Modern Gretsch Guitars

What is the name of this Baldwin era bridge?

1

Is this a "Space Roller Bridge" or? It was on my 1999 G6119 until I ditched it while back based on feedback given here and replaced it with a Tru Arc (which I still love). What is the official name of this bridge, other than "rattle, hum, and assorted noise maker"?

2

I don't believe it is "Baldwin Era". Looks to be a pre-FMIC German made roller saddle bridge from the 90's to early 2002.

3

I don't believe it is "Baldwin Era". Looks to be a pre-FMIC German made roller saddle bridge from the 90's to early 2002.

– Gretschadelphia

Yeah 1999 was not a year of Baldwin production, but weren't they still made by Baldwin specs and such until Fender took over production?

My 6119 has the 5 play top, waffle bracing, non-Gretsch dimensions, so even thought mine was not produced during the Baldwin era, isn't is still bases on Baldwin design? I'm not arguing, I'm asking to be schooled on this

4

No. 1999 had nothing whatsoever to do with Baldwin. 99 was squarely in the modern Fred era.

That's the notorious ABM roller bridge, which was very common across the range in the 90s. You don't see them all that often anymore since most were removed and chucked as far as the owner could throw.

They were not loved. As you noticed, they were pretty well known for rattling.

I think 99 was about the time they started phasing them out. They may have held on a bit longer.

5

No. 1999 had nothing whatsoever to do with Baldwin. 99 was squarely in the modern Fred era.

That's the notorious ABM roller bridge, which was very common across the range in the 90s. You don't see them all that often anymore since most were removed and chucked as far as the owner could throw.

They were not loved. As you noticed, they were pretty well known for rattling.

I think 99 was about the time they started phasing them out. They may have held on a bit longer.

– Baxter

Baxter I think you are the gent who advised me to throw this thing in the trash the minute I posted about it here. After applying some butt hurt cream I took your advice and it was one of the best decisions I made to improve the guitar. What does the "ABM" mean?

9

That's an unfortunate piece of ABM hardware - they've been building a lot of guitar hardware for a long time, and a lot of what they offer is very nice and high quality. Those roller bridges...not so much. Not the greatest design, the saddles lift when you fingerpick.

10

I put mine in the round file....

11

Yeah 1999 was not a year of Baldwin production, but weren't they still made by Baldwin specs and such until Fender took over production?

My 6119 has the 5 play top, waffle bracing, non-Gretsch dimensions, so even thought mine was not produced during the Baldwin era, isn't is still bases on Baldwin design? I'm not arguing, I'm asking to be schooled on this

– Mr_Christopher

The external body shapes of the early Terada models, as well as the neck profiles and sometimes headstock shapes were very much like post-'73 Baldwin era. Waffle bracing was strictly Terada. IIRC the 5-ply top 7-ply sides were a Terada thing although Gretsch did experiment with 5 or 7 ply sides and 3 ply tops (no need for kerfing/lining) in the early '60's. Baldwin took over in '67 but significant changes started happening around '73.

12

I think the name for that bridge is POS or Rattle-o-matic. I may be mistaken.

13

I would say that it is the ABM Adjust-O-Matic roller bridge.

ABM was the manufacturer at the time.

Don't confuse these with the Space-O-Matic bridges that have issues of their own.

The AOM rollers were used in the Fred Gretsch III era for most Bigbsy equipped guitars.

They rattled and the rollers tended to stick. But in theory they fixed the Bigsby introduced intonation issues.

The ABM bridges are best replaced with a Serpintune bridge. Just make sure you can tell Tim Harman the exact position of the bridge elements.

Lee

14

Sorry Tim, I just thought that Serp-In-Tune might be cooler.

Lee

15

Dr. Klaus Muller was a very close friend of mine until he passed away from a heart attack at age 54.. the man was a genius! His wife Gundy sold the company to my friend Peter Borowski a few months after he passed. We use to share a booth at NAMM and I've been to Germany a number of times.

16

Sorry Tim, I just thought that Serp-In-Tune might be cooler.

Well, as a matter of policy, of course I agree.

17

This is a Space Control Bridge. It is designed to change the spacing between the strings by spinning the wheels along the threaded bar. So, technically, the wheels will spin slightly back and forth as the Bigsby is deployed.

BUT, NOTE: This is NOT one of the much maligned "roller bridges" that were on some of the pre-FMIC model guitars. So don't refer to a Space Control Bridge as a "roller bridge".

This is a Roller Bridge as was installed on many of the pre-FMIC models. It is generally not viewed as a bridge that will produce great user satisfaction, although your mileage may vary.

NOTE: This one IS the "roller bridge" and may be called that. Of course, to be technically correct, it should be referred to as "that crappy roller bridge."

18

the wheels will spin slightly back and forth as the Bigsby is deployed.

Or, more descriptively, they budge. The Space Control has budgie-wheels.

19

This is a Space Control Bridge. It is designed to change the spacing between the strings by spinning the wheels along the threaded bar. So, technically, the wheels will spin slightly back and forth as the Bigsby is deployed.

BUT, NOTE: This is NOT one of the much maligned "roller bridges" that were on some of the pre-FMIC model guitars. So don't refer to a Space Control Bridge as a "roller bridge".

This is a Roller Bridge as was installed on many of the pre-FMIC models. It is generally not viewed as a bridge that will produce great user satisfaction, although your mileage may vary.

NOTE: This one IS the "roller bridge" and may be called that. Of course, to be technically correct, it should be referred to as "that crappy roller bridge."

– Ric12string

That ABM bridge photo is mine!! It's from a review of the Tru Arc Serpentune review on a blog I help manage, lol. I wanted to make sure I was calling it by the correct name, other than "rattle turd" and provide any historical data I could come up with.

Anyhow, thanks everyone and if it was not clear - I ditched my ABM bridge based on it sucked and YOU guys suggested that, I replaced it with a Tru Arc Serpentune (the weirdest name ever) and I've been happy ever since.

Rock on!


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