75 Broadkaster

Shawnrule62

Electromatic
May 17, 2020
5
Beaver PA
I just recently purchased a '75 Broadkaster. It has some tuning issues. My guitar tech suggested I try installing a roller bridge. Does anyone know where I can find one? I have searched to no avail. The posts measure approximately 83 1/2 MM from center to center. (?) Or does anyone have any other suggestions on how to correct the problem?
I appreciate any advise.
Thanks
Shawn
 

bluenote23

Country Gent
Oct 17, 2009
1,647
Montreal, Canada
By tuning issues, do you mean the guitar goes out of tune when you use the Bigsby?

If so, your tech's reaction seems kind of common among techs who have never seen a Bigsby. If you have used a vibrato before and are having problems, the most likely suspect is the nut. Try giving it a lube before making more drastic changes.
 

Shawnrule62

Electromatic
May 17, 2020
5
Beaver PA
By tuning issues, do you mean the guitar goes out of tune when you use the Bigsby?

If so, your tech's reaction seems kind of common among techs who have never seen a Bigsby. If you have used a vibrato before and are having problems, the most likely suspect is the nut. Try giving it a lube before making more drastic changes.

Both my tech and myself are very familiar with Bigsbys. I don't really use it much though. It is just going out of tune during typical playing, with or without the Bigsby. The nut does look kind of worn, but this guitar has a zero fret, so the nut shouldn't come into play that much, correct? I changed the strings when i got it and used graphite on the nut, which i do for every re-string. And yes, i would rather not make any major modifications to it. I would love to hear anything else you could suggest.
 

section2

Country Gent
Dec 21, 2016
2,559
Toronto
Welcome to the forum!

Does your Bigsby have a tension roller? If so, that's the next place to check after looking at the nut. On some models, the tension roller can put too much downward pressure on the strings behind the bridge, causing the strings to bind and preventing them from returning to pitch.

You can test this theory by restringing your guitar with the strings overtop of the tension roller (i.e., bypassing the roller completely). If your tuning problem disappears, then you'll know the roller is to blame.

The cure for this problem is to replace the tension roller with a BiggsFix. The BiggsFix is a replacement roller which rides a little higher and uses higher-quality bearings. It's made by our fellow forum member @Setzerhotrod.

I'd try the nut first, then check the tension roller. I've had six or seven Bigsbys over the years, and I've never found that roller bridges made a difference to tuning stability. Once you get the nut and the tension roller sorted out, your guitar should stay happily in tune with its original bridge.
 

Shawnrule62

Electromatic
May 17, 2020
5
Beaver PA
Welcome to the forum!

Does your Bigsby have a tension roller? If so, that's the next place to check after looking at the nut. On some models, the tension roller can put too much downward pressure on the strings behind the bridge, causing the strings to bind and preventing them from returning to pitch.

You can test this theory by restringing your guitar with the strings overtop of the tension roller (i.e., bypassing the roller completely). If your tuning problem disappears, then you'll know the roller is to blame.

The cure for this problem is to replace the tension roller with a BiggsFix. The BiggsFix is a replacement roller which rides a little higher and uses higher-quality bearings. It's made by our fellow forum member @Setzerhotrod.

I'd try the nut first, then check the tension roller. I've had six or seven Bigsbys over the years, and I've never found that roller bridges made a difference to tuning stability. Once you get the nut and the tension roller sorted out, your guitar should stay happily in tune with its original bridge.
Welcome to the forum!

Does your Bigsby have a tension roller? If so, that's the next place to check after looking at the nut. On some models, the tension roller can put too much downward pressure on the strings behind the bridge, causing the strings to bind and preventing them from returning to pitch.

You can test this theory by restringing your guitar with the strings overtop of the tension roller (i.e., bypassing the roller completely). If your tuning problem disappears, then you'll know the roller is to blame.

The cure for this problem is to replace the tension roller with a BiggsFix. The BiggsFix is a replacement roller which rides a little higher and uses higher-quality bearings. It's made by our fellow forum member @Setzerhotrod.

I'd try the nut first, then check the tension roller. I've had six or seven Bigsbys over the years, and I've never found that roller bridges made a difference to tuning stability. Once you get the nut and the tension roller sorted out, your guitar should stay happily in tune with its original bridge.
 

stiv

Country Gent
Sep 12, 2014
2,305
Firenze, Italy
Looks great! There was one on sale over here as well on a marketplace, but it had the stop tailpiece instead of the Bigsby. I really like it.
To be honest, it’s the first time I see a B5 on a hollow body (although a thin body like that)… weird choice, even in ‘75..:)
I guess that could have something to do with the tuning issues, the tension bar on my Loar (which should be similar for body construction) always gave me trouble when using Bigsby (although I had a B7), but it always stayed in tune if I didn’t use the Bigsby… I switched on a roller bridge as well on mine, but with little improvement.
I don’t know, probably trading that B5 for a B6 (that has no tension bar) would help? Just guessing.
 

Shawnrule62

Electromatic
May 17, 2020
5
Beaver PA
Welcome to the forum!

Does your Bigsby have a tension roller? If so, that's the next place to check after looking at the nut. On some models, the tension roller can put too much downward pressure on the strings behind the bridge, causing the strings to bind and preventing them from returning to pitch.

You can test this theory by restringing your guitar with the strings overtop of the tension roller (i.e., bypassing the roller completely). If your tuning problem disappears, then you'll know the roller is to blame.

The cure for this problem is to replace the tension roller with a BiggsFix. The BiggsFix is a replacement roller which rides a little higher and uses higher-quality bearings. It's made by our fellow forum member @Setzerhotrod.

I'd try the nut first, then check the tension roller. I've had six or seven Bigsbys over the years, and I've never found that roller bridges made a difference to tuning stability. Once you get the nut and the tension roller sorted out, your guitar should stay happily in tune with its original bridge.

Purchased the Biggsfix you recomended, and that seems to have done the trick! Thanks for the tip!
 

Setzerhotrod

Country Gent
Oct 26, 2011
1,590
Anchorage Alaska
Looks great! There was one on sale over here as well on a marketplace, but it had the stop tailpiece instead of the Bigsby. I really like it.
To be honest, it’s the first time I see a B5 on a hollow body (although a thin body like that)… weird choice, even in ‘75..:)
I guess that could have something to do with the tuning issues, the tension bar on my Loar (which should be similar for body construction) always gave me trouble when using Bigsby (although I had a B7), but it always stayed in tune if I didn’t use the Bigsby… I switched on a roller bridge as well on mine, but with little improvement.
I don’t know, probably trading that B5 for a B6 (that has no tension bar) would help? Just guessing.
97455986-CD44-4D39-9845-2165B1877E2F.jpeg And this is for the hard tails so you can add a B3 or b30- you don’t have to deal with the nasty holes left behind when removing the hard tail.
 


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