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Jazzmaster vintage trem upgrade

Discussion in 'Other T-Types and Partscasters' started by pypa, Apr 19, 2021.

  1. pypa

    pypa Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    I have a Jazzmaster body that's pre-routed for a vintage trem. Does anyone have opinions on a good alternative to that trem in the same price range? Am not averse to re-routing the pocket.

    Any words of advice/experience welcome.
     
  2. SixStringSlinger

    SixStringSlinger Friend of Leo's

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    I suppose that depends on what you'd consider an upgrade. What's your beef with the original?
     
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  3. J. Bonkosky

    J. Bonkosky Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    The vibrato tailpiece or the bridge? The American fender made tailpiece is as good or better than anything else on the market. The bridge is a fine unit when setup correctly. Some people like the mustang bridge or the mastery bridge. I have used both but prefer the sound of the stock unit.
     
  4. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    If I understand this correctly, you don’t want a “Floating Tremolo”/offset trem?

    There’s a Bigsby plate adapter, but I don’t think a B5 Bigsby is an upgrade from the offset trem. Besides, B5s are hard to find, with crazy prices. There’s the two big upgrades to the AV gold standard, but out the budget. I’d get a Fender Panorama unit but that comes with an ‘annoying’ guitar I’d have to flip :)
     
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  5. pypa

    pypa Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    I have the body, it is pre-routed for the Vintage tremolo, but I have not yet purchased the tremolo or the bridge. I have read that it isn't great for tuning stability. I am not averse to just going with the Vintage, but I thought i'd ask for experience before doing that. To be clear, I have no personal beef vs. the Vintage trem but have never used one.
     
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  6. eMGee

    eMGee Friend of Leo's

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    Or... you could go non-term. Found this on eB*y. (The extra hole is for a lipstick pickup for behind-the-bridge playing. Not my own idea, but looked like something I'd like to try.) I also picked up a plate with angled string holes.

    IMG_1595.jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2021
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  7. lammie200

    lammie200 Friend of Leo's

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    Mo money but I have a Mastery trem on my JM and am not looking back.
     
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  8. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Don't believe critics that don't know how to set them up. They are beautiful units. Nothing shimmers like a nice JM. I would lean toward a Tusq XL nut though.
     
  9. fasteddie42

    fasteddie42 Tele-Afflicted

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    why?
     
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  10. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    They are tuning stable, but like all guitars, it's all about the set up. I'd go with these for a build:

    https://darrenriley.com/store/fender-american-vintage-jaguar-jazzmaster-tremolo-0054466000/

    and a Staytrem bridge:

    https://staytrem.com/epages/9500023...h=/Shops/950002362/Categories/Page__Category1
     
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  11. lammie200

    lammie200 Friend of Leo's

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  12. Mekhem

    Mekhem Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

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    My experiences below.
    +1 for the Staytrem bridge. Its a good upgrade to the stock and, set up aside, allows a good range of string sizes. I have a Mastery bridge and like it bit i am not convinced it $100 better than a Staytrem bridge (of note for a build: the mastery comes with thimbles).

    The trem though get into a lot of things. Most of them involve how you want/need to set up the guitar: Neck shim > Bridge height > behind the bridge break angle

    • AVRI unit, above link, is of course the gold standard and I would highly recommend the staytrem arm and collet to fix chronic floppy arm. a good set up will usually require a neck shim and a higher bridge for optimal break angle
    • Mastery Trem - Nice unit with great feel. Similar set up requirements to avri. Spendy....
    • Decendent trem - Lowers the string anchor point, so theoretically, lessens the need for a high bridge and/or neck shim for break angle. I have not tried this one but want to due to the changes in set up options. Also very spendy.
    Any combination will require a good offset set up but once its right its magic.
     
  13. lammie200

    lammie200 Friend of Leo's

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    Also +1 on the Staytrem bridge. But I think as with almost any JM bridge you may need to file down the back edge of the upturned flange so that the strings clear it at the break angle to the tremolo. It is a very tight tolerance for no reason.
     
  14. pypa

    pypa Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    I got my trem. The locking button doesn't match by body route, so I have a little drilling to do.
     
  15. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    Stock hardware is generally fine. It's all about the setup.
     
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  16. zippofan

    zippofan Tele-Afflicted

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    We have two guitars with Staytrem bridges, VM Jag (my son's) and VM Jazzmaster. I put a US tailpiece on the Jag and a Mexican on the Jazz, they both play nice.
     
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