1 Proteus 7 months ago Because I'm otherly-abled in math, I was thinking 2018 would be the 10th anniversary of something that started in 2008. Thus last July (if I can recall, and I can't), I didn't make any fuss about Tru-Arc's 10th birthday.Turns out 2018 is actually the 11th go-round. I hereby make a big deal of it.The prototypes of the bridges were shown at the first Nashville Roundup, in June 2008, where they were well received. I then announced the bridges here on the GDP and "opened for business." The original impetus for the development of the product (which had begun the previous July) was persistent whining and bitching here on the GDP from guys who had 9.5" fingerboards and much flatter bridges - up to 20" radius - on their guitars. It seemed to me (and other posters) that the obvious solution would be to file the string slots on the bridges so the bottoms of the slots matched the radius of the fingerboard, even if the saddles or bridges themselves didn't.But few seemed to go to that effort.So. My brother had a tube-bending business, of all things, where he did (and does) precise fabrication work for all manner of industries - and I figured, "the rocking bar bridges sure look like tubes, maybe it's in his bailiwick." And it was, and he (and his staff) did all the development work - some of which involved some non-obvious engineering that ended up improving on the basic design of the Gretsch rocking bar bridge (which was our starting point).At that June 2008 Roundup, I checked with both Fred Gretsch and Joe Carducci to see if my basing my product on their existing bridge violated any intellectual property, and they agreed it did not.Thus, production proceeded. I assumed there would be a worldwide lifetime market of 50 guys who had 9.5" radius fingerboards and mismatching bridge radii - and who cared - so it was pretty low key.But at the last minute, out of curiosity (and more intuition than I should take credit for), I asked the shop to use three different metals. Because, you know. What if they sounded different?And they did - and that was the basis for most sales in the beginning, though the radius match was a big deal as well (as it remains for some buyers who are aware of it).ANYway. It's a product line that grew directly out of my involvement on the GDP, and the critical nature of many posters at that time. (Something that has changed, it seems.) To the extent I've ever had marketing, it's been word-of-mouth here on the GDP. So I have the GDP - and all of you - to thank for what has become a steady business for me.So...thanks!According to my records, Troy Dering (troy6120) got the first Tru-Arc shipped, an AL-120 - though the first to pay for a bridge was either Shawn Roux (sroux) or one Adrian McKenna (then known as shuie, now as Ade). That all happened during the second week of July, 2008. Troy's bridge was shipped on 7/22, and the rest of the first batch on 8/7. (Then, as always and still, shipping sometimes lags behind orders.)Other early adopters - of the first 10 bridges - were Shawn Bragg (Reverb11), Mark Joss (RPC), an Alexander Beck (fudongshi), Sergi Romero (sergi), and Martijn Vink (Vinkie). All were GDP members. Oddly, of the first 10 bridges, only two went to the US, both to Louisiana. The others went to the UK, Canada, Germany, Spain, and the Netherlands. Through the years, about a third of the business has been international, with bridges going to 44 countries including Russia and Tibet.Besides trying to make multiple solutions for every Gretsch model - which has included various string spacings, hole diameters and spacings, bridge height, and bridge width - we've done bass and baritone bridges, and one for a 12-string (which Cam bought).The most interesting developments, from my perspective, were the Hole Tone options for drilled and lightened bridges; the fully (and truly) compensated SerpenTune series (development name: TruComp); and the glass bridges. But I realize all those materials (5 metals and glass) and Tru-Arc versions make the product line confusing. It's just been the only way to assure a bridge for almost any Gretsch - and lots of other brands as well.In 2010, Duane Eddy endorsed Tru-Arc™ for inclusion on his signature model 6120, and he's mentioned it in several interviews and articles - and used it at gigs and on recordings. I'm a little proud, of course - but mostly, just forever grateful. Duane took the selection process very seriously, trying every material for months at a time, before settling on Stainless - which does provide masterful punch on his sig model - because aluminum was "too twangy!" (But when you're the Titan, the twang comes from within.) I'm not a guy who likes thrills and excitement - but after waiting through a series of great acts at the Guitar Geek Festival (2010, I believe) for Duane to take the headliner stage, when he stepped on after midnight, plugged into a pair (I think) of 2-15 Showmans, and hit the first note on his sig 6120...well, when I heard and felt the impact of that tone, on those iconic riffs...it was just pretty cool to know I'd had been privileged to have the teeniest tiniest part in its production.Thanks again, Duane.There have been many other well-known and "celebrity" adopters over the years, but a list would surely leave someone out, and raise questions about who's "famous" enough to be mentioned. I guess I can't help but mention Paul Yandell, however, whose interest, enthusiasm, and friendship in the later years of his life meant so much to me.And, of course, Joe Carducci and Fred Gretsch have been very supportive from the beginning. Without Joe, there's no way I could have penetrated FMIC. I owe the man worlds of gratitude.I was also informed that Tru-Arc™ is the "official bar bridge" of the Gretsch Custom Shop. I can't help but find that gratifying. So there you go. It's been an amazing 11 years. I've learned a lot, forgotten a lot, and keep learning more.Next goal: computerized accounting and a real websiteWho knows what might happen then!Thanks, everyone.