TK Smith vibrato & Mastery bridge

Discussion in 'Other Cool Guitars' started by dankas11, Oct 9, 2018.

  1. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    Dankas, Im glad youre digging TK Smiths Vibrato (dont call it a bigsby he doesnt like that, cuz its not haha) Its one of the smoothest I have owned. Most of your questions have been answered but something that I dont think was addressed was the saddles on a mastery bridge. Ok w the hipster..err mastery vibrato but w the bigsby..err oops, Tk Smith vibrato, the strings wear grooves into the soft material of the bridge over time especially w bigger gauge round wound strings and then they stick. THEeee reason I took the mastery ricky bridge off my dipinto. What do you think about the embiematic bridges. They are machined from alum billet unlike the crap diecast syncromatics used on the gretsch guitars, and... AND the saddle choices are through the roof and you can swap them out at will..which is FUN!! I have stove bolt saddles on mine at the moment but the military brass was a bit warmer. Also yes you will have to raise the bridge a tad bit higher if the body of the guitar is not long enough to sit the vibrato at the end. In the case of my telecaster, I did use the tk Smith shim which is perfectly sized/angled compared to the stock one that bigsby sells btw. Also I think you would love the Smith Summertone bridge pickup, yes its more of a P90 meets tele clonk than trad telecaster sound but man its so much cooler w overdrive and fuzz in my opinion..plus its got a perfect riser bezel for your set up. :)

    My tele has one of the very first versions of the CAR/Bigsby pickup so TK was making riser plates for them back then.
    [​IMG]
     
    BorderRadio, RomanS and Stefan like this.
  2. dankas11

    dankas11 Synchromatic

    Age:
    47
    945
    Jul 6, 2014
    Croatia
    hey Tavo,
    yes I know your tele, that is where I started looking TKS vibrato. well its too late to change the bridge, I already have ordered it, but after some time if this happens I know what to order. didnt know for embie bridges before, unfortunately. So you also think it wouldnt be wise to put some kind of tension bar between vibrato and bridge?
     
  3. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    If there is room to get the break angle not so steep, then a break bar can be useful and the instrument can remain in tune. IMO,They look fugly and they certainly dont feel as good as a B-3/B-6 laying across the bridge straight to the vibrato but..... we do what works right? :) I had that going on w my ES-335 using the Towner, he's a good guy down here in san diego. IMG_2637.JPG IMG_2741.JPG
     
  4. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Country Gent

    Mar 6, 2014
    Phoenix, AZ
    Good to know Tavo. So the big gauge strings cut through the hard chrome plating, exposing brass?
     
  5. dankas11

    dankas11 Synchromatic

    Age:
    47
    945
    Jul 6, 2014
    Croatia
    tnx for advice Tavo. Tell me, if I go for B16,cut it, use housing for this guitar and I can sell or use vibrato part for some other guitar, what about their stock B16 bridges? Are they good?
     
  6. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    Germany
    My B16 came without bridge. And yes, the Bigsby Rocker bridges are nice.
     
    dankas11 likes this.
  7. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    It never really wore through it just bore down into it over time and the strings wouldnt slide across. There is a LOT of down tension on my dipinto especially being 25.5 scale w 12's.. now I have flats and the fixed post bridge is there w a tru-arc serpentune
     
    BorderRadio likes this.
  8. dankas11

    dankas11 Synchromatic

    Age:
    47
    945
    Jul 6, 2014
    Croatia
    I decided to buy B16 together with its bridge. I will chopp it. that is the best solution, maybe little more expensive but after a couple of years I will not remember that detail :) I can allways use vibrato part of b16 for another project \o/
     
    BorderRadio and RomanS like this.
  9. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    Germany
    What about the Smith vibrato now?
     
  10. dankas11

    dankas11 Synchromatic

    Age:
    47
    945
    Jul 6, 2014
    Croatia
    Smith is going on guitar, I will chop b16 and use only bridge and pickup part. tremolo I can use later for some other project.
     
  11. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    Germany
    Expensive solution. I thought you're goin to swap the TK for the B16 completely.
     
  12. dankas11

    dankas11 Synchromatic

    Age:
    47
    945
    Jul 6, 2014
    Croatia
    I'm not looking it that way. First I don't have to buy Extra bridge, second,I can use vibrato part later, put it on one of my guitars that don't have vibrato or sell it to someone for someones project. My logic is , if I am Building a guitar I want the best solution. Anyway I can always sell one pedal. (except Nocturne pedals ofcourse) :)
     
  13. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    The smith vibrato is butter, man just pure joy.

    I have put B16s on a few guitars and not only are they stiff feeling, the pickup mounted in that bigsby riser causes some big time microphonics. you have to stuff them w foam if you dont want the squealies :) I had compression rubber under this one that was sporting a peter florance voodoo broadcaster in the bridge and the CC II by TK Smith w accompanying armrest and pkguard.
    [​IMG]

    cutting them off and just sticking w the vibrato is great btw and its what I did on mustard


    before she got
    the Smith Vibrato.
    TK SMith Telecasters.jpg
     
    BorderRadio likes this.
  14. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    Germany
    I really dig TKS's stuff but man, I love the B16 in all it's glory :)
    I guess the foam rubber under the high bridge pkup is a must as well as a good coat of wax on the pkup! But why stiff? I can't see much handling differences to a regular B6 (of course with a Reverend spring)?
     
    dankas11 likes this.
  15. RomanS

    RomanS Gretschie

    158
    May 26, 2010
    Vienna, Austria
    Hmm, never needed the foam on my B16 Tele with a DiMarzio PreB1 pickup. But then, my loudest am is my Carr Rambler which only has 28 W - maybe with bigger amps the squealing might become a problem?
     
    dankas11 likes this.