Why didn’t the LSR roller nut stick around?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by dscottyg, May 3, 2021.

  1. vid1900

    vid1900 Most Honored Senior Member

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    I still install LSRs all the time.


    Anything cool, Fender stops installing as stock.

    Truss adjustment wheel, LSR, Ebony fretboards.....
     
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  2. Michael919

    Michael919 Most Honored Senior Member

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    There was also that Mahogony FSR that ran 2004 - 2012, the American Select HSS.

    jpgcq3ricvzmttyfgakn.jpg
     
  3. John C

    John C Most Honored Senior Member

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    I remember those; done for Guitar Center/Musician's Friend here in the USA. That version didn't run all that time - they also did an FSR where the spec was more like the American Series/American Standard (no LSR or SCNs); they bounced between the two versions depending on the year.

    As I said excluding FSRs; there were a few other FSR runs over the years, and also some Custom Shop models that had (and still have) them over the years.
     
  4. Colnago1

    Colnago1 Strat-O-Master

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    My 2007 American hss Strat has an LSR nut and it’s awesome. mid they could make one to fit in a regular nut slot I would install them in my 6 other Strats and probably my Teles as well. I’m not about to hack out more space to make one fit as I do buy and sell all the time and the next guy might not like them. If the LSR was an easy swap more peeps would use them for sure.
     
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  5. nutball73

    nutball73 Senior Stratmaster

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    So, to answer the OP's question:

    1. They are expensive. For Fender we are probably talking 10x more expensive than a normal nut.

    2. They are more difficult to build into a guitar (more cost to Fender).

    3. They take more time to set up (for Fender) - removing shims to suit different fret heights.

    4. They only suit certain radii.

    5. They support a limited range of string gauges.

    6. Replacement when worn or damaged limits you to a single supplier - retrofitting a conventional nut is not just drop-in.

    Lots of reasons why it's not the universal solution to the world's problems. If it works well for you, great! But it doesn't work for everyone and would definitely put the cost of a new guitar up (which is against Leo's fundamental principles!)
     
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  6. dscottyg

    dscottyg Strat-Talk Member

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    Just curious, after hearing all the positive comments vs. the one example of your friend, would you be more open to getting a guitar that had one stock if you were going to buy the guitar otherwise?
     
  7. PCollen

    PCollen Senior Stratmaster Silver Member

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    Seems to me that the cost of new Fender guitars have been going up on a regular basis every year or two without any significant changes to most models. And do you think that FMIC has given a fig about "Leo's fundamental principles" since Y2K ? I just can't visualize the current FMIC marketing/sales executives sitting in their daily meetings asking " What would Leo do ? " .
     
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  8. Michael919

    Michael919 Most Honored Senior Member

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    I just wanted an excuse to think about and mention that Select model because I have gassed for one for a decade!
     
  9. StratMike10

    StratMike10 Dr. Stratster Gold Supporting Member

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    Nut action at the first fret is one of the first things I adjust on a new guitar, to me that's one thing that affects feel, playability, and intonation quite a bit (all other things being already set up). With a set of nut files, a feeler gauge, and some patience you can turn a stubborn guitar into an "Ahhh...!" guitar. With a roller nut I lose that ability.

    I had two guitars with roller nuts and retrofitted graphtech saddles, they didn't have any better tuning stability than standard nut/saddle guitars.

    To me they are a net minus.
     
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  10. jvin248

    jvin248 Senior Stratmaster

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    .

    Listen to practically every thread and the first batch of mods a new owner chases includes 'a nut upgrade!'.

    When you have a steel roller nut then upgrades are super finicky. It's a boring choice because you have no choice in mod replacements.

    Real reason is players want 1950s stuff, are resistant to change, and regular nuts are cheaper for the factory.

    Roller nuts often get grit in them from greasing them and then they grind to a halt. Might as well have a zero-fret (which will work for modern times with stainless steel frets).

    .
     
  11. Jimbo_Jones

    Jimbo_Jones Strat-Talker

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    And don't forget the penultimate example of the Plus, Plus Deluxe, and Strat Ultra progression, the 90s Custom Shop Set Neck Stratocaster. Early production with the Wilkinson nut of course, followed by LSR equipped models in 1993.
     
  12. joesatch

    joesatch Strat-Talker

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    i've done extensive research to try and get my LSR to return to proper pitch. They're OK for most but not for me as i get better results with a tusq. A few tips to help are to use less staggered tuners because more of a break angle can result in the strings sticking more. My best results were from using "high" post tuners all the way to the G string , B and high E get a medium post. Also NEVER oil an LSR nut this is from the manufacturer. Makes sense as dust and particles will stick to the oil (or lubricant) and interfere with the ball bearings.
     
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  13. Kingmarc1982

    Kingmarc1982 Strat-Talker

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    I have an LSR sitting in my drawer for months. Haven’t had it installed because I worry about cutting into the neck. 1. There’s no going back so it’s all or nothing
    2. If the install goes bad well that’s basically game over for that neck
    3. I like my graphtech nut and if I don’t like it I can get a different nut. Bone synthetic whatever
    I feel like if you want a roller nut. buy a guitar with a roller nut
    So in the drawer it sits in its packaging forever I suppose unless I get the nerve to send her in for surgery. Don’t get me wrong. I would like to have it in there. I think. But that’s the problem. I don’t know if I will like it and really that’s the hold up. I’ll probably just list it.
     
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  14. jtoomuch

    jtoomuch Senior Stratmaster Silver Member

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    Sounds like you just don't need one.
     
  15. Believer7713

    Believer7713 The Pink Bunnyman Frankenstein Silver Member

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    Let me know if you ever decide to get rid of it.
     
  16. pookie613

    pookie613 Strat-Talker

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    The LSR nut appealed to me because I'm a sucker for that kind of thing: It was an innovation in a Strat marketed for its innovations (a Plus Deluxe).

    I had two necks with LSR nuts and replaced LSRs in both of them. In theory, steel-against-steel is low friction, but in the real world there's tiny bits of dust everywhere, accumulating 24/7. After a while, an exposed-to-the-environment ball bearing doesn't spin freely. In practice, I didn't think they worked any better to prevent pings and binding than a simple nut. I think Fender saw that they were expensive to make/install and didn't improve sales enough.
     
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  17. nutball73

    nutball73 Senior Stratmaster

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    Well actually Leo's principle of "build it as cheaply and quickly as possible" so that the profit margin is as high as possible still applies, and I'm sure FMIC care about that. However FMIC's departure into hyperbole and marketing speak to artificially boost prices is something else!
     
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  18. John C

    John C Most Honored Senior Member

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    Ha!!! I certainly understand; those were a nice model!

    Of course! I was only mentioning production line models excluding FSRs in that post. The Set Neck Strats were very cool guitars; it seems like there was even one variation of set-neck Tele that had the trem/roller nut combination but I could be mis-remembering the roller nut on that one (they even had an HSH Set Nek Tele with a Floyd Rose briefly at that time; must have been 1992/93 also?). The CS has continued to use the LSR nut off and on even though the production line has ceased using it.
     
  19. vid1900

    vid1900 Most Honored Senior Member

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    One of the best features of the LSR is that you can put any gauge strings on them without re-cutting the nut

    If you want to experiment with some super heavy strings, you can; without any real commitment.

    Try them for a month, and go back if you don't like them...
     
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  20. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    Because they suck for 99.5% of players. The original ones had a little string retainer rod that made doing adjustments a nightmare of string wrangling and even just restringing was a complete hassle. The later ones are better. They are mostly an overkill solution to fix a problem that doesn’t really exist for most players.

    There is one guitarist who has made it part of their technique which is Jeff Beck and he has incorporated its features into his sound. The way he uses harmonics and pulls up on the whammy at the same time using the 2nd generation roller nut is one of the secrets to his sound. If you are a Jeff Beck wannabe then the roller nut would be essential, I think? Bob Mould also loves the roller nut but I don’t think it influences his technique the way it did with Beck.
     
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