dhergert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bridge parallel to the top or the strings ...

    Unless the bottom of the saddle is flat against the top of the bridge with no adjustment left, every two piece bridge that I've seen on a carved top mandolin very quickly "learns" at least a minor tilt away from the tailpiece, originating at the adjuster assembly. They don't stay 100% straight using current technology. Compensating by adjusting the feet to lean back toward the tailpiece helps more than anything else. The ideal 50/50 break based on a straight bridge would be wonderful, but it doesn't stay that way in real life and there isn't a way to estimate the amount of tilt that will be "learned" at the adjusters.
    -- Don

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    Phil Goodson Philphool's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bridge parallel to the top or the strings ...

    If the bridge bisects the break angle, it usually is tilted towards the tailpiece by roughly 8 degrees which decreases the likelihood of "learning" to lean away from the tailpiece.
    There was a previous thread drawing vectors to show the forces and discussing this is greater detail. sblock gave lots of info IIRC.
    Phil

    “Sharps/Flats” “Accidentals”

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