Should I replace the adjustable bridge on my 1966 Gibson J-50?

Hi everybody,
I'm not a luthier but I've got a question for the people that have the answers (that would be y'all-yes I'm from Savannah, Georgia).
I just got a 1966 Gibson J-50 with the "famous" adjustable bridge.
It sounds good now but I've got a gut feeling that a standard rosewood bridge with a bone saddle would really bring it to life.
Does anybody have any direct experience to compare the before and after sound in this kind of guitar?
Also, who is really good at this kind of work?
Thanks so much for your time and expert opinions.

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It's all on my page: Every detail. The "saddle studs" are pressed in, but to get them out, you have to remove the nuts inside (see the page for details—this is a messy bad attempt in this particular image—I'm just trying to show the nut you need to remove):

Pry it up, out it comes:



Thanks, Paul! Came right out levering it just as pictured.

You'll be glad it's gone. All that weight built into the bridge area, if left there (as seen in that image I posted first, above), really damages the sound of the guitar. It's like a big mute.

Yes, it's an amazing amount of stuff. The owner wants to keep the original bridge so not I need to make a rosewood insert then use the slotting jig that Hesh bestowed. Manana.

Too bad. The original bridge is not worth the effort. But if (and I am assuming it's made of wood!) you can inlay a piece to precisely fill the original slot, you can treat it as if it was a solid one-piece bridge. New saddle slot, new bone saddle, etc. Good luck!

Just weighed the hardware: 38 grams.

Also studied up on the physics of heavier vs lighter bridges.  Seems heavier may increase sustain but increase decay rate (I'm thinking ADSR envelopes). Also, the higher frequencies decay faster than the mid-range tones and overtones or are completely dampened.

No telling what kind of overtones the metal/ceramic contraption generates.

I've reglued the Texan's bridge, filled the holes and inlaid the slot. I'll show some shots of cutting the saddle slot with Hesh's jig as soon as I get back from the beach at Tybee.  My friend is making me install a big screen TV in return for staying at his condo for 4 days. Life is hard.

Thanks everybody I really appreciate the input.
I'm going to have the entire assembly removed and a new rosewood bridge installed.
Can't wait to hear the difference.
On my Ibanez there were no inserts under the bridge. The thread for the screws was in the metal part of the adjustable saddle. What you saw in my picture was the best solution for me. Snd easyest

Screw value...make it play to its full potential if that's what you want to help it achieve !!!In fact I consider a guitar w/one of these left in worthless !Compensate what? BS.second only to the gibby ebonite bridge..



Chuck, none of these guitars were of particular value anyway. Removing all that weight that is impeding the top will certainly improve the sound of the guitar. It will be a marked improvement that you will hear right away.


I assume Chuck has made up his mind by now - the original post is three years old! :)

I didn't see that! 

   "Holy Zombie Thread Batman!!!"


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