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Author Topic: Saddle Experiments - Best material???  (Read 51681 times)

Offline newlywashed

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Saddle Experiments - Best material???
« Reply #45 on: January 23, 2007, 09:36:44 AM »
Looking great there David. Very anxious to know how they work out for you. Keep us informed!!!
 

Offline Dreadman

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« Reply #46 on: January 23, 2007, 11:02:54 AM »
Wow, I'm jealous. I bet you're having a ball.

How did the molding go? Were there any hang ups or difficulties that you weren't expecting?

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Offline spt

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« Reply #47 on: January 23, 2007, 01:06:31 PM »
Great work David. Please, keep us posted as you go along...
 

Offline Dreadman

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« Reply #48 on: January 24, 2007, 09:18:38 PM »
Well I found a way to get my mill to cut all 3 dimensions of a saddle. My problem was that I was trying to duplicate the curved radius at the top when that's not necessary. There are only 6 strings so as long as they're at the right heights (following the radius) then each string landing can be straight across.

I wrote a CAM program for the saddle top and made up some ebony, rosewood & birdseye maple blanks for testing. I cut one from ebony, sanded the sharp edges then I came in to make and eat a turkey sandwich with chips and a can of root beer. As soon as I'm done with that I'm going to install it in my WD32SW to check the intonation and see how it sounds. I don't expect much in the way of sound because the ebony is even softer than the plastic but I'll let y'all know.




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Offline newlywashed

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« Reply #49 on: January 24, 2007, 09:30:51 PM »
what kind of chips?
 

Offline newlywashed

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« Reply #50 on: January 24, 2007, 09:41:02 PM »
..sorry, got distracted. Nice looking work there.  This was done with a computerized mill? It looks very precise.  As you said, the ebony will be softer than the plastic. It will be interesting to hear your thoughts on the sound. Even if it's not what some might call better, it still could produce a a good tone. Are you planning on trying with the other wood types you have pictured? Is that maple and.. um.. rosewood? I'm rusty on my wood ID
 

Offline Dreadman

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« Reply #51 on: January 24, 2007, 10:42:40 PM »
Ruffles. And Barq's root beer. [:D] I love Barq's root beer and I usually drink two a day. LOL

Yes, a Sony Millstation. I own a small machine shop.

Well I've got the ebony saddle in the WD32SW and I've got to say, it doesn't sound bad at all. Just a hair quieter but it took the slight brittleness out of the sound. I know it will wear pretty quickly but I might make a few more just for this guitar because I really like the sound. Intonation is very good too.

I do plan to make several from the rosewood and maple too, just for testing and fine tuning of the CNC program. Once I'm happy with everything I plan to make several from bone, Corian, Snakewood and Lignum Vitae for sale to benefit the Guitars For Kids program (Snakewood and Lignum Vitae are VERY hard woods and I believe neither floats in water). I might fool around with some plastics/composites too but it looks like David L. has that well covered. Maybe I'll make a video with good quality audio showing the sound differences of the different materials.

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Offline dlovegrove

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« Reply #52 on: January 25, 2007, 12:10:18 PM »
Popping my head out of the basement like the mad uncle inventor -

I'm excited about what you are doing, Dreadman. A way to mass-produce bone is certainly the holy grail.

I've been casting non-stop, with all sorts of composites... fused silica, bone ash, powdered marble, various earth compounds. Still waiting on delivery of powdered porcelain and milled carbon fiber.

I've installed a couple, with decent success so far. I haven't found the perfect solution yet, but I doubt I ever will :).

If anyone wants a free saddle in trade for giving me feedback on how it compares to whatever you are currently using, just e-mail me an address and I'll send you one (or more than one, if you are willing to do the work of swapping them out!).
« Last Edit: January 25, 2007, 02:42:59 PM by dlovegrove »
David




Offline spt

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« Reply #53 on: January 26, 2007, 11:47:05 AM »
Hey David, I'd be interested for some experiments of my own, soundwise and workwise. I'd compare them to bone as it's my reference and a commonly available upgrade. I'm also curious to know how easy porcelain composites are to work with...
 

Offline Dreadman

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« Reply #54 on: January 26, 2007, 12:19:45 PM »
quote:
Originally posted by dlovegrove

I'm excited about what you are doing, Dreadman. A way to mass-produce bone is certainly the holy grail.
I don't know if it's mass production, more like small production but it will give us all low cost access to bone saddles. Low enough that a beginner can try saddle sanding/fitting without worry. If ya screw it up, throw it away and start again. [:D]

Once we've each got a pile of finished ones we can make a trade. I'll include all of both of ours in the comparison video to make a definitive record.

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Offline Dreadman

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« Reply #55 on: January 26, 2007, 12:34:25 PM »
Well that was quite a forum outage, huh? Once I detoxed I ended up working, then when that got boring I made a fixture for milling saddles. [:D] I didn't like the look or feel of the top of the first milled saddle because it felt bumpy and looked rough so I set out to get that radius on there. What I came up with is a fixture that allows me to machine the radius in one set up then flip the fixture over to machine the compensation. The fixture is basically a precision aluminum clamp that mounts easily in the machine vise.

I cut the top radius on about a dozen wood saddles yesterday and the following video ( I like having a video camera [:D]) shows this process from a few different angles. At the end I flip the fixture and put in the saddle that I cut straight compensation on just to show the position it will be in for the next process. Hopefully I'll have a matching video in a couple days to show the compensation being cut.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=irCBMoehcUQ

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Offline dlovegrove

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« Reply #56 on: January 26, 2007, 12:38:43 PM »
I received the carbon fiber last night, and cast a series with various formulations. A warning to anyone: that stuff takes extreme care. Not a problem in long fiber form, but when it is finely chopped/ground it easily goes airborn and is very irritating to skin and lungs. Anyway, I didn't get to install one and try it out yesterday, but up to this point they look excellent. They are very hard - in fact, it takes quite a bit of work to sand down the bottom edges. It's interesting that they don't ring - you know, the story has always been that saddles should sound like glass when dropped. Instead, they sound more like wood. I'll try it out tonight. Still waiting on the porcelain to arrive... hmmm, maybe a porcelain/carbon fiber mix?!
David




Offline spt

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« Reply #57 on: January 26, 2007, 02:26:59 PM »
quote:
Originally posted by Dreadman

Well that was quite a forum outage, huh? Once I detoxed I ended up working, then when that got boring I made a fixture for milling saddles. [:D] I didn't like the look or feel of the top of the first milled saddle because it felt bumpy and looked rough so I set out to get that radius on there. What I came up with is a fixture that allows me to machine the radius in one set up then flip the fixture over to machine the compensation. The fixture is basically a precision aluminum clamp that mounts easily in the machine vise.

I cut the top radius on about a dozen wood saddles yesterday and the following video ( I like having a video camera [:D]) shows this process from a few different angles. At the end I flip the fixture and put in the saddle that I cut straight compensation on just to show the position it will be in for the next process. Hopefully I'll have a matching video in a couple days to show the compensation being cut.


Fun to watch. This simple process would cut almost an hour of hand work for me...
« Last Edit: January 26, 2007, 02:31:03 PM by spt »
 

Offline Dreadman

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« Reply #58 on: January 26, 2007, 02:55:40 PM »
quote:
Originally posted by spt

Fun to watch. This simple process would cut almost an hour of hand work for me...

Simple process yeah, but it took 3 hours to design and make the fixture plus another hour writing the program and setting up the mill. [:D]

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Offline Dreadman

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« Reply #59 on: January 26, 2007, 06:25:53 PM »
quote:
Originally posted by luvmyshiner

What were the various materials you were using to make the saddles?
Birdseye maple, rosewood & ebony. I've decided against all wood for anything except screwing around though. After just one day on my WD32SW the string grooves in the ebony were terrible. I'll use these ones for proofing CNC programs but that's it (unless anyone else wants to try one).

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« Last Edit: January 26, 2007, 06:26:43 PM by Dreadman »
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