New to Strats, opinion on trem tone blocks?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by chilln2music, Aug 1, 2020.

  1. chilln2music

    chilln2music New Member!

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    Having played Floyd Rose equipped electrics for so many years, I can say the tone block mod is a common upgrade for that style of trem but I’m unsure if the same general positive feedback holds true for the strat trem. I see several companies selling brass (and other metals/stone) blocks for Strats but I’m not sure if the mod would be as welcome with true single coils. What are some your guys’ thoughts/opinions? If you’re for them what material tone block do you prefer?
     
  2. Cesspit

    Cesspit Strat-O-Master

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    I have a Wikinson 'Big block' vintage trem on my parts caster. I won't say it has affected the tone but it has helped with sustain on an already resonant guitar
     
  3. uncle daddy

    uncle daddy Strat-Talker

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    I changed the one on my Vintage Modified Squier. All it did was make the guitar heavier.
     
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  4. ProSonicLive

    ProSonicLive Senior Stratmaster

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    I hear this one is amazing.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. LOSTVENTURE

    LOSTVENTURE Senior Stratmaster

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    I've never found a use for any type of block. Just add springs if necessary to deck the trem.
     
  6. Sparque

    Sparque Strat-Talker

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    I normally have no use at all for a tremolo, so I just unscrew the whammy bar and play the guitar.

    I can't honestly say that a block would do anything for me but add unwanted weight.

    As long as it's got three springs, it's stable enough for me.

    :)
     
  7. Thrup'ny Bit

    Thrup'ny Bit Grand Master Curmudgeon Strat-Talk Supporter

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    A block is a block. Unless it's damaged there's no reason to change it.
     
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  8. Kestrel

    Kestrel Strat-Talker Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I am another one who doesn't think having a heavier block makes any difference to tone or sustain, I have worked on and played Strats for over 50 years, many were cheap guitars that their owners wanting work done and after I had set them up they played as good as any expensive guitar, the only difference would be the pickups, some had requested me to change the block, customers choice, so I did, any difference ? no, not a bit and I have keen ears, a bit like a piano tuner working on a Strat. If you want to change tone and sustain I suggest you look at what amp or effects you are using.
     
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  9. SpeedKing

    SpeedKing Senior Stratmaster

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    In my opinion even if it's possible to hear a difference between differing block materials the question of which is 'better' remains entirely subjective.

    I would think psychology means that most will insist their 'new' sound is better since they've just spent time, effort and money making that new sound. Also unless you do a recording with one block then change it and make a second recording with all the same gear at the same settings our memory of an exact sound isn't precise enough to make comparisons. Hence it's the psychological issues that tend to determine our view.

    Not, of course, that that may be entirely irrelevant....
     
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  10. BlurgyWurgyWibble

    BlurgyWurgyWibble Strat-Talker

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    The best sounding strat I ever played had a trem blocked with an WH Smith tablet eraser. :thumb:
     
  11. PCollen

    PCollen Senior Stratmaster

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    That looks nearly identical to the block used on the Fender American Standard Strat. I have two AS Strats, and have never had an issue with the tone or sustain of either.
     
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  12. Kestrel

    Kestrel Strat-Talker Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Strat Plus's also had the same block, I think all strats from the late 80's to the early 90's used the same block.
     
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  13. henderman

    henderman Most Honored Senior Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    my ibanez s5470 has the smallest block i have ever seen. i bought a well made brass block that was as large as it could be and still fit.

    the way the bar felt from an addition of so much extra mass is the only change i felt or heard.
     
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  14. tinkertoy

    tinkertoy Strat-O-Master

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    Someone did a test with scope results. Not sure of trem brand and level, but it had a pot metal block, stock.

    Between cast pot metal, brass, steel and titanium, there were differences.

    It was mostly small. Some added a touch of high end. Some added a bit of bass.
    Sustain varied somewhat.

    The surprise was the stock block. It was no slouch! It wasnt really lacking anything and held it's own very well, to my surprise.

    My take away was that they change the sound, but nothing that eq on your amp, guitar, or pedal couldn't accomplish.

    It saved money too as I was doing research and getting ready to swap the blocks on my edge zero 2 and edge trems.
     
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  15. nadzab

    nadzab Play Don't Worry Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I'm partial to Callaham but only because of the engineering...it has zero to do with tone.
     
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  16. jvin248

    jvin248 Senior Stratmaster

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    .

    Eric Clapton uses a wood block on his Strat bridges to stop them from moving when bending strings.

    Older players complain their guitars weigh too much.

    Whammy trem dives have disappeared from most music.

    BB King string bends make the chicks swoon.

    ... So block that trem.

    [​IMG]

    .
     
  17. Kestrel

    Kestrel Strat-Talker Strat-Talk Supporter

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    If you change anything on a guitar, and this means resting on your knee or standing with a strap, using a capo, changing tuners, nut, saddles and anything else, it would show up on a scope. Years ago before the net and social media nobody would have thought that changing something would make any difference, yes there were comments in guitar magazines, but one person say's he put a brass block in and makes a big difference, then everybody wants one, I sure many were disappointed and felt what a waste of money.
     
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  18. tinkertoy

    tinkertoy Strat-O-Master

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    Exactly!

    Thanks to that guy with the oscilloscope.
     
  19. Wrighty

    Wrighty Most Honored Senior Member

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    Have you actually heard it to be amazing, or does ‘I hear that.......’ really mean ‘I’ve read that’ or ‘I’ve been told that’?
     
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  20. Wrighty

    Wrighty Most Honored Senior Member

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    TROLL ALERT!!!! But did they test them with different fingers.........it is, after all in the fingers..........
     
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