I'm a non-luthier looking for a DIY solution to an intonation problem with an older Godin Multiac nylon-string guitar.

As I understand it, some older models are known to have problems with bridge and/or slot placement.

The guitar's too sharp at the 12th fret on all strings, even with lower-tension strings than the recommended ones. I haven't been able to set the breakpoint on a normal 1/8" saddle far enough back, or the action low enough for my playing style, to compensate.

I know the "right" thing to do would be to take it in to have the slot filled and re-cut. But I'm poor as a churchmouse at the moment.

I have a hare-brained idea of fashioning a saddle with a "backset," as shown in the attached picture. That would allow me to set the breakpoint further back than the back edge of the slot.

Has anyone ever done this? I realize that it will make the break angle more acute, as well as increasing the mass of the saddle and maybe even the pressure against the bridge in front of the slot. But is it a totally mad idea?



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Sorry, disregard my last post. I was focused on the problem and forgot the kind of guitar.

It's a good idea. My Godin, which is over 15 years old, has an early-version Baggs Duet system -- an in-body air mic plus the transducer ribbon. But no phase switch :-(

So if I go with your idea, I'll want to figure out how to get the Baggs ribbon-wiring out of the way and the K&K piezo wiring in its place. And because the old Baggs system has no phase switch, maybe I'll want to think about how to work in one of those as well.

With my "denture" saddles, the sound produced by the Baggs ribbon is uneven, just as you predicted. The G string sounds much, much stronger than the others.

I've been hoping that with a little more shaping of the saddle pieces I could even out the sound. But the other day I read, in Dan Erlewine's guitar-repair book, that a two-piece saddle, seated on a single ribbon, will have phasing problems. I'd never thought of that. If a two-piece saddle can cause phasing, think what a six-piece saddle might do!

(I have to say, though, that the guitar sounds much more alive, unplugged, than it did before I gave it dentures.)

So now I'm thinking hard about phasing. If I do as you suggest, I can avoid the phasing caused by 6 little saddles on one ribbon. But I'll still have to consider how to avoid phasing between the Baggs air mic and the K&K piezos.

Thinking, thinking, thinking ;-)

Thanks for your suggestion. I'd never heard of K&K before. Cheers.

Greg, my idea is good only if there's access under the sound-board. I don't remember if the chambered body allows you to reach the bridge reinforcement. That's why I had the doubt I said a stupid thing.
If there's room in that zone, then you can install a piezo contact pu as the KK Sound System. Visit their site, they produce a number of models for any purpose and any instrument. In the case, you can take away the ribbon, set a good enlarged compensated saddle and combine the new pu with the air mic.
I'm a fan of KK Pure Western that I installed on many guitars as in my personal four.
I really hope you can resolve. Let me know.
Obviously the acoustic sound has improved, after the job you did, but tell me honestly how can you look at the dentured bridge without sunglasses (very dark)!!!!


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