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Thread: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

  1. #1

    Default Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    I ordered an abbreviated pickguard from Cumberland for my gold top Eastman. Looks like itís just the guard, no hardware. Can anyone steer me towards a good permanent mountain bracket? I know very little about em. Iíve googled them of course, but they all look the same to me. Thnx.

  2. #2
    Registered User J Mangio's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Srew mac has what your looking for; search pick guard mounting bracket.
    2020 The Loar Supreme LM700 VS

  3. #3

    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    There are many examples of abbreviated pickguards being attached with 2 small pins (nails) without the use of a mounting bracket. The nails are inserted into holes drilled into the side of the PG and corresponding holes into the side of the fingerboard. The holes are drilled slightly undersized so the nails are held firmly in place and they should be carefully measured so that everything aligns perfectly. I haven't searched for threads on this topic but someone may chime in with additional links to this thread.

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    Len B.
    Clearwater, FL

  4. #4

    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Quote Originally Posted by lenf12 View Post
    There are many examples of abbreviated pickguards being attached with 2 small pins (nails) without the use of a mounting bracket. The nails are inserted into holes drilled into the side of the PG and corresponding holes into the side of the fingerboard. The holes are drilled slightly undersized so the nails are held firmly in place and they should be carefully measured so that everything aligns perfectly. I haven't searched for threads on this topic but someone may chime in with additional links to this thread.

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    Len B.
    Clearwater, FL
    Interesting. I thought those were just for added strength. I donít see how they could hold up a pickguard by themselves.

  5. #5
    Lurkist dhergert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    In addition to the pins, for those pickguards which do not use the brackets, some installers also attach an appropriately small but sufficient size piece of closed-foam cushion under the pickguard so it just barely rests on the top of the mandolin, thus preventing the pickguard from being accidentally pressed down and hitting the top of the mandolin.

    Also, some mandolins have shorter ~20 fret fingerboards which include no florida. For them, the two pins need to be located higher in the fret layout and closer together. They still work.

    And lastly, some installers use long thin screws instead of pins.

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    Last edited by dhergert; Sep-22-2021 at 2:11pm.
    -- Don

    "Music: A minor auditory irritation occasionally characterized as pleasant."
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Quote Originally Posted by Parmejohn View Post
    I don’t see how they could hold up a pickguard by themselves.
    Like I said, the holes are drilled slightly undersized (compared to the pins) so it's just friction that holds them in place. Sometimes a drop of CA glue is used if there isn't enough friction to hold the pins in their respective holes. You can see in the picture I provided that the PG is slipping off the pins slightly from me playing a little too aggressively.

    Len B.
    Clearwater, FL

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    I mounted mine with a single pin (brad with a cut off head) and a small pad of closed cell foam at the other end. Used a dab of E6000 in the drilled hole. If you use two pins you have to be pretty careful about placement and timing. One pin is fairly easy if you have a drill bit with a long enough shank. Worked out perfectly for me.

  8. #8
    Lurkist dhergert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Quote Originally Posted by ajh View Post
    I mounted mine with a single pin (brad with a cut off head) and a small pad of closed cell foam at the other end. Used a dab of E6000 in the drilled hole. If you use two pins you have to be pretty careful about placement and timing. One pin is fairly easy if you have a drill bit with a long enough shank. Worked out perfectly for me.

    Using a single pin is an interesting option. It should work most of the time, but there is the possibility of the pickguard floating upward, effectively using the single pin as a hinge, and in doing so digging into the mandolin top above the pin on the treble side of the fingerboard.

    The likelihood of this happening in real life while a caring person is holding and playing the instrument is very low, but if someone were to try to lift the instrument by the pickguard, or if someone were trying to remove the pickguard by lifting it upward (both which I've seen people do), it could happen.
    -- Don

    "Music: A minor auditory irritation occasionally characterized as pleasant."
    "It is a lot more fun to make music than it is to argue about it."


    2002 Gibson F-9
    2016 MK LFSTB
    1975 Suzuki taterbug (plus many other noisemakers)
    [About how I tune my mandolins]
    [Our recent arrival]

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Quote Originally Posted by dhergert View Post
    Using a single pin is an interesting option. It should work most of the time, but there is the possibility of the pickguard floating upward, effectively using the single pin as a hinge, and in doing so digging into the mandolin top above the pin on the treble side of the fingerboard.

    The likelihood of this happening in real life while a caring person is holding and playing the instrument is very low, but if someone were to try to lift the instrument by the pickguard, or if someone were trying to remove the pickguard by lifting it upward (both which I've seen people do), it could happen.
    Actually that is a great point. I would never lift by the pickguard myself.....but somebody else just might (likely the same guy with the exposed zipper!). I will be adding another small chunk of closed cell at the other end of the pickguard (on the headstock side of the pin) to try to address. Thanks Don!

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  11. #10
    Got Buckstrips? Jerry Byers's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    I have always used the two pins and drilled undersized holes. A drop of glue will hold it. Make sure your pickguard is angled the way you like it and drill the holes parallel to the pickguard and into the wood below the fretboard. You still have some flex in the pins if you need to re-angle; if you use brads, they don't flex.
    2015 Ellis F5 Special #336 "Bella"

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  13. #11

    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Byers View Post
    I have always used the two pins and drilled undersized holes. A drop of glue will hold it. Make sure your pickguard is angled the way you like it and drill the holes parallel to the pickguard and into the wood below the fretboard. You still have some flex in the pins if you need to re-angle; if you use brads, they don't flex.
    Where do you get pins?

  14. #12
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    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Pins? - I think you need to make your own!

    Bothe my Kimbles came with abbreviated pickguards and they are fixed with a pin and a small screw. I decided that Iíd like a similar pickguard on my Clark GOM but Austin suggested that a friction fit should be enough. A local luthier friend did a superb job for me but said that it was a pain drilling the holes in the side of the fingerboard in exactly the right place to make sure the pickguard was the correct distance below the edge of the fretboard.

    Iíve never found the need for any form of additional support.

  15. #13
    Got Buckstrips? Jerry Byers's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Quote Originally Posted by Parmejohn View Post
    Where do you get pins?
    Amazon has brad nails; $5 will get you a 1,000. A piece of coat hanger will be too soft; a finish nail with the head cut off will be the stiffest. Like Ray(T) said, you can make your own.
    2015 Ellis F5 Special #336 "Bella"

  16. #14

    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    I have made narrow fingerrests for my main player mandos. It started out as a solution to a pinkie planting issue, but now I just like having the reference point. Unlike a pickguard, they are set below the level of the fretboard and angled down by 7ļ (I can't stand having a pickguard getting in the way). This is the setup that works for my application. I don't anchor fingers to them, but use them for a reference point. My fingertips just barely brush the top of the finger rest while playing.

    Mine are held in place by two pins. Embarrassingly, because I couldn't find a brad to match the diameter of a small drill bit, I ended up using bare 12 gauge copper house wire. It matches the drill bit size exactly and I'm able to remove and replace the guards with a little effort. The guards haven't worked their way loose on their own yet. Getting the holes to match up perfectly would be impossible, so I made a lexan template with fences and used it for drilling the holes in the edge of the guard and the edge of the neck.

    I think the system of one pin and one screw would be ideal (and easier) but the 7ļ bevel on the edge of my finger rest would make that problematic.

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  18. #15

    Default Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Roy View Post
    I have made narrow fingerrests for my main player mandos. It started out as a solution to a pinkie planting issue, but now I just like having the reference point. Unlike a pickguard, they are set below the level of the fretboard and angled down by 7ļ (I can't stand having a pickguard getting in the way). This is the setup that works for my application. I don't anchor fingers to them, but use them for a reference point. My fingertips just barely brush the top of the finger rest while playing.

    Mine are held in place by two pins. Embarrassingly, because I couldn't find a brad to match the diameter of a small drill bit, I ended up using bare 12 gauge copper house wire. It matches the drill bit size exactly and I'm able to remove and replace the guards with a little effort. The guards haven't worked their way loose on their own yet. Getting the holes to match up perfectly would be impossible, so I made a lexan template with fences and used it for drilling the holes in the edge of the guard and the edge of the neck.

    I think the system of one pin and one screw would be ideal (and easier) but the 7ļ bevel on the edge of my finger rest would make that problematic.

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    Beautiful work!

  19. #16
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Question Re: Pickguard Mountain Brackets

    Steve made a larger one for me, it included an edge piece , to screw into the bottom edge.

    with that support, It only needed 1 beheaded thin finish nail into the neck.
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