I've been using regular cam clamps and Ibex clamps for a long time and this morning I've decided I hate them. I've been persevering, but it's not me: it's the clamps. What's everyone else using?
This is my bridge clamp.
yeah, i've never been comfortable with the idea of a one-piece top clamping thing without equal pressure from the bottom over the entire area either; i worry the ends of the bridge get inadequate clamping or even slightly distort the top from being pushed down from above only.
best i've been able to come up with is two of the big ibex clamps with spacer blocks stuck to the bottom jaw so as to clear the braces (making them a PITA to get into the soundhole) for the main body of the bridge and then two of the smaller skinny stamped steel clamps with the screw-adjustable jaw pads to slip in on the outsides to catch the ends of the bridge from top and bottom.
at least that way the bridge gets clamped along its whole length from above and underneath without getting pushed out of shape
Stumbled across a video showing a modded F clamp for longer reach. I’ve been meaning to make some but haven’t gotten to it yet. Looks promising, if maybe a little heavy for using multiple clamps.
For a little more assist for clamping the bridge wings you can install a couple turn buckle jacks inside the guitar in the bridge wing areas.
This is a bridge clamp that I made. There is a long bolt through the back to keep it from splitting and a large wing nut to tighten it up. Opposite the wing nut is a peg for indexing the caul that is inside the guitar.
Next is the caul that I used recently on a ladder braced parlor guitar. It has holes that line up with the 1st and 6th bridge pin holes. Between those holes is a third shallow hole that is a snug , but not tight fit for the peg on the bottom jaw of the clamp.
When I put the caul inside the guitar, I hold it in place with 2 large headed roofing nails through the 1st and 6th bridge pin holes, and they are held there by clothes pins.
The clamp is then placed inside the guitar, and by feel, and looking at the wing nut location, the peg is slipped into the middle hole in the caul. Once it is in, the clamp is propped in place with a block that holds it there.
Then the roofing nails can be released (to be retrieved later). The bridge is then held in place by two brass pins that are the same size as the bridge pins.
The caul for the top of the bridge has 2 holes for the brass pins and a central shallow hole for the end of the wing nut.
I use 2 of the Stew Mac soundhole clamps for the wings, with small individual cauls carved to fit the wings.
It sounds complicated, but with everything In place, I use a hot air gun to warm the top and the bridge, and can get it all clamped up before the HHG begins to gel.
Hope I am not "teaching my grandmother how to suck eggs".
Well, none of my pictures came through?
no way, i wanna see it! :)
Me too :-)
I should have said "wing screw".