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Making a Saddle
© Frank Ford, 3/24/98; Photos by FF, 9/296
Here's how I use my 1x42 sander to make an acoustic guitar bridge saddle.
First, I flatten the bone blank on a marble slab with silicon carbide paper:
I can slide just a bit of the end of the saddle through my thicknessing sander:
I make repeated small cuts and try the fit into the saddle slot. If I cut too deep, I can lower the table and switch ends to try again. Since the blank is longer than I need, I have a bit to spare, and can even shorten the blank to try a third time, if necessary:
Once I'm confident of the trial fit, I'll pass the entire saddle under the bottom wheel of the sander to bring it to uniform thickness:
At this point the blank should just fit the saddle slot.
After the thickness of my blank matches the slot in the bridge, most of the work is over. Now, I'll mark it for length and sand the ends off to the marks. I can round the ends on my sander to match the rounded ends of the routed slot in the bridge: