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Old ABR-1 bridge...what do you think?

zhivago

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Sep 29, 2004
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1,317
So...my '56 Custom's bridge has been caving in a bit, so when an alleged '54 gold ABR1 from a LP Custom popped up at Heritage Auctions, I thought I'd keep an eye on it, just in case.

The action only had one pic...it looked ok-ish, so I thought that if it went for a sensible price, I'd place a bid.

Turns out that I won at a pretty good price, and the bridge arrived today...here's some pics...what do you guys think? Does it look good? :)

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sws1

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Dec 4, 2001
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2,650
Maybe it's the camera, but it looks like it is somewhat collapsed in the middle. Maybe not.
 

zhivago

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Sep 29, 2004
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Thanks for having a look guys...it is not collapsed...I think it is the angle...I just checked with a straight-edge ruler :)

The one on my '56 is bent though :(
 

Unbound Dot Neck

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Jun 14, 2004
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1,607
saddles are in good shape ! I hunted years for a low profile abr for mine, worth the wait,
Do not see any cracking around the intonation screw threads, which was an obvious sign on mine of
collapse. Additionally, do you see a bevel on the intonation screws top crown .. Very slight detail

:jim :hank
 

Wilko

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Mar 11, 2002
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That is completely collapsed. The TOP edge is supposed to be straight. Not the bottom.
 

zhivago

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Sep 29, 2004
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That is completely collapsed. The TOP edge is supposed to be straight. Not the bottom.

Really?

I have seen bridges referred to as "collapsed" where the whole bridge arc'd downwards...weird...

I guess this will be a good candidate to try and straighten! :)
 

latestarter

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Nov 9, 2009
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4,065
It's not hard to straighten these, but go slow. Too fast, or over bent and you'll have cracks along the top. I've done many using some small strips of wood to lift the bridge, then clamping down in the middle to push it back out. I should take a photo one day. I need to do it on my tail piece for my Custom.
 

zhivago

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Sep 29, 2004
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1,317
It's not hard to straighten these, but go slow. Too fast, or over bent and you'll have cracks along the top. I've done many using some small strips of wood to lift the bridge, then clamping down in the middle to push it back out. I should take a photo one day. I need to do it on my tail piece for my Custom.


Thanks for the tip!

I will definitely have a go at sorting this one out...it has a bit more gold plating than my '56 ABR :jim
 

58burst

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May 11, 2002
Messages
2,174
I straightened the original ABR on my burst, worked great. Using wood shims in a vise, one on each end on the top side, one in the middle of the bottom- straighten slowly, little bits at a time.
 

Jumping@Shadows

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Dec 11, 2003
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1,283
+1 on it being collapsed, plus it's not a low profile one- that could be from any gold plated guitar up to '61ish..
I don't think I've straightened one as completely collapsed as this, but have rescued many others- if you need a dead straight, totally sound no wire ABR let me know as I have a fair few :)
 

sws1

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Dec 4, 2001
Messages
2,650
BTW - What is the history of changes on these bridges? I see some late 50s saddles that seem to be shorter, with flatter tops. Others seem a bit higher and narrower top. Some have the diagonal tooling marks on them. Some don't. Some look brass colored (all 6 saddles) while others look like nickel-plated.

Did these change from 56-61?
 
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