If you build a CBG without a tailpiece and with the strings attached to the saddle, how do you get the intonation right? I mean, without a tailpiece you can not move the bridge around until the intonation is good and you can not just put the bridge straight at the scale length. In my case as I will have two lighter strings followed by a heavier string I suspect the bridge would need to be at a bit steeper angle.

(After some experimentation I have decided to tune C2-G3-C4, using 0.059, 0.018 and 0.014, so the difference in diameter will be quite big.)

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Hi, I’m on holidays at the moment so I cannot show you pictures from my computer. So I hope you can follow this.

I instal two tuning machines for the outside strings,
Fit the nut
Rig up a temporary tailpiece (you’ll have plan that)
String up the two outside strings
Place your bridge under the strings (make sure saddle is at the correct action height)
Place the bridge at the scale length position (ready to fine tune by sliding under strings
Tune up the strings to pitch
Have your digital tuner ready
Then set the intonation in the normal way by sliding bridge back until the tuner shows the bridge at correct position (note of open string same at twelfth fret.
Mark that position
Glue on bridge.
Sorry no pics.

Thank you! This sounds like a good way to do it!

Has anyone ever attached the strings through the soundboard (by reinforcing that area with a small piece of wood on both sides) and then having a floating bridge? I am considering this option as a floating bridge would give more freedom to pick any tuning and string combination I want, and having the attachment points close would still allow me to have low action on a slightly larger box.

If I glue on a normal saddle, I would not have a good intonation if I do big changes.

Hi, if i think about how a guitar produces sound, I would not go that route. Choose between quality of sound or perfect-ish intonation.

My guitars with a glued on bridge have a negligible change in intonation with the range of gauges of strings on a six string and the different dropped or open tunings I might use.
Try it.

I have one that I strung from the back like a Tele.  The floating bridge sits out over the unsupported part of the top.

Couple ways you can do it? 

In my experience, it’s better to build some easier ones first. Understand what you’ve done & why you did it, then build some advanced ones. If you try to build a top of the line cbg on the 1st try you will learn nothing but mistakes & will regret the whole ordeal? Sorry to be a ball buster, but Ive been building for decades & been here at the nation since it started in 08’ & have seen many fail because of this? 

Hi again, Brian has possibly given you the best advice so far. experience is a great teacher. When my son started building he never asked me once ,how, he did it and we discussed his approach and he went back to the drawing board. Every guitar sounded very good though.


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