The Acoustic Guitar Forum  

Go Back   The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > General Acoustic Guitar Discussion

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 04-07-2010, 09:54 AM
rrgguitarman's Avatar
rrgguitarman rrgguitarman is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Southern California
Posts: 623
Default Replacing the Micarta Saddle to Bone on a Martin D-16GT

Has anyone in this forum changed the Micarta to Bone?

Was it worth the time and money?

Thanks.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 04-07-2010, 12:20 PM
Wade Hampton Wade Hampton is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Chugiak, Alaska
Posts: 13,879
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rrgguitarman View Post
Has anyone in this forum changed the Micarta to Bone?

Was it worth the time and money?

Thanks.
It can be, and in fact I'd go so far as to say that at least nine times out of ten it's an improvement.

A lot just depends on the individual spruce top on any given individual guitar. There's a slight chance that you might not like the tonal results you achieve when the saddle is switched out, so it's a good idea to hang onto the original saddle just in case.

But chances are that you'll like the change that you get.


Wade Hampton Miller
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 04-07-2010, 12:32 PM
Lacks Focus Lacks Focus is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Central Indiana
Posts: 420
Default

While I'm not entirely positive, I believe the saddle, and to a lesser extent the nut, on my M-38 are Micarta. While it's in the shop for all of its major surgery, the luthier is also going to replace both with bone. I am extremely eager to hear the results.
__________________
Craig

1977 Martin M-38
1982 Stelling Staghorn
2014 Larrivée D-40R
2014 Andrew White Eos 1011
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 04-07-2010, 01:55 PM
rrgguitarman's Avatar
rrgguitarman rrgguitarman is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Southern California
Posts: 623
Default

Quote:
There's a slight chance that you might not like the tonal results
This is very true.

I've purchased bone saddles for my Taylors only to take them off to put the Tusq back on because I didn't care for the "change" in tone.

My Larrivee L-03WL on the other hand really benefited from the change to bone.

Thanks.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 04-07-2010, 09:37 PM
Wade Hampton Wade Hampton is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Chugiak, Alaska
Posts: 13,879
Default

After I wrote:

Quote:
There's a slight chance that you might not like the tonal results
RR wrote:

Quote:
Originally Posted by rrgguitarman View Post
This is very true.

I've purchased bone saddles for my Taylors only to take them off to put the Tusq back on because I didn't care for the "change" in tone.

My Larrivee L-03WL on the other hand really benefited from the change to bone.

Funny you should mention that....my standard practice whenever I get a new guitar is to wait a few weeks to let it settle down to the environment, then take it in to my repairman to get it set up. Part of that process is to replace the nut and saddle with bone.

The guitar that rejected the bone saddle most emphatically was my 1998 Larrivée OM-03W. It went from sounding great to sounding unbearably harsh and brittle just with that addition.

I put a factory stock GraphTech saddle back in it, and it resumed its sweet tone.

This just goes to show how very individual the responses of these guitars can be.


Wade Hampton Miller
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 04-07-2010, 10:03 PM
Newf Newf is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 79
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rrgguitarman View Post
Has anyone in this forum changed the Micarta to Bone?

Was it worth the time and money?

Thanks.
I put a bone nut, saddle and ebony pins in a D-16 RGT - the rosewood back and sides - made the sound more woody with a deeper bass.

Also the best strings I found are the Martin SP acoustic bronze mediums.

The nut and saddle were done separate from the bridge pins over a period of 10 days and the same strings were used for comparison purposes.

Each step altered the sound toward a deeper bass and bell like trebles.

Just changing the saddle and bridge pins is a relative inexpensive trial and then try the different strings - you'll find that combination that just sings to you and not have too much money tied up in the process.
__________________
Cheers,
Newf
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 04-08-2010, 02:54 PM
rrgguitarman's Avatar
rrgguitarman rrgguitarman is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Southern California
Posts: 623
Default

Quote:
I put a bone nut, saddle and ebony pins in a D-16 RGT - the rosewood back and sides - made the sound more woody with a deeper bass.
That's what I'm hoping for. I've already changed to ebony pins.

I went ahead and ordered the bone from colosi.

It is a cheap ($26) experiment.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 04-08-2010, 03:06 PM
captivate captivate is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 61
Default

The saddle should be Tusq, not micarta.

In any case, I also changed the saddle in my D-16RGT from Tusq to Fossilized Walrus Ivory. The main difference was the clarity and amount of depth I got from the sound. It gave a more responsive sound.
__________________
Guitars:
1. Seagull 25th Anniversary Flamed Maple w/ LR Baggs Micro EQ
2. Martin D-16RGT w/ LR Baggs M1 Active
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 04-08-2010, 03:21 PM
rrgguitarman's Avatar
rrgguitarman rrgguitarman is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Southern California
Posts: 623
Default

Quote:
The saddle should be Tusq, not micarta
I'm confused...I was told that it was Micarta.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 04-08-2010, 03:23 PM
argosrocks argosrocks is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 41
Default

is it just me or does anyone else feel,that spending 1k on a guitar,a company like martin especially should already be using "premium" nut and saddle materials like bone or to a lesser extent tusq?
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 04-08-2010, 03:29 PM
tnvol tnvol is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Oregon
Posts: 1,528
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by argosrocks View Post
is it just me or does anyone else feel,that spending 1k on a guitar,a company like martin especially should already be using "premium" nut and saddle materials like bone or to a lesser extent tusq?
I feel the same way. I don't think you should have to upgrade anything on a guitar that cost 1k +. It really goes to show how much you are playing for a name.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 04-08-2010, 03:29 PM
captivate captivate is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 61
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rrgguitarman View Post
I'm confused...I was told that it was Micarta.
The fretboard and bridge material are micarta.
__________________
Guitars:
1. Seagull 25th Anniversary Flamed Maple w/ LR Baggs Micro EQ
2. Martin D-16RGT w/ LR Baggs M1 Active
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 04-08-2010, 03:53 PM
valleyguy valleyguy is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: LA Area - valley
Posts: 2,649
Default

I experimented on my Martin D16R by replacing the saddle with a Colosi bone saddle. I was trying to lessen the brightness of the sound. I'm going to put the old saddle back in to compare.

I wouldn't day that the sound is "better" with the bone saddle, just different. If Martin felt a bone saddle sounded "better", the extra $10 for the bone saddle wouldn't stop them.

It's all in what sound you're looking for.
__________________
Fred

The secret to life is enjoying the passage of time.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 04-08-2010, 04:20 PM
captivate captivate is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 61
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by valleyguy View Post
\
I wouldn't day that the sound is "better" with the bone saddle, just different. If Martin felt a bone saddle sounded "better", the extra $10 for the bone saddle wouldn't stop them.

It's all in what sound you're looking for.
The $10 isn't what's stopping them. Everything 16 series and under are mass production models. Unlike Tusq which is easily mass produced, bone and ivory saddles take time to shape. And time = money.

The reason the 1, 15, and 16 series guitars are so cheap is because they cut little things that don't really matter as much.
__________________
Guitars:
1. Seagull 25th Anniversary Flamed Maple w/ LR Baggs Micro EQ
2. Martin D-16RGT w/ LR Baggs M1 Active
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 04-08-2010, 04:22 PM
rrgguitarman's Avatar
rrgguitarman rrgguitarman is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Southern California
Posts: 623
Default

Quote:
If Martin felt a bone saddle sounded "better", the extra $10 for the bone saddle wouldn't stop them.
$5 would stop them. How many guitars do they manufacture per year x10?

That would add up. Taylor does the same thing as well as Larrivee (on 03 series)

My Larrivee D-09 came with a bone saddle but my Larrivee L-03WL did not.

Seagull ships out all of their guitars with Tusq but I changed out the Tusq to bone on my Seagull S6+ Spruce and it made a huge difference in the sound.

It is just business. Unless I'm mistaken R. Taylor guitars all come with bone saddles?
But youi're correct about it all depends on what you're looking to achieve. Tone is very subjective.
Reply With Quote
Reply

  The Acoustic Guitar Forum > General Acoustic Guitar and Amplification Discussion > General Acoustic Guitar Discussion

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Loading

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:08 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, The Acoustic Guitar Forum
vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=