Loose bridge pins

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by m-m-m, Jan 25, 2012.

  1. m-m-m

    m-m-m Member

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    I'm working on a setup/restring for a friend on his "Lotus" electric/acoustic guitar. It's kind of a piece of junk ... slab wood body with an acoustic top and a routed out soundhole. It's got a piezo under the bridge.

    A few of the bridge pins are loose and I don't really want to pay Stew macs shipping costs just for a few lousy pins. I was thinking about perhaps using a small drop of glue to help them stay in, and was thinking that it'll more than likely be easy to get them out the next time he asks me to change the strings. Any thoughts or better solutions would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Jack Daniels

    Jack Daniels Supporting Member

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    If its a cheap guitar with no real value, you can try to swell the holes in the bridge plate just a bit. Place a towel inside the guitar with the strings off and pins out. Then add very small drops of water around the bridge pin holes. NOT A LOT... maybe use a small paint brush to apply the water. You don't want to saturate the plate, but the end grain of the holes will swell just a little with the added moisture. That may be enough to get it to hole when the pins are inserted.

    I would not really try this on a higher end guitar, but on a Lotus.... worth a shot. I think the other option would be to do the same thing and instead of water use Titebond glue applied the same way and let dry. You will have to ream the holes in this scenario to make them tapered and round again. But its another cheap option.

    J
     
  3. m-m-m

    m-m-m Member

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    Thanks. I'll try that.
     
  4. nateclark

    nateclark Member

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    I did this repair on similar guitars a bunch of times when I worked at a music store, years ago. I would swab the pin holes with a qtip dampened with super glue accelerator, then apply a small amount of super glue with a plastic toothpick. I would build up the glue until the pins would not seat, then I would refit with a bridge pin reamer.
     
  5. Jack Daniels

    Jack Daniels Supporting Member

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    Yep. Same idea.
     
  6. m-m-m

    m-m-m Member

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    Sounds like the best way to do it. Only problem is I don't have a pin reamer or the accelerator. I'll have to look into getting those, but the point was to not have to order anything from stew-mac as this is more of a favor for a friend than a "client" situation.
     
  7. sashi

    sashi Member

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    Here's something you can try. Rotate the pins before pushing them in so that the groove that runs along their side (where the string normally fits) is away from the string. This should create a tighter fit for the string & help keep it in. No cost involved ! ;)
     
  8. m-m-m

    m-m-m Member

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    very interesting! that's just so crazy, it just might work!
     
  9. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    it'll work only if the slot in the bridge is big enough.

    otherwise, a pinch of superglue on the pins or in the holes (let it dry first!!) should indeed make for a tighter fit.
     

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