Is my cone sinking or has it finally settled?

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Is my cone sinking or has it finally settled?

Postby bignick » Tue Jul 08, 2008 6:25 pm

When I first bought my Beard Gold Tone spider bridge reso, I noticed that the saddles were fairly high. About a month ago I decided to replace the maple saddles with some ebony capped saddles and swap the spider out for a leveled one that I had in another reso.

The first thing I noticed after sanding the saddles was that my reso takes a significantly lower saddle than it used to. The spider is a bit different, the depth of the bridge slot isn't quite as deep, but not enough to notice THAT big of a saddle height difference.

I think my cone has sank a bit into the chamber due to the heavy string gauge.

I hear it is normal for them to settle a bit, but I'm paranoid it is going to keep sinking.

Should I be worried?

Beard Guitars thinks I should send it in for a setup since making the changes, but I'm not paying $200 for the Beard setup and I don't know any techs around here that set up resos.
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Re: Is my cone sinking or has it finally settled?

Postby ricochet » Tue Jul 08, 2008 11:56 pm

Do you know how to set up the center tension screw properly? If it's slack, the cone/bridge system will be more compliant (mushy), and will sink more under string tension than if it's adjusted tighter. Overtightening will strip, break or crush the screw, spider or cone, respectively. Usually recommended range is between 1/4 to 1 full turn tight from where the screw just begins to load the spider against the cone.
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Re: Is my cone sinking or has it finally settled?

Postby bignick » Wed Jul 09, 2008 12:42 pm

I always back the screw off until the spider is buzzing against the cone, then tighten until there is no cone buzz. I have never noticed any screw or cone damage.
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Re: Is my cone sinking or has it finally settled?

Postby ricochet » Wed Jul 09, 2008 2:01 pm

Of course not. That leaves it on the slack side. When I was playing a spider I didn't like the cone set soft, though. The strings actually move around with the flexing cone, and it feels mushy. The action's lower, and the tone's bassier. I liked it better on the tight side, and tended to tighten it past the recommended range a little bit. Never tore it up either, thankfully. Gives the strings a tight, snappy feel, raises the action, and makes the tone brighter. Overall volume's probably loudest in the middle somewhere. What you prefer's quite individual and subjective. Each to his own.

At any rate, it's easy to adjust that screw, and it's the most important thing in setting up a spider. Really changes the sound and feel of the instrument!
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Re: Is my cone sinking or has it finally settled?

Postby bignick » Wed Jul 09, 2008 3:50 pm

So tightening the screw actually raises the action?
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Re: Is my cone sinking or has it finally settled?

Postby ricochet » Wed Jul 09, 2008 5:51 pm

Yes, because the cone then doesn't sink down under pressure as easily. It's stiffer.
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