About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

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About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby zaiata » Mon Nov 07, 2005 2:50 am

As many others in this forum, I found I love
spider bridge guitars.

Will like to start this tread to talk about
Spiders in general: Setups, mods, tips, recommendations,
preferred strings gauge and brand, approach to play it, style,
anecdotes and any other positive or negative comment
related to Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars.
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby mickeypainless » Mon Nov 07, 2005 3:04 am

I have the Rogue Spider and absolutely love it! As I said in another post, it is currently my most played axe! I have guitars costing up to 10 times the amount of this jewel and I have the most fun on it! I don't remember what brand of strings I put on her but they are 13's and they're just about right for both slide and fretting. At the moment I'm in open D and have been crackin out all kinds of great songs. On a scale of 1 to 10 I give this thing an 8 plus just cuz I don't believe there are any 10's around! LOL
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby ricochet » Mon Nov 07, 2005 3:13 am

I've mentioned this before, but the tension of the screw that holds the bridge to the cone is very important in both the tone and playing feel of the guitar. It applies a preload that sets the effective spring rate of the cone/bridge system that supports the strings. Loosen it, and the system is "softer," with more compliance. It will compress farther with the same force than if the screw is tighter, which increases the spring rate.

A slack screw will make the action feel very "mushy," and it will be lower as there's less resistance to the downforce of the strings. You can feel sideways "give" to the strings, as well. The volume goes down, and the brightness goes out of the tone.

Tighten the screw, and the action will rise. The strings feel much snappier as the bridge is more positively located and doesn't easily shift with the picking force. The volume increases and the tone gets brighter.

Overtighten it, and you'll start to lose bass eventually. More importantly, the pressure on the spider legs can crush them into the raised rim of the cone, or the screw can strip its threads. The rising action may eventually cause the saddles to rise enough to hit the handrest if something doesn't break first.

Stew-Mac's setup instructions recommend a range between 1/4 turn "tight" after the screw just begins to encounter slight tightening resistance to 1 full turn "tight." Experiment within this range, beginning at 1/2 turn "tight," moving in 1/8 turn increments looser or tighter.

I actually had my old Johnson spider set up about 1 1/4 turn tight, and was limited by the rising saddle approaching the handrest. I like the sound and feel best when it's cranked down tight. But you're on your own if you tighten past the recommended 1 turn tight.

I do like spider resos! I'll eventually get another.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby crowduck » Mon Nov 07, 2005 3:16 am

[updated:LAST EDITED ON Nov-06-05 AT 10:20 PM (EST)]For setup & maintenance there are at least 2 videos I know of available.
Paul Beard's, and the last part of one of Dan Elrewine's on Acoustic's. I've seen the Erlewine, and can say that it's pretty good, haven't seen Beard's. Oh yeah, as Ric mentioned, StewMac has setup instructions too.

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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby zaiata » Mon Nov 07, 2005 3:36 am

[updated:LAST EDITED ON Nov-06-05 AT 10:38 PM (EST)]Mickey i am having the same experience.
I also got a Rogue Spider, I will provably order a second one just
because i am nervous about loosing this one or MS discontinue this
model in the future, This never happened to me before with any guitar.
Even my wife mention that this guitar sounds better than the others i own,
I do not know if she knows that it is also the less expensive one too :) .

I have not changed any thing on this guitar so far, another first, i always
change at least the strings as soon as i get any new guitar.

At the moment i keep changing from open D to Cross-note (D Minor),
Oh! i love Cross-note tuning on this guitar, i get inspired.

Thank you Rico and Crowduck, very inside-full, important info on adjusting the tension of the that holds the bridge to the cone. I will check for thosevideos Crow.
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby ricochet » Mon Nov 07, 2005 3:45 am

>I do not know if she knows that it is also the less
>expensive one too :) .

She doesn't have to know that. :)



"A cheerful heart is good medicine."
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby grady » Mon Nov 07, 2005 5:01 am

My Spider Bridge Regal Dobros with Barcus-Berry Magnetic pickups that get played every day.

I have one in Open D and the other in Open G.

I've found that a Bone nut and properly cut Maple Saddle are essential tools in getting the tone I want.

As far as adjusting the Tension Screw,,,I start with it barely tightened and take it from there.
My ears know when I get it where I want it.

Adjusting the Intonation on these babys can be had by properly compensating the Saddle and turning the Spider Bridge.

I also have a Washburn Es20ce that I love tuned to Open G.
It's my "Reso Rocket" ,,,LOL !!
That baby screams,,,"Play me Fast & Hard" !!!

Yep,,,the Wood-Body Spiders are my favorite Resonator guitars.
they give me everything I want and more than I need.

Somebody please give me $1200.00 for my National Delphi so I can buy more of them !! LOL !!
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby zaiata » Mon Nov 07, 2005 5:09 am

"My Spider Bridge Regal Dobros with Barcus-Berry Magnetic pickups that get played every day."

I keep checking for one of those grady, as soon as i get a chance i will grave it.
But they do not come around very often.
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby crowduck » Mon Nov 07, 2005 9:39 am

Zaiata,

There's an OMI Dobro with a Barcus Berry on eBAy right now, not mine, last I saw it was at about $158.

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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby zaiata » Mon Nov 07, 2005 3:16 pm

>Zaiata,
>
>There's an OMI Dobro with a Barcus Berry on eBAy right now,
>not mine, last I saw it was at about $158.
>
>CrowDuck


I am going searching right this moment.
Thank you.
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby ricochet » Mon Nov 07, 2005 3:56 pm

I like that Delphi of yours, Grady, but I don't like it that much. :7

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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby louisianagrey » Mon Nov 07, 2005 5:58 pm

To add to what Ric said, the tension screw "number of turns" information is normally given on the basis that the strings are on and tuned to pitch. When the cone and spider are out, for example when I'm first assembling a new squareneck or after a cone change, I tighten so all the slack is take up, then do one and a quarter turns. I find that this usually brings it pretty much into the right area for when the strings are brought to pitch, which will make the spider settle a bit.

Don't overtighten, though

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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby richard » Wed Nov 09, 2005 10:35 pm

The info on the setup and amount of turns has been great - it has been something that i have pretty much done by ear before.

One question - i have the Schatten pickup installed on my reso, (Grady, you might be able to answer this) - since the pickup is attached to the underside of the cone and held in place by a substitute nut, will i affect the positioning and contact of the pickup if i start to adjust the tension on the spider ?

At the moment it isn't sounding too bad, but occasionally i am getting some contact with the bass strings against the handrest. hasn't happened for a while, though, so it may have settled in.

thanks guys.
Long live spider resos !

Richard
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby grady » Thu Nov 10, 2005 4:59 am

No more than what you're going to turn the screw,,I don't think it would bother anything.
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RE: About Spider Bridge Resonator Guitars

Postby richard » Thu Nov 10, 2005 5:56 am

Thanks, mate -
i guess if it's just minute adjustments then it shouldn't hurt.

Richard
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