Gretsch 512X owners. Bridge questions

Discussion in 'Electromatic Gretsch Forum' started by TeleKing, Aug 5, 2020.

  1. TeleKing

    TeleKing Electromatic

    Jan 28, 2016
    I own two 5125s and a 5127. All with the dynasonics. I just LOVE the tone of these guitars and why I own three.

    All have the extra tension bar on the Bigsby.

    1 came with a roller bridge, the other two with the standard bridges.

    I, personally, think the one with the roller bridge sounds better, but it's a slight difference between the two that could equate to pickup magnet heights more than anything, although I try to match them closely.

    But, I did research here and it seems most think the roller bridge sacrifices tone. I haven't noticed it when comparing my guitars without a roller and the one with, but it seems many here feel this is true.

    I don't use the Bigsby a ton, and the roller bridge stays in tune better than the non-rollers. It's by a significant, noticeable amount.

    My roller bridge measures

    ~2 1/32" E to E
    ~2 7/8" stud to stud
    ~5/32" stud screw ends

    Just curious if others have made the switch. What they thought? Which bridge they bought that worked well with these guitars when you made the shift.

    Thanks for any help!
    Randy99CL likes this.
  2. Randy99CL

    Randy99CL Synchromatic

    Feb 17, 2020
    Amazing timing! Just last night I fitted a roller bridge to my G5129T. It's an experiment and I haven't played it enough yet to decide which I like better.

    My guitar came with the "rocker" bridge, the aluminum alloy non-adjustable piece that is designed to rock with the strings when you use the tremolo. I didn't care for the design; I like individual adjustments for intonation and the knife-edges on the bottom don't seem like they would transfer the string vibrations as well as other types.
    I had ordered the roller replacement before I learned that many players prefer the rocker design over others, so I guess it must work fairly well.
    And the string spacing with my rocker bridge is frustratingly uneven, but I can cut new slots.

    The wood base of the new bridge required a lot of sanding and fitting to the guitar that took a couple of hours over two evenings. This base has close to twice as much surface area in contact with the guitar.

    This is my first hollowbody guitar and I have a lot to learn.
    I like the sound of the new bridge and haven't noticed anything I don't like about it. It seems to hold tune well and I have no complaints.
    It doesn't really sound any different than the original bridge and I didn't have any complaints with that one either.

    The good thing is that now both are fitted (and not fixed) so I can easily switch between them and really judge their performance to decide which I prefer.

    Yours have the tension-bar Bigsby? My 2004 has the B60.
    And this is the factory pic of the roller bridge, I mounted mine with the adjusting screws facing toward the pickup.
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2020
  3. TeleKing

    TeleKing Electromatic

    Jan 28, 2016

    Thanks for your input. I'll be interested to hear what you think after playing it for a bit. Mine are a pin-through bridge, so it will be different, but still interested in your thoughts. Thanks
  4. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Country Gent

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    I had a 5129 that originally had a B70, but was replaced with a B6.
    It had the secured bridge like yours. I put a stainless steel Tru-arc on it, and it made those DeArmonds SING! It MADE that guitar.

    GT member @wildeman has a 5125 with a B70 and I believe he has a Compton bridge on his that he is very happy with.
    Outlaw likes this.
  5. Outlaw

    Outlaw Synchromatic

    Jul 13, 2011
    Tru arc or Compton for more tone, sustain, no rattles and good intonation.
  6. TeleKing

    TeleKing Electromatic

    Jan 28, 2016
    I know everyone says this, but intonation? How can you intonate it without any adjustments?

    If I went this route, what would you recommend I buy? Do you have a link? I have 3 of these, so I'm open to trying anything. I have 2 I use live and I want them completely interchangeable so if I break a string, I can switch and not change a thing. Or, if I need to use a capo, I can hand it off to have it re-tuned while I use the other.

    I just want to make two of them exactly the same, and probably all three. I love the idea of the tru arc, but I'm just really worried about intonation, especially when using a capo.

  7. FiveAces

    FiveAces Electromatic

    Mar 1, 2009
    San Jose, CA
    Have you checked into a Wilkinson Roller Bridge? A while ago, I put one on my 5120 and was very satisfied with the results! Much so, that last week I also installed one on my 5435T Pro Jet, too! It's solid mass gives great sustain, and no tone loss at all!

    Attached Files:

IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.