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Neck Relief Drop Tuning Question
Phil66
Jun 28 2020, 07:17 PM
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Thank Todd,

Yeah, I've got one of those on my Squire HMIII, the one with the crackle finish, I'm just thinking of blocking or decking or even double blocking to see how it goes. My luthier friend fitted the Tremol-no and did a full set up because the guitar kept going out of tune, I think the knife edges on the Scaller trem were worn so I bought a Tremel-No and took it in.

He hadn't fitted one before but he did say that if you don't need to swap between floating, dive bombing and fixed then wood is just as good.

I'm just wondering if any Strat players here had tried any of the methods.

Cheers

QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Jun 28 2020, 06:09 PM) *
There is always the "TREMEL NO" as an option. Easy to put in and take off.

https://www.tremol-no.com/

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klasaine
Jun 28 2020, 11:33 PM
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I have one Strat with the trem blocked.
If you don't need to use the trem, that's the fool proof solution and you can change your string gauge at will.

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Phil66
Jun 29 2020, 08:18 AM
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QUOTE (klasaine @ Jun 28 2020, 11:33 PM) *
I have one Strat with the trem blocked.
If you don't need to use the trem, that's the fool proof solution and you can change your string gauge at will.


Thanks Ken,

Is yours blocked on both sides of the trem or just one, if just one side, which side? I'm guessing the best side for most people is the side that prevents the trem being able to be pulled by the strings, I know some have it on the other side to allow dive bombs.

Cheers

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This post has been edited by Phil66: Jun 29 2020, 08:20 AM


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klasaine
Jun 29 2020, 04:46 PM
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Completely blocked. It might as well be a "hard tailed" Strat at this point.

*I am thinking about unblocking it though.

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Phil66
Jun 29 2020, 06:15 PM
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Thanks Ken, I think I'll do that, so you have the trem against the body or angled? I think I'll have mine against the body.

Cheers

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Todd Simpson
Jun 30 2020, 12:36 AM
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Could always get an ibanez fireman with single coils and a fixed bridge! smile.gif but it's not as handy as blocking the trem since you can alway unblock a trem and have it back as a real "strat". Not that blocked strats are "fake"Strats per se, just have had some of their design functionality removed usually for an issue like the one you are facing.




QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jun 29 2020, 01:15 PM) *
Thanks Ken, I think I'll do that, so you have the trem against the body or angled? I think I'll have mine against the body.

Cheers

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klasaine
Jun 30 2020, 01:20 AM
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Against the body.

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Phil66
Jun 30 2020, 07:34 AM
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Thanks Todd & Ken,

For now, until I get a bit of time and sort some wood out of my garage I've put five springs on it, didn't need to adjust the claw springs, it's pulled the trem against the body and it doesn't put other string flat when bending. I don't know about the sonic pros and cons.

There is fret buzz, action is 2mm (.080") on the bass and 1.5mm (.060") on the treble, relief is 0.25mm (.010") on the bass at the 8th fret. I'm trying to develop a softer picking style to overcome it a little.

I don't want to by a hard tail Ibanez Todd, even though it's a good idea, I just love the SRV, everything about it, the neck, the tone, the looks, the whole feel of it.

Once I've decided what strings I'm going to be using, 10s, 12s or hybrids, I'll take it to my friend and get him to set it up as it should be with floating trem and D standard tuning if possible, if not he can double block it, unless I decide to keep it how it is, if it works no point change only for sonic benefits.

Thanks for you help folks. Appreciated smile.gif

Phil

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klasaine
Jun 30 2020, 05:30 PM
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I doubt you'd notice any 'sonic' difference. If there even is any, it is neither good nor bad. Just different.

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Phil66
Jun 30 2020, 08:24 PM
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Thanks Ken, the cork sniffers out there debate it at great lengths wink.gif

As a side shot, this video is interesting, I was thinking about this when I was messing but I'm not experienced enough to do it in 15-30 minutes like he says wink.gif

https://youtu.be/Iy-F7iSIopA

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This post has been edited by Phil66: Jun 30 2020, 08:35 PM


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Todd Simpson
Jun 30 2020, 10:02 PM
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I laughed out loud at the sheer stone faced quality of that statement. smile.gif Good one Ken.

QUOTE (klasaine @ Jun 29 2020, 08:20 PM) *
Against the body.



More springs is a good plan smile.gif Your guy will have plenty of tension to work with. He should be able to set it up to float and be in perfect tune and hopefully get rid of the buzz by adjusting various bits on the axe. Then you'll have the srv with the strings your looking for and it will detune just fine smile.gif Hopefully.

QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jun 30 2020, 02:34 AM) *
Thanks Todd & Ken,

For now, until I get a bit of time and sort some wood out of my garage I've put five springs on it, didn't need to adjust the claw springs, it's pulled the trem against the body and it doesn't put other string flat when bending. I don't know about the sonic pros and cons.

There is fret buzz, action is 2mm (.080") on the bass and 1.5mm (.060") on the treble, relief is 0.25mm (.010") on the bass at the 8th fret. I'm trying to develop a softer picking style to overcome it a little.

I don't want to by a hard tail Ibanez Todd, even though it's a good idea, I just love the SRV, everything about it, the neck, the tone, the looks, the whole feel of it.

Once I've decided what strings I'm going to be using, 10s, 12s or hybrids, I'll take it to my friend and get him to set it up as it should be with floating trem and D standard tuning if possible, if not he can double block it, unless I decide to keep it how it is, if it works no point change only for sonic benefits.

Thanks for you help folks. Appreciated smile.gif

Phil

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klasaine
Jul 1 2020, 01:20 AM
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Re: the Carl Verheyen vid ...
Yeah, you can get real deep with how to set up a trem depending on what you want to accomplish with. Some guys hook the springs up at more drastic angles like low E spring hooked to the claw closer to the A or D string.
My Xotic Strat will drop the G and B string down a whole step which is nice as I can get the 3rd and the 5th of a triad to move in tune. *Also, the Xotic Co. fashions their own trem springs because they like the alloy recipe from the 50s better than the current standard and they think that it enhances the tone and feel. YMMV on that.

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Phil66
Jul 1 2020, 06:13 AM
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Thanks both,

Obviously once I'd decided to block/deck it the offset pull on the springs became irrelevant but, at first when I was messing and keeping it floating I did start to wonder.

The reason I asked about having the trem angled or against the body is that one video I watched was saying that some people still like to have angle on the trem even when double blocking, which I didn't see the reason behind, unless I misunderstood what the bloke was saying.

Cheers

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This post has been edited by Phil66: Jul 4 2020, 08:25 AM


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Todd Simpson
Jul 1 2020, 07:58 PM
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Once your luthier gets a crack at it, you may not need to block the trim. But, if you don't and you don't like the results, you can always have it blocked. SRV did make use of the trem now and then so blocking it would sorta keep it from being a srv strat like srv actually played. Here is a site about how he set up his guitars. I hope it helps smile.gif As you'll notice, he did use 5 trem springs.

http://davidtannen.com/music/stevie-ray-va...ns-guitar-setup

----
Neck adjustment

With all the guitars, neck straightness (or relief) is the first thing I checked, sighting down the fingerboard. A fingerboard should either be dead flat or have a slight up-bow, known as relief, in the direction of the strings' pull. Stevie's guitars had approximately .012" of relief around the 7th and 9th frets, and then leveled out for the remainder of the board.
String gauge

Stevie tunes his guitar down a half-step and uses GHS Nickel Rockers measuring .013, .015, .019 (plain), .028, .038, and .058. On this particular day, Rene had substituted an .011 for the high E to keep down the sore fingers that blues bends can cause. Rene changes strings every show for each guitar that gets played.
Fretwire

If you're trying to evaluate action, it's nice to know what size and shape of fretwire is used on any guitar. Number One's frets measure .110" wide by .047" tall. These frets would have started out at .055" tall when they were new, and were probably either Dunlop 6100 or Stewart-MacDonald 150 wire.
String height

I measured the distance from the underside of the strings to the top of the fret at the 12th fret on both E strings. Rene Martinez describes "I set up all of Stevie's the same: 5/64" on the treble E string and 7/64" at the bass E."
Fingerboard radius

Knowing the radius of the fingerboard can help in setting up a comfortable bridge saddle height and curve. Stevie's Number One was somewhat flatter than the vintage 7-1/4" radius. Rene has refretted the neck at least twice, and in the process the fingerboard has evolved into a 9" or 10" radius in the upper register. This isn't the result of a purposeful attempt to create a compound radius, which allows string-bending with less-noting out; it just happened.
Bridge saddles

Stevie's Number One wants to break high E and B strings at the saddle every chance she gets. Rene showed me why the strings break, and how he takes care of the problem: As a string breaks out of the vintage Strat tremolo block/bridge top plate, it "breaks" or contacts, the metal directly; this causes a slight kink that weakens the string. With the bridge saddles removed, Rene uses a Dremel Moto-Tool to grind the holes edge until the lip is smooth and gradual, and any binding is eliminated.



Number One uses vintage replacement saddles (the originals wore out long ago), and they're not all alike --some have a shorter string slot than others. The high E and B strings may contact the front edge of this string clearance slot as they rise toward the "takeoff point" at the saddle's peak. The kink formed by the contact stretches into the saddle peak during tuning, and breaks right at the crown. Rene elongates the slot, again by grinding, and then smoothes any rough metal edges. Finally, he slides a 5/8"-long piece of plastic tubing (insulation from electrical wire) over each string to protect it from the metal "break points." He uses the heaviest piece of tubing he can get that still fits down the tremolo/block hole. Even with this, the high strings still cut through the plastic quickly (sometimes in one set), and when they do, the strings break. Rene plans to try a Teflon wire insulation if he can find the right size.
Nuts

Stevie's Number One, Lenny and Charley have standard Fender-style nuts, but Rene makes them from bone. Stevie prefers the sound of bone, although for studio work he had Rene make brass nuts for Scotch and Red.
Tremolo setup

Vaughan's standard vintage tremolo uses all five springs. Rene prefers the durability of the stainless steel Fender tremolo bars. He puts a small wad of cotton at the bottom of the tremolo-block hole to keep the bar from over-tightening and becoming hard to remove if it breaks. He emphasizes the importance of lubricating all the moving parts of the tremolo system, preferring a powdered graphite-and-grease mixture (the grease holds the graphite in place where it's needed). He lubricates everything that moves: mounting screws/plate; all string "breaks" and contact points, including the saddle peaks; where the springs attach to the block and claw; the nut slots; and the string trees.
Pickup height


As a reference point I laid a precision steel straightedge along the frets for making the measurement. Stevie's pickups were raised fairly high. I measured from the straightedge to the polepiece tops: On the treble side, the bridge pickup touched the straightedge, and the middle almost touched the straightedge, and the neck pickup was 1/16" away. The bass side measured 1/32" at the bridge pickup, 1/16" at the middle, and 1/32" at the neck.
Tuning machines

We've covered about everything except tuners, and there's nothing secret here. Stevie Ray's tuners are all originals, and each has three full string winds to get the best angle at the nut.

QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jul 1 2020, 01:13 AM) *
Thanks both,

Obviously once is decided to block/deck it the offset pull on the springs became irrelevant but, at first when I was messing and keeping it floating I did start to wonder.

The reason I asked about having the trem angled or against the body is that one video I watched was saying that some people still like to have angle on the trem even when double blocking, which I didn't see the reason behind, unless I misunderstood what the bloke was saying.

Cheers

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Phil66
Jul 1 2020, 08:57 PM
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Thanks Todd,

I tuned down a whole step because the lesson I'm doing (https://www.guitarmasterclass.net/ls/SRV-Chordal-Licks/) and some others on the GMC site are tuned that way, maybe all of them.

I'll have a talk with my luthier in a few weeks, we might be going into local lockdown here soon rolleyes.gif

I had a look for some 13s with a plain G but they're tricky to find, I found 12s with a plain G though.

I know I can't get it setup like "number 1" as this guitar was made for people to get close to the SRV experience but I can only do what is possible without my own private tech wink.gif

Cheers

Phli

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This post has been edited by Phil66: Jul 4 2020, 08:36 AM


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Todd Simpson
Jul 3 2020, 10:55 PM
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I look forward to seeing you go full SRV!! smile.gif I hope you guys avoid another lockdown. We are on the verge of more of those just about everyhere over here. It looked like we were doing better for a while, but then, as many experts predicted, we started seeing more and more spread. Now there are several countries in Europe that won't take flights from my country at this point.

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Phil66
Jul 4 2020, 09:01 AM
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I don't think I'll be able to go to full SRV but I may go to 12s, it's a struggle to find 13s with an unwound G.

Going back to that angled claw, I'm not going to even attempt it but I am trying to understand the physics of it. I'm struggling to understand how you can put more tension on the low strings than on the high. I understand that the springs themselves will have different tension but, they all attach to a common block, the trem itself has two or more screws holding it in place so I just can't see how the tension isn't averaged out by the time it gets to the strings.

Being an engineer I'm embarrassed that I can't understand it but maybe being an engineer is making me over think it laugh.gif

Cheers

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klasaine
Jul 4 2020, 05:36 PM
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The strings also exert different tension from the first to the sixth which gets complicated due to the fact that the bass strings are wound and the diameter (and alloy) and overall length of the winding is different than the diameter and length of the core.

There is a good book on the physics of musical instruments (and sound) - 'Strings, Horns and Harmony' by Arthur Benade. There's a chapter on the piano and they go into string length, tension, material, windings, etc. It is truly fascinating.
https://www.google.com/books/edition/Horns_...tsec=frontcover
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1542369...ngs_and_Harmony

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Phil66
Jul 4 2020, 06:29 PM
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Thanks Ken,

Yeah I understand that the strings and springs exert different tensions at the point of contact I just can't understand how you can affect the tension on different strings by altering the tension of the springs that are attached to a solid block which in turn is connected a set of string clamps and the whole assembly is connected to a fulcrum that only allows movement of the whole assembly at the same time in one plane.

I could understand it if the block and clamps were spot into six individual sections with a dedicated spring for each.

I think I need to get that book.

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Todd Simpson
Jul 5 2020, 10:36 PM
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I always thought it had more of a regional effect. E.G. Loosen the first spring and the first few strings are effected and so on. I usually keep a high level of tension on my strings so that there is very little back pull when pulling up the trem. I leave a bit just in case I want to pull up a harmonic but it's not set free float balance in the middle. I have done that on a few guitars and it does make tuning a bit of a pain especially during a string change. So I went toward a higher tension but not fully snapped to the back by the springs.

QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jul 4 2020, 01:29 PM) *
Thanks Ken,

Yeah I understand that the strings and springs exert different tensions at the point of contact I just can't understand how you can affect the tension on different strings by altering the tension of the springs that are attached to a solid block which in turn is connected a set of string clamps and the whole assembly is connected to a fulcrum that only allows movement of the whole assembly at the same time in one plane.

I could understand it if the block and clamps were spot into six individual sections with a dedicated spring for each.

I think I need to get that book.

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