Crawls Backward (When Alarmed)

IconProjects, musings about guitar builds, guitar repairs, vintage tube amplifiers, old radios, travel, home renovation, and other stuff.

Making a Maple Bridge Plate for an Acoustic Guitar

While the hide glue is in the refrigerator waiting for its command performance, I made the new bridge plate (aka bridge pad) for the Epiphone.

This is a maple blank I got from LMI already sized close to what I'll need.  You could make your own blank from a hunk of maple if you have a bandsaw.  I don't (yet).  Doh.

Since I got the old plywood plate off intact, it was easy to use it as a template for the new one.

Note the orientation of the grain.  It runs perpendicular to the direction of the strings.  This is the traditional direction.  Frank Ford, however, suggests making the plate so it runs parallel to the direction of the strings.  He argues that this will lessen the tendency for the plate to crack at the pin holes.  Dan Erlewine suggests cutting the plate so the grain is on an angle, which actually makes the most sense to me.

However, the blanks I have are sized so that they'll wind up with the grain in the perpendicular orientation.  So I have no choice here.  Another reason to cut your own.

I cut the new plate out of the blank with a coping saw and used the ROSS to size it exactly as needed.  I also beveled the two edges that won't butt up against the braces - this should help it not 'curl' up over time.

Wow.  Lookit that.  Me do luthier work!

 
 
 
 

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