Strat Mods to Improve Primary Tone

Discussion in 'Fender' started by FLICKOFLASH, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,825
    Likes Received:
    9,559
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    Whew! I was afraid I just had another of my nutty ideas. Anybody know what kind of glue Blackmore uses? Important to me, as he gets almost exactly the kind of tone I seek from my Strat. From woodworking experience, I know type of glue would be crucial here. I wouldn't want to use any type of silicone based adhesive, as it leaves a thick and somewhat soft layer between the surfaces being glues. JB Weld (and other epoxy types) is harder, but the glue layer would still not be hard enough to transmit tone. I think it probably best to stay away for "super glue" types, as it dries too quickly to absorb into the wood surfaces. I was thinking about perhaps a thinned-down water based wood glue like Tightbond. But I'm sure some of you know of something better. Right?
     
  2. diceman

    diceman V.I.P. Member

    Messages:
    29,932
    Likes Received:
    5,213
    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    I think that a lot of that article was... "silly." Sanding out the paint from under your pickguard? :laugh2: From under the bridge? :laugh2: Really?

    A good setup (file those nut slots!) and a blender pot, along with good pickups and electronics is as far as I've felt the need to go.

    I also deck my bridge, since I don't use a trem, and like the tuning stability.

    Anyway, have fun sanding those trem blocks! :cool: And... String trees. If you're not playing an open E or B... WTH does it matter? :confused:
     
    AngryHatter likes this.
  3. brianugly

    brianugly Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,407
    Likes Received:
    101
    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2009
    But Eric Johnson and Eddie Van Halen did it!!!:thumb::laugh2::laugh2::laugh2:
     
  4. diceman

    diceman V.I.P. Member

    Messages:
    29,932
    Likes Received:
    5,213
    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    They're also better players than any of us! :D




    "Let the guitar breathe. Sand under and around the pickups, then slap a plastic pickguard over top of it. Then... sand under the bridge, and put the bridge on top of it!"

    Well, why not just sand the whole f#cking thing and use a raw body? :confused: "Your tone will be immensely improved if you sand the pant under the pickguard! BUT ONLY THE PAINT UNDER THE PICKGUARD!" :rolleyes:
     
    Matrock78 likes this.
  5. PINKBITS

    PINKBITS Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,583
    Likes Received:
    466
    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Couldn't agree more Dice, it's um, bullshit :cool:
     
  6. diceman

    diceman V.I.P. Member

    Messages:
    29,932
    Likes Received:
    5,213
    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
  7. brianugly

    brianugly Senior Member

    Messages:
    5,407
    Likes Received:
    101
    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2009
    Or you can pick up an unfinished one from warmoth!

    I agree Dice :)
     
  8. PINKBITS

    PINKBITS Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,583
    Likes Received:
    466
    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    :shock:

    That we agree :hmm: :laugh2:
     
  9. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,825
    Likes Received:
    9,559
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    There are all sorts of theories about how to get a better primary (no amp) tone out of guitars. Of course, this does affect the amplified sound a little. Some people get guitars finished only in tung oil for this reason. I don't think anybody has ever used measuring devices to back up any theory.

    My own theory is that the most important things with any solid body electric guitar in this area are good, solid contacts on everything the strings vibrate against from nut to TP, and that these items be made of good musical material (like brass or steel and not porous pot metal.) But do things like removing the body finish under the pickguard improve things? I think not.
     
  10. chrisuk

    chrisuk Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,649
    Likes Received:
    1,923
    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2010
    I think having some of the wood effectively open to the air is more plausable than many of the ideas we have heard. Look what it did for SRV! and even better it's free (or the token cost of sandpaper).

    The alternative appears to be adamantium hardware made from the clippings of Wolverine's claws...:naughty:

    If you need adamantium hardware then I can supply it at only 10 x the cost of stock Fender parts - I have also had it carefully tooled to precisely resemble stock Fender hardware in appearance. Only you and I will ever know your secret!:cool:
     
  11. FLICKOFLASH

    FLICKOFLASH V.I.P. Member

    Messages:
    24,742
    Likes Received:
    8,300
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    Imagine raw wood as a vibrant speaker then throw a quilt blanket on top then a sheet of glass connected to a microphone .Imagine all the filters the vibrations had to move thru :hmm:
     
  12. PINKBITS

    PINKBITS Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,583
    Likes Received:
    466
    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    IMO, that's not a fair comparison at all Mr Flick.
     
  13. diceman

    diceman V.I.P. Member

    Messages:
    29,932
    Likes Received:
    5,213
    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    If that is true, and your concern is tone, just sand all of the finish off and play a raw body.

    I still call B.S.
     
  14. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,825
    Likes Received:
    9,559
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    I have no opinion about the effect of unfinished wood on the tone of a solid body electric guitar. Someday when I grow up (I'm only 66) I'll have a guitar custom made for me, and I have thought about an oil finish on it for the very reasons that some have advocated leaving some wood exposed. It just might make a positive difference.

    But one thing my experience has made me sure of is that having strings held in place anywhere by anything made of cast pot metal is a tone sucker. From my past experience with my LP, I knew that getting rid of the pot metal TP and replacing it with either an aluminum or machined brass TP improved primary tone -- just in different directions but both musically desirable. Neither of those "mod" TPs cost over $30 with shipping. So when I got my "partscaster" and noticed that it had a pot metal trem block, I knew it had to go. A local music store had an improved trem with a brass block already on it for $30. It made the same difference that the brass TP had made on my LP. So good, solid, and musically conductive metal connections with the strings can make a big difference, and doesn't have to cost much either.
     
    medic24 and 79standard like this.
  15. FLICKOFLASH

    FLICKOFLASH V.I.P. Member

    Messages:
    24,742
    Likes Received:
    8,300
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    raw wood does sound best but you better keep it climate controled
     
  16. PINKBITS

    PINKBITS Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,583
    Likes Received:
    466
    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    I'm still with ya Dicey :dude:
     
  17. FLICKOFLASH

    FLICKOFLASH V.I.P. Member

    Messages:
    24,742
    Likes Received:
    8,300
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    Tone tap a raw blank & then tone tap after its been painted Tell me there is no difference......go ahead tell me :fingersx: the point is to get as much unfiltered energy from the strings to the pickups
     
    79standard likes this.
  18. FLICKOFLASH

    FLICKOFLASH V.I.P. Member

    Messages:
    24,742
    Likes Received:
    8,300
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2007
    directly setting the Pu's in shallow routes also helps
     
  19. PINKBITS

    PINKBITS Senior Member

    Messages:
    7,583
    Likes Received:
    466
    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Play a raw guitar body then play painted body. This is where it counts, in the playing, not the tapping :thumb:

    I doubt very, very much that many could hear any difference. If you could, I would certainly doubt it would be significant.
     
  20. Alvinfan

    Alvinfan Senior Member

    Messages:
    3,014
    Likes Received:
    3,931
    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    A Villex passive 4 way rotary boost works well for me. Makes the Strat so much more versatile and you donĀ“t have to worry about batteries.

    Villex passive rotary booster
     

Share This Page