Once you become an experienced guitar player, you understand the sound and the quality of music which seems soothing to your ears then one thing comes to your mind. It is upgrading your guitar’s hardware and customizing it as per your preference so the quality of music you want to produce is not compromised at any level.
Step 1: Analyzing
The first thing which you have to identify when you plan to upgrade the guitar’s hardware is the selection of bridges. You need to analyze what you expect out of the upgrade. You also have to understand what brand you are upgrading. Each guitar has a different measurement for the Guitar bridge, So Gibson, Epiphone, Burny, etc. will need parts that are a little distinct.
Step 2 : So what bridge measurement to select?
The saddle is the important component of the bridge and the measurement of the bridge will differ in three ways:
- Heritage guitars or Non-custom shop guitars that have Schaller bridges – Gibson Guitar with Nashville Bridges
- Original Gibson Guitars/ Custom shop /Gibson Historic
- Guitars that use 4mm bridge posts can be imported guitars or the ones that are not from the USA
The size, spacing, and post mounting for each guitar bridge vary and therefore most of the parts cannot be interchanged. The Faber ABR-59 range is vintage and suitable for each type of guitar. You can get the right replacement for it and there are flat top saddles in various finishes and the saddle is removable as well. You get 100 percent mechanical contact too.
Step 3: Choices in Bridge and which one to use
- ABRM Bridge: For 4mm post styles on import guitars ABRM Bridge is the direct replacement and it also enhances the tone of import guitars
- ABRH Bridge: If your Gibson guitar is original or from the custom shop, is a vintage model, or is from the historic collection then ABRH Bridge is worth considering. ABR-1 bridges are also known as Tune-o-Matic bridges. In fact, Both the ABR and Nashville bridges are types of Tune-o-Matic bridges. The main differences between the two can be found in their adjustability.
- ABRN Bridge: If you have a USA Gibson guitar then the bridge style in Nashville and ABRN is for you and this also fits on the conversion bushings which are used on the import models.
From the tone lock series, you can choose the Faber bridge replacement. The tone lock range comes in the same size as the ABR range and this has no gap technology so the bridge is fastened to the body and it enhances the stability. It also vibrates more and improves sustain. The tone lock model is for import models, Gibson guitars (custom shop/ Nashville bridges and vintage)
Step 4: A more details on the following will help you
- Guitar Bridge posts:
For all new bridges, Faber gives Conversion Bridge posts Bridges which accompany all the bridge types. Import guitars are metric and the USA parts are measured in inches which is vital for ordering the right parts of the instrument.
For USA Gibson Guitars the vintage steel tailpiece studs are ideal for the bridge upgrade and these fit the USA Gibson Guitars that have Faber TPI tailpiece bushings or the 5/16-24 bushings.
For import guitars, the vintage steel tailpiece metric one is great for replacement and these are made of German steel which can be replaced for non-USA guitars and have a thread pattern of 8M X 1.25. These can be paired with the TPM tailpiece bushings and you can directly replace the non-steel bushings with these on the best import models.
The Faber Wrap-Lock locking bridge studs are used for one thing because wraparound guitars have one obvious issue. These lean forward when there is full tension application and it is because the mounting post as well as the bridge is not compatible with each other. To eliminate this is used.
- Conversion Bridge studs:
The ABRM or Tone-Lock Bridge is a good replacement for the USA style bridge and installation of these conversion bridge studs will take a few minutes. There is no need to change the set up for the ESWKIT and take the help of A few videos to do so.
The F Faber ESWKIT bridge stud is great for the import of guitar bushings and you can make use of the USA style bridges without any modification in the body so it is very simple to remove and replace.
The non-steel tone robbing bushings can be replaced with Faber E-Sert which most imported guitars come with and these are also to use the tone lock model bridges or the ABR. For action adjustment, the E Sert comes with a thumbwheel and a pair of steel studs. When the posts are fixed to the bushings, it will improve sustain and give maximum vibration.
There are various configurations when it comes to Guitar tailpiece parts and most guitars are manufactured with these. These are either gold plated or die cast from zinc or other similar metals. Zinc does not react with the guitar strings and it can rob the hard-earned tones.
The Gibson guitar parts here are made of aluminum. They are lightweight which is one-third of a zinc cast tailpiece and helps in transferring the vibrations differently which gives a vintage tone. For Gibson and Epiphone guitars, the custom tailpieces here can be replaced directly.
For replacing the Parts for Gibson Guitars you can get a TP-59 stop tailpiece for upgrading. TP-59 is made of aluminum and gives the tone which nickel or zinc die-cast tailpieces give.
For the one-piece wrap around Style Bridge, you can choose Faber Guitar Parts
The tailpiece has compensated edges and it helps in intonation. The Wraptonate tailpiece is a complete intonate wraparound bridge and there may not be an ideal replacement but it will be suitable for vintage players.
The tone bar compensated will give precise tone and the intonation will improve as well. The adjustable saddles for wrap tail guitar will be more beneficial and for TPWC compensated ones who have a vintage feel will give a perfect intonation. Non compensated ones will be good for vintage guitars.