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Classic Vibe Jazzmaster trem, functional or not?

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by BluesRockDude, Apr 12, 2021.

  1. BluesRockDude

    BluesRockDude TDPRI Member

    Dec 8, 2012
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    I've been considering getting a jazzmaster, and the classic vibes seem the best option for my budget. I'd like to use the trem, and I'm wondering how good the CV is for tuning stability with a lot of trem use. The last squier I owned was a strat in the nineties, and the trem on that was essentially a cosmetic feature as it always knocked the guitar out of tune. I know squier quality has come on a long way, but reliable trems in budget guitars are usually rare. Anyone have any experience with the CV Jazzmasters?
  2. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

    Apr 2, 2014
    Phoenix, AZ
    It’s functional. Since the 90s, a lot has changed in quality, especially with the older VM line and CV line. I own a VM JM, owned VM and CV Jaguars, and also a VM Bass VI. Each of those trem plates were good to great. They all did what they were supposed to do, but I do recall the VM Jag having a click. IIRC, some people file the fulcrum edge point for a ‘better’ pitch return, but all my examples didn’t have any problems. I switched my VMJM trem to the AV version, and while I say the spring/feel and fulcrum was upgraded, I simply swapped because I wanted the lock button :).

    The only other variable is the bridge and nut. With both the VM and CV, the nuts both need work. The bone CV nut was ok, but they shaved too much off the top at the factory and I barely had any depth to keep my high ‘e’ in it’s slot. A little dressing and graphite for both. Bridge? Aye. Pick your poison. The CV bridge is actually great, over the previous VM. It has a 9.5” radius and chrome brass Mustang-style saddles. The bridge post screws still need teflon tape or lacquer/locktite to immobilize the threads a little. The low ‘e’ slot might need some filing to seat well. You’re gonna want to shim the CV JM neck, for sure, anywhere from half to a full degree. I started out using 11s but I upgrade all my offset bridges, and 10s or even 9s are doable (i.e. Mastery, Staytrem, etc).

    Tuners are good, you shouldn’t have any problem with them.
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2021
  3. WingedWords

    WingedWords Friend of Leo's

    Feb 4, 2015
    UK Europe.
    Michael Adams is pretty reliable on offsets. It's a while since I watched these reviews, but I'm pretty sure he talks about the trem. (The CV Jaguar uses the same trem.) Worth a look through anyway.

    In the UK James Gascoigne at James' Home of Tone knows a lot about offsets and I'm sure would be happy to give you an honest opinion.
    Here's an article he wrote on the trem as part of a series on modding the earlier Squier Vintage Modified JM


    Hope that helps. There's also lots of info right here on TDPRI

    BorderRadio and BluesRockDude like this.
  4. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 11, 2013
    Personal experience with a JMJM and a Bass VI: trems work very well.
    BluesRockDude likes this.
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