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Thread: Minimum saddle height?

  1. #1

    Default Minimum saddle height?

    Hi, All,

    Iíve got a mando on which the slots for the G string were cut very far apart. To salvage it, Iíd need to sand the top of the saddle down enough to get past those slots and file new ones. The saddle is now about 9mm high (in the middle, not at the wheels). So, itíd end up being about 7.5 mm under the strings. Is that enough wood? Does this operation sound like a bonehead move otherwise? Itís a standard Gibson-style on an A5.


  2. #2
    Teacher, luthier
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Southeast Tennessee

    Default Re: Minimum saddle height?

    Alternatives would be to:

    1. Fill the slots with superglue and ebony dust, then re-cut.
    2. Order a new saddle from Axiom Inc.
    3. If it is badly messed up and you don't want to replace the saddle, you can regularize the damaged area and inlay a piece of new ebony into the channel. Tricky work.

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  4. #3
    Adrian Minarovic
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Banska Bystrica, Slovakia, Europe

    Default Re: Minimum saddle height?

    I would just plane top 1/16" off the saddle and glue (with CA) one long strip of new ebony and reshape to match the shape of compensations (any small remnants of slots would be filled by CA glue when you add the new piece). You can even choose to use some other material like bone or antler for effect.
    I wouldn't want the saddle lower than 7-8mm at posts. That's recipe for cracked saddle. If you need to lower the bridge to keep the height of saddle then remove wood from base (bottom and sometimes top of base)
    If you choose to order new saddle make sure the post distance is exactly same and diameter of holes matches.

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  6. #4

    Default Re: Minimum saddle height?

    Thank you, Adrian - just what I was hoping to learn - much appreciated.

  7. #5
    Registered User Steve Sorensen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Santa Clarita, CA

    Default Re: Minimum saddle height?

    .... or you use this as an opportunity to fit a new bridge and saddle and improve that whole (critical) element of the drive train.


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