Vintage Gretsch Guitars

1967 Double Anniversary Bridge base dimensions

1

I have a 67 Double Anniversary that I'm refretting and doing a neck reset. The bottom of the bridge has been sanded down at some point. Now I need to build up the "feet" by gluing a piece of Rosewood to each end. How thick are the ends of the bridge base?

2

Can't tell you on a vintage Gretsch - though I suspect they differed over time and perhaps from batch to batch (or that's been my experience selling aftermarket bridges and working with customers on such questions).

But a modern Gretsch base - which was based on vintage bases - tapers from .141 at the very end to .325 at the "shoulder" which marks the division between the slope up from the end and the flat surface the posts are screwed into. Then it's .285 just before the undercut in the middle.

(And, of course, you'll have to shape the bottom of the base to honor the radius of the top of your guitar.)

3

Thanks for the reply. This helps a lot!

4

IMO GVK, I wouldn't be adding wood to each foot but rather put one piece across the top of the existing base. In all probability, the feet were sanded down to contour the base to the top which is necessary for it to make full contact with the top so it won't 'skate' out of position on the top's surface. My Super Chet had the center span of the bridge way too thin, allowing the outer ends of each foot to bow upward losing contact. In addition, this top of the base being thin, required the bridge to be raised so that there was quite an extent of the post showing to get the bridge in the proper location. Toxophilite here remedied the situation nicely by gluing an extra piece of ebony seamlessly across the top of the base and drilled the holes for the post through it. Now the base is a bit more than twice what it was and the feet now sit flush and the bridge isn't perched high above the base. Adding to each foot will accomplish the same thing for your bridge if the top it isn't too thin like mine was, but adding to the top is a far simpler fix. No measuring required. J Just add a piece and trim to suit the size of the top of the base, be it ebony or rosewood. This little fix took him about half an hour.

5

Maybe it was sanded down for better action if the neck angle went off. Either way, a period replacement bridge couldn't cost too much?

6

Often when the 'feet' are sanded down a lot they get quite narrow and ridiculously thin and sharp at the outside edge. The older gretsch bridges had a heftier middle section to the bridge than those found on our 70s Chets Dave (completely different bridge base actually), So in this instance you usually do need to add to the feet, though I appreciate the idea endorsement.

I'd help with dimensions but I usually sell most of the vintage Gretsch bridges I get because I don't really care for them.. The one I still have (from my 55 Convertible) is pretty uniform all the way across at around .385" or about 9.75 mm.

i don't think there would be a double anniversary specific bridge Any Gretsch from the same era would have roughly the same bridge base. they were mass produced, especially in the 60s. Somebody should chime in.

7

The neck was definitely in need of a reset. It appears that the previous owner shaved the bottom of the bridge to lower the action after the bridge adjustment was bottomed out. Then the frets were sanded paper thin.

8

The neck was definitely in need of a reset. It appears that the previous owner shaved the bottom of the bridge to lower the action after the bridge adjustment was bottomed out. Then the frets were sanded paper thin.

9

The neck was definitely in need of a reset. It appears that the previous owner shaved the bottom of the bridge to lower the action after the bridge adjustment was bottomed out. Then the frets were sanded paper thin.

10

The feet are very thin.

11

Here’s another picture of the base.

12

Yep, pretty shaved.

If the bridge has the current default spacing (2-29/32" center-to-center between the holes), it would be easier just to replace the base with a new one.

13

Here’s the guitar!

14

Proteus, do you have a site where you sell them?

15

I don't sell the bases from a site, exactly...I stock them as necessary accessories for Tru-Arc bridges, which are my product. There's a website for that (you can get it from the sidebar), but you can't buy from there directly because...mumbled insufficient reasons.

But I sell direct via email, using PayPal. Message me through this site (or use the email address on the pitiful webpage) and we can discuss it.

16

Also, don't look now - but your guitar is in pieces. It's not a guitar now, it's not even a good sculpture of a guitar. (Maybe a cubist sculpture. Did cubists sculpt?) It's PARTS for a guitar.

But I see tools, and it looks like there might be enough parts...so maybe it's going to be a guitar again.

17

It is a complete guitar. All original parts. I pulled the frets and then pulled the neck. I'm letting the dovetail and neck block dry out now. Then I'll set the neck angle, refret and reinstall the neck. It will be sweet when I finish the repairs. I build acoustic guitars so this type of repair is no big deal. Actually it's been kind of fun so far.

18

Well there you go then! It's in good hands.

19

What could really help this guitar when it's put back together is to park that bridge and base in a drawer - for posterity - and get a Serpentune and base from Tim.

Those roller bridges are generally not well regarded around here......I have my own reasons for disliking these things.....they won't intonate and they're very uncomfortable for resting the heel of my hand on for playing fingerstyle.

20

Wow, another black double anniversary..one would almost think they made them that way. Is it missing it's label inside?

21

There is no label inside and no evidence of a refinish. I'm told that starting in 1966/67 they did offer the Double Anniversary in different colors.

22

Custom colors were always available upon request. Good for you for keeping the original finish.

23

I like keeping everything original on guitars. I learned my lessons about devaluing vintage instruments many years ago. Original Double Anniversaries don’t command a high price to begin with.

24

But they are very cool!


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