1960 Duo Jet - NGD

Discussion in 'Vintage Gretsch Discussion' started by 6124Bassman, Mar 28, 2021.

  1. 6124Bassman

    6124Bassman Synchromatic

    573
    May 20, 2018
    Phoenix, Arizona

    I’ve already begun looking for an original replacement. I did find a nicely priced 1958 Melita bridge & base that has my attention, for not much more than a new Compton.
    I’ve played a melita a few times and it definitely would take some getting used to.
    We’ll see, so many options! I’ll probably stick with the space control for the time being. The nice thing about bridges is that I can always just put the original back on if needed.
     
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  2. Chmason85

    Chmason85 Synchromatic

    679
    May 1, 2018
    Philadelphia
    I love melita bridges, I have an original 50s and a newer gretsch version and lots of spare parts. I tried those Embie versions a couple times when they were still around but I prefer the stock gretsch, though I have custom embie saddles, flat screws, and their shorter base on mine.
     
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  3. Bob Perrone

    Bob Perrone Gretschie

    107
    Mar 7, 2017
    allentown, pa
    That is a beauty!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Best of luck with it!
     
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  4. stiv

    stiv Country Gent

    Sep 12, 2014
    Florence, Italy
    I'm no vintage Gretsch guitars expert, but for what I've seen and tried melita bridges were on Jets with Dynasonics while roller bridges were on Jets with Filtertons.
    If you want to be period correct, I'd stay with roller bridge with a new (old) wooden base. I did the same with my '67 Rally, only I had to buy the whole bridge... it costed me a lot more than a compton, but to me it looked better. And I never had a problem soundwise.
    However, if you're after a better tone as well, I guess you'll have a lot more options (Melita, Compton, Tru Arc).
     
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  5. afire

    afire Country Gent

    Totally normal. Looks like you've got a nice one.

    I've only ever had one guitar with a space control bridge. It was a '56 Duo Jet and shortly after I got it, I added a Bigsby. To my 17 year old mind, it seemed like a "roller" bridge (which a space control really isn't) would be the correct pairing. Man, that guitar was plinky. I'm sure it wasn't exactly oozing with sustain to begin with, but I suspect the space control wasn't helping. I'd try a Compton or Tru-Arc and see if it's an improvement.
     
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  6. 6124Bassman

    6124Bassman Synchromatic

    573
    May 20, 2018
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Great thank you I appreciate the advice.
    I think I’ll try a Compton and see how I like it. A lot of people have said to try and keep it as original as possible which of course I 100% agree with, but a bridge is always easy to swap back to original. If a Compton will enhance the tone and sustain then I’m all for it.
     
  7. Highroller

    Highroller Country Gent

    Jun 11, 2015
    Portland, OR
    Very cool score - Congratulations!
     
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  8. wildeman

    wildeman I Bleed Orange

    May 10, 2015
    norcal
    Yep, i myself feel the benefits of a Compton outweigh its non vintageness.;) 20210206_164939.jpg
     
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  9. Henry

    Henry I Bleed Orange

    Apr 9, 2014
    Petaluma
    The wonderful thing about the bridge is that it can be easily swapped, so you can preserve the original, and also have a completely functioning bridge of your preference for playing. I'd personally go for a Tru arc or compton.
     
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  10. wildeman

    wildeman I Bleed Orange

    May 10, 2015
    norcal
    That's how i feel too, this Harmony didn't have the stock bridge when i got it or there may have been a twinge of guilt but in all honesty, any guitar I've put a Compton on has improved immensely. I will be ordering one for my '66 Meteor too, still undecided which though as its a bright (maple) guitar even with its stock wood bridge.
     
    Henry likes this.
  11. 6124Bassman

    6124Bassman Synchromatic

    573
    May 20, 2018
    Phoenix, Arizona
    I just need to figure out what radius my fretboard is. It’s really flat. I printed off the PDF to measure it so we’ll see. My guess is 12” or even flatter. I know a lot of vintage examples vary
     
  12. Archtops

    Archtops Gretschie

    226
    Mar 4, 2021
    SoCal
    As an acoustic guitar and ukulele builder, I have some ebony on hand. Let me know if you need a piece for the repair.
    I will send it free of charge.
     
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  13. 6124Bassman

    6124Bassman Synchromatic

    573
    May 20, 2018
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Thank you for the offer, depending on how this replacement I already ordered turns out I may be in touch with you! I’m not sure I have the skills or tools necessary to do such a repair however.
     
    Archtops likes this.
  14. Lucky Jim

    Lucky Jim Electromatic

    29
    Oct 16, 2020
    Kent, England
    That’s a really lovely guitar. Congratulations.

    Just a little comment on the bridge, something you may have already noticed: The strings appear to be too widely spaced which results in them misaligning with the bridge pickup pole pieces and puts the high E very close to the edge of the fretboard at the dusty end. My Jet has 2 inch string spacing E to E at the bridge. Yours looks like it might be a little wider?

    FWIW I swapped my original bridge for an aluminium Serpentune which seems to suit the guitar well but there are other options of course.
     
  15. Berington

    Berington Electromatic

    76
    Jan 6, 2014
    Los Angeles
    Sounds like the right decision! Congrats on your beautiful new old baby!!! Cheers!
     
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  16. 6124Bassman

    6124Bassman Synchromatic

    573
    May 20, 2018
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Thanks, yes I did notice the spacing sort of misaligned the pickup poles from the strings. It measured 2-1/8th” string spacing. Once I get the new bridge base on there I can really dial it in I’ll try setting it closer to 2” string spacing E to E and see if they align better.
     
  17. 65club

    65club Electromatic

    42
    Jul 31, 2017
    USA
    Hey 6124Bassman, I was tweaking the truss rod on my old Jet last night and it reminded me of this thread. Did the new bridge base work out for you?
     
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  18. mrfixitmi

    mrfixitmi Country Gent

    Mar 20, 2010
    Michigan
    That 6128 is beautiful, it is rare to find these without excessive binding rot. The alignment issue with the pole pieces as mentioned can be improved. When note separation is optimized, that guitar will show that it is a real treasure.

    Congratulations on a spectacular find.
     
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  19. 6124Bassman

    6124Bassman Synchromatic

    573
    May 20, 2018
    Phoenix, Arizona
    Funny you replied today, I just got my new Compton Stainless Tone Chambered bridge in today. I also got the ebony nickel base from Darren Riley’s a few days ago.

    I have to say, the Compton bridge increased the resonance and sustain by 100x and added so much brightness and high end clarity it is absolutely a game changer. As much as I loved this guitar before, it is now even better. I thought it was a little dull sounding with the space control and now the guitar has just opened up and showing it’s full self with this Compton. I can’t recommend it enough.

    Thank you. About the pole piece alignment, that is all solved with the new Compton bridge I installed. Perfect spacing now.

    23044285-CDFD-4A91-AC56-53F836A0FE31.jpeg
     
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  20. 65club

    65club Electromatic

    42
    Jul 31, 2017
    USA
    Also funny because I put the space control back on mine when I was fiddling with it. I completely agree with everything you said about the bar vs space bridges, but the space wasn’t as bad as I had remembered.

    I’ve also fiddled with both entire pickup height and pole piece height a lot since I last had the space on it so I’m sure that has a lot to do with the improvement. I have every flavor of vintage Gretsch pickup and I think they ALL have a sweet spot where they just come alive when you find THAT spot. I know other manufacturers pickups also have sweet spots but with Gretsch it’s like ok..ok..ok..ok..ok..OMG THAT’S GLORIOUS!!!!
     
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