View Poll Results: Which tune-o-matic replacement bridge?

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  • Wilkinson roller bridge w/ locking studs $24

    3 60.00%
  • TonePros ABR-1 replacement $64

    1 20.00%
  • Callaham steel ABR-1 $117

    1 20.00%
  • other

    0 0%
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Thread: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

  1. #1
    Ultimate Tone Slacker Fresh_Start's Avatar
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    Default ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    I've decided to replace the bridge on my Heritage 535 (335 clone) and have three choices with a pretty wide price range. What do you all think?

    1) Wilkinson Brass Roller Bridge - $24.95 and locks up!



    Immortal Six suggested this bridge in another thread, and it looks like a good option, especially for the money. More info HERE

    2) TonePros AVR-II replacement for ABR-1 $64. INFO (first one on this page)

    3) Callaham Steel ABR-1 bridge $117.50. I didn't even know Callaham was making these but figured I'd look since I know they make some of the best Tele and Strat replacement bridges anywhere. Has anybody tried one of these out?



    More Info

    The reason for the new bridge is that I need new saddles and a narrower bridge (ABR vs. Nashville) would help solve a problem. Also, the tighter connection of a locking bridge (1 and 2) appeals to me. This guitar does NOT have a Bigsby or other whammy bar BTW.

    Thanks for your thoughts,

    Chip

  2. #2
    Ultimate Tone Member Condemned soul's Avatar
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    Default Re: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    Over the years, I've played a couple of guitars with Bigsby guitars with roller bridges and have one lasting impression.

    This might be my imagination or my preference for older Gibsons, but I seem to remember that roller bridges rob some of the guitar's sustain.
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    Default Re: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    I think you will find the Wilkinson wont be 'more of the same' as the others...not that that's a bad thing, but i think it might change your tone a bit. If you like that change or not...only you can decide!
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    i don't want to shoot at a guy holding my Les Paul, but I'd gladly shoot through a Fernandes that I paid $250 for.

  4. #4
    John Mayer's Mankini ImmortalSix's Avatar
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    Default Re: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    I put that brass Wilkinson roller bridge on my 335, and I like what it did for my tone.

    The stock TOM, and I only know this now, after swapping it out, gave me a hollow, kind of scooped sound. This new brass roller bridge yields fuller lows, low mids, mids. I feel like the vibrations from the strings are being transferred more efficiently to the body of the guitar now too. That's possibly a function of the locking design.

    I didn't buy the bridge because it was a roller. I bought it because 1) it was smooth, no sharp edges (I like to palm-mute, this was a godsend), 2) it's made of brass, 3) it has a very wide range of travel for individual intonation (I had experienced intonation problems with this guitar on the stock TOM), and 4) the locking studs were an attractive design feature.

    I have never had a really high end bridge on a guitar, but all of the changes that I noticed with this Wilkinson really impressed me.

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    Last edited by ImmortalSix; 07-30-2009 at 10:30 AM.

  5. #5
    Something Cool uOpt's Avatar
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    Default Re: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    I mentioned this before, but again.

    Although with Strat tremolos most people prefer steel (a softer, rounder sound) over Zinc, the same doesn't have to be true for tone-o-matics. The original 1950ties tone-o-matic were made from zinc.

    That doesn't mean that modern rolled steel tone-o-matic like the Callaham have to sound bad, but clearly some though is indicated.

    I didn't have a Tonepros ABR1, but I can tell you that the metric Tonepros is just a $20 Gotoh with two more holes. This left me with a skeptical few of Tonepros.

    So you have a Nashville now and you want conversion posts?

  6. #6
    Ultimate Tone Slacker Fresh_Start's Avatar
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    Default Re: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    Quote Originally Posted by uOpt View Post
    So you have a Nashville now and you want conversion posts?
    I'm not positive that the bridge is a Nashville now - need to do some measuring. I am sure new saddles are in order, and the locking feature of the TonePros (or the Wilkinson) appeals to me. Frankly, I didn't know that the ABR-1 used different posts...

    Your comments about vintage TOMs being made from zinc make the Callaham seem like an expensive gamble. Maybe I'd like the tone but maybe not.

    Chip

  7. #7
    Something Cool uOpt's Avatar
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    Default Re: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    Do you have posts that go into the wood, or posts that screw into metal anchors that are in the guitar's top?

  8. #8
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    Default Re: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    Quote Originally Posted by uOpt View Post
    Do you have posts that go into the wood, or posts that screw into metal anchors that are in the guitar's top?
    The posts with the thumb wheels screw into metal bushings in the guitar's top.

  9. #9
    Tone Member Gila_Crisis's Avatar
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    Default Re: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    Quote Originally Posted by ImmortalSix View Post
    1) it was smooth, no sharp edges (I like to palm-mute, this was a godsend), 2) it's made of brass, 3) it has a very wide range of travel for individual intonation (I had experienced intonation problems with this guitar on the stock TOM), and 4) the locking studs were an attractive design feature.
    I just ordered a wilkinson roller bridge from guitarfetish (it's on the way, it was shipped today) as a replacement of the standard TOM i have on my guitar for about the same reasons as ImmortalSix (especially 2) and 3) and 4))


    i think the tom on my guitar is also a brass one (by looking on the point where it's worn), but since it's an "old-school" TOM (= it isn't that much wide) it lacks the wide travel range for intonation the wilkinson offers.
    when i got it on my guitar i'll maybe tell you how it feels.
    Last edited by Gila_Crisis; 08-05-2009 at 07:33 AM.

  10. #10
    Tone Member Gila_Crisis's Avatar
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    Default Re: ABR-1 Bridge Replacement

    so, i mounted the wilkinson roller bridge on my guitar, and i'm really happy with it!
    for the price is a really TOM-bridge, a lot tweakable/fine tunable than the tom i had on the guitar before.

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