Other Guitars

Oddball Jazzmaster; looking to upgrade bridge

1

About a year ago, I acquired an oddball Jazzmaster. Most features say J Mascis signature (pickups, neck profile, his autograph on the back of the headstock). But I thought the Mascis model was a Squier, cream finish, gold anodized pickguard. This one is pink, including the face of the headstock, with a tortoiseshell pickguard. Oddest of all, there is a Fender logo, also on the face of the headstock. The rear of the headstock says "Designed and Backed by Fender", and the neck plate says "Squier by Fender". All of which is neither here nor there, since it plays and sounds great. I'm really enjoying it.

But the bridge experience is not all one might hope for. When played unplugged, I can hear that there is very little sustain. And the strings jump out of the allthread threads way too easily.

I'm hoping y'all have some suggestions for a more satisfying alternative. Thanks in advance for sharing the benefit of your experience.

2

You could shim the neck and raise the bridge for better break angle.

4

Love ya, Tubs. Thanks so much.

5

I use a Mastery bridge on several of my guitars including my Jazzmaster. IMHO they’re the best.. Spendy but good, especially for helping with tuning issues.

6

I've got a Mastery on my Bigsbfied Tele it replaced exactly the bridge you described. I had cut the slots deeper and raised the action, the Mastery seemed to smooth out the sound with more sustain. Staytrem in the UK who did make a replacement have stopped shipping to the US sadly.

7

I'm using a Staytrem bridge on my Squier Jazzmaster. They offer a choice of radius to match the neck. On a Jaguar I used to have I fitted a 'buzz stop' -- it's easy to fit/remove and acts like a tension bar on a Bigsby, increasing the break angle of the strings over the saddles. In that respect it works like a charm but many JM/Jag users don't like it because it affects the sound. I must admit I never noticed it -- my JM has more than enough 'plink' for me.

8

Just yesterday I ordered a Staytrem for my Squier Jazzmaster. Given the guitar only cost $140, it was a big decision (a Mastery would have cost more than the guitar). Apart from the bridge, though, I really love this guitar, so I took the plunge. Like others have said, they now only ship to the UK, so I had to send it to family there. I will report back when I get it.

Also, this guitar is the first one I’ve ever modded. When the pickup switch broke on the first day, I bought a full rewiring kit. My local luthier also shielded the pick guard for me. Even with all of these upgrades it is still far cheaper than pretty much any other Jazzmaster option.

9

The guy at the my local vintage guitar store mentioned the Buzz Stop Roller that attaches to the tremolo plate to change the break angle over the bridge.

http://whizzobuzzstop.com

10

I've shimmed the neck on every jazz master i've ever owned. 1 american penny is what i use. the buzz stop is a great idea as well!!

11

Hey Tommy! If you’re THE T59, man...long time no seeum. So good to see you posting. Hope you come around more, I’ve missed you. And if you’re a different T59, never mind and howdy.

Either way, I’m working on a Tru-Arc one-piece fully compensated rocker for the Jazzmaster. Developments expected soon. Ish.

12

Had the same break-angle problems with my AVRI.Got a Buzz-Stop.No more break-angle problems. Oddly,my AVRI Jaguar(also pictured below) has never had those issues.

13

Staytrem is my favorite, with a small shim if the guitar needs it. Mastery is great too, but crazy expensive.

14

I love my masterys I spent $180 for a bridge for a guitar I spent $180 to buy. I don’t regret it one bit. I installed one on tuneomatic posts on another guitar. They are the real thing!

15

I had a Jazzmaster like you describe except mine was metallic red. It had a tuneomatic bridge which I understand is slightly different width and specs than all the cool jobbers that go onto the high dollar Jazzmasters.

I'm in the market for another Jazzmaster style bridge but the Mastery is out of my price range. Booooo.

16

I’m a happy Mastery Bridge user. You can’t go wrong with that - except with the extra cash going away. It fixes everything, improves the sound and are pretty cool looking.

Having said that, I’m dying to ser Tim’s version of a bridge for offset guitars!

17

A few notes on some of these suggestions: 1) Mastery changes the JM design by fixing the posts. This increases sustain but removes the rocking bridge design. 2) buzz stop kills a lot of the weird overtones you get behind the bridge 3) staytrem maintains these features

Personal preference will determine whether these are positive or negative aspects.

18

Yeah, the Mastery bridge doesn’t rock back and forth like a stock one . I have never had any tuning issues with mine. It was especially helpful for my B5 Bigsby Tele in helping avoid tuning problems.

19

A great deal of useful knowledge here. Many thanks to all.

I'm especially intrigued with the 1¢ shim idea, and the prospect of a TruArc for offset guitars. Yum.

20

My Staytrem arrived via hand delivery from England. Wow. In five minutes to remove the old one and install the new, all of the hassles of the stock bridge were gone! Yet all of the weirdness (rocking design, strange overtones from behind the bridge) are maintained. I’ve read solutions to get the stock bridge working right, but the Staytrem is a quality, easy to use product. Highly recommended.

I had been looking at Collings takes on the Jazzmaster, but now I have an el cheapo Squier that is fun to play, sounds great, and is far less likely to get stolen when I’m out and about.


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