Fender jaguar opinions?

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by jetlennon, Dec 2, 2014.

  1. jetlennon

    jetlennon Tele-Meister

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    Hi guys,

    Im in a british invasion coverband and thinking about buying a jaguar. Havent played one but like the look. Would it suit my style?

    Thx!
     
  2. LoveHz

    LoveHz Tele-Holic

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    When we "invaded" (I've always thought this a strange term, but I'll go with it) I don't seem to recall that there were many Jaguars about, although no doubt someone will find a photo of somebody playing one. Plenty of ES335s and SGs, and a few Gretsch and Rickenbacker when people could get them.

    But don't let that put you off. I've recently bought a Squier VM Jag and I'm having great fun with it.
     
  3. Fendereedo

    Fendereedo Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've heard that the bridge in the VM Jaguar is not very good, how was yours?
     
  4. Newbie Brad

    Newbie Brad Tele-Meister

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    All the Morrisey cats are playing the Johnny Marr Jag.
     
  5. Fearnot

    Fearnot Friend of Leo's

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    There's nothing wrong with the VM bridge that isn't wrong with all of them; it's a pretty finicky design. I'm using the Warmoth Modified Mustang bridge myself.
     
  6. LoveHz

    LoveHz Tele-Holic

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    "I've heard that the bridge in the VM Jaguar is not very good, how was yours?"

    The Jag/Jazzmaster bridge has come in for a lot of criticism over the years. Main complaints are that it buzzes and enthusiastic playing can sometimes make the strings pop off too easily. True, the string break angle over the saddles is very shallow — but when these guitars were designed, players used much heavier gauge strings (12s maybe) so the problem didn't really arise.

    Nowadays, put 9s or 10s on and give the guitar a good hammering, then yes, the bridge might well buzz and the strings could well slip off. However, there are easy fixes, I think.

    Make sure the saddle adjustment screws are the same height through each saddle so that it doesn't chatter on the bridge bass.

    A spot of clear nail varnish — or some sort of non-permanent Loctite — on the saddle screws will stop them from slipping or rattling.

    If you shim the neck very slightly then you'll have to raise the saddles a little and this will increase the break angle (and therefore string pressure) over the saddles.

    If you're still not happy with the bridge then replacements are available. The Fender Mustang bridge is the cheapest option, although its radius may not be exactly the same as the guitar neck (depending on which Jaguar version you buy). The high and low E saddles may need to be shimmed with thin washers if you feel any radius mismatch is an issue. The Mastery replacement bridge seems to solve all problems but is quite expensive — probably worth it for a US-made guitar but maybe not cost-effective for a Squier. Costwise, the Staytrem bridge is a midprice option but I don't know which models it fits.

    I'm currently experimenting with both a Mustang bridge and a device called the Buzzstop which simply screws to the trem plate and acts like the tension bar on a Bigsby, increasing the string break angle considerably. Some players hate it, either because they don't like the look of it, or because they feel it robs the guitar of some of its characteristic tone, or that it stiffens the guitar's lovely warbly trem action. Or for all three of those reasons. I'm currently trying a Buzzstop fitted back to front (see pic). This moves the tension bar further away from the bridge — it still increases the break angle, but not by as much as fitting the thing the right way round. And, to be honest, the effect on the guitar tone is minimal to my ears and the trem feels much the same. And the appearance doesn't bother me at all — although I might yet go back to square one.

    I just think the Jags and Jazzmasters are great guitars, whether you fiddle around with the bridge or not. And Newbie Brad mentioned the Johnny Marr Jag. That thing sounds terrific.
     

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  7. brenn

    brenn Tele-Afflicted

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    I have owned a few Jazzmasters, U.S. and Japanese, and all I ever had to do to stop buzz at the briudge was make sure that the height adjustment screws on each saddle had the same tension. If a saddle is angled, with one screw pressing down harder than the other, the shorter screw tends to buzz. With the saddles adjusted, I never had buzz issues (may vary with playing style, but I played a lot of punk rock rhythm with them). Putting on a Jaguar bridge and taping the bridge posts/legs so it doesn't rock, was the only modification I made to some of them.
     
  8. jetlennon

    jetlennon Tele-Meister

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    I've got a epi 61 casino reissue wich does a great job and a vox phantom that also looks the part but i'm selling my Ric330 (the neck problem)
    So money to spend on a guitar. I just like the look of the jag and think soundwise it would be allright. Early beatles,searchers,hollies etc
     
  9. joy-z

    joy-z TDPRI Member

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    I don't recall any British Invasion bands using an SG. Gretsch or ES335? Yes.
     
  10. Fendereedo

    Fendereedo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Thanks great reply. I like these, wouldn't mind one at some point.
     
  11. spankdplank

    spankdplank Tele-Afflicted

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    I have the Squier Jag and Squier Jazzmaster. Both sound and play like the "real deal". These type of guitars are finicky to set up, but once you do they sound great and are a lot of fun to play. These guitars are so good I have gigged both of my Squiers and left my American Strats and Teles at home without any problem. I put Buzzstops on both my Jag and JM and it is a huge improvement in sustain and stops the bridge rattle/string popping issues, with minimal effect on the feel of the whammy. Both guitars are very bright and twangy, with the Jag perhaps a bit more so. The Jag also has a very short 24'' scale, as opposed the the JM's 25.5", which is the standard Fender scale length. This might take a little getting used to. Finally, the bridge on the Squires is the same design as on the vintage ones, where the bridge posts sit loosely in metal cups, with a screw in the bottom of each post for height adjustment. some people think this is a poor design, but it actually works well because the bridge will rock back and forth a bit when you use the whammy and it helps it return to tune. The down side is that the post screws on the Squires are fairly loose and they will work their way back up the post with playing vibrations and rocking the whammy, thus gradually and unintentionally lowering your action to the point where you will start to have problems. If you set your action and then take the bridge out, put some Loctite on the post threads and then put it back in, this problem will go away. I don't consider these to be typical "British Invasion" guitars, but run them through a Vox and they will definitely do the job.
     
  12. CrisHendrix

    CrisHendrix Tele-Afflicted

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    I just got rid of my VM Jag. Really liked the sound and look of it, but it was just a bit too finicky and I wasn't really "vibing" with it, even after applying Loctite to the bridge and swapping out the trem for a hardtail replacement to increase stability, etc.. Also got an SG last year and have "vibed" far more with that one, definitely a keeper (I draw the comparison because they're both "short scale", at least compared to Strats and Teles).
     
  13. 56strat

    56strat Tele-Meister

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    I have the 50th Anniversary Jaguar. I wouldn't necessarily call it a British Invasion guitar, but with the right technique and the right amp, who knows? I have a pretty aggressive attack and I don't have any trouble with the bridge buzzing or the strings jumping off. I think on these, the tailpiece may be located closer to the bridge than on a normal Jag. Somebody check me on that. I do like the shorter scale for something different than my other guitars.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. lineboat

    lineboat Friend of Leo's

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    You're right. The extra angle on the strings makes a big difference. The Classic Player is the same way. Great guitars!
     
  15. lindenj

    lindenj Tele-Meister Ad Free + Supporter

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    The Johnny Marr has eliminated the infamous "bridge issues" of the past Jaggz. Oooooo I want one soooo badddd.....gonna make my teles jealous...just debating on the colors now!
     
  16. sjtalon

    sjtalon Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Well, Surf Green of course !
     

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  17. goonie

    goonie Friend of Leo's

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    Yes the tailpiece is a lot closer to the bridge than on the original design. About an inch I would say. Which in one sense is kinda odd on an 'anniversary' model but let's face it, the guitar is much more playable.
     
  18. lindenj

    lindenj Tele-Meister Ad Free + Supporter

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    That is B*E*A*U*T*I*F*U*L !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  19. sjtalon

    sjtalon Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Thank you my great northern friend.

    Please don't send us any of that frightfully cold air again this winter...bababababrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr !


    :p
     
  20. lineboat

    lineboat Friend of Leo's

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    Here's my latest. A Blacktop Jag I routed, and wired all the innards like an HH Classic Player. I don't have a trem to mess with on this one. The neck is now on it, new strings on. I tuned it and put it back in the case. Gonna let it settle in for a couple days.
     

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