Callaham ABR-1 replacement

Discussion in 'The Custom Shop' started by Kølabrennern, May 31, 2009.

  1. Penny Dreadful

    Penny Dreadful Banned

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    I agree about technology, but sometimes I feel like theres too much of it as far as guitars are concerned. Most guys here (not all) have a sound in their heads that they are trying to achieve. These companies come out with aftermarket parts that they claim wil do this, or do that.

    The biggest factor in your tone is your hands, Your touch and technique.
    Second is a good amplifier. How many times have we heard guys complaining that they cant achieve the lets say "Clapton Beano" tone, no matter how they tweak their guitars...then you find out they are playing through a hundred dollar Traynor amplifier! duh!!...no kidding!

    If you have the time and patience to adjust your playing style and a top quality all tube amp, youd be surprised at how much your tone will improve, and you wont be fooled into thinking that aftermarket bolts the weighs a fraction of a gram more than stock will do anything but empty your wallet.
     
  2. redlir

    redlir Senior Member

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    I hear ya, but I don't feel fooled at all. I own great tube amps, great guitars, this bridge replacement was more significant than changing the stock pickups was. I'd liken it to more along the lines of looking at a beautiful background through a dirty window, then opening the window ya know?

    Whatever floats your boat :thumb:
     
  3. Penny Dreadful

    Penny Dreadful Banned

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    lol!..I like that.

    I admit that I changed my pots and caps, and my pickups. But those parts are in the foreground of the tone chain. I cant see myself changing nuts and bolts or bridges. Those are parts that ill deal with....Im trying to keep my historic...historic.
    Cheers!
     
  4. Motorcycle

    Motorcycle Senior Member

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    Redlir,

    Sorry to revive such an old thread, but I'm looking to put a distressed Callaham ABR-1 on my 2010 R9 and was wondering how the long-term report was stacking up. I was also wondering if you notched the saddles yourself or ordered them pre-notched. I have no experience with notching saddles and would be hesitant to attempt this on something I just dropped $140.00 on.
    Any advice is appreciated.

    Thanks
     
  5. 1981 LPC

    1981 LPC Senior Member

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    I looked at their website but found no reference to a gold plated Callaham ABR-1 Bridge (so I sent them an email). Has anyone ever seen one?

    By the way, do I have a Nashville or ABR-1 bridge? All I know it's made by Allparts...
    Also, what material is this Allparts bridge made from?

    [​IMG]

    It replaced this one:
    [​IMG]
     
  6. 1981 LPC

    1981 LPC Senior Member

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    Right, a quick Google search would have told me that, yes, they also offer a gold plated ABR-1 bridge. But they seem to be currently out of stock everywhere....
     
  7. Lysol

    Lysol Senior Member

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    Playing Fender Jaguars/Jazzmasters primarily for 16 years, bridge buzz was a thing you got used to, but on a Gibson, NFW would I put up with it, its just not acceptable IMO. The tuneOmatic/stoptail design totally eliminates buzz and if you are still getting it with this set up there is a design flaw in the set up.

    I was looking into these Callaham bridges,briefly, but I decided to get a Faber instead as good old cast bridges are what Gibson have always used so why change to billet steel now!?!?!?

    I'll stick with Faber and Gibson bridges as they (cast) bridges have proven themselves over decades on all the classic recordings we love. So, why mess with something that works?!?!?!?! IDK but I wont be!

    I like the idea but if it ain't broke, don't fix it!
     
  8. Jakeislove

    Jakeislove Senior Member

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    The Callaham produced a pretty dramatic change in my guitar, for the better. Increased sustain and a warmer/richer tone.

    I'm really not concerned with keeping the guitar historically accurate. should I ever get an R8, 9, 0, or whatever one of the first thing it will get is a new Callaham Bridge.
     
  9. Lysol

    Lysol Senior Member

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    I don't care abut historical accuracy either, I just use what works, what has proven itself over a decent length of time and is reliable.
     
  10. 1981 LPC

    1981 LPC Senior Member

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    So you'll buy it if enough people over a long enough period tell you it works?
     
  11. Jakeislove

    Jakeislove Senior Member

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    There's nothing wrong with cast iron bridges, LOL! I just wanted more sustain and really felt Callaham's argument for stainless made sense.
     
  12. bp-plickner

    bp-plickner Senior Member

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    Callaham hardware specifically their trem blocks and bridges have made significant improvements on the strat type guitars that I have put together. Not only improved tone but playability as well.

    On my first Les Paul R8 that I am just getting into I was disappointed in the bridges fit and finish although the guitar sounded really good. I put a callaham on it primarily so it was easier to adjust, but the difference in tone is to my liking. This is the real deal and if you have 150 bucks that isn't doing any thing you should check it out.

    If you like a darker tone stay with the stock bridge because the callaham will brighten things up


    Peace
     
  13. Gabriel

    Gabriel Senior Member

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    Interesting thread. Glad it was bumped as I am looking to replace both the bridge and the tailpiece. I don't mind some brighter tone in favor of additional sustain and harmonics. IMO when talking about the ABR a lot of the sound is hidden in the shape of the saddles. I always floss them and try to make them as smooth as possible.

    So my main question about the Callagham. Does it comes with prenotched saddles? There is no single tech I trust to radius the saddles correctly. Most tend not to give a crap about them and to me, coming from telecasters where the radius can be adjusted perfectly it's REALLY important.

    So, do I have to slot the on my own or there are notches on them? I play DR Pure Blues Pure Nickel 11's.
     
  14. chrisuk

    chrisuk Senior Member

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    They come as standard unnotched but will provide centre notched as a special order.

    Personally if you are going to this level of kit I think you really want them spaced properly for your guitar.
     
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  15. KentishDan

    KentishDan Member

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    Great thread....im also looking into a callaham nashille/abr-1 coversion for my 1990 US standard....This thread has helped me decide...however Im still confused why they dont offer a matching tailpiece?...what do you guys reccomend as a suitable tailpiece upgrade to match the callaham? I think I saw the gotoh alluminium mentioned?

    and lastly (apologies as ive also posted this on the dimarzio spacing thread)..I am about to buy a set of double cream Dimarzio 36th anniversary paf's....am I right in thinking that as my guitar stands now (us 1990 standard) I WOULD want an F spaced bridge pup......but....as im planning to uprgrade my nashville bridge to an ABR-1 (callaham) it would be better to get a standard spaced bridge pup? (presuming the callaham ABR-1 is vintage accurate string spacing wise?)...thanks for any advice in advance...I have been reading this forum for ages and finally got round to signing up. ;)

    Dan
     
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  16. chrisuk

    chrisuk Senior Member

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    I've answered the spacing question in your other thread but as for the tailpiece I have no idea why Callaham haven't bothered to do one but a decent Ali tailpiece would be a good pairing - I went with Faber. Your existing hardware is probably chrome and the Callaham is nickel so you almost certainly will want to swap to a nickel tailpiece and studs.
     
  17. coldengray

    coldengray V.I.P. Member

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  18. chrisuk

    chrisuk Senior Member

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    Yep - that is new: a matching steel tailpiece...
     
  19. David Mccarroll

    David Mccarroll Senior Member

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    Okay - I have a '61/62 Les Paul SG that I bought with no parts other than strap buttons, and Les Paul Standard Faded - both of these now have the Callahams Steel ABR-1 bridges.

    All I can say is - when my CS Historics are finished by Historic Makeovers, they will also be fitted with Callaham Bridges - they sound, feel and look great - sustain for days and huge clarity.

    It's really not hard to work out that a bridge milled out of hard steel will offer a tonal/sustain advantage over a casting made out of Monel Metal - people worked out years ago that it is stiffness that transmits tone and sustain, not mass, and these babies are a whole lot stiffer than a casting.

    Cannot recommend highly enough.
     
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  20. Lysol

    Lysol Senior Member

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    :rolleyes:

    Nope, I use what I have been using for almost 2 decades-Regular Gibson Tune-O-Matics because they work for me and I like them.
     

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