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  • Saddle notch?

    Hi there,

    I have Anthems or Anthem SL's installed in a couple acoustics I use at gigs.

    I noticed, on a Gibson that came with an LR Baggs factory stock-installed, a small notch on the underside of that guitar's saddle. About in the middle, and not even half-way the height of the saddle.

    What is the purpose of that?

    The other Baggs I had installed on other guitars at shops here do not have a notched saddle. But I also think, on one or two installations, the B string voices too high and the high E voices too low in comparison to the rest of the strings. Those saddles are not bone or anything, I think they're tusq...or whatever's most compatible with pickup systems. I know the piezo was installed correctly and that small section of the braid at the end is not in contact with the saddle.

    I don't notice any problems with the lower strings...just the B and E.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated. I really do like these Anthems the best, and LR Baggs best in general. Thanks!

  • #2
    Hi acme97,
    I've seen installers use notched saddles to try an fix balance issues before, but they are usually pretty ineffective. If the balance on that guitar is ok, then maybe the installer was successful at trying to repair a poorly balanced saddle or slot. It's hard to say. I've never seen Gibson notch a saddle from the factory before.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Caleb_Elling View Post
      Hi acme97,
      I've seen installers use notched saddles to try an fix balance issues before, but they are usually pretty ineffective. If the balance on that guitar is ok, then maybe the installer was successful at trying to repair a poorly balanced saddle or slot. It's hard to say. I've never seen Gibson notch a saddle from the factory before.
      Ah, a notch on the underside of the saddle is a fix, not an LR Baggs recommended practice.

      So if the response string-to-string is uneven, or one string is louder than the others...in this case the B...look to the saddle? I've heard that a thin rosewood shim glued to the bottom of the saddle can help and doesn't negatively affect tone or output. Any truth to that?

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      • #4
        The world of saddles and undersaddle pickup balance is an unpredictable one.

        I've had times where a surefire fix didn't do anything, and something crazy like notching the saddle did. In most cases the saddle just needs to have the bottom leveled out. In some cases the saddle material needs to change completely. And there's a lot of in-between where shims and things are used to compensate for errors in the saddle slot or saddle that can't be nailed down.

        I've definitely seen rosewood shims used, and it usually works in some cases like everything else. I personally like to use Electrical Tape shims on the bottom of the saddle, since they're easily removable. Once I dial in where the shims need to be, I can made tweaks to the saddle as needed.

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