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odd ball build

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odd ball build

Postby Michael Lombardi » Sun Sep 18, 2016 8:23 am

HI. i decided to cut loose and try something new. im building what i would call a travel guitar, the body is the size and shape of a violin. the frame is a 1/2 inch all the way around except were the neck glues in that part is solid, the top and bottom is carved from solid 3/4 inch figured cherry inside and out, so im left with a 1/4 in radius. im gonna put a two inch round sound hole instead of f holes. i'm useing a 59 gibson style neck shortend to 23 inch scale lenth, i'm making the fret board out of cherry. my question is do you think i can use a acoustic bridge, or should i use a tail piece? to anchor the strings.
Michael Lombardi
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Aug 20, 2016 9:30 am

Re: odd ball build

Postby Freeman Keller » Sun Sep 18, 2016 12:13 pm

Michael, floating and fixed bridge instruments work on different principals - a fixed (pinned or tie block) bridge puts a pretty high torsional force on the top and the vibrating strings "rocks" the top in that area. The torque wants to push the top down ahead of the bridge and pull it up behind. That is one of the reasons the X brace is so brilliant - it puts the strongest part of the brace (the X) where the most rotational force is yet frees the lower bout to vibrate.

Floating bridge instruments have most of the string force perpendicular to the top into the bridge. They typically have different bracing systems (tone bars) however, of course, a few archtops have X braces. Traditionally carved top instruments (archtops, mandolin family, violins, etc do have floating bridges altho of course there are exceptions.

I'm not saying one is better than the other but you might want to take the bracing into consideration when you design this. Also I am quite sure that there will be a difference in sound but I don't have the experience to tell you what it will be.

I'll add that some years ago I built a ladder braced 12 string and couldn't decide on a pinned bridge or tailpiece. I glued the bridge on and put a patch under it but did not drill the pin holes. I tried it first with at tail piece figuring that if I didn't like the sound I could drill the holes and convert it. As it happens I liked the sound enough that I've kept it that way
Freeman Keller
 
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Joined: Mon Feb 27, 2012 11:34 am

Re: odd ball build

Postby Michael Lombardi » Sun Sep 18, 2016 7:20 pm

that is excellent advice. im new to hollow body, had a feeling acoustic bridge would be to much stress , its just a lot easer and cleaner, i to was thinking of a glue on bridge and bone saddle and tail piece, knowing it works now i can proceed, and with your good advice on braceing, im gonna try to fit a sound post just for good measure.
Michael Lombardi
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Aug 20, 2016 9:30 am


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