Hi everyone. I'm pretty new to this with 6 builds now. I've been noticing in many pictures of builds that people are angling the bridge. It seems with the high g side angled back towards the neck more. What is the reasoning for this? I realise it must have something to do with setting the intonation. I had always just assumed it should be set straight.

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Hi Nick, yes you're right about it being for intonation. This is easiest to do with an electronic tuner. Using the tuner tune your open strings dead on. Now check the intonation by playing the high G at the 12th fret. If it's sharp  move the bridge toward the tail until it's tuned dead on. If it's flat move the bridge toward the neck until it's dead on . Now check he low G string and you'll find the bridge will have to be angled back toward the tail to get the low G in tune at the 12th fret. Get your high and low G perfectly in tune both open and at the 12th fret and your D string will be perfect or very close.

Thanks Don for clearing that up for me. And for to the explanation to adjust the bridge. I moved the bridge around on my first build from a kit. I always thought it sounded off, but now it sounds considerably better.

Yup . setting intonation ,  a small adjustment for fatter strings ,  and string height . etc ..

If you are using nylon stings, the saddle is straight. With steel strings if I remember correctly (it has been a while), the saddle offset is 1/8" per inch

intonation...  this is VERY VERY important and positioning is CRITICAL.  if it's off even by a little it will sound OFF !!  The goal of saddle positioning is to get your 12 fret harmonic to line up EXACTLY over the 12th fret

Thanks everyone. I'm about to start my first multistring fretted guitar and this was very helpful. Until now I'd only built a fretless slide guitar and one string canjos and Diddley bows. I guess you wouldn't notice the angle so much with a three string slide guitar because your probably compensating with the slide to find the right notes. Or at least it always sounded good to my ears when playing the three string slide cbg set up with a perpendicular bridge. But it's obvious the effect on a fretted insturment. Thanks again everyone.

P.S. I've since discovered in the forum. Questions and responses pretaining to this topic. I will be more dutiful in searching the database before asking a question in the future to avoid repeats.

Always happy to help.

This is an oversimplification:

Thin strings bend easy over the nut and bridge, thick strings have a little bit of stiff bit at the bend that doesn't vibrate.  Think of it like trying to measure the curve of a rocking-chair rocker with a tape measure versus a wooden yard-stick.


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