View Full Version : Looking for a vintage bridge

01-05-2015, 05:21 PM
Hello everybody. I am in the process of restoring a vintage ukulele. It is currently not in playable condition. Some time in the past somebody tried to put steel ball end strings on it. The bridge failed and seriously split the soundboard, the under bracing & the neck heel. That is all in the process of being fixed. Sadly they drilled the bridge plate and bolted it to the soundboard! This has horribly mangled the original bridge plate and I'm trying to hunt down the correct replacement part.

The ukulele in question is a 2nd gen Lyon & Healy Camp Uke. My research tells me it's a mid 1920's vintage. It seems to be rare enough to be worth restoring.


01-05-2015, 11:37 PM
I'd be surprised if you found an original bridge lying around somewhere. But it's really easy to carve a replacement - I recently made a couple of camp ukes based on the L&H and carving bridges was quite simple. Just follow the bridge you have there (omitting the screws). Whoever is fixing the cracks and braces should be up to carving a bridge.

I believe the original L&Hs were made of mango, which might be hard to find, but I suspect someone on here has a suitable scrap of mango they could let you have. I'd guess 3.5 ins x 1 in x 3/4 in would be about right, but take measurements.

01-06-2015, 12:50 AM
I'm the one doing the restoration, and carving a new bridge would be my 2nd option if I couldn't locate one. I was a bit concerned that not having an original bridge with the "Patent Applied For" on it might reduce it's value. I have restored a number of vintage instruments, but this is my first ukulele. I intend on selling it once the restoration is complete. I live in Florida, so Mango is easily available to me. Thank for the reply.

01-06-2015, 01:22 AM
Could you maybe rethink your view that the original bridge is trash? Perhaps restoring that is the best option? I can't see how bad the damage is of course.

01-06-2015, 06:53 AM
This is where to see what you're aiming for:


I misremembered - monkeypod, apparently, but mahogany for the bridge.

01-06-2015, 07:12 AM
Here is some pictures of the original bridge. If it is salvageable, it is beyond my meager skills. I have mahogany available to make another. Sad what some instruments get subjected to.

01-06-2015, 09:01 AM
It's fortunate that you have the actual bridge to use as a template. That should save lots of work.

01-06-2015, 12:54 PM
Yes, it was fortunate. I have a new mahogany bridge cut and mounted.