Mark the space between the feet for a gently curved cutout, as seen above. Leave a little extra all the way around for safety. I attach the sandpaper, centered, onto the heavy paper with spray adhesive, Elmer's, or even a gluestick. Other times I can spend 15 or 20 minutes or more on this step. How to Make a Banjo Bridge for Tenor or Cello Banjos. tunings whose string diameter differences are in the range of 4:1 from The bridge should be a total of 4" to 4 1/4" long. Slide the bridge down toward the tailpiece until it is approximately two-thirds of the way down the head of the banjo. 10. You can leave the top as thick as 1/4". enters the head, made the footprint much smaller in order to focus soundbetter, and sloped and softened the sides so the bridge was player friendly. Here's how I fit a bridge, myself: The bridge will make a significant difference in the sound of your banjo. (Thanks to Mike Conner for this hint) Here's how some quick compensation cuts looked (this is a winged bridge): ...and now the bridge is ready for its first trial! I usually sand from the bass side for a while, then turn the mandolin around and sand from the treble side. You will also need the right height of bridge. could they bring out the full sound of the Irish tenor tuning. Take your playing to the next level with the help of a local or online banjo teacher. The 11-hole bridge design should not have any side "wing" cuts. It really is easier if you make the cutouts first, while you are working with a large, rectangular piece of wood which is easier to hold or clamp in a vise. Now, how do you get there? It should be 4" to 4 1/4" long. This bridge will work best at about 5/16" thickness at the feet, but as little as 1/4" will also work fine. Some bridges are really recalcitrant and never really look like they come to a great fit, but sometimes these are among the best-sounding bridges. It turns out that this design is alsouseful in cello banjos and clawhammer banjos. P.O. This can be done with sandpaper on the top (Frank Ford's method at is useful), or for those with less experience, just get the mandolin, the bridge, and a small file close to a bright light, and start to work. The hole centers are marked on the template. The wood can be slab-cut or quarter-sawn. Weekly newsletter includes free lessons, favorite member content, banjo news and more. You will also need the right height of bridge. (Click here for more details and suggestions about setting the bridge height.) This file method is slow but safe, and has less risk of scratching the mandolin finish. To protect the mandolin finish, I usually cut a piece of medium sandpaper about 1" x 7", and then cut a piece of heavy paper about 1" bigger each way. My original 4-hole winged design did not seem to give as much volume as the 6-hole and 11-hole bridges, but when it's modified with two more holes, making a 6-hole winged bridge (see the bridges in the template .pdf above), then a winged bridge's volume can rival the other designs, while retaining the advantage in richness. Clean up the drill holes and the center saw cut using small round and flat files. Paste the template right onto the wood. I started out trying to make a better bridge for the Irish tenor banjo --------------------- Choose a banjo with low action to make … 7. The center cut will require a coping saw or jeweler's saw. Ideally: Obtain a strip of maple or other wood, at least 4" long, 1 1/4" high, and 1/4" to (preferably) 5/16" or even 3/8" thick. Find a Teacher. I want it to be easy for musicians to make their own! 8. You may discover a new, good-sounding design! A full description of my efforts and design principles is on my website Follow the template everywhere except for the feet. fame) and widened the bridge to 9 cm to change the place that the sound Reduce the bridge thickness as desired. Very light bridges make a bright sound.


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