The Acoustic Guitar Forum

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

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 01-14-2021, 09:14 PM
KevinH's Avatar
KevinH KevinH is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Tacoma, WA
Posts: 848
Default Saddle shim

I have a Furch Little Jane. For those not familiar, the LJ is designed as a travel guitar, that disassembles into 3 pieces and fits into a small pack. I decided to replace the strings today - for the first time. I removed the strings and discovered that the saddle would rock back and forth quite a bit if I pressed on the E string side or the e string side - which made it feel like there was a high spot in the center. So I pulled the saddle out and found a small shim sitting roughly in the center of the slot. See attached images.

At first I thought it had to be a mistake - a piece of something unintentionally left in the slot. When I pulled it out it was obviously a shim, constant thickness and just wide enough to fit in the slot. But it's only 30% of the length of the slot. I've never used saddle shims - but I'd think they would have made the shim the full length of the slot. And I'm surprised they'd even use a shim. Given the cost of the guitar (~$1,200 USD), why not just put in the correct saddle? I had thought better of Furch.

I decided to take the shim out since the action was a bit higher than I like. There is now a little buzz on the e string. Action at the 12th is now 5/64" on all strings, except for the e, where its 4/64", which should be fine.

Anyway, does this strike you as odd?
Attached Images
File Type: jpg s1.jpg (41.3 KB, 141 views)
File Type: jpg s2.jpg (30.0 KB, 142 views)
__________________
2020 Breedlove Premier Concertina
2020 Furch LJ 10-CM
2020 Larrivee 00-40R
2005 Martin 00-18V
2019 Taylor 522ce
2019 Waterloo WL-S Deluxe
2020 Yamaha FS-TA TransAcoustic
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01-14-2021, 09:22 PM
Macpage Macpage is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2020
Posts: 203
Default

Neat guitars. I bet you have a lot of fun with that one!

It sounds to me like someone got a bit hurried in the initial set-up. Perhaps, they got a hair low on the E saddle side. The shim was the quick fix to get that last 64th or so back and make it level. Enjoy all the places you can go with that one.

Best,

Mac
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-15-2021, 04:59 AM
mirwa mirwa is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 2,757
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinH View Post
Anyway, does this strike you as odd?
Nope, happens way to often when a store tech tweaks it for you

Steve
__________________
Cole Clark Fat Lady
Gretsch Electromatic
Martin CEO7
Maton Messiah
Taylor 814CE
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-15-2021, 06:16 AM
Mbroady's Avatar
Mbroady Mbroady is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Asheville via NYC
Posts: 5,055
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinH View Post
I have a Furch Little Jane.
Anyway, does this strike you as odd?
This is not as it should be. Was the guitar purchased new from a dealer? Ultimately a new saddle would be they way to go. And if it was purchased new I donít see why the warranty would not cover the cost for a replacement and set up (of the new saddle)
__________________
MJ Franks Lagacy OM, Furch D32-LM, Stonebridge OM33-SR DB. Boucher BG-52, Voyage Air VAD-2, Rainsong H-WS1000N2T, Tacoma Papoose, 72 Fender Strat
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-15-2021, 07:30 AM
RoyBoy RoyBoy is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 356
Default

In your photo it looks like the saddle slot has a scooped out area matching the length of the shim, like it wasn't milled flat. Perhaps the shim was an attempt to fill that dished out part of the slot, albeit not well because the dished area has a curved bottom.

If you've got a buzz on the E string, I would put in a 1/32" shim that extends the entire length of the slot to get you back to buzz-free. That would put your E string action at 5/64". To get the action better, you'll need to have the frets leveled, recrowned, and polished and perhaps the nut slots adjusted. This may cost more than you're willing to put into a travel guitar.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-15-2021, 07:57 AM
Mbroady's Avatar
Mbroady Mbroady is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Asheville via NYC
Posts: 5,055
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by RoyBoy View Post
In youíre photo it looks like the saddle slot has a scooped out area matching the length of the shim, like it wasn't milled flat. Perhaps the shim was an attempt to fill that dished out part of the slot, albeit not well because the dished area has a curved bottom.

If you've got a buzz on the E string, I would put in a 1/32" shim that extends the entire length of the slot to get you back to buzz-free. That would put your E string action at 5/64". To get the action better, you'll need to have the frets leveled, recrowned, and polished and perhaps the nut slots adjusted. This may cost more than you're willing to put into a travel guitar.
If the saddle slot is scooped then you would not get full contact unless the saddle slot was filled and rerouted. Once again, if new this is a warrant issue, and Furch does well by their customers when it comes to legitimate warranty issues
__________________
MJ Franks Lagacy OM, Furch D32-LM, Stonebridge OM33-SR DB. Boucher BG-52, Voyage Air VAD-2, Rainsong H-WS1000N2T, Tacoma Papoose, 72 Fender Strat
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-15-2021, 09:00 AM
Tuch Tuch is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 53
Default

the saddle slot base would be milled 'level'..no curvature.[deliberately scooped!].
if a shim were to be used...there should not be any gap between etc=for full contact saddle base & slot base etc.=a mirror image etc.

it is assumed the small shim has been used[deliberately inserted..] to raise the action. The issue here would be...that over time the saddle would 'bend/distort'...under string tension...causing further issues etc.

To rectify...a tapered shim inserted [correct length x width x thickness] resulting in the required 'action' to suit. or.. ,a new saddle etc of the correct dimensions inserted that does suit the purpose etc.= As is.. its a d i y/quick fix!

If the gtr is to be kept then L & C the frets. New saddle & set up=A perfect guitar resulting.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-15-2021, 10:01 AM
redir redir is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Mountains of Virginia
Posts: 6,064
Default

At least they used rosewood for the shim
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-15-2021, 10:41 AM
nikpearson nikpearson is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Nottinghamshire, U.K.
Posts: 676
Default Iím confused...

And cannot see any scoop in the saddle slot. The two pictures appear to be the saddle slot with a short shim in place and then the same shim on a piece of light-coloured wood. Maybe Iíve got this wrong?

If the guitar was bought new it needs remedying by the shop with either a whole new saddle or a proper bone or hardwood shim that runs the full length of the slot. My preference is to superglue the slime to the bottom of the saddle as it makes it easier to thickness correctly and should give better contact.

A shim can be tapered from one side to the other with very careful sanding. Keeping the bottom flat is trickier than it sounds but itís achievable with only very basic tools: square block, abrasive paper and a known flat surface.

If the guitar was not new then and you donít fancy doing this yourself it would be a very quick and inexpensive job for a luthier to do.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-19-2021, 11:02 AM
dbintegrity dbintegrity is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: living in the crotch of long island
Posts: 723
Default

Looks to me someone got lazy.. just make a new saddle or have it done and be done with it.... anyone who put a 3/4" shim probably has rubber bands and duct tape in their tool box...
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 01-19-2021, 02:39 PM
KevinH's Avatar
KevinH KevinH is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Tacoma, WA
Posts: 848
Default

Thanks for the replies. I've been away for a few days and am now just getting back to it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mbroady View Post
This is not as it should be. Was the guitar purchased new from a dealer? Ultimately a new saddle would be they way to go. And if it was purchased new I donít see why the warranty would not cover the cost for a replacement and set up (of the new saddle)
Yes, it was purchased new from a dealer. I thought about contacting them, but I'd rather not have to deal with shipping it back to the east coast, and perhaps back to Furch.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RoyBoy View Post
In your photo it looks like the saddle slot has a scooped out area matching the length of the shim, like it wasn't milled flat. Perhaps the shim was an attempt to fill that dished out part of the slot, albeit not well because the dished area has a curved bottom.
The bottom of the slot was flat. Hard to say for sure, but I think someone at Furch just got lazy and, for whatever reason, thought it was OK to just shim up 30% of the saddle length. Or else they had the shim in there for some reason and forgot to remove it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nikpearson View Post
And cannot see any scoop in the saddle slot. The two pictures appear to be the saddle slot with a short shim in place and then the same shim on a piece of light-coloured wood. Maybe Iíve got this wrong?...
I think you got it right. The first picture showed the saddle slot after I removed the saddle. There was a short piece of shim material in the bottom of the slot. The second picture showed the shim sitting on a flat face of the saddle so you could see it more easily.

Given that only the center part of the saddle was shimmed, I could rock the saddle side to side by quite a bit. In the best case, that meant only 30% of the saddle was in contact with the shim and saddle slot. Depending on how well the shim was centered and the tension on the bass vs treble strings, the saddle could have rocked one way or another when the strings were under tension, which means the saddle would only have two points of contact - one at the bottom of the slot and one at a corner of the shim. And the shim was free to move within the slot. So when the guitar was disassembled for travel, the shim would be free to move side to side in the slot. So this was pretty clearly a mistake.

Re the buzz after I removed the shim bit, I checked the relief and found that it was pretty much nonexistent. I gave the truss rod a tweak and the buzz is now gone! In the end, the action is now lower than it was and the guitar sounds even better than before - probably because it now has full contact between the saddle and bridge.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbintegrity View Post
Looks to me someone got lazy.. just make a new saddle or have it done and be done with it.... anyone who put a 3/4" shim probably has rubber bands and duct tape in their tool box...
Agreed!
__________________
2020 Breedlove Premier Concertina
2020 Furch LJ 10-CM
2020 Larrivee 00-40R
2005 Martin 00-18V
2019 Taylor 522ce
2019 Waterloo WL-S Deluxe
2020 Yamaha FS-TA TransAcoustic
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01-19-2021, 03:24 PM
Mirosh Mirosh is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: Duluth, Minnesota
Posts: 245
Default

All's well that ends well? Thanks for telling the rest of the story.
Reply With Quote
Reply

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

Thread Tools





All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:35 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, The Acoustic Guitar Forum
vB Ad Management by =RedTyger=