Re: bridge help and first bass

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Posted by john on July 12, 2000 at 08:40:17:

In Reply to: bridge help and first bass posted by Cheng on July 12, 2000 at 03:17:38:

Congratulations. I own a Snow bass-- also Chinese. An excellent instrument.
In answer to your questions. If you feel confident in your woodworking skills (although what I'm about to suggest doesn't require much) you could, indeed, adjust your own bridge. DON'T, however, sand the bridge feet! They are carved to fit the top. Unless you are a trained luthier and have tools, it is devilishly difficult to fit bridge feet. You could, however, trim the top of the bridge yourself. I have done this successfuly. Just be sure to keep the same curvature, cut or file very gradually-- do it in steps-- take off less than you think you'll need. I'd recommend about 1/8 " would be safe. Obviously, if you trim too much you will need a new bridge. It is a time-consuming process of trial and error. Mark the curve and string positions, file your bridge carefully. You will need to file for thickness too-- obviously, as you cut the bridge down the thickness will increase. File your string grooves (you should get a small, tapered round file-- sometimes called a "rat tail" file. Remount your strings, and try it.
I took three tries to do my first bridge. It was perfect for the warm months here in the American Midwest. But after the hot season here turned to Winter, my bridge was too low. I had to have another bridge. I finally bought an adjustable bridge to take care of this seasonal variation. If the climate is consistent where you are (warm and humid, mostly, right?) you might not get as much variation. I recommend an adjustable bridge ultimately for you as well.
Good luck

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