Crawls Backward (When Alarmed)

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CJ Guitar Tooling Bridge on Danelectro DC-2

You may recall that I put a fabulous CJ Guitar Tooling bridge on the Cancer Killer guitar I put together for my friend (and cancer survivor!).

And then I did some crazy mods to my own Danelectro DC-2. At the time I worked on mine, production of the CJ bridges was in a hiatus, so I settled for a stock 6-saddle bridge. Now CJ is back making bridges and I procured one! Which is a great thing, because I couldn't stand the Danelectro bridge. Too cheaply made, flexes under string tension, too hard to intonate, hard to adjust for string height, just bad.

But I'm going to fix that with my new CJ bridge.

Here's the last time you'll see that awful Danelectro bridge on my guitar.

Good riddance, I say.

You'll notice I went with brass saddles on the bridge - you can get those, or cold-rolled steel, or even rosewood when you order one.

The bridge plate now has five mounting screw holes instead of the stock three. Which means I'll be drilling two new mounting holes in the guitar.

Here I am drilling one of the new holes. You may notice that the hole I'm drilling is a bit large (bit? haha) for a simple wood screw you'd normally use on a Dano bridge.

That's because, in a fit of inspiration lunacy, I decided to use threaded inserts to mount the new bridge.

I figured it might give some added sustain.  And it definitely will be a very solid mount.

If you look closely at the hole in the center of the picture on the left, you may notice that you can see right through it to the inside of the control cavity.

That's because the hole is at the edge of the guitar's center block, and there's nothing there to drive a screw or an insert into.

(Note the test fit of an insert on the left).

What to do?

Easy fix. I glued two dowels into the new holes that I'll drive the inserts into.

Here I'm cutting the dowels flush with the top of the guitar.

One of the inserts was tending to rotate instead of staying put when driving a screw into it, so I used JB Weld epoxy on all of the insert external threads to ensure they'd be solid.

On our way to a super-solid mounting for the bridge plate. I'm using stainless steel screws to tighten it down.

The plate is thicker and much more solid than the Danelectro plate - huge improvement.

Plus it looks a whole lot better.

With the plate installed, we can now put the saddles on. The mounting is a variation on the classic Telecaster screw-and-spring arrangement.

The saddles are angled for improved intonation. And they come with a set of longer and shorter height screws so you can use whatever works best (I used the shorter screws).

CJ sells Telecaster bridges too.

I put the saddles up fairly high so I can just adjust them down when I do the final setup.

And here it is after setup. Looks great and sounds terrific. The intonation is on the money.

I had shimmed the neck on this guitar for the old Danelectro bridge, and I wound up making a new shim since this bridge plate is thicker and I needed more height. My new shim is about 0.70 inches at the body end - the old one was about 0.40.

Here it is from another angle. The bridge is a no-brainer and a steal for the money. You can get one here.


 
 
 
 

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