Hardtail upgrade replacement - Jemsite
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-03-2021, 07:37 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 71
Hardtail upgrade replacement

Can anyone recommend a replacement or upgrade for the hardtail on my RG3EXFM. I have a spare Tight End bridge I would really like to use. Does anyone have any experience making this kind of modification? I also like the Hipshot hardtail with the curved edges but they dont have a black chrome option. Does Gotoh have an equivalent? Thanks for any help!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-04-2021, 09:38 PM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Canberra, Australia
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Reviews: 120
Re: Hardtail upgrade replacement

Gotoh should have a bridge that is pretty much identical. They're on the PGM 301s for example.

LonePhantom is offline  
post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-05-2021, 11:34 AM
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Louisiana, USA
Posts: 261
Re: Hardtail upgrade replacement

Replacing the bridge is not hard, the main thing is to make sure everything lines up as it's supposed to. The hardest part is finding an upgrade that is a direct replacement; if that is what you want. This can be a little difficult to find something aftermarket that matches mainly screw holes and to some extent string spacing. If you don't mind drilling new mounting holes you only need to find the bridge you want and make sure it is big enough to hide the existing screw holes and matches string spacing. For that you just need to take some measurements and compare.

Another option is to leave the bridge alone and upgrade only the saddles. Going this way you'll get a good 80%-85% of a full bridge upgrade without having to worry about drilling new holes or finding something that fits the existing ones.

I really can't give advice on a specific bridge. I've always like using a Schaller 475 for a hardtail on my scratch builds, but it probably wouldn't be a good fit for yours. In general, if you go with Schaller, Gotoh, Wilkinson for anything you're probably safe. Just watch out for the "licensed by" models as they are not always the best quality.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-07-2021, 07:58 AM
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: UK
Posts: 483
Re: Hardtail upgrade replacement

Yes, the Gotoh GTC101 should be a direct replacement, and has a cosmo/smoked chrome option. They also offer different saddles (i.e. brass or steel). As mentioned above, sometimes changing just the saddles can make a considerable difference. Ultimately, it depends on what you're looking for sonically.

A number of manufacturers have measurement specs on their website, so you can check against what you have stock.

Regarding Hipshot, I presume you're thinking of the Ibby HM, which does indeed look nice.

For hardtail, I personally love the Schaller Hannes, but this requires woodworking to install and is not often offered stock on guitars. Lovely piece of kit, looks like a Batmobile component.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-07-2021, 09:22 AM
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 193
Re: Hardtail upgrade replacement

just convert it to evertune
Fowleri is offline  
post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-07-2021, 02:31 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 71
Thanks for all the feedback. I went ahead and and replaced the hardtail with the Ibanez Tight End that I had on hand. The string through body holes lined up nicely and there is plenty of intonation adjustment to maintain the 25.5 inch scale. Here is a pic. Let me know what you think!20210207_122550_1612722666547.jpg
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