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Author Topic: F-III bridge plate + K&K mini different?  (Read 8048 times)
Mr_LV19E
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« on: February 21, 2010, 07:19:28 PM »

I ordered a K&K mini for my F-III and received it last week. Yesterday I started the install and the first thing I did was remove the endpin and check the depth of the end block so I could adjust the output jack for installation. What I found was the end block was 5/8" thick and the adjusting nut for the jack couldn't be made smaller than 7/8". I gave it some thought and ended up making a 1/4" thick spacer out of oak, now I was set to get started. I made the template for the transducer install then I stuck a light and mirror in to the soundhole, oh cr^p. Below is a picture of what I found. The transducers are supposed to be installed on the bridge plate directly below the saddle but there is not enough bridge plate available to do that.

I thought I remembered others having Jim install a K&K so I gave him a call, this is what he told me. First he said he doesn't like K&K pickups for reasons that are not applicable here but then he said a few F-III buyers required them so he did install them and yes he remembered there not being enough room to mount the transducers. He said that he had to fit bridge plate extensions to the bottom of the top in order to do the install. I asked him if he remembered the thickness of the bridge plate and he said he didn't and he was at the store and his shop was still located at his house. He went on to tell me to send him an email with my address and he would send me a pre-made extension that all I would have to do is glue in place as he still had some materials left over from when he did the installations.
Three cheers for Jim, what a great guy that looks out for his customers.

The reason for this post is to let others know of the potential problems with which should be a simple installation of a highly regarded pickup.
The first pic shows the bridge plate and the second pic shows the size of the transducer. You would need at least 7/8" from the center of the pin hole to the front of the bridge plate to have enough room to install the transducer.


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Roger


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Mr_LV19E
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« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2010, 07:53:55 PM »

Here are a couple of pics of the output jack showing the limited adjustment. Had K&K supplied one extra adjustment nut, that would have taken care of this problem. The cover for the connections has to tighten down to the nut to prevent loosening and rattling, as you can see it does that just short of bottoming out on the ground attachment.

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Roger


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« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2010, 10:07:57 PM »

The inside nut doesn't stay against the shield...  it is meant to adjust for the thickness of hte endblock.  The shield will not loosen or rattle.  I've had endpin jacks installed for years without any problems.

That bridgeplate problem is odd.

Ed


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Mr_LV19E
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« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2010, 11:24:27 PM »

The inside nut doesn't stay against the shield...  it is meant to adjust for the thickness of hte endblock.  The shield will not loosen or rattle.  I've had endpin jacks installed for years without any problems.

That bridgeplate problem is odd.

Ed

I'm just going by what it states in the installation instructions.  This is the first time I installed a pickup.
The bridge plate doesn't appear to even cover the entire area under the bridge, I would indeed call that odd.
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tuffythepug
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« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2010, 12:03:03 AM »

The inside nut doesn't stay against the shield...  it is meant to adjust for the thickness of hte endblock.  The shield will not loosen or rattle.  I've had endpin jacks installed for years without any problems.

That bridgeplate problem is odd.

Ed




I agree that the inside nut is not meant to stay against the shield.  It is the only adjustment you have available and it is meant to be adjusted for the thickness of the endblock.  The bridgplate is a different matter altogether:  I'm glad Jim is helping you out on this matter.

By the way, when I installed the K & K on my 000-50 I used an alternate set of instructions that I obtained on the good ol' internet.   It made the job of installing the transducers a lot easier.  I've shown these instructions to others who have agreed that it makes the job simpler.   I will post these here if you are interested.

So far I haven't installed a pickup on my F III yet.    Still thinking about it.

Good luck with the rest of the install.  I'm still wondering why Jim does not care for the K & K system.
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Randy_R
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« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2010, 12:05:12 AM »

Is this something to do with the bridge being shifted back for the 12 fret neck? Has anyone put a K&K on the previous Forum I/II guitars which were OM-03's with 12 fret necks also?
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Randy R., Georgia, USA
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Mr_LV19E
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« Reply #6 on: February 22, 2010, 01:03:42 AM »


"Find out the thickness of your end block and set the nut on the cap accordingly (see picture below). Once in place, screw the cap against it to secure the nut."

Am I not understanding that sentence correctly?

I am not comfortable tightening the cap against the grounding post of the jack. Not saying it can't be done, others have done it with no problems apparently. I saw two ways of going about it, 1. Go to the hardware store and get an extra nut or 2. Make a spacer up real quick with scrap wood laying around. I chose 2 because I didn't feel like going out, at the time I didn't know I was going to have to wait to receive a part from Jim to complete the job.
If there is some reason that I shouldn't use the wood spacer please enlighten me, there are many out there with more knowledge about this stuff than me.


Lynn, is this the site you are referring to?
K&K install
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tuffythepug
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« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2010, 02:17:22 AM »

Roger
Yep, that's the site.  I followed these instructions for installation on my 000-50.    Note the last part where they talk about adjusting the nut for the proper length by trial and error.  The only adjustment you can make is the nut on the inside.  The outside nut holds everything in place and the "strap button" part tightens down onto the outside nut.  You have to adjust the length so that the part sticking out through the hole is exactly the correct amount to allow the strap button portion to cover it.    On your instructions there is a reference to the "endblock thickness adjustment nut."   That means to adjust it as necessary to allow for the endblock thickness plus the amount that sticks out on the outside.
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« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2010, 02:36:36 AM »

Not meaning to be condescending...  it's the difference between following the instructions and knowing how it works.

If nothing else, there is a plastic/paper sheath inside that shield (or cap as the instruictions call it) which insulates it from that "grounding post".  And, even if it came in contact, it would have to come in contact with the center contact also to cause a problem.  

If you are concerned about anything being loose, you could put a dab of Loctite (or fingernail polish works great) on either the nut or "cap" to lock them in place.  In my experience, it's not a problem.

Ed
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Danny
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« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2010, 02:42:48 AM »

  As far as the bridge plate; I made an extension for the Maple/Koa top re-finish I'm working on. The bouts and waist are very close to the F-III and the bridge plate was even a bit shorter. So I made a maple plate extension to work with the "Belly in" bridge I am using.
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« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2010, 01:30:18 PM »

That bridgeplate isn't K&K compatible from the looks of it. The transducers are supposed to positioned directly center, between string pairs, and exactly underneath the saddle itself. The bridgeplate was positioned poorly. Somebody at Larrivee didn't double check measurements when they drew up the modified bracing pattren.
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Barefoot Rob
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« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2010, 02:51:04 PM »

Could it be that the bridge plate is correct for the guitar and maybe they weren't thinking about what type of pickup was going to be installed afterwards?Its not like they designed acoustic guitars to be electricified.
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A REPAIRPERSON,Still Unclrob
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Randy_R
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« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2010, 03:03:15 PM »

That bridgeplate isn't K&K compatible from the looks of it. The transducers are supposed to positioned directly center, between string pairs, and exactly underneath the saddle itself. The bridgeplate was positioned poorly. Somebody at Larrivee didn't double check measurements when they drew up the modified bracing pattren.

I have an LS guitar with a 12 fret neck made in 1975. So Larrivee has been making this type guitar since the very beginning.
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jeremy3220
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« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2010, 03:24:31 PM »

I agree with GA-ME, if Larrivee is going to put the most atrociously massive bridgeplate ever conceived in there it could at least be centered under the bridge... instead having 1/4" in front of the pins and 8 feet behind. 
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Barefoot Rob
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« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2010, 03:38:27 PM »

First off there is no complaint about the bridge plate except the K+K's don't fit.The 1/4" statment referred to the piece of wood that was needed to be made so that the output jack would fit correctly.I see nothing wrong with the bridgeplate,I've seen smaller and larger.I don't believe that a  acoustic guitar company has to build there guitars to the spec's of aftermarket pickup companies,there building acoustic guitars after all.


But as I say so often "What do I know".Maybe we should get a loan and buy out Larrivee so we can build them the way we want since everyone knows better.Oh ya I'm very happy with the product that they deliever.


Let the stone's fly........
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A REPAIRPERSON,Still Unclrob
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« Reply #15 on: February 22, 2010, 03:52:05 PM »

Could it be that the bridge plate is correct for the guitar and maybe they weren't thinking about what type of pickup was going to be installed afterwards?Its not like they designed acoustic guitars to be electricified.

Rob, are you saying you think that bridge plate is where it belongs to be? Seriously? Are saying that the 1/4"-1/2" of rosewood in front of those pin holes is the correct position for the bridge plate?

 
I have an LS guitar with a 12 fret neck made in 1975. So Larrivee has been making this type guitar since the very beginning.

Randy, I know they have made them before. They messed up the bridge plate location on that particular guitar, and apparently at least a few others that Jim glued patches on, and whether they made them before or not doesn't change that fact that the bridge plate is positioned incorrectly. Take a look at some older bridge plates and look at what strings do to them and tell me what you think the longterm wisdom of that bridgeplate location is.

http://frets.com/FRETSPages/Luthier/Technique/Guitar/Structural/NewBridgePlate/newbrplt1.html
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Barefoot Rob
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« Reply #16 on: February 22, 2010, 04:08:03 PM »

If that is were Larrivee decided were it belonged then "Seriously" yes.The add ons that Jim referred to was so that he could make the K+K work.At no time did he say the bridge plates were'nt installed incorrectly.Again what do I know I fix the stuff I don't build them.

Nice Thread on bridge plates by the way,BUt it doesn't apply here.
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« Reply #17 on: February 22, 2010, 04:18:13 PM »

IF Larrivee decided he(they) wanted the plates there, that's fine but it is out of the ordinary.  Looking at that plate it's hard to come to any other conclusion than it was improperly placed.  Typically, the bridgeplate doesn't extend very far (if at all) towards the endblock.  That one would have to.  And again, typically, they extend much farther up towards the X.

Ed
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Mr_LV19E
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« Reply #18 on: February 22, 2010, 05:29:26 PM »

My main purpose in starting this thread was to make others aware of the potential issues of installing a K&K to their F-III. I never doubted my ability to come up with a remedy to address any issue I encountered, nor would I believe my way was the only remedy. I have always prided myself on my ability to fix anything (got that ability from my dad). Because I fix things for friends all the time I am aware of the fact that not everyone has that ability. When I approach something for the first time I almost always follow the instructions that are provided. Each subsequent time I change how I do it to make it more efficient and easier.
As far as the bridge plate being installed the way it is, well it is what it is. That is the way Larrivee did it and if there are any issues as a result of it down the road that is why there is a warranty. It appears the edge of the bridge plate is directly under the saddle, maybe that explains why this guitar has so much volume.

Not meaning to be condescending...  it's the difference between following the instructions and knowing how it works.

If nothing else, there is a plastic/paper sheath inside that shield (or cap as the instruictions call it) which insulates it from that "grounding post".  And, even if it came in contact, it would have to come in contact with the center contact also to cause a problem. 

If you are concerned about anything being loose, you could put a dab of Loctite (or fingernail polish works great) on either the nut or "cap" to lock them in place.  In my experience, it's not a problem.

Ed
I agree there is usually some type of sheath inside the shield insulating it from the grounding post, but this one does not have one.  It just didn't feel "right" when I tightened  the shield up, like metal against metal type grinding.  Thanks for the loc-tite idea, hadn't thought of that.

I appreciate everyones input but I didn't start this thread to cause a battle over how  Larrivee decides to build its guitars, just to let others know that the installation will not be a simple one.
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« Reply #19 on: February 22, 2010, 05:48:24 PM »

My main purpose in starting this thread was to make others aware of the potential issues of installing a K&K to their F-III. I never doubted my ability to come up with a remedy to address any issue I encountered, nor would I believe my way was the only remedy. I have always prided myself on my ability to fix anything (got that ability from my dad). Because I fix things for friends all the time I am aware of the fact that not everyone has that ability. When I approach something for the first time I almost always follow the instructions that are provided. Each subsequent time I change how I do it to make it more efficient and easier.
As far as the bridge plate being installed the way it is, well it is what it is. That is the way Larrivee did it and if there are any issues as a result of it down the road that is why there is a warranty. It appears the edge of the bridge plate is directly under the saddle, maybe that explains why this guitar has so much volume.
I agree there is usually some type of sheath inside the shield insulating it from the grounding post, but this one does not have one.  It just didn't feel "right" when I tightened  the shield up, like metal against metal type grinding.  Thanks for the loc-tite idea, hadn't thought of that.

I appreciate everyones input but I didn't start this thread to cause a battle over how  Larrivee decides to build its guitars, just to let others know that the installation will not be a simple one.
  The first part of your post looks like something I could be saying. Have any of your friends or family called you "MacGyver"? I never watched a full episode of that show , but I know he is resourceful and quick to find a fix.
               I've been thinking it may be a good idea to have a "Tips" thread. Where anyone could post an idea that may benefit others who do some of their own repairs. At the same time unclrob and others could provide further insight into problems with a particular "tip" or add to it.  Anyway if we all "play nice" I think it would be a help to the forum.
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