So the other night I tightened the banjo mute to much and it pushed the bridge over, so I loosened all the strings and stood it up again. Now I Have to learn how to place. it in the correct position. I asked for advice on the forum and was given videos to watch and very useful help. I started this morning getting it back into playing shape. Watched the videos again and measured everything out. So...I have two banjos...the resonator one I have the music store restring it a few months ago and they moved the bridge around and penciled in several lines that I guess they tried. The bridge on that one is much closer to the tailpiece than the videos describe and I remember when I got it back it sounded great. I am not sure why oit is not measured in the ways described on the videos.
So I have placed the bridge and tuned it but now some of the notes do not seem to be on the correct fret....so I will continue on again until I get it right.
Now my first intention when this happened was to take it to the music store but then I realized that if this happened again I would need to know what to do and if I want to change strings I will need to know. So reading my Earl Scruggs book and learning via the helpful folk on this forum I am getting my banjo back in playing order. :D
Thursday, December 28, 2017 @9:41:41 AM
Once you are tuned up you should be able to move the bridge without detuning if you are very careful. Get under the strings and grab a bit of the 'meat' of the bridge rather than the very edges though to prevent snapping it..
Thursday, December 28, 2017 @12:04:35 PM
Once you have it placed to your satisfaction, with intonation correct, then you can use a pencil to make little marks on the head to show you where it goes.
Good on you for figuring it out yourself. Every player should know how to position a bridge.
Banjo Lefty Says:
Friday, December 29, 2017 @10:55:33 AM
If you do change strings, do it one at a time. If you take all the strings off at once, the bridge will fall off too and then you’ll have to start the positioning sequence all over again.
Friday, December 29, 2017 @11:25:11 AM
Thank you BanjoLefty that is a very good idea. :)
Friday, December 29, 2017 @7:36:12 PM
Judith, when I first started learning I tried and tried to get the bridge in the right spot using measurements. I never could get it to work right. In a year or two this will be something’s not that is second nature to you but it can be frustrating early on. If you have an electronic tuner, tune up the banjo. Then on the bottom (first) string fret at the 12th fret. You want it to be in tune to D at both spots. If not you will need to move it around. Now once you move it you will now be out of tune open so you will have to retune then repeat. Until you get it fine tuned. Then you can do the same thing on the fourth string trying to not move the bottom of the bridge. It’s a hassle the first few times but you’ll get it.
As for changing strings I learned early on that if I only changed one string at a time then I wouldn’t have to reset the bridge position. I don’t worry about it much now but the first year that was a big help.
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