I think I need a custom bridge plate/mounting ring.



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I think I need a custom bridge plate/mounting ring.

Postby Benn Roe » Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:29 pm

The guitar I'm working on has a 2TEK bridge, and an Alumitone Deathbucker in the bridge position. It's a Telecaster body, and 2TEK actually makes a bridge plate/mounting ring for this exact combination. Perfect, right?

IMG_1354.jpg


Only--in reality--if the plate is lined up perfectly with the bridge, it actually lines up pretty awkwardly with the pickup. The weirdest thing about that is that Warmoth made this body, and Warmoth is the sole distributor for 2TEK bridges and bridge plates. I've interfaced with their customer service, who have largely been very helpful, but ultimately it seems that my pickup rout is placed correctly, which apparently means "placed to Fender's specs". So, the problem is with the bridge plate. See below.

IMG_1355.jpg


Now, to be clear, this plate will work. If I pull the plate as far toward the pickup as possible and pull the pickup as far toward the bridge as possible, the pickup will mount straight. But, wood will be visible inside the ring around the bridge and it's a very tight fit for the pickup. On top of that, the bridge plate is nickel, and all of my hardware (other than the bridge itself) is chrome. It's hard to tell in the picture above, but I think it'll bother me.

So, I looked at getting a mounting ring just for the humbucker and leaving the bridge naked, which may be what I end up doing, but I think the bridge will look a lot better covered. I think the ideal solution is having a similar bridge plate/mounting ring built, with a chrome finish and an extra 1/8" between the two cut-outs. Anyone have any thoughts on who might be able to do that for me? I know custom metalwork can get pretty expensive, but if this is a project that gets too far north of $30 to $40, I'll probably just get a mounting ring and call it a day. I'd definitely rather start by exploring options that get the bridge covered, though. I'm happy to mail my existing plate to whomever, to help facilitate this.

Thanks!
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Re: I think I need a custom bridge plate/mounting ring.

Postby coldbrightsunlight » Fri Oct 26, 2018 12:39 pm

Could you not file back the edge of the ring on the neck end (or take off less, symmetrically on both ends) to make the pickup hole larger? Looks to me like ~5mm total float would do the job (apologies if my eyes aren't calibrated and that's a bad judgement :lol: )

You'd be able to do it pretty easily with a hand file, and fairly neatly if you took your time and did it carefully.

You could achieve a similar effect but rougher looking by sawing the thing in half but it seems like you care about this one looking neat so probably don't do that. :lol:


I think it might look cool with the bridge and pickup not "covered" at all. But maybe that's just me.

Anyway, even if this isn't helpful I want to say it's a gorgeous guitar, love the look of the pickguard and chrome hardware against the natural wood.

In terms of who could make it, I might look into if you have a hackspace/fab lab or something similar in your area, either to borrow the tool time or get someone to make it for you? Never actually used one myself but I've known people who organised them in the past and they were generally nice folks.
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Re: I think I need a custom bridge plate/mounting ring.

Postby Benn Roe » Mon Oct 29, 2018 12:04 pm

Thanks for the suggestions! I'm going to give all that some thought! I've been meaning to take the existing trim ring down to a maker space just down the street from my store to see what they say. I'm a little nervous about taking files or a hacksaw to the existing plate, because I am digging the relatively clean look, and I don't want the openings to be too big for the bridge or pickup. It's not out of the question, though.

I'm definitely happy with the way this is all coming together, though. I'm actually planning to dye the body blue, but I've been going back and forth on translucent blue versus a more natural wood colour, or some combination thereof. I agree that natural wood looks incredible with polished metals, but I wanted to get some colour on here too! I may still change my mind, even though I already bought the dye. Either way, I appreciate the comments!
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Re: I think I need a custom bridge plate/mounting ring.

Postby Phosphene Audio » Mon Oct 29, 2018 9:48 pm

Does the part of the plate that surrounds the bridge have any purpose other than looks? There is certainly nothing wrong with that, but I might be tempted to just use a pickup ring and be done with it, leaving nothing around the bridge.

It's just a matter of taste, though.
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Re: I think I need a custom bridge plate/mounting ring.

Postby Benn Roe » Mon Oct 29, 2018 11:07 pm

No, it's definitely just looks. I had the same line of thinking, and still may go that direction, but I think the bridge will look a lot better with a plate surrounding it, so I figured I'd explore my options first.
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Re: I think I need a custom bridge plate/mounting ring.

Postby Elyon. » Tue Nov 06, 2018 4:19 pm

Can't you just enlarge the route a bit towards the bridge?
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Re: I think I need a custom bridge plate/mounting ring.

Postby Benn Roe » Sat Nov 10, 2018 12:56 pm

Yeah, I suppose I could. I don't really have any woodworking experience, though, so it's likely to look pretty bad. It shouldn't matter with it covered, but I'll know, and my brain has trouble letting that stuff go. After messing with this more, I think I can get everything to line up straight with the existing plate, so I might just settle for plating the one I have. It's such a tight fit, though. I'd still rather get one that's a little longer if it's an option, for the extra breathing room.
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