5 springs?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by Willmunny, Oct 29, 2019.

  1. Willmunny

    Willmunny Strat-O-Master

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    While changing strings in my 2013 mij I noticed 5 springs in the trem cavity. My mim and the many squires I have handled have all had 3.
    Is this factory or possibly po wanted to stiffen the bridge. The guitar plays great and I never really put the trem arm on this one.
    20191029_103302.jpg 20191029_103205.jpg 20191029_103232.jpg
     
  2. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Most Honored Senior Member

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    it's just a personal choice... the major difference is the more springs the more force it takes to actuate the tremolo...

    some will argue that it makes for a better sound... I'd suggest it's just a DIFFERENT sound, relative to what ya had before.. that could be better, if you like it, our worse if ya don't.. More springs is no guarantee of anything except the force needed to move the tremolo..

    r
     
  3. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

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    MIJ 'reissues' always come new with 5....
     
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  4. Willmunny

    Willmunny Strat-O-Master

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    Thank you
     
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  5. Yves

    Yves Most Honored Senior Member

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    Blimey !
    I've been had then. My MIJ 60s bought new came with only 3.
     
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  6. Ronkirn

    Ronkirn Most Honored Senior Member

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    reason there were 5 springs back when is back then the lightest gauge strings around were 10's . and most of us were playing 11's. 12's or 13's.. thus the additional tension required additional springs to offset it..

    Today 10's have become the norm... and 3 springs work fine ... but if ya must, there's room for an additional 2 .. but I don't know that the additional springs ever did anything truly notable... however they don't hurt anything so go for it..

    r
     
  7. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

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    yeah, 3 on the guitar and 2 extras in a baggy right?
     
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  8. rockon1

    rockon1 Strat-O-Master

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    Judging from the claw, block, it looks to be decked anyways. Five will make that easier
     
  9. jvin248

    jvin248 Senior Stratmaster

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    .

    You can also fashion a block of wood to jam in the back of the guitar and remove the springs.
    Eric Clapton approves of blocking your trem so try that out sometime. Others just use five springs when decking the bridge. By blocking you can remove the springs and claw and get rid of that springy-reverbish-rattle.

    .
     
  10. Yves

    Yves Most Honored Senior Member

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    Damn!
    Just got the 3. It got me wondering ever since I had noticed. But thought it was just the way they were sold since it's the one and only I ever got brand new.
     
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  11. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Some of them seemed to come with 5 on the guitar, and tools in a bag for truss rod and saddle heights. I remember because in the early 90s my local shop was a Fender dealer and I used to hang out there all day and help them unpack boxes, or sit all day waiting for the UPS truck.....I was like unofficial volunteer free help, I guess they got the good end of the deal but I had a lot of fun. I knew if some had a couple springs in the bag of tools they would be missing a couple inside. The USA Fender stuff didn't seem to come with as many springs.....
     
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  12. Willmunny

    Willmunny Strat-O-Master

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    Was wondering about this
     
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  13. Yves

    Yves Most Honored Senior Member

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    I like that story. I wish I had had the chance to do so as a young lad.
     
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  14. kurher

    kurher Strat-Talker

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    Leo has stated that the 5 springs also functioned as a shield (which is debatable).
    Also, the springs in old strats had less tension so 5 vintage springs are about the same as 3 of the stiffer, more recent ones.
     
  15. Biddlin

    Biddlin Senior Stratmaster

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    I had a Standard from the late 70s that was floated with five springs. It came to me that way from a rockabilly player who had had it for a few years. I found very little difference in the pull of three or five, frankly, but the five spring set up had a weird but nice "jangle" to it. At some point in its life the black and rosewood beauty had a beer spilled on it while in the case. That was why Billy sold it to me, and ultimately why I sold it to the next guy. no amount of product, effort or ultra-violet rays would cure it or the case. I managed to keep it a couple of years, but realized that if I got pulled over, that smell meant instant field sobriety test.
     
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  16. Tuner Sandwich

    Tuner Sandwich Strat-O-Master

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    I use 5 springs to deck my bridge. I don't use the wiggle stick. Five isn't necessary, three would work just fine but I like the natural reverb of the springs. And, just because.
     
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  17. fezz parka

    fezz parka fezz parka Strat-Talk Supporter

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    This is what you do to deck the bridge. No blocking needed. Double stop bends and unisons will stay in tune. :)
    [​IMG]
     
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  18. DeMelo

    DeMelo Senior Stratmaster

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    Poor strat
     
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  19. BlurgyWurgyWibble

    BlurgyWurgyWibble Strat-Talker

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    Its all a matter of personal taste. Sure. Absolutely.
    Just one small point of order though:

    3ereex.jpg

    TBH I use the Raw Vintage springs which have a slightly larger diameter and are 'softer'. 5 of those feels like 3 normal ones screwed in tight. Which, in theory, gives you the best of both worlds re: bending and vibrato still being usable. It still doesn't work very well. I mean, I can't bench 2 plates so that might be it..

    The strat is basically a compromise. You can use more springs and less claw tension to try and get a middle ground between usable vibrato and bending stability or you can go for 3 springs and set it up loose and accept the consequences. Depends what you play! If you are Jeff Beck, well you need a super sensitive vibrato. Forget huge bends. If you are bashing out rock or blues, you probably need to bend 1 tone in 1 step not 2.5. Especially if you haven't got jumbo frets.

    That is all before you get down to how more springs and the diameter and tension of those springs affects your overall tone and feel.

    I have not yet come accross a strat setup that lets me beat the hell out of it and play power chords and rock/blues bends and not have a decked/blocked trem. I wish that was possible. Maybe it is? :)

    That said, I guess the reason Fender moved to higher tension springs was to solve the issue of bending and tuning stability as best they could without re-designing the trem. Which they ended up doing anyway. Well, copying G&L/Leo's revised design anyway..
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
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  20. Miotch

    Miotch Senior Stratmaster

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    Here's the thing for me: I can balance my bridge with three, four or five springs. When the claw is adjusted to balance the bridge against the strings, the actual tension would be the same with any of those setups. However, the result when doing deep string bends is different. Due to the nature of springs, it is easier to inadvertently make the other strings flat when you go for a big bend on a string while using three springs, compared to four or, especially, five.

    Therefore I started using four springs instead of three when I discovered this several years ago. I don't ever use five because 1) I don't need to; 2) one less spring to deal with; and 3) I'd have to buy some more springs.