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Adjustomatic bridge posts too small!


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I bought a used MIJ Fender Kurt Cobain Mustang with adjustomatic bridge.  The diameter of the holes in the bridge that accept the bridge posts is too large.  The bridge easily wiggles forward and back on the posts when I use the vibrato bar, sending the guitar out of tune and messing with the intonation.  I have two questions:

1.  Why would Fender design it this way?  I have a MIM Classic Player Jaguar HH that also came stock with an adjustomatic bridge and it does not have this issue.  There is a large screw on top of my Jag bridge post to tighten down the bridge so it doesn't move, just like a Gibson Tune-o-matic. My Stang' does not have these screws and I have looked at many online images of KC Mustangs and this appears to be the stock configuration.

2.  Can this problem be fixed; e.g., cut up one of those metal Starbucks straws or wrap small pieces of a cut up aluminum can or something similar around the bridge posts?  The guitar goes severely out of tune with vibrato use and my intonation is spotty.  My adjustomatic equipped Jag's intonation is spot on and it stays in tune, even with heavy bar abuse.

Any advice would be appreciated

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And, just to be clear, I am not describing a vintage style rocking Mustang or Jaguar bridge.  I used to have a Jag-Stang, so I am familiar with that type of bridge.  I locked down the tailpiece on that guitar and used surgical tubing on the bridge posts underneath the bridge plate.  The issue with my Mustang is above the bridge plate where the bridge fits over the top of the bridge posts.  The diameter difference between the posts and holes in the bridges is so large that I can actually push one side of the bridge forward towards the headstock, while simultaneously pulling the other end of the bridge back towards the tailpiece.  I want to use the vibrato bar on this guitar, so I don't want to lock it down like I did with my Jag-Stang.

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  • 1 year later...

Update:  For anyone also experiencing this issue, it turned out that there was not enough string tension pushing down on the bridge to hold it in place.  There are two springs under the bridge attached to notched posts.  I set the springs into the last notch at the end of the post for maximum spring tension and that pulled the lipstick tube back a bit, increasing the downward pressure of the strings on the bridge.  Now the bridge no longer wiggles around and tuning stability after using the bar is greatly increased.  I also suggest not going lower than .10 gauge strings.

Tightening down the lipstick tube a bit more probably would have also helped.

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