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Old 01-02-2018, 05:28 PM
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David MacNeill David MacNeill is offline
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Default Stratocaster trem block

Anybody know of a drop-in trem block, something that could be inserted and removed easily? Preferably made of alder? I could make one but where we live now I donít have space for a proper wood shop.
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Old 01-02-2018, 05:42 PM
LouieAtienza LouieAtienza is offline
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Buy a pack of shims for $3 at the hardware store, and cut to shape
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Old 01-02-2018, 05:46 PM
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Originally Posted by David MacNeill View Post
Anybody know of a drop-in trem block, something that could be inserted and removed easily? Preferably made of alder? I could make one but where we live now I donít have space for a proper wood shop.
Why would it need to be alder?

I haven't ever seen such a thing. I've achieved much the same result as a block by using 5 springs at maximum tension, and cranking down the 6 pivot screws, so that the trem sits flush to the body.

Alternatively, you could just use these

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Old 01-02-2018, 05:59 PM
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It’s a musical instrument, not a kitchen floor. A block that connects to the strings via the trem block should be made of the same wood as the body: alder.
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Old 01-02-2018, 06:08 PM
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Itís a musical instrument, not a kitchen floor. A block that connects to the strings via the trem block should be made of the same wood as the body: alder.
I think you might be over-reacting just a tad.
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Old 01-02-2018, 06:17 PM
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I think you might be over-reacting just a tad.
Donít think so. To me, Strats arenít ďplanksĒ. Wood matters.
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Old 01-02-2018, 06:21 PM
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Donít think so. To me, Strats arenít ďplanksĒ. Wood matters.
I don't disagree. I do, however, seriously doubt that anyone could pick up any tonal differences that could be attributed to the type of wood a Strat trem block is made of.
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Old 01-02-2018, 06:27 PM
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I don't disagree. I do, however, seriously doubt that anyone could pick up any tonal differences that could be attributed to the type of wood a Strat trem block is made of.
I would. Imagine using closed cell foam, or balsa. Either would absorb string energy instead of transmitting it to the body.

Clapton uses blocks. Do you think they are made of cheap hardware store shims?
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Old 01-02-2018, 06:34 PM
LouieAtienza LouieAtienza is offline
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I would. Imagine using closed cell foam, or balsa. Either would absorb string energy instead of transmitting it to the body.

Clapton uses blocks. Do you think they are made of cheap hardware store shims?
Clapton played a hardtail (Blackie), he did not like the sound of a trem guitar...

As to absorption of atring energy? By the trem pivot screws. By your reasoning a floating trem would bring no string energy to the body...
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Old 01-02-2018, 06:34 PM
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Clapton uses blocks. Do you think they are made of cheap hardware store shims?
I neither know, nor do I care.

I do know, however, that using a in a post that is intended to be jocular apparently doesn't work for some folks.

Over and out.
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Old 01-02-2018, 07:56 PM
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Originally Posted by David MacNeill View Post
Itís a musical instrument, not a kitchen floor. A block that connects to the strings via the trem block should be made of the same wood as the body: alder.
Not necessarily. I've modded a gaggle of Strats and to be honest, you can't totally predict the results. I've found that unless you pin the trem with something metallic like quarters the sound itself doesn't change much. However I'd support the idea that the wooden shims would work well without disturbing anything.

Personally, for my own playing, I'm not fond of blocking the trem. I can achieve similar results with spring tension. Also, even on my decked trems I tend to back off the tension just enough so that the strings don't feel so stiff, yet don't make the other strings go out of tune much when bending. JMO
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Old 01-02-2018, 08:06 PM
LouieAtienza LouieAtienza is offline
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Originally Posted by vindibona1 View Post
Not necessarily. I've modded a gaggle of Strats and to be honest, you can't totally predict the results. I've found that unless you pin the trem with something metallic like quarters the sound itself doesn't change much. However I'd support the idea that the wooden shims would work well without disturbing anything.

Personally, for my own playing, I'm not fond of blocking the trem. I can achieve similar results with spring tension. Also, even on my decked trems I tend to back off the tension just enough so that the strings don't feel so stiff, yet don't make the other strings go out of tune much when bending. JMO
I think using 5 springs and adjusting the screws that the trem plate completely touches the top is a good idea, and one I've done in the past. Unless of course I'm in surf mode.
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Old 01-02-2018, 08:31 PM
Steve DeRosa Steve DeRosa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eatswodo View Post
...I've achieved much the same result as a block by using 5 springs at maximum tension, and cranking down the 6 pivot screws, so that the trem sits flush to the body...
Quote:
Originally Posted by LouieAtienza View Post
I think using 5 springs and adjusting the screws that the trem plate completely touches the top is a good idea, and one I've done in the past. Unless of course I'm in surf mode.
You don't even need to crank down the pivot screws - FYI this used to be called the "Van Halen Mod," since Eddie used it before Floyds came on the market; good news is that it allows you to do down-bends when/if you choose, you get the benefit of the bridge/tailpiece coupling with the top, and you don't lose that "acoustic reverb" that five-spring Strats used to be known for back in the day...

Quote:
Originally Posted by LouieAtienza View Post
Buy a pack of shims for $3 at the hardware store, and cut to shape...
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Originally Posted by LouieAtienza View Post
...As to absorption of string energy? By the trem pivot screws. By your reasoning a floating trem would bring no string energy to the body...
PSA: since Louie builds guitars (do a search on the Custom Shop subforum), IME he knows what he's talking about...

FWIW I've been in this game for 55 years, and one of the things I love about the AGF is that I learn something new every day...

Looks like today is your day...
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Old 01-02-2018, 09:14 PM
Otterhound Otterhound is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LouieAtienza View Post
Clapton played a hardtail (Blackie), he did not like the sound of a trem guitar...

As to absorption of atring energy? By the trem pivot screws. By your reasoning a floating trem would bring no string energy to the body...
I love my hardtail Strat .
Was the Brownie a hardtail ? You know , the guitar that supplied the neck for the Blind Faith Tele .
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  #15  
Old 01-03-2018, 12:01 AM
M Hayden M Hayden is offline
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With five springs and the claw in tight, my strats have great energy transfer and donít need blocking, and I put 11s or 12s on it. Those trem springs are mighty strong!
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