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Bridge screw issue
http://www.rickenbacker.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=15016
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Author:  Rickissippi [ Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:20 pm ]
Post subject:  Bridge screw issue

On my 360, I have an issue with the bridge screw that adjusts the saddle intonation on my low E string. I'll try to upload pics later, but basically, when I adjust that screw to move the saddle forward (away from the tail piece) by turning the screw counterclockwise, the screw just backs out of the front hole (the hold holding the front end of the screw - just like on the other five saddle assemblies) instead of moving the saddle. This happens is as if the screw wasn't meant to turn in place and move the saddle at all, but is rather just a normal screw that you screw into and out of threaded nuts. As a result, I'm not able to intonate that string at all, and any attempt to do so just moves the screw further out of the bridge assembly.

Does that make sense at all? Can you envision it?

Anyone else had this issue? What do I do?

Before I give up all hope, I'm going to try again (after temporarily removing the string from the bridge, or after temporarily removing the whole bridge) to screw it all the way in and then back it out to see if it will stay in place this time.

Author:  Uffingdon [ Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:42 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bridge screw issue

When I've had this problem I adjust the screw a bit as you have and gently lever the saddle forward by placing a small screwdriver between the saddle and the back of the bridge, if you're to heavy handed the bridge may tip forward so just hold it firm with your other hand.
Oh and yes loosen the string a bit so it dosn't grip the saddle, hope this helps.

Author:  Aerome [ Wed Mar 21, 2012 5:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bridge screw issue

Same problem here! The screw is binding and working (threading) its way out of the end of the hole (on the neck side), making the head travel toward the tail. I've moved the screw around until it popped back into the the hole and thought about either reaming out that hole just a wee bit or even using a screw 1/32" longer. Also if the screw was designed somewhat like a pin that would have an unthreaded end section fitted into that hole on the bridge (the one on the neck side) it may be an improvement.

Author:  jbudweiser [ Wed Mar 21, 2012 9:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bridge screw issue

Uffingdon wrote:
When I've had this problem I adjust the screw a bit as you have and gently lever the saddle forward by placing a small screwdriver between the saddle and the back of the bridge, if you're to heavy handed the bridge may tip forward so just hold it firm with your other hand.
Oh and yes loosen the string a bit so it doesn't grip the saddle, hope this helps.


Probably good advice in this case. I had the same problem, and managed to fix it with a method similar to yours. I loosened the string, just enough that I could move it away. I then applied some lube gel, I turned the screw and made the saddle travel back and forth. I used my hand to guide the saddle, I repeated this a few times.

Then when I put the string back in position on the saddle, I did tune the string up a bit more but still not concert pitch ( it was loose just to allow free movement of the saddle)

I then use a small screw driver to apply a small amount of manual pressure on the saddle to guide it forward( It moved forward as is meant too) I tuned the guitar string to the correct pitch, I had to repeat the last step to get perfect intonation at correct string tension. I was guiding and only using a very light amount of pressure in the saddle while turning the screw for intonation. How did you manage to get another hand to hold the saddle from tilting as you mention while turning the screw at the same time and using the small screw driver???

Author:  iiipopes [ Thu Mar 22, 2012 6:14 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Bridge screw issue

It may not be the screw. It may be some corrosion, as that is the saddle that takes a lot of gunk from palm-damping. It may also be that the saddle itself could use a little polishing or burnishing on the bottom so it is both not binding and is perfectly in line with the screw holes in the bridge. It could also be that the spring needs a little bit of trimming so it has even tension and is not binding, since the low E saddle is offset towards the tailpiece somewhat anyway. Or it could be so far back it is binding on the curve of the bridge frame, a doubled up spring, or both.

A couple of years ago I upgraded the bridge on my 1981 360-12 to the new stainless screws and springs, as the older screws and lock nuts had corroded, and I needed to file an offset saddle so the low E string pair would intonate properly with my preferred strings. It never hurts about once a decade or so to completely clean and check the bridge for such.

A little work on the saddle, a new stainless steel screw and spring, a new trimmed spring, and you should be in business.

And if your 360 is new enough that it has the slot in the bridge baseplate, you can slightly loosen the screws, move it back, and then the saddles can be adjusted to be more in the center of the bridge frame for better adjustment overall fore and aft.

Author:  Rickissippi [ Thu Mar 22, 2012 7:28 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Bridge screw issue

Thanks for all the replies. I was hoping for something not too involved, iiipopes, but if it comes down to doing all of that, I am glad you're in my foxhole - I'm sure I will rely on you for support/instruction.

My Rick is a 2009, bought new in 2010. My buddy talked me out of getting an older one when I bought mine -- Am I glad he ever did. This is still the best electric guitar I've ever owned, bar none.

Author:  Rickissippi [ Wed Jan 30, 2013 8:07 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Bridge screw issue

I re-visited this last night while re-stringing. Y'all are right - it's definitely the E saddle binding up against the side of the A saddle. In fact, the top right corner of the E saddle (looking from the tailpiece toward the neck) actually has a small triangular notch sticking out to the side - it's very small, but still big enough to catch the A saddle. The only thing I can think of is to take the saddle off, and sand it down.

Any other ideas?

Author:  iiipopes [ Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:19 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bridge screw issue

Use a flat rattail file and proceed gently. The saddles are softer than you think, and you can take a lot of metal off with one stroke.

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