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Bridge too high on Loar LH600 VS?

After reading Jonathan Stout's gear suggestions here:

I decided to go for the Loar LH600 VS with the Dearmond Rhythm King pickup.

The guitar arrived yesterday after a rather nightmarish fashion and the first thing that stood out was how high the bridge was relative to the rest of the guitar's setup.

I've got the action set at about 2.2mm on the bass side and 2.0mm on the treble side, which suits me and I think sounds good.

But if you look at the two pics I've attached, the bridge is cranked up so high to allow for this relatively low action that it's slightly tilted forward and is barely still resting on the bridge pins.

Every floating bridge instrument I've ever owned has nothing like that much clearance between the bridge and base.

This just doesn't seem right to me. If anyone else here has gone for the above or a similar rhythm guitar setup with a Loar LH600, what was your guitar like out of the box?


I've contacted Thomann about this, but not surprisingly, I've heard nothing back from them.

Thanks for reading,

Will

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Comments

  • Posts: 4,833

    Maybe ask some of the YT reviewers what's their experience. As long as the neck and the rest seem solid, you could replace the bridge.

    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
  • JasonSJasonS New
    Posts: 63

    A very slight lean isn't uncommon on archtop bridges, especially when the posts are that exposed. It usually isn't a big deal unless intonation is being compromised. Most people I've talked to about these guitars have said they needed quite a bit of bridge/fret work out of the box to get them into playing shape.

  • krzyskrzys New
    Posts: 138

    Likely needs a neck reset to get the angle right, then the bridge will sit lower.

    Seems in line with what I've read about these guitars. Can be hit or miss unfortunately.

    But if it plays well and sounds good, it might not matter..

  • Posts: 4,833

    Better yet, let it settle in for a few months then have all wood bridge made for the guitar.

    Lango-DjangoGouch
    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
  • pdgpdg ✭✭
    Posts: 473

    How's the neck relief? If the neck happens to be too straight, or even back-bowed, then a slight loosening of the truss rod would improve the neck relief and also raise the action slightly, allowing you to lower the bridge height.

  • WillHWillH New
    Posts: 15

    Thanks to everyone for your comments and advice.

    The neck relief could be better and I think a new bridge would be a good idea. I had a new bridge made for my GJ guitar and it made an enormous difference.

    As is, the Loar plays well. The intonation is good for the 3 and 4-note big band swing chords I play and it speaks well, too.

    I'm going to take it round to a luthier I know on Tuesday for his advice and enquire about a new bridge and adding a pick guard / scratch plate. Once that's done, hopefully he can fit the pickup as well.

    Thanks again and I hope you all have a good weekend,

    Will

    billyshakesBuco
  • WillHWillH New
    Posts: 15

    Hey, folks.

    I just wanted to provide an update on this.

    My luthier says he reckons the wrong bridge was put on the instrument at the factory, but he can easily put things right.

    And it won't cost a fortune.

    I contacted Thomann, gave them the same update, and their response was basically, "Send it back and if we determine that you didn't cause the defect, we'll give you a partial refund".

    No thanks.

    On a different note: Does anyone here have any idea how the DeArmond Rhythm King pickup should be wired so that you can have a volume knob on the pickguard and a jack plug as well for plugging it into an amp?

    I've got the DeArmond pickup, but it doesn't look like there is enough wire coming out of it to accommodate both.

    Thanks in advance for your comments and help.

    Buco
  • Posts: 4,833

    Here's a basic diagram for how to wire a volume control

    You have a short pigtail coming from the pickup which just needs to make it to the volume knob. From it you'd wire to the jack.

    For this kind of pickup I'd probably go with passive volume control box.

    billyshakes
    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
  • WillHWillH New
    Posts: 15

    Thanks, Buco.

    I very much appreciate your help.

    I'll pass that on and hopefully be squared away soon.

    Have a good weekend,

    Will

    Buco
  • WillHWillH New
    Posts: 15

    It's been a while, so I thought I'd update everyone on how this has gone.

    I got the luthier to build up the base of the bridge and that has helped - some.

    He also tried adjusting the truss rod, but it's buried so far back into the neck, it can't be seen with the naked eye. :(

    He had to take an alternative Allen key to be able to reach the truss rod. He then found that it only turns slightly each way, so there is no realistic way to adjust the relief. It's still a flat neck.

    Now that the guitar has settled and I've had more time to play it, it's clear that it doesn't intonate well the length of the neck. If I tune it so that basic barre chords (barre chords based on the low E string), some of the chords are more or less in tune (but not completely), but they vary at different points on the neck. The secondary barre chords (based off the A string) are very out of tune. Very out of tune.

    Thomann have come back with a half-hearted offer of maybe paying some of the costs of having the bridge adjusted or I can return it. But, of course, I can't return it because I've had the bridge adjusted, so they won't accept the guitar because it's been modified.

    I also contacted Loar directly. But although they expressed some sympathy for my situation, they basically said they can't help, which seems odd to me as they produce the guitars, so how this got through quality control is a mystery to me.

    Quite frankly, this guitar is a boat paddle. I can't recommend buying one.

    And I certainly wouldn't recommend buying anything from Thomann. Save a bit more money and buy from someone local. Even if local means the other side of your own country. Thomann have been completely untrustworthy through this entire process, telling me one lie after the other.

    I played a friend's Godin the other day and it's 10 times the guitar this one is for a little more than half the money.

    I have well and truly been taken.

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