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  #31  
Old 04-17-2024, 01:20 PM
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The string tension on a pinless bridge is held by a glue joint attached to the topmost layer of wood of the top. I have seen that layer turn loose when the area around the bridge was trimmed a little too deep cutting those surface fibers. With a pin bridge the ball end of the strings pulls up against the bridge plate which gives two layers of wood mechanically resisting the string tension. In fact that design would hold if the bridge was not glued at all to the top but just acted as a spacer held tight to the top with the force of the strings acting on the saddle. It wouldn't be pretty, but there would be no risk if catastrophic failure like there is when the entire force is counteracted only by a glue joint. I. have repaired bridges that have almost completely turned loose (not one of my guitars of course - but the strings are still tight and playable because the ball ends are held securely against the bridge plate.

John O makes a good point too. When the strings have to come on and off multiple times during setup, it sure is nice to just pull a pin and remove the strings from that end and leave the other end wrapped on the tuning post.
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  #32  
Old 04-17-2024, 01:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merlemantel View Post
Doing a custom build. Wondering if I want to ask for a pinless bridge.
Got it. My personal preference would be to NOT do a pinless bridge. I don’t see much advantage. I give a slight advantage to pinned because of the ability to remove the saddle without wasting strings.
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  #33  
Old 04-17-2024, 01:28 PM
Dustinfurlow Dustinfurlow is offline
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Nice to see the informative replies from such great builders here.

From a non-luthier standpoint. I can't really imagine it being tonally different as I'm sure most builders who use pinless bridges exclusively or on occasion will still try to dial in the mass for ideal responsiveness of the individual top regardless of which style they or the client chooses.

I personally always prefer pinless on custom guitars if possible, after seeing so many performer friends in the modern fingerstyle genre lose bridge pins on stage and lose substantial performance time hunting it down (not to mention the occurrence being a whole ordeal that can kill the vibe in a room).

It's also fun and easier to change strings if you don't mind the zing when you pull wound strings through, I've learned to love it
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  #34  
Old 04-17-2024, 02:27 PM
Merlemantel Merlemantel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j. Kinnaird View Post
The string tension on a pinless bridge is held by a glue joint attached to the topmost layer of wood of the top. I have seen that layer turn loose when the area around the bridge was trimmed a little too deep cutting those surface fibers. With a pin bridge the ball end of the strings pulls up against the bridge plate which gives two layers of wood mechanically resisting the string tension. In fact that design would hold if the bridge was not glued at all to the top but just acted as a spacer held tight to the top with the force of the strings acting on the saddle. It wouldn't be pretty, but there would be no risk if catastrophic failure like there is when the entire force is counteracted only by a glue joint. I. have repaired bridges that have almost completely turned loose (not one of my guitars of course - but the strings are still tight and playable because the ball ends are held securely against the bridge plate.

John O makes a good point too. When the strings have to come on and off multiple times during setup, it sure is nice to just pull a pin and remove the strings from that end and leave the other end wrapped on the tuning post.
This squares with my intuition. Makes a lot of sense. It is always helpful to hear from the guys that make wonderful instruments, like you. Thank you
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  #35  
Old 04-23-2024, 07:11 PM
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My Kevin Ryan 12 string has both types. When changing strings, I prefer the pinned one. Hard to thread that string thru the pinless hole sometimes.

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  #36  
Old 04-23-2024, 08:39 PM
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Originally Posted by kyee View Post
My Kevin Ryan 12 string has both types. When changing strings, I prefer the pinned one. Hard to thread that string thru the pinless hole sometimes.

That is one Beautiful Guitar!!!

As usual, I will second John Kinnaird. Much as I like my pinless 96 412ce, his logic is hard to argue against.

(As are his guitars!)

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  #37  
Old 04-23-2024, 10:58 PM
Gryf Gryf is offline
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I've had two pinless bridge guitars-an Ovation I bought in 1978 (zero problems with the bridge lifting), and my O25c Lowden that was built in 2002 (also zero problems with the bridge lifting.)

Differences in sound? No real way to tell unless you have two identical guitars with both styles of bridge. And even then.....

All I can say is don't be dissuaded by fears of bridge problems, and take comfort that there are high end guitar builders who utilize a pinless bridge. I expect that they know something about what they're doing.
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  #38  
Old 04-24-2024, 07:33 PM
Merlemantel Merlemantel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gryf View Post
I've had two pinless bridge guitars-an Ovation I bought in 1978 (zero problems with the bridge lifting), and my O25c Lowden that was built in 2002 (also zero problems with the bridge lifting.)

Differences in sound? No real way to tell unless you have two identical guitars with both styles of bridge. And even then.....

All I can say is don't be dissuaded by fears of bridge problems, and take comfort that there are high end guitar builders who utilize a pinless bridge. I expect that they know something about what they're doing.
Yes. Very logical. Makes sense
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