Longer wraparound intonation screws for Epi Les Paul Junior

Guitar Rod

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I recently got a sweet sweet Korean made TV yellow 97 LP DC Junior for $100 CDN ($80 USD). Came with soft case and a $40 Levy strap. Amazing deal. And I love the thing. Bolt on neck, but that even lends itself to the original "student guitar" heritage of the original. Love the way it plays and sounds after setting it up to my liking. But...

It will not intonate. I have gone through the entire sweep of the screws, and they are now fully screwed in and it still needs more length. A tape measure confirms it as well. After some Googling, it seems a common issue with this era Junior. The suggestion is finding longer intonation screws since there is more room to move on the bridge. But for the life of me, I can't find any online. Does anyone know of a place to get longer intonation screws? Otherwise I may have to jury rig some kind of spacer between the post and screw. Thanks for any info!
 

DrBGood

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Those are M3-0.5. You'll have to buy a 100 part box if you look on the web. There must a store that carries metric. Réno-Dépôt has drawers and drawers of funny screws.

If you can't find any, maybe get a bridge with adjustable saddles. I have one of those, they work OK.

https://www.amazon.com/Musiclily-Tune-O-Matic-Wraparound-Adjustable-Electric/dp/B0757K41W1/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1505693825&sr=8-1&keywords=MX1280CR

This last one just came out, looks nice.
https://reverb.com/item/32937797-new-ping-wrap-around-bridge-studs-tone-pros-style-for-guitar-nickel-str-tp6-n
 

Guitar Rod

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Thanks @DrBGood for the info! Finding quite a few good candidates on eBay. Can even get the hex socket head in black. You wouldn't know the length of the stock screws off hand? Guessing around a centimeter.

An adjustable bridge was an option and would be way better, but I kinda like the basic look of this little DC Jr.
 

sonar1

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If it was me I’d pull one out and go compare threads at a hardware store.
Thread pitch and same diameter is all that matters.
 

ARandall

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^ You can substitute with any screw of course - as an addition to the above info.
So not just small allen key stuff but flat or phillips head screws might make it easier to find but more of a long term proposition for adjustment longevity.
I'd also consider whether or not having something else on the inside of the tailpiece if its being pushed that far back. Something to spread the load from just being on the screw.
 

Guitar Rod

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Thanks for the suggestions. I'm a stickler for little details, so a chrome domed screw would always look wrong, even it it isn't and functions easier.

To answer my own question, I pulled the screw and it is .75cm. So I'm guessing a 1.0-1.2cm would give me plenty of play to intonate.
 

rfrizz

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Those are M3-0.5. You'll have to buy a 100 part box if you look on the web. There must a store that carries metric. Réno-Dépôt has drawers and drawers of funny screws.

If you can't find any, maybe get a bridge with adjustable saddles. I have one of those, they work OK.
I have to +1 this one. Back in the '80s, I had an "SG jr" or whatever it is called. I couldn't stand the crap intonation, so I got a drop-in w/adjustable saddles. I wound up playing it more after that. When I unloaded it, I had the original still in the case, but the buyer liked the adjustable saddles better. I hope he kept the original because that guitar was in original condition!
 
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Lester

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The local hardware store will usually have those in stock, surprisingly enough. Go to a store that has all those little cardboard bins of specialty screws and you'll find them. They'll even be in black.

But, I will second, or is it third, the idea of a bridge with intonable saddles. The Wilkinson pigtail is a major improvement. Fully adjustable with no screws sticking out the back end. You can get the internation spot on. Yeah, the appearance is off, but it's really worth the difference.
 

Guitar Rod

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Just a little update for searchers of this potential issue in the future. I ordered 10mm and 12mm screws. Go with 12mm. Just the right range.

Ended up having time this weekend to do a complete setup. Had to shim the neck because the action was too high with the tailpiece completely lowered. I think part of the problem was the high action was also pulling the notes sharp. As I moved the tailpiece back, it moved up in the back against the studs so the action had to keep being lowered to compensate. Now it's intonated about as good as can be expected. Only the cheap tuners are letting it down a bit, but livable.
 

Lester

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Just a little update for searchers of this potential issue in the future. I ordered 10mm and 12mm screws. Go with 12mm. Just the right range.

Ended up having time this weekend to do a complete setup. Had to shim the neck because the action was too high with the tailpiece completely lowered. I think part of the problem was the high action was also pulling the notes sharp. As I moved the tailpiece back, it moved up in the back against the studs so the action had to keep being lowered to compensate. Now it's intonated about as good as can be expected. Only the cheap tuners are letting it down a bit, but livable.
Few thoughts... if you buy some locking posts, that will stop the bridge tilt and help with the action issue. I've also had sitar sound problems when the tilt comes to town. There's just too much slop in the stop-tail to post connection. You can get set from $10 USd to $75. The $10 Kaish ones from Amazon work fine.

An intonatable bridge will also help. Pigtail, not Badass style. It won't have to go back so far on the posts and will be more accurate. Wilkinson has one, as does Musiclily, for under $20.

For tuners (and those cheap Epi's can definitely be improved) I'd look for some used Grovers. But, it probably means reaming the peg holes to the 10mm standard. That's a bit more cost, $35+.

Not a lot to invest - and when you're done, you'll have a fine playing "cheap" Epi.
 

Guitar Rod

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Thanks for the tips. I'll look at the locking posts. Played it for a couple hours tonight and it played great. Everything settled and luckily no sitar sounds. The tuners even kept tune, though still a little loosey goosey for my tastes. But I think the couple bucks in screws was the most I'd invest for what's a very fun guitar.
 

DrBGood

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Play it like you stole it ... you did actually. There's one for sale in local ads for 600 CDN ... DOH !

For the tilting wraparound bridge, nmaybe you can find slim U shaped washers to insert around the posts below the bridge. Can probably make some out of beer cans :) You can make them small enough so they won't stick out and show.
 

Guitar Rod

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Play it like you stole it ... you did actually. There's one for sale in local ads for 600 CDN ... DOH !

For the tilting wraparound bridge, nmaybe you can find slim U shaped washers to insert around the posts below the bridge. Can probably make some out of beer cans :) You can make them small enough so they won't stick out and show.
Cool idea. May try it. And yeah, I saw on Reverb that these were going for around the 600-650 CDN range. Guess it's from it being Korean made, and has Gibson on the truss rod cover. Not to mention sounding great and playing quite well.
 


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