General tech questions

Bigsby Installation and operating instructions

1
These are scans of Actual installation instructions sheets that came with Bigsbys: Bigsby B-3 & B-6 installation instructions True-Vibrato Tail Piece Bigsby B-7 & B-12 installation instructions True-Vibrato Tail Piece Bigsby B-5, B-50 installation instructionsTrue-Vibrato Tail Piece Operating instructions for Bigsby Vibrato Hi Res Scan B3 B6 B7 B11 B12 B30 B70 Hi Res Scan B7 B12 Hi Res Scan B5 B50 for Short Body, Flat Top, Solid guitars with Low Bridge B16 etc. at Natsteels site PROJECT TELECASTER
2
Very cool paul, great to have in the collection! Thanks!
3
I was looking for some kind of instructions for a Bigsby installation and was surprised that there aren't even any decent technical instructions on the Bigsy website! Thanks for posting these, Setzer!
4
You know a power drill and a 12 pk can get one installed, too. Actually there are some excellent videos on youtube documenting particular bigsby installs that I've used successfully, as well. The info was handy, but a shot of courage before applying the drill was at least as important! Thanks, Paul for the detailed specs that I'll keep handy, too.
5

Your welcome guys. Some of those papers are pre internet days. If you want the original scan of one let me know. Photobucket down sized them by the looks of it(a couple of the Hi Res ones). Or I had my scanner set wrong.

6
are there any detailed instructions on how to properly ground the guitar when putting the Bigsby on? I installed one a few years ago but I dont think I grounded it right as I get buzzing sounds when touching the guitar. The ground wire is attached to this eyelet thingy on the bridge pickup and I've read about people attaching a piece of a guitar string and running it under the bridge plate or into one of the bridge posts (i use a jaguar bridge). I've tried that but maybe I'm not making a proper connection or something. In any event, it's pissing me off.
7
are there any detailed instructions on how to properly ground the guitar when putting the Bigsby on?
It varirs from instrument to instrument. It's best if you have an ohm-meter on hand, ideally one that beeps with continuity (zero ohms, a short). If the original tailpiece connected to or pressed against a ground wire, just be sure that it's in the same place. Connect one lead of the meter to the shell of the output jack, and the other anywhere on the Bigsby. You should see the meter read 0 ohms or beep. If the ground wire goes to the *bridge*, you won't get continuity to the Bigsby until at least one string is on. HTH -pk
8
The ground wire is attached to this eyelet thingy on the bridge pickup and I've read about people attaching a piece of a guitar string and running it under the bridge plate or into one of the bridge posts (i use a jaguar bridge).
What model guitar do you have? Guitars with a removable bridge - these are normally hollow archtops - usually have the ground going to the tailpiece; in this case there is a hole drilled in the tailblock for the ground wire. Guitars with bridges mounted to the top, and those with top-mounted Bisgbys, frequently use a wire to one bridge post, or to anything that reliably connects to the strings. Strats, for example, have the ground wire going to the claw that holds the trem springs. Les Pauls have a hole drilled in the treble-side tailpiece post hole for the ground wire. You need to find some place where you can get a reliable connection.
9
It's a Nashville telecaster, stock pickups.
10
Hmmmm, If you are using the Bigsby plate with push in thimbles for the bridge, you may have to pull one of the thimbles out and drill a hole for the ground wire. Just get a drill bit long enought to go from the side of the thimble hole into the pickup cavity. Then you could push a piece of wire through with the end stripped. When you push the thimble back into the hole, it will make contact with the stripped end of the wire. Then solder the other end of the wire to your ground.
11
K-Wad: said: Then solder the other end of the wire to your ground.
So the stripped end goes into the thimble hole and the thimble will be pushed down onto it through the thimble hole. Then the other end gets soldered to the small metal eyelet where the other wire is currently soldered to?
12
Usually the ground for a Tele is a very short piece that runs from under the bridge plate to the Bigsby. It can be 1/4" long and still do the trick. No solder is needed.
13
Yea but wouldn't that leave the wire visible when looking at the guitar?
14
MR TROUBLE said: So the stripped end goes into the thimble hole and the thimble will be pushed down onto it through the thimble hole. Then the other end gets soldered to the small metal eyelet where the other wire is currently soldered to?
That's exactly what I did with mine. Actually I got lucky, and the spot where I had to drill the treble-side thimble hole fell EXACTLY on top of the existing groundwire tunnel. I saw bare wire at the bottom of the thimble hole, and just pushed it to the side a bit, so that when I inserted the thimble the wire would bind between the thimble and the body. Obviously, not everyone will be so lucky.
15
SeaDevil, So, you use the original bridge plate ground wire (that came from the factory) for the Bigsby bridge plate, then run a second piece wire from the plate to the Bigsby frame? But, then wouldn't you have an exposed piece of wire (visible on the face of the guitar)? Edit, wow, I am an incredibly slow typer!!!
16
man I think I need pic by pic instructions on how to properly do this!!
17
So the stripped end goes into the thimble hole and the thimble will be pushed down onto it through the thimble hole. Then the other end gets soldered to the small metal eyelet where the other wire is currently soldered to?
Yes. The ground wire can go anywhere, really, the ideal being a "star" ground where the various grounds - pickups, controls, bridge - go to one common point, which would ideally be the ground lug of the output jack. In reality, this can be impractical, so anywhere you can get a solid ground will work. Again, this becomes a lot easier if you've got a meter at hand. HTH -pk
18
Yes, the ground wire is visible when you run it the way I described. Fender doesn't do it that way now, but some older Fenders have it. If the bridge plate and the Bigsby are close enough, it would be inconsequential unless you're really picky. I don't spend a lot of time looking at that area, and no one has ever noticed it on my one Bigsby Tele that has it. It's beat to hell, though. My other Bigsby Tele has the plate actually touching the Bigsby, but it has a Warmoth body that's slightly smaller than Fender specs. What everyone else is recommending is grounding the bridge, not the Bigsby. The strings complete the circuit. There may be a small advantage in star-grounding the bridge, but a short piece from the pickup base, running over the guitar's top to the thimble, would accomplish pretty much the same thing with no drilling. You'd see it when the bridge is off, but not when it's on.
19

Guys,

I found an interesting resource in the patent office's database.

Get the Patent number off of anything in the correct format.(in this case, I used patent number from a Bigsby I just purchased off of ebay, which looks like a B3, but it says ex short on the back of the hinge)

The correct format would read: D-169,120 in the search field, and when done, should lead you to an images option, where you can get a look at the original patent drawings.

Here's what I found for mine:

Patent Number Database Search

20

I posted a pic for just this purpose a week or so ago. I'll see if I can dig it up.

Here's the thread. http://gretschpages.com/forum/general-tech-questions/telecaster-earth-quandary/30012/page1

21

so this gap is quite normal?

22

yep thats normal. that little felt disc should prolly be moved to somewhere actually in contact with the guitar though.

23

What about the bridge that they supply you with...? Do you file it for strings to rest in? If not I don't see how the strings would ever stay in one place when you are playing....

thanks

24

Yes, you need to notch it.

25

Thanks.........!


Register Sign in to join the conversation