Warmoth Flat Mount Bridge (Narrow Spacing) Setup Question.


Hello - I've just finished putting a guitar together using a front routed Warmoth body and neck with a narrow spaced flat mount string-thru bridge.

I'm not sure what is normal for these bridges - but even with the saddle height adjusted for maximum string height, the action on the guitar is too low for the strings to play without buzzing.

My initial thought is to relax the truss rod slightly and let the neck bow a bit, this may raise the nut in relation to the saddles and give slightly higher action.  I have not adjusted the truss rod at all yet, the neck is currenlty very straight with only minimal relief.  The action is very low though, even with the saddles topped out, and I don't know how much a truss rod adjustment will actually help.

It just seems like the bridge saddle adjustment should not have to be completely topped out to make the guitar playable.  I was hoping someone on this forum could provide some insight on what might be causing this, or what a normal setup with one of these bridges looks like.

Thanks in advance, any info is appreciated.

When you talk action and setups.... best to be prepared with measurements.  Thats all we can go on.

At pitch, get about .010 or releif at fret 8 or so.  Press fret 1 and press 21(22) and check half way tween' em (about fret 8 or 9).

For string elevation, think in terms of 3.5/64 on the high E and something like 4/64 on the low E as the lowest point.  A tad higher for bend free buzzing on small radius necks, perhaps a tad lower on compound radius necks

So, what have you got?
It's my understanding that all warmoth necks are factory set up to need some truss rod turnin' before your setup is done.
I have set up 4 Warmoth necks, and in each case, I added a 1/4 turn in on the truss rod just prior to install, so far I am 4 for 4 having them be spot on.

It's not gonna hurt to take out a 1/4 turn on the truss rod and see how that helps. 

Also refer to CBs post above, there are places on the internet with info for adjusting  your action and intonation,  I dont have one handy now sorry.  Just Google Guitar set-up and see what you get.
Hey - thanks for the input.

Checking the action with the handy-dandy Stew Mac String Action Gauge - my action and string relief are almost exactly what you have posted (High E: just under 4/64ths at the 12th, Low E: Exactly 4/64ths at the 12th).  The relief is a little tougher to measure, (.010 is really a small gap), but I have (maybe the smallest bit less than) .010 of relief at the 8th fret with the string fretted at 1 and 21.  The neck is currently pretty straight...

So the action and relief on my neck is probably OK.  Given that, the issue is my bridge saddles are completely topped out - I can not add any additional string height at the bridge.

I am concerned that the bridge is not really designed to function well with the saddle screws extended so far.  I may have to look into some replacement saddles.  With the current vintage style saddles, the height adjustment screw threads in at the highest point of the saddle.  For Graphtech and "American Standard" style saddles, the height adjustment screw exits from threads on teh bottom of the saddle.  Swapping saddles may give me the same string height with less screw protruding from the threaded part of the saddle.

Also - I'm beginning to think this bridge would work better with a rear-routed body.  I believe the neck pocket of a front routed guitar is more shallow than the pocket of a rear routed guitar (to allow the fingerboard to clear the pickguard).  I could be wrong about this though.  A slightly deeper neck pocket (like a rear routed guitar) would put the bridge string height adjustment more in the middle of the bridge's adjustment range.

Does anyone have any expierience with using the vintage style flat mount fixed bridge on a front routed Warmoth strat body?

Thanks again, any info is appreciated.

give yourself a bit more relief, but not much.

.010 is the thicknes of your high E string....  a tad more is ok

remember for ever .001 you raise in releif, you'll get double that down the neck.....

I wanna see a picture of how this bridge is set....  if you please

OK - here are some shots of the bridge - the action is still low enough to produce buzzing with the bridge set this way.  The photos may not be the best (sorry bout that), it's the 1st time I've tried to post one:


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Hopefully the photos show what is going on...  the saddles are topped out - another 1/2 turn on the two middle string saddle screws, and the height adjustment screw comes out of the saddle.

I'd really like the action to be a bit higher than it is, and with the screws out so far I don't think the saddles are giving me the solid coupling I want between the bridge saddle and bridge base plate.

I almost think some kind of shim under the bridge base plate would be the best solution.

Let me know what you think, all info is appreciated.

Who installed/setup the nut? Keep in mind that there can be a bit of variation in the combined tolerances of the neck/neck pocket. I've had a couple of necks that needed the back of the neck heel to be sanded down a bit to get the action set up properly; unless you have a LOT of experience I would not recommend trying that yourself, take to a local luthier/guitar shop.
The nut was installed and cut by Warmoth. 

I think that I'd try to find some way to raise the bridge with a shim before I tried to alter the neck/pocket fit.


WOW!  You mentioned Earlier that your action was on or close to what CB said.  It sure looks like the neck is at the wrong angle.  Are you sure the Heel of the neck is tight with the body?  Loosen the strings and double check your neck bolt tightness,  or maybe something fell in behind when you assembled the neck and it is acting as a shim.

I'm not sure about adding shims to correct your angle, I usually add shims at the heel to get a higher string at the bridge, not the other way arround.

Keep us posted
I'll take a look at the pocket... see if anything could be interfering with the neck seating correctly.  It looks like a very clean fit, with the neck sitting securly in the pocket.

The action is currently very low - lower than all my other guitars.

Something does seem a little wrong to me.

Thanks again for the input, let me know if you have any other suggestions.

picture of the neck pocket
picture of the strings and elevation
picture of the nut

I'm interested in this thread myself as I seem to be having the same issue with the same bridge. I'll try to take pictures.
I'll reiterate; if you've pulled the neck and checked the pocket and back of the neck and do not see any raised wood, and assuming the truss rod is properly adjusted and the neck's straight, you may actually need to sand the heel of the neck down a bit to get a proper setup - do NOT sand the heel pocket!!!!

Even if using both a Warmoth body & neck, all spec'ed measurements are within .XX tolerance; you will occasionally run into a combo that will require a little sanding at the heel to get a perfect neck angle. If you don't have a lot of experience, I'd take it to a shop to get this done.

BTW, if you ever decide to do a build with a Musikraft neck and Warmoth body, you will ALWAYS have to sand the neck heel to get the proper angle....
Hello RacerR,

I am going to assume that you have a compound radius fingerboard.

When you think of compound radius fingerboard, you imagine the fingerboard flattening more and more as it gets to the 22nd fret. You're either thinking that the flattening is coming from taking more wood from the center of the fingerboard or leaving more on the edges. It's actually leaving more on the edges. What you end up with is a thicker or higher fingerboard at the 22nd fret than you have at the 1st fret, at least on the edges. There's good manufacturing and structural reasons doing it this way, but we'll save that for another time.

The manufacturer of the bridge you have and indeed all of the vintage bridges we carry are spec'ing their bridges to work with a 7 1/4" to a 10" radius. Every set up is different mind you, but there is a certain percentage of builds like yours where the grub screws (saddle hieght adjustment screws) are simply not long enough. The remedy is either to raise your entire bridge up by making an ebony spacer or simply taking one of your saddles down to the hardware/fastener store and getting longer grub screws.

For rear rout bodies not using a pickguard, you can actually lower the floor of your neck pocket slightly paying close attention that your fingerboard overhand never contacts the body. You could delam your fingerboard by tightening up the neck screws once you've routed your pocket too deep. I am going to disagree with of my favorite guys on the board here and recommend that you never sand on a neck. When you do that, the neck's structural integrity changes. Since the neck is under pressure, you do not want it to start behaving erratically, and sanding on a neck is fraught with peril. I've seen it happen over and over. You can always fix a body, but a twisted or warped neck is toast.

Longer screws or raising the bridge in some fashion is your ticket I believe!
Plus-if you fix the body and leave the neck alone-changing necks will be simple and easy. 
if you mod your neck, you will have to always mod any future neck to that body.

im getting a body blank made for me at Warmoth with the same bridge config, will peghead vaneer from stewmac suffice as a shim if i need to do this as well? here is the link:


I've got some of the stewmac peghead veneer here, and its some STRONG stuff in ebony.  A real @##@$@# to cut, but I did manage to make a pickguard out of it!




If you PM me and we can arrange my scraps getting to you if you send me a SASE.  I think there's enough there to shim the bridge.

(edit)  Measure your bridge, so I can tell if they're gonna be big enough.  What I think you can do is lam two together, then cut to size.