#1
The pins I'm using now are just white plastic, what are the advantages or disadvantages to different materials?
#2
Sturdiness is the main factor, I would believe...

However, I can imagine the bridge pins minutely affecting the tone, what with the different materials and their different tonalities and vibratory profiles
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#3
Quote by CorduroyEW
People like to say how much the bridge pins change the tone but truth of the matter is that they don't change it all that much. Plastic is really soft so it makes it easy to string your guitar the wrong way which dampens the tone. If you are careful to string your guitar right then plastic pin's won't hurt anythingl.

Brass pins are hard which means if you string your guitar wrong you will still get good sound, and just having hard pins makes it easier to string your guitar the right way anyway. The problem with brass pins is that they are so heavy. Heavy pins dampens the tone which means that if you string your guitar correctly the plastic pins will sound better than the brass.

I like to use wood pins that match my bridge. If I'm building a guitar with rosewood a rosewood bridge then I use rosewood pins. If you building a guitar with an ebony bridge then I use ebony pins. The wood pins don't add much weight to the guitar so they don't dampen the tone the way brass ones do. Wood pins are also much harder than the plastic pins so they make it easier to string your guitar the right way, and if you don't string it the right way they still help it sound better than the plastic. So with wood pins you get some of the benefits of the plastic and the brass. The best of both worlds.

The best pins you can get are bone or ivory. They are really hard and they are pretty light, but they cost a lot and I don't think they are worth it. If you string your guitar correctly then they won't do anything that wood pins wouldn't do.


He is definently the authority on acoustic guitars as he builds them.

Bry
#4
^ Yes, Corduroy knows more than a freakin' library lol
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#5
Quote by Bryan52803
He is definently the authority on acoustic guitars as he builds them.

Bry


thanks, that helped a lot
#6
Some other things to keep in mind not already mentioned:

Wooden pins are subject to changes in humidity just like the other woods that go into a guitar's construction, so if you're not humidifying your guitar and it's dry enough, they can shrink and loosen. Conversely, if it's humid enough, they can swell and be difficult to remove.

From what I've been able to determine, pin material has more of an effect on tone on guitars that DON'T use a slotted bridge. On guitars with a slotted bridge, the strings will often stay in place once under tension even if the pins are removed, so that implies less sonic coupling between the strings and the pins. Conversely, they'll have more of a tone-changing effect on guitars where the pins contribute more to holding the strings in place and are usually slotted themselves as opposed to the bridge being slotted.

Metal pins, like brass, are reported by many users to brighten the tone, but, sometimes, to the point where it's actually harsh.

There are acoustic engineers out there that claim that the way a guitar produces it's sound makes it impossible for pin material to have any effect on the sound/tone, but I'm not sure I believe them.

And, finally, this is information I've encountered reading about this subject on the internet...I've never swapped out the Tusq/plastic? pins on my own guitars with anything else and have no first-hand experience.
#7
Quote by reholli
Wooden pins are subject to changes in humidity just like the other woods that go into a guitar's construction, so if you're not humidifying your guitar and it's dry enough, they can shrink and loosen. Conversely, if it's humid enough, they can swell and be difficult to remove.


Should I be humidifying my guitar? All I've been doing is keeping it in my case when I'm not playing it.
#8
Quote by Starglider
Should I be humidifying my guitar? All I've been doing is keeping it in my case when I'm not playing it.


If it's a high end guitar that's not lacqered then yes. If it's a practice guitar that's painted and lacqered I wouldn't worry about it. My guitar has survived the ups and downs of the Midwest weather and two tours in Iraq (up to 140 degree temp).

Also if this is a practice guitar I might recommened brass bridge pins as they're less of a hassle. I change my strings alot and they make it 1000x easier and quicker to replace. The sustain was slightly increased, but I didn't hear a noticeable difference in brightness.

Bry
#9
I believe it is lacquered (that's what causes the glossy look to the top, right?).

It's a mid-range guitar (Ibanez AW100ECE). I'm not sure whether it qualifies as a "practice guitar" or not. I use it for practice, as it is my only guitar, but I want to keep it in good condition because I'm in love with it.

If I should be humidifying it, how would I go about this?
#10
Yeah that's a pretty decent guitar. I honestly have never humidifyed mine so I can't field any questions in that respect. I'd PM CorduroyEW and ask him what he thinks. I'm not sure but is it a good idea to humidify it with electronics? Like I said I don't know anything about it so I'd ask him. Post it on here so the rest of us can learn though!

Bry
#11
^--- to humidify your guitar... buy a guitar humidifier you can usually pick one up at any music shop for between 10 and 60 bucks, depending on how fancy you want it. don't worry about the humidifier messing up the electronics in your guitar... it won't. i use these guys in my guitars and they work great:

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/Planet-Waves-Body-Guard-Humidifier?sku=420552
#12
You want to keep your guitar at 40 to 60% humidity. In the summer the humidity is typically too high. In the winter the humidity is typically too low. As a rule of thumb, if you are heating your home you need to use a humidifyer, if not then you don't. There are exceptions to the rule tho... for example I live in wales where it's always too wet and I ALWAYS use a dehumidifyer even when I'm heating my home.
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#13
Oh ****, then my guitar is like half ****ed. What if I normally turn the AC on in my room?
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#14
AC brings humidity down.

When the humidity is too high it isn't *that* big of a deal. It makes them sound kind of dead but thats it. The low humidity is what really hurts your guitar. That is why they make such a big deal about humidifying your guitar but you never here about dehumidifying.
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#15
The heating/cooling system in our house also includes humidifying. Does that mean I'm ok?
#16
it might but the ony way to know for sure is to check the humidity in your house. A digital humidity gaudge is only abot $30 so if you are really worried then you could always get one and see
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#17
Quote by Bryan52803
If it's a high end guitar that's not lacqered then yes. If it's a practice guitar that's painted and lacqered I wouldn't worry about it. My guitar has survived the ups and downs of the Midwest weather and two tours in Iraq (up to 140 degree temp).

Also if this is a practice guitar I might recommened brass bridge pins as they're less of a hassle. I change my strings alot and they make it 1000x easier and quicker to replace. The sustain was slightly increased, but I didn't hear a noticeable difference in brightness.

Bry

Weird, the plastic ones work for me, the brass ones pop out.
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