The plastic pins seemed a little weaker to me but maybe that is because I don't like plastics. If you need to remove one of these saddles for adjustment, you have to heat up the glue attaching it to the bridge (using a hairdryer or similar device), paying careful attention not to heat up the guitar’s finish or you’ll damage it. While bleached bone may look better, it’s generally considered that natural bone is superior (bleaching allegedly strips the material of some of its natural lubrication). I put zero stock in any of these tests. The misplaced saddle slots meant the strings were falling off the fretboard on the treble side. Many fans of these guitars will tell you such an alteration robs the instruments of some of their distinctive sonic character. The Bridge Is Crucial in Determining a Guitar’s Feel. As the fretboard is slightly bowed (depending on how the guitar is set up), the distance of the strings from the fingerboard will vary. Frank Ford posted a story about bridge pins--probably more than a decade ago. Receive mail from us on behalf of our trusted partners or sponsors? On an acoustic guitar, the saddle is a 2” to 3” thin strip of material (see below for a list of the common materials used) set within the wooden bridge. The compensated saddle is quite different and can easily go unnoticed. On an acoustic guitar, the saddle is a 2” to 3” thin strip of material (see below for a list of the common materials used) set within the wooden bridge. Of course, many folks on these lists would say that it's invalid if there is not a player in the loop, so we're never going to agree. The Telecaster famously has a 3-saddle assembly that shares front-back adjustments for all 6 strings but still has discrete height screws to adjust up and down (to alter action). We’ve all seen this type of saddle. Secondly, tradition. Therefore, the quality of the body’s resonance is going to be in great part determined by the composition and quality of the bridge (and tailpiece, if they are separate units). The adjustable element of your guitar’s intonation is set right here, and if you don’t get it right, you’ll never quite play in tune, no matter how accurately you tune up. I sometimes use ebony, but prefer either to any bone or ivory that I've tried. The material the saddle is made from is often overlooked as a contributing factor to the sound of a guitar. Lets talk about metal parts... We all know that brass was a big deal back in the 80's for bridges, for "sustain" Everybody was selling something with brass in it. And YET.....  people swear up and down they hear big differences in strings. First, nylon strings hold intonation better than steel, so they don’t require the compensation on the higher strings. 2,054 729 1. By removing a bit of material from the underside of the saddle, you can drastically change the action, and consequently the playability of the guitar. Bone is usually the standard in high-end guitars, as it’s hard, dense, and transfers sound to the soundboard rather efficiently. These saddles are typically not glued in, meaning you’re free to take them out and lower them should you wish (lowering is done by cutting or filing away material from the bottom). Ditto any experiment that relies for its results on the subjective impressions of self-selected observers listening to their computer's speakers (unless it's an experiment to test the computer speaker variable). 3. Get your answers by asking now. A compensated saddle with an elevation for high E and B strings helps normalize the effective string length and helps the guitar sound in tune with notes played higher up the fretboard. This is sort of a follow up to the thread I made about Maple vs Mahogany wood "sustain" issues. There was a problem. Disclaimer Section: IMHO, YMMV, IMHE, Don't Try This At Home, Take With Grain Of Salt, etc, etc. Choose the one you like best with the Tele you're playing. Is it a good time to buy a rancho in someplace cold? For example, Gretsch guitars mounted with a Bigsby B3 or B6 vibrato tailpieces—which lack tension bars—will have fairly low string tension over a floating bridge, and the relatively light coupling of this setup is an important part of the jangle content in “that great Gretsch sound.” Similarly, Fender Jazzmasters and Jaguars are made with vibrato units that present low string tension over moving “rocker” bridges. Some guitars don't have saddles. ), take a second look at it and try and figure out what type of saddle it has. If they are not, you can move the saddle back or forward until they’re the same (this is easier to do on guitars with floating bridges). Future US, Inc. 11 West 42nd Street, 15th Floor, Guitars with three-saddle Tele-style bridges, wrap-over bridges, and singlesaddle floating bridges offer less and lesser abilities to fine-tune intonation, but Tuneo- matic bridges and Strat-style vibrato units and their derivatives provide excellent facilities for precise adjustment. To contact the forum owner hit the Contact Us link. Never mind. NY 10036. 2. ... Saddles and bridge are usually Steel but the newer Blocks are still Zinc. I thought that the bridge sat on top of the saddle, not the other way around? (You must log in or sign up to reply here. Although the tension required to bring strings of the same gauge up to pitch is the same, those strung on a Strat-style vibrato or a Bigsby unit will have a slightly looser, spongier feel and be easier to bend than strings on a wrap-over or Tele bridge or similar. The saddle is one of two places on the guitar where the strings come into direct contact (the other being the nut at the headstock end of the guitar).