Bigsby arm question.

swivel

Country Gent
May 13, 2018
2,170
PNW
I was just playing my buddy's Epi Johnny A (superb guitar!) and we were talking about the Bigsby. A 'stop' on the rotating arm bracket keeps it from swinging up more over the strings. It's pretty cumbersome the way it is.
Do any Bigsby models allow the arm to swing 360?
Are there aftermarket parts that will?
 

Henry

I Bleed Orange
Apr 9, 2014
18,506
Petaluma
You could grind off the little knob on the arm that stops it from moving. Chet arm rotates 360, but if this is not the US bigsby you will have to open up the bracket.

And I love the Johnny A guitar. The gretsch custom shop I am dreaming about will be a Jet with influences from the Johnny A.
 

emitex

Synchromatic
Aug 21, 2014
891
NYC
For all my Bigsby's I have to have the arm swing freely 360º, so I buy a replacement bracket (preserving the original), hacksaw off the nib then file the base smooth. Works great. It's aluminum, so it's soft enough to do. Other suggestions here using the dremel, etc. should work even better!

bigsby arm bracket 2.jpg

full


(FYI: Callaham sells the bracket you're looking for, but it's only compatible with U.S. made models, and was pretty expensive for my budget, so I decided to do it myself.)
 
Last edited:

swivel

Country Gent
May 13, 2018
2,170
PNW
His Johnny A is completely like new and he intends it to stay that way. . The Bigsby is Gold also. He ain't sawing off any nubs!
I wonder if a thick nylon washer between the arm and the bracket would allow the arm to clear the nub?
It amazes me they dont make a nubless bracket with all this aftermarket stuff out there.
He doesn't want to pay $80 for a Chet arm in gold. Does a Chet arm even fit in the case?
 

Henry

I Bleed Orange
Apr 9, 2014
18,506
Petaluma
His Johnny A is completely like new and he intends it to stay that way. . The Bigsby is Gold also. He ain't sawing off any nubs!
I wonder if a thick nylon washer between the arm and the bracket would allow the arm to clear the nub?
It amazes me they dont make a nubless bracket with all this aftermarket stuff out there.
He doesn't want to pay $80 for a Chet arm in gold. Does a Chet arm even fit in the case?
All I can say is he is don't-wanting his way out of a solution. If he doesn't want to modify existing parts or buy new parts, he could pray for a miracle. The nub is on the arm not the bracket iirc.
 

swivel

Country Gent
May 13, 2018
2,170
PNW
All I can say is he is don't-wanting his way out of a solution. If he doesn't want to modify existing parts or buy new parts, he could pray for a miracle. The nub is on the arm not the bracket iirc.
Yeah. It's on the bracket. If it were mine I would probably go for the Chet arm or just buy an aluminum bracket and cut/polish it. Save the original. There's a rockabilly model Epi that comes with a Chet style arm. I kinda liked the one I played.

It just amazes us both how these companies seldom improve their products.
Similarly, Strat Trem arms famously wobble in the trem for 60 years. They try various band aids like set screws and springs etc. Then Callaham etc make a bridge right off the bat that the arm doesn't wobble in... go figure...:rolleyes::D
 
Last edited:

Henry

I Bleed Orange
Apr 9, 2014
18,506
Petaluma
Yeah. It's on the bracket. If it were mine I would probably go for the Chet arm or just buy an aluminum bracket and cut/polish it. Save the original. There's a rockabilly model Epi that comes with a Chet style arm. I kinda liked the one I played.

It just amazes us both how these companies seldom improve their products.
Similarly, Strat Trem arms famously wobble in the trem for 60 years. They try various band aids like set screws and springs etc. Then Callaham etc make a bridge right off the bat that the arm doesn't wobble in... go figure...:rolleyes::D
Ah thanks. I change all my arms to Chet arms so I have forgotten what the other arms are like. I also don't know if the Epiphone Johnny A uses USA or Asian bigsbies. Most of these parts are for USA.
 

afire

Friend of Fred
Feb 12, 2009
5,367
Where the action is!
The nub is on the bracket with a standard Bigsby, but on the handle with the Duane Eddy assembly. I don't know, but it may be possible to use the DE bracket with a standard arm to get full 360 degree rotation. But again, I have no idea whether any of the USA parts interchange with the licensed models.
 

BorderRadio

Country Gent
Mar 6, 2014
3,476
Phoenix, AZ
Looks like the Johnny A uses the import Bigs, so there is no way to get 360 degree arm turn without modifying something, even if using the drop-in Chet *bracket*. The link above lists a gold Chet bracket at $44. That part will need to be reamed to fit an import shaft (to 10mm IIRC). Put the Chet arm clamp in the parts drawer, still worth the price vs hassle if it were me.
893C3410-1BB6-4511-B863-DCEE0FA767FC.jpeg
 

swivel

Country Gent
May 13, 2018
2,170
PNW
Looks like the Johnny A uses the import Bigs, so there is no way to get 360 degree arm turn without modifying something, even if using the drop-in Chet *bracket*. The link above lists a gold Chet bracket at $44. That part will need to be reamed to fit an import shaft (to 10mm IIRC). Put the Chet arm clamp in the parts drawer, still worth the price vs hassle if it were me.
View attachment 172989
Yeah, by the time you buy the arm and the bracket and shipping it's about $80. Good info on the import vs US though, I'll tell him. Thx!
 

powerwagonjohn

Electromatic
Nov 12, 2015
16
I have no information on the Bigsby arm but I do have a Gibson Johnny A guitar and they are great guitars. I install a Biggsfix on my guitar.
Thanks John
 

Electrosynthesis

Gretschie
May 11, 2011
378
São Paulo
I removed mine. I figured it made no sense (to me, YMMV) to buy a fully rotating one and keep the original. If I ever need the original again for any reason I'll buy a new one then, instead of keeping one I might never need stashed away.

But then again I gig my guitar and I don't intend to sell it. It's a player and a keeper.

IMG_6338.jpg
 

CheapGretschLover

Electromatic
Dec 2, 2019
68
Portland Oregon
His Johnny A is completely like new and he intends it to stay that way. . The Bigsby is Gold also. He ain't sawing off any nubs!
I wonder if a thick nylon washer between the arm and the bracket would allow the arm to clear the nub?
It amazes me they dont make a nubless bracket with all this aftermarket stuff out there.
He doesn't want to pay $80 for a Chet arm in gold. Does a Chet arm even fit in the case?
They do make a nubless bracket. I saw one on Reverb.
 


Latest posts

Top