All "normal" guitars have the strings attached at the saddle, right behind the bridge while most CBG seems to have a similar attachment as the violin (where the attachment point is behind the soundboard as a normal saddle attachment would rip off the cigar box lid).
I can not find any cigar boxes in my country (and I have no plan to pay expensive shipping for a box). Thus I will have to build a simple box myself. As my box will be fully glued without a removable lid and without hinges and such, I have the option to use either saddle attached strings or strings attached in a typical CBG way.
And now to my real question: how do these two methods affect the sound?
Hi Engblom, 33 views so far and nobodies jumped in yet, well it's me again, sorry about that.
Good to see you gathering information before you tackle your first build, I like to know the why, what, and what if's as well, it makes the work more interesting for me.
Well, I think that the difference in sound between a bridge fitted to the soundboard and a bridge using a tailpiece is very little, especially on a small box that's used in a CBG build. The difference I suggest may come from the height of the bridge.
The bridge that uses a tailpiece would be higher so as to have a decent break angle. The glued-on bridge has a break angle closer to the saddle, so can be lower. The difference in low and high strings does impart a tonal difference. Higher warmer tones.
You can hear a more noticeable difference in full-size guitars using these bridges/tailpiece configurations as these are designed for different styles of playing generally. Think flat-top and arch-top guitars with their different bracing, sizes, and soundholes. The difference comes mainly from other features used in the guitar design not only a tailpiece or not.
Now to start building, Haha
Thank you for always putting some time into writing answers to my questions. I have a lot of questions because I think a bad guitar would kill the interest while a good guitar would keep up the interest.
I wish my future guitar would have a sound similar to a normal steel stringed acoustic guitar, but with the exception that it got only 3 or 4 strings (I have yet to decide). So a simple guitar with a good acoustic sound. I am not into blues, so I am not interested in the distorted and rattling sound many CBG youtube got. I also prefer to have the strings as close to the fingerboard as possible (low action), which is why I am kind of also considering to add a truss rod.
Hi again, thanks for the kind words, only too glad to help. The way I see it is I answer members one question the best I can, but it could be helping many other builders too. I also try not to give the full picture but leave room for others to respond, and the questioner to think more about the issue, whenever I can.
Just a few words regarding this post and your comment, “to sound similar to a normal steel string guitar”. My first suggestion is, if you do let me know how, ha-ha.
Seriously though, to even get close I feel you would have to understand the dynamics of the acoustic guitar, what makes it sound the way it does, and what the builder does that gives it the sound we recognize as a steel string guitar.
Then, what I do is take as much of that information as I can and fit it into a squarish box much smaller than a guitar but using the same good quality tonewood and the same building principles. What did I get…..a great-sounding CBG, my best one yet.
Here it is being played acoustic…
*** I would be very pleased with a first build, it will make music. It's the next 3 - 10 builds I would get critical about
Did you use any bracing when you built that guitar?
Since Taff covered your question, here's a few important thing to consider that affect the sound of CBG:
IMO, string gauge, scale length, & type of strings (electric nickel vs acoustic phosphor bronze vs nylon) make the most difference in sound (for CBG).
CBGs strung with electric guitars string tend to sound tinny & banjo-y when played unplugged (to me), especially with shorter scale lengths. Heavier strings & lower tunings like EBE, DAD, etc, for a 3 stringer can go a long way towards mitigating that.
Acoustic strings can be used with piezo, but would usually be the best choice for acoustic only.
A soundhole or holes will increase the volume.
Hi, yes it does have bracing, one fine cross brace. The top is Cedar about 2mm thick, so I have one near the bridge area and light reinforcing in the weaker area of the top near the soundholes. Also one across the back. It’s easy to overbrace such a small box so I keep that in mind.
Similar to the one pictured only that one was for a 4-stringer.
As Carl mentioned strings can make a big difference, the CBG in the video has phosphor bronze strings on it made a world of difference to an acoustic instrument. Although this one has a UTS piezo and a pre-amp.