Posted on

Letter: Don’t Replace Bridge Plate

Letter: Don't Replace Bridge Plate

by John Higgins

Originally published in American Lutherie #41, 1995

Greetings to All-

As usual, the last issue of the quarterly was filled with loads of good stuff, with useful information available in all the articles. However, I must take exception to the premise of Bryan Galloup’s reason for replacing the bridgeplate on the 1962 D-28. He states he replaced it because “the balls on the string ends have worn all the way through (the plate) and into the top.” Had the top “bellied up” behind the bridge or sunk toward the soundhole, I would say such a repair would be warranted. Since only the ball ends are involved, I feel the better option is to install a piece of quartersawn maple, cut 0.100" thick by 5/8"×2 3/4", onto the existing plate with some yellow glue. When redrilled and slotted, it seats the ball ends properly, as well as pulling the winding back into the pin hole and off the saddle. The small amount of wood added doesn’t seem to affect the tone adversely, but helps due to the windings being off the saddle. Martin recommends this method when only ball-end wear is a factor, and I’ve found it to be very effective.

Become A Member to Continue Reading This Article

This article is part of our premium web content offered to Guild members. To view this and other web articles, join the Guild of American Luthiers. Members also receive 4 annual issues of American Lutherie and get discounts on products. For details, visit the membership page.

If you are already a member, login for access or contact us to setup your account.