US2897711A - Tremolo device for stringed musical instruments - Google Patents

Tremolo device for stringed musical instruments Download PDF

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Publication number
US2897711A
US2897711A US761557A US76155758A US2897711A US 2897711 A US2897711 A US 2897711A US 761557 A US761557 A US 761557A US 76155758 A US76155758 A US 76155758A US 2897711 A US2897711 A US 2897711A
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Prior art keywords
tremolo
tail piece
lever
carrier rods
anchor
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US761557A
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Jack L Matthew
Punturi Albert
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Jack L Matthew
Punturi Albert
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    • GPHYSICS
    • G10MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACOUSTICS
    • G10DSTRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; WIND MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; ACCORDIONS OR CONCERTINAS; PERCUSSION MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; AEOLIAN HARPS; SINGING-FLAME MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS; MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • G10D3/00Details of, or accessories for, stringed musical instruments, e.g. slide-bars
    • G10D3/14Tuning devices, e.g. pegs, pins, friction discs or worm gears
    • G10D3/147Devices for altering the string tension during playing
    • G10D3/153Tremolo devices

Description

TREMOLO DEVICE FOR STRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS Filed sept. 1'?.v 195e Aug. 4, 1959 J. L. MATTHEW Erm.
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TREMOLO DEVICE FOR ySTRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS Filed Sept. 17. 1958 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 liu" INVENTORS J4CK /HA 7TH/.CW ci BY 4Z 5527 /Jz//v//e/ United States Patent O TREMOLO DEVICE FOR STRINGED MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS .lack L. Matthew and Albert Punturi, Detroit, Mich.
Application September 17, 1958, Serial No. 761,557
Claims. (Cl. 84-313) This invention relates to tremolo devices for stringed instruments such as guitars and the like.
There have been many prior tremolo devices for stringed instruments, but none have proven to be completely satisfactoiy in adjustment, manipulability and resultant tremolo tone quality.
The primary object of the invention is to provide an improved tremolo device for guitars and other stringed instruments which does not alter the normal tone quality of the musical instrument with which it is employed and, at the same time, provides a feather touch control of the desired tremolo effect readily manipulable by the strumming hand of the musician.
Another object of the invention is to provide a tremolo device including a novel spring tensioned adjustable mounting of the improved tremolo leverage system employed with which tremolo tones may be readily obtained by a musician with an easy tone lever manipulation, which leverage system has an extremely quick return to normal tone upon release of the tremolo operating arm.
Ather objects of the invention will become apparent by reference toy the following detailed description taken in connection with the accompanying drawings, in which:
Fig. 1 is a top plan view of a tremolo device embodying the invention mounted on a guitar as indicated in Fig. 3, certain portions being broken away to clearly illustrate the invention.
Fig. 2 is a longitudinal sectional View taken on the line 2 2 of Fig. 1.
Fig. 3 is a top plan view of ya guitar showing a tremolo device embodying the invention mounted thereon.
Fig. 4 is a rear elevational view of the tremolo device taken on the line 4 4 of Fig. 1.
Fig. 5 is a cross sectional View taken on the line 5 5 of Fig. 1.
Fig. 6 is a cross sectional view taken on the line 6 6 of Fig. 1.
Fig. 7 is a cross sectional view taken on the line 7 7 of Fig. 1 showing a ball socket type of a rocking bridge support preferably employed.
n Referring now to the drawings wherein like numerals refer to like and corresponding parts throughout the several views, a tremolo device 10 illustrating the invention is disclosed in detail in Figs. l and 2, and is shown mounted on a guitar 11 in Fig. 3. The guitar 11 comprises the usual body 12, neck 13 including frets 14, a neck bridge 15 and adjustable key operated string anchor pegs 16. Strings 17 anchored at one end to the tail piece of the tremolo device as hereinafter described in detail are preferably supported at the body 12 on a body bridge 18 which in turn is -ball and socket mounted at 19 on a bridge base 20 disposed on the top member 120 of the body 12. The said strings 17 extend over the body bridge 15 and are anchored through the usual apertures provided therefor in the key operated string anchor pegs 16.
The particular tremolo device 10 shown in the drawings consists of an anchor plate secured by screws 26 to the bottom or rear end portion of the guitar body 12.
Patented Aug. 4, 1959 ICC The top of the anchor plate 25 is looped transversely at 250 and extends above the top member of the guitar body 12. A transverse anchor pivot 27 is journaled through the said anchor plate loop 250, and is diav metrically bored and threaded adjacent its outer ends to receive the rear threaded ends 300 of a pair of laterally spaced carrier rods 30. The tremolo device 10 is thusly anchored in a pivoted relationship to the bottom of the guitar Ibody 10 in a manner and at an elevation that will permit it to align itself with the guitar str-ings 17 extending from the body bridge 18.
Mounted on the said carrier rods 30 is a transversely disposed anchor bar 32 formed to provide a pair of laterally spaced guides 320 having longitudinal bores 321 therethrough which telescopingly accommodate the said carrier rods 30. The said anchor bar 32 is fixed in the desired location on the carrier rods 30 by such means as anchorage ynuts 33 and 34. A ball bearing pivot 35 supporting the rear end of a generally Lshaped tremolo lever 36 is preferably press fixed at its outer race 350 into a suitable vertically disposed aperture 322 provided therefor in the anchor bar 32 somewhat off-center thereof as best shown in Fig. 1. The L-shaped tremolo lever 36 consists of upper and lower generally L-shaped lever elements 360 and 361 respectively suitably apertured near the short end thereof to accommodate a tremolo lever pivot stud 37 which fixes the said L-shaped lever elements 360 and 361 to the inner race 351 of the ball bearing pivot 35. The opposite or laterally extending ends of the said L-shaped actuating lever elements 360 and 361 are preferably formed into clamp jaws 362 and 363 respectively which receive the rearward end 380 of a tremolo operating arm 38 therebetween. Suitable studs 39 disposed through the clamp jaws 362 and 363 function to clamp the said rearward end 380 of the tremolo operating arm 38 to the tremolo lever 36 at any longitudinal position selected by the musician which will permit him to conveniently and comfortably manipulate the tremolo operating arm 38 of the tremolo device 10 by an operating knob or the like 381 provided on the forward free end of the said tremolo operating arm 38.
The tail piece 4t) of the tremolo device 10 is preferably formed at its forward end into a transverse head 400 and its rearward end into a transverse tail 401, both integrally connected together by a center strip 402, all as best shown in Figs. 1 and 2. The head 400 of the tail piece 40 is preferably hollowed out at 41 and the forward wall 42 thereof is provided with six laterally spaced longitudinally disposed apertures 43 which telescopingly receive the guitar strings 17 with their headed or knotted ends disposed within the hollowed-.out portion 41 of the said transverse head 40G of the tail piece 40.
A ball bearing pivot 44 is preferably press xed at its outer race 440 into a suitable vertically disposed aperture 403 in the center strip 402 of the tail piece 40. The forward bifurcated end 450 of a tail piece-to-lever link 45 is suitably apertured to accommodate a pivot stud 46 which fixes the said bifurcated end 450 of the said tail piece-to-lever link 45 to the inner race 441 of the said ball bearing pivot 44. The opposite or rearward single end 452 of the tail piece-todever link 4S is provided with a ball bearing pivot 47 which is preferably press fixed atl its outer race 470 into a suitable vertically disposed aperture 453 in the said rearward single end 452 of the said tail piece-to-lever link 45. The elbow or intermediate portion of each of the upper and lower generally L-shaped lever elements 360 and 361 of the L-shaped tremolo lever 36 is suitably apertured to accommodate a tremolo leverto-lever link stud 48 which fixes the said elbow portion of the upper and lower L-shaped elements 360 and 361 of the L-shaped tremolo lever 36 to the inner race 471 of the said ball bearing pivot 47.
The transverse tail 401 of the tail piece 40 extends laterally each side of the center strip 402 thereof as best shown in Fig. 1, and is formed to provide a pair of laterally spaced guides 404 longitudinally bored at 4%40 to telescopingly receive the forward portions of the carrier rods 30. A suitable compression spring 50 is telescoped over the forward end 301 of each of the said carrier rods 30 `forward of the guides 404 of the transverse tail 491 of the tail piece 40, and an adjusting nut 5i and lock nut 52 is threaded on the forward threaded end SG1 of each said carrier rod 30. The adjusting nuts 51 function to establish the neutral position of the tail piece 40, the normal angular attitude of the lever-linkage system $6- 45, and the neutral position of the tremolo operating arm 38, all as desired by the particular musican who plays a guitar 11 or the like equipped with an improved tremolo device 10 embodying the invention.
A suitable cover plate 55 may be placed over the unsightly portion of the mechanism of the tremolo device 10. The said cover plate 55 is preferably supported on bosses 323 extending upwardly from the transverse anchor bar 32, and is rmly secured on the flat tops of said bosses 323 by such means as studs 56.
By manually deilecting or vibrating the tremolo operating arm 38 of the tremolo device 10 laterally after the strings of the guitar 11 have been strummed, a tremolo effect is attained proportionate to the vigorousness and extent to which the tremolo operating arm 38 is deflected either or both sides of its neutral position. Release of the tremolo operating ann 38 permits the improved tremolo mechanism to return immediately and accurately to its normal position whereupon the tremolo effect ceases abruptly and full normal tone quality is obtained in the continued playing of the guitar 11 or other stringed instru- -ment equipped with an improved tremolo device embodying the invention.
Although but one embodiment of the invention has been disclosed and described herein, it is obvious that many changes may be made in the size, shape, arrangement and detail of the various elements of the invention without departing from the spirit and scope thereof as defined by the appended claims.
We claim:
l. In a stringed musical instrument, a tremolo device comprising an anchor plate fixed to the body of said instrument including a transverse anchor pivot, a pair of longitudinally disposed laterally spaced carrier rods connected at one end to said pivot, a transverse anchor bar telescoped on said carrier rods and fixed thereto in a selected position adjacent said anchor pivot, a tail piece telescoped on said carrier rods in longitudinal spaced relationship with respect to said transverse anchor bar, a lever system longitudinally connecting said tail piece to said anchor bar movable to reciprocate said tail piece with respect to said anchor bar, said tail piece being formed at its forward end to receive and anchor the strings of said stringed instrument in laterally spaced relationship, compression spring means on said carrier rods having one end thereof disposed in abutment with said tail piece, means adjusting said spring means to resiliently position said tail piece in a desired neutral position, and a tremolo operating arm extending from said lever system and disposed alongside said strings in spaced relationship thereto adapted to move said lever system and said tail piece to change the compression of said spring means responsive to manual lateral movement of said operating arm whereby to produce tremolo effects, release of said operating lever from any position to which it may be moved permitting said spring means to return said tail piece to its normal position.
2. In a stringed musical instrument, a tremolo device comprising an anchor plate xed to the body of said instrument including a transverse anchor pivot, a pair of longitudinally disposed laterally spaced carrier rods fixed at one end to said pivot, a transverse anchor bar telescoped on said carrier rods, means fixing said anchor bar in a selected position on said carrier rods, a tail piece telescoped on said carrier rods in longitudinal spaced relationship with respect to said transverse anchor bar, an L-shaped lever pivotally connected at one end to said anchor bar and having its free end extending laterally from the space between Said anchor bar and said tail piece, a link pivotally connecting said tail piece to said L-shaped lever at the elbow thereof, said tail piece being formed at its forward end to receive and anchor the strings of said stringed instrument in laterally spaced relationship, compression spring means on said carrier rods having one end thereof disposed in abutment with said tail piece, means adjusting said spring means to resiliently position said tail piece in a desired neutral position, and a tremolo operating arm extending from the free end of said L-shaped lever alongside said strings in spaced relationship thereto, manual vibratory movement of the L-shaped lever and link changing the location of said tail piece longitudinally on said carrier rods whereby to produce tremolo tone etects, the manual release of said operating lever permitting said spring means to return said tail piece to its normal position.
3. A tremolo device for stringed musical instruments, an anchor plate xed to the body of said instrument including a transverse anchor pivot, a pair of longitudinally disposed laterally spaced carrier rods fixed at one end to said pivot, a transverse anchor bar telescoped on said carrier rods, means fixing said anchor bar in a selected position on said carrier rods, a tail piece telescoped on said carrier rods in longitudinal spaced relationship with respect to said transverse anchor bar, an L-shaped lever pivotally connected at one end to said anchor bar and having its free end extending laterally from the space between said anchor bar and said tail piece, a link pivotally connecting said tail piece to said L-shaped lever at the elbow thereof, said tail piece being formed at its forward end to receive and anchor the strings of said stringed instrument in laterally spaced relationship, compression spring means on said carrier rods, a tremolo operating `arm extending from the free end of said L-shaped lever alongside said strings in spaced relationship thereto, means on said carrier rods adjusting said compression springs to position said tail piece and said operating lever in the desired normal resilient position when the strings of said stringed instrument are tuned, manual vibratory movement of the L-shaped lever and link changing the location of said tail piece longitudinally on said carrier rods whereby to produce tremolo tone effects, the release of said operating lever permitting said spring means to return said tail piece to its said normal position.
4. A tremolo device for stringed instruments comprising an anchor plate fixed to the body of said instrument including a transverse anchor pivot, a pair of laterally spaced carrier rods connected to said pivot, a transverse anchor bar fixed on said carrier rods, a tail piece telescoped on said carrier rods in longitudinal spaced relationship with respect to said transverse anchor bar, an L-shaped lever-link system longitudinally connecting said tail piece to said anchor bar movable to reciprocate said tail piece with respect to said anchor bar, said tail piece being formed at its forward end to receive and anchor the strings of said stringed instrument in laterally spaced relationship, compression spring means on said carrier rods having one end thereof disposed in abutment with said tail piece, a tremolo operating arm extending from said lever-link system disposed alongside said strings in spaced relationship thereto, and means on said carrier rods adjusting the compression of said compression springs to establish the resilient neutral location of said tail piece and attitude of said lever system and said 5 tremolo operating arm, lateral manual movement of said operating arm producing tremolo effects after strumming of the strings of said stringed instrument.
5. A tremolo device for stringed instruments comprising an anchor plate fixed to the body of said instrument including a transverse anchor pivot, a pair of laterally spaced carrier rods connected at one end to said pivot, a transverse anchor bar fixed on said carrier rods adjacent said pivot, a tail piece telescoped on the free ends of said carrier rods in longitudinal spaced relationship with respect to said transverse anchor bar, an l..-shaped lever-link system consisting of an I -shaped lever pivoted at one end to said tail piece and a link pivoted at one end to said L-shaped lever at the elbow thereof and at the other end to said tail piece longitudinally connecting said tail piece to said anchor bar, said L-shaped lever being movable to reciprocate said tail piece With respect to said anchor bar, said tail piece being formed at its forward end to receive and anchor the strings of said stringed instrument in laterally spaced relationship, compression spring means on said carrier rods having an end thereof disposed in abutment with said tail piece, a tremolo operating arm extending from the free end of said L-shaped lever disposed alongside said strings in spaced relationship thereto, and means on said carrier rods adjusting the compression of said compression springs to establish the resilient neutral location of said tail piece and attitude of said lever system and said tremolo operating arm, lateral manual movement of said operating arm producing tremolo effects after stnumming of the strings of said stringed instrument.
Kauman c. Jan. 5, 1932 Kauffman May 13, 1941
US761557A 1958-09-17 1958-09-17 Tremolo device for stringed musical instruments Expired - Lifetime US2897711A (en)

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Cited By (6)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3056329A (en) * 1960-09-01 1962-10-02 Paul D Butts Tremolo device for stringed instruments
US3695137A (en) * 1970-05-04 1972-10-03 Robert C Eurich Tension adjustment for stringed musical instruments
US4555970A (en) * 1983-06-15 1985-12-03 Rose Floyd D Tremolo apparatus capable of increasing tension on the strings of a musical instrument
US4864909A (en) * 1988-11-23 1989-09-12 Toney William L Stringed instrument and tremolo apparatus
US5542330A (en) * 1992-01-14 1996-08-06 Borisoff; David J. Multi-tuner bridge for stringed musical instruments
EP1704557A2 (en) * 2004-01-12 2006-09-27 Donald L. Ramsay Adjustable tremolo bridge

Citations (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1839395A (en) * 1929-08-19 1932-01-05 Clayton O Kauffman Apparatus for producing tremolo effects
US2241911A (en) * 1938-09-26 1941-05-13 Electro String Instr Corp Stringed musical instrument

Patent Citations (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1839395A (en) * 1929-08-19 1932-01-05 Clayton O Kauffman Apparatus for producing tremolo effects
US2241911A (en) * 1938-09-26 1941-05-13 Electro String Instr Corp Stringed musical instrument

Cited By (8)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US3056329A (en) * 1960-09-01 1962-10-02 Paul D Butts Tremolo device for stringed instruments
US3695137A (en) * 1970-05-04 1972-10-03 Robert C Eurich Tension adjustment for stringed musical instruments
US4555970A (en) * 1983-06-15 1985-12-03 Rose Floyd D Tremolo apparatus capable of increasing tension on the strings of a musical instrument
US4864909A (en) * 1988-11-23 1989-09-12 Toney William L Stringed instrument and tremolo apparatus
US5542330A (en) * 1992-01-14 1996-08-06 Borisoff; David J. Multi-tuner bridge for stringed musical instruments
EP1704557A2 (en) * 2004-01-12 2006-09-27 Donald L. Ramsay Adjustable tremolo bridge
EP1704557A4 (en) * 2004-01-12 2008-10-29 Donald L Ramsay Adjustable tremolo bridge
AU2004314451B2 (en) * 2004-01-12 2009-12-03 Donald L. Ramsay Adjustable tremolo bridge

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