Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

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Ice Tre
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Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by Ice Tre » Thu Feb 27, 2020 9:01 pm

I recently purchased a used Fender 60's Roadworn Jazzmaster on Reverb.com. When I was changing the strings, the bridge fell out. When I put it back in, I noticed it was loose in the holes; it wasn't snug. It's the original Jazzmaster bridge, stock on the Roadworn Jazzmaster. But shouldn't it be snug? I'm wondering if a previous owner changed to a Mustang or Mastery bridge, which require larger diameter holes, and then put the original bridge back in when they sold it. Any thoughts?

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timtam
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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by timtam » Thu Feb 27, 2020 9:25 pm

What do you mean by 'snug' ? It has to be free to rock. So there's always some play. And yes it will fall out without the strings.
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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by andy_tchp » Thu Feb 27, 2020 9:57 pm

No.
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Ice Tre
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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by Ice Tre » Thu Feb 27, 2020 9:58 pm

I don't mean the top part where the strings are, I mean the 2 posts that go into the hole of the guitar. The holes (with the "thimbles" inserted, are way too big for the posts.

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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by lastlol » Thu Feb 27, 2020 11:53 pm

That's perfectly normal. The bridge is designed to rock as timtam said.

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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by adamrobertt » Fri Feb 28, 2020 8:32 am

The Jazzmaster bridge is not meant to be snug or "locked" into the thimbles by design. The posts on the bridge are slimmer than the thimble holes so that the bridge can rock when the tremolo is used. It is held in place by string tension only.

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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by Danley » Fri Feb 28, 2020 9:24 am

Yep - whole point of the way that bridge works. Just make sure it’s centered when you set the guitar up. When you use the trem you’ll see it move back and forth, which keeps the strings from going out of tune.
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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by Ice Tre » Fri Feb 28, 2020 2:01 pm

I wrote the person I bought it from, and he confirmed that it used to have a Mastery, so the holes were routed and expanded.

I'm going to get either a Mustang bridge, like on my other two Jazzmasters, because that works fine for me, or perhaps a more expensive Stay-Trem or Mastery. So the fact that the holes are already routed will save me the trouble.

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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by mbene085 » Fri Feb 28, 2020 2:21 pm

The Mastery bridge fits standard thimbles. Mastery brand thimbles are standard thimbles. There's no need to rout unless the guitar came with a TOM (which yours didnt).

Your Jazzmaster is normal. It's the standard configuration, and the bridge floats. Yes, that means it's loose if no strings are on the guitar.

Staytrem and Mustang bridges have legs smaller than standard thimbles to, so switching to one of those wont stop it from rocking.

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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by Ice Tre » Fri Feb 28, 2020 2:31 pm

The Mustang bridges on my other two Jazzmasters are snug, and the vibrato bar works fine.

From the Mastery website:

"The inside diameter on Mexican made thimbles are slightly smaller and require our standard MT thimbles installed for our M1 bridge to work. The outside diameter of Mexican made thimbles are sometimes slightly smaller and if needed, we suggest opening the body wood holes up by drilling in REVERSE with a 3/8” bit to accommodate our USA vintage spec size thimbles. "

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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by Danley » Fri Feb 28, 2020 2:52 pm

I think we need pics. The only way I’m aware of that an offset bridge (stock Jaguar/Jazzmaster/a Mustang) would possibly be snug or ‘stuck’ in the stock holes of any MIJ/MIM/MIA standard instrument are if the later/optional rubber bushings were used. And I think those were usually installed in MIM 60s guitars from the factory, but often removed?
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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by adamrobertt » Sat Feb 29, 2020 7:53 am

Ice Tre wrote:
Fri Feb 28, 2020 2:31 pm
The Mustang bridges on my other two Jazzmasters are snug, and the vibrato bar works fine.

From the Mastery website:

"The inside diameter on Mexican made thimbles are slightly smaller and require our standard MT thimbles installed for our M1 bridge to work. The outside diameter of Mexican made thimbles are sometimes slightly smaller and if needed, we suggest opening the body wood holes up by drilling in REVERSE with a 3/8” bit to accommodate our USA vintage spec size thimbles. "
He's describing like a .05mm difference in size. Not one that would make a huge difference with a floating bridge. Also, the Mustang bridges on your other guitars shouldn't be snug, as they're the same design. They are also meant to rock.

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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by Ice Tre » Sat Mar 28, 2020 9:12 pm

I put the Mastery bridge in. It fits snugly, as it's designed to-- Mastery says on their website more contact with the bridge and body should increase sustain. But frankly I can't notice any difference in tone or sustain. But no chance of strings slipping out of the Mastery bridge. No problem with the whammy bar with the snug Mastery bridge.

Now I just need to fix the loose-fitting whammy bar. WAY looser than my other Jazzmasters and Jaguar-- I lean down to adjust a pedal or turn a knob on the amp and it falls to the floor. I tried electrical tape and heat shrink, but they were too thick, and shredded when I inserted the bar. Need something thinner. I don't know if mine is an anomoly or if all Roadworns are like this.

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Ice Tre
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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by Ice Tre » Sun Mar 29, 2020 8:55 pm

I just dug out the Premier Guitar issue about Jazzmaster and Jaguars, and found the solution to the bar falling out. I put the inserted end into a vise and gave it a little tap with a hammer to bend it imperceptively. It worked! So simple!

Now all the fixups are done and I can just play it.

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Re: Bridge loose on Roadworn Jazzmaster

Post by seawalker » Mon Mar 30, 2020 9:40 am

mbene085 wrote:
Fri Feb 28, 2020 2:21 pm
The Mastery bridge fits standard thimbles. Mastery brand thimbles are standard thimbles.
I believe, according to the Mastery Bridge site, that a road worn would have come with different size thimbles, which necessitates replacement. The mastery thimbles have different dimensions. Although a mastery bridge might be able to be mounded in the MIM thimbles it won't fit snugly the way the bridge is intended.

**Edit - disregard, someone already covered this.

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