My Jaguar is driving me nuts with it's buzz!

Page/lespaulfreak

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I bought a Squier Vintage Modified Jaguar a few months ago and it's beginning to frustrate me a bit.
When I bought the guitar, I was aware of the issues that Jaguars and Jazzmasters bring with them (Bridge issues, mostly).

I fought with the stock bridge for the first few weeks with the guitar, but ended up caving and replacing it with a Mustang bridge with individually adjustable saddles. I thought that would fix the tuning issues and buzzing and it did for like a week. The guitar doesn't go out of tune as easily as it did with the stock bridge (One bend and it went out of tune). But, it does have it's day where I have to re tune it every few bends or so.

The buzzing however has gotten worse and it's driving me nuts. While the action is low, it's not terribly low as to cause buzzing and I can mostly hear it when I play the first two strings openly.
I don't know what is causing it. Although, I've found that if you press down on the string from behind the bridge while it is ringing, the buzzing will stop.

Could it be something to do with the tremolo system? This is a really nice guitar and I don't mind putting some money into it to make it better and fix it's quirks
 

LSAR

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I've got the VM Mustang, and currently have a Staytrem bridge on the way for it.
I take it your stock bridge was the following:

Did you replace it with the modified/adjustable mustang style like below:

Or the traditional Mustang style?


I don't have much experience with Jags but as far as Mustangs go there's a few tricks to making this bridge type work well.
- Firstly unlike a TOM it has to face a certain direction - the adjustment screws need to be facing away from the fretboard or the strings will touch edge of the bridge (each side is not at the same height). I learned that the hard way the first time I owned one.
- Secondly, the bridge needs to be able to rock, but not too much. It's the most stable when the bottom of the bridge channel is only about 2mm out of the thimbles. Any more than that and it will be more prone to getting stuck either side when it does rock or it simply won't return to exactly the right spot.
- Third is they need as much tension on them as possible, and the tightest functional break angle possible. On the first two types shown above the height adjustment screws for the saddles are not built to tight enough tolerances and will back out if there isn't enough tension holding them in place. If they don't you're lucky. This tends to cause buzzing against the front of the bridge if they lower slightly, and is more prone to happen with the saddles higher off the bridge. For the most stability they should be just high enough not to allow the string to touch the bridge when played and while maintaining the proper radius across all the strings. The angle they break over the back should also be as low as possible to prevent the strings from touching the back of the bridge and creating friction there. This is also important for preventing strings from hopping out of the saddles which some have trouble with.
- Fourth is heavy gauge strings. Stepping up a gauge provides the extra tension mentioned above, it helps keep things in place and slightly reduces the space a string needs to vibrate when played. It makes everything easier including achieving accurate intonation in my experience.

A common cause for rattle as well is the saddle springs - they're pretty short on my VM Mustang's stock bridge and aren't actually pushing against the saddles that need to be adjusted further out to intonate properly. Poke em and see if they're moving around? That might be all it is, until I stretched mine out a little it buzzed like crazy.

As far as the trem/tailpiece unit on those I have less than no idea.

Edit:

These buzzstops are a known fix for a lot of these issues, but as I understand it there's some tone tradeoff perceived by preventing the length of string behind the bridge from vibrating. I haven't tested that myself.
 

Pop1655

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OK, so I was totally duped by the thread title. It’s been a long week. No cool car pics in this one.
I had no idea what model jag a squire vintage modified was. At least I kept reading and didn’t google it before I saw the pics.
 

Gar

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I've owned a few Japanese Jaguars. The main this for me was strings jumping out the slots but I'm a heavy handed bonehead. I raised the action and shimmed the neck, even with flatwound 13s they jumped. Recently I fancied one again (despite the known isssues). I went to a shop and tried american vintage, Johnny Marr and Squiers. All had some kind of problem. The Marr Jag bridge buzzed like crazy, the whole unit not the saddles. I decided against it in the end.

Step 1. Larger string gauge, more downward pressure on the bridge will help stop buzzing.
Step 2. Nail polish on bridge saddle screws. Helps stop them working loose and rattling.
Step 3. Tape around the bridge posts to stop the bridge rocking will also help to dampen any rattling.
Step 4. Fit a Buzz stop to the tail piece to increase downward pressure.I have never used one but aparently work well.

Other options are the stay trem bride and the mastery bridge. Aparently these cure all the problems but I have never used them. They are also expensive and probably around half the value of the guitar.

When you press in the string and the buzz goes away it indicates to me a lack of downward pressure on the saddle allowing the saddle to rattle. A proper mustang bridge's saddles are tight together allowing no movement. Some aftermarket ones have a gap between the saddles allowing buzz.

Hope that helps.
 

LSAR

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I'm still getting it dialed in but the Staytrem arrived today for my Mustang - absolutely worlds apart from the stock bridge. Superior in every way.
 

Page/lespaulfreak

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I've owned a few Japanese Jaguars. The main this for me was strings jumping out the slots but I'm a heavy handed bonehead. I raised the action and shimmed the neck, even with flatwound 13s they jumped. Recently I fancied one again (despite the known isssues). I went to a shop and tried american vintage, Johnny Marr and Squiers. All had some kind of problem. The Marr Jag bridge buzzed like crazy, the whole unit not the saddles. I decided against it in the end.

Step 1. Larger string gauge, more downward pressure on the bridge will help stop buzzing.
Step 2. Nail polish on bridge saddle screws. Helps stop them working loose and rattling.
Step 3. Tape around the bridge posts to stop the bridge rocking will also help to dampen any rattling.
Step 4. Fit a Buzz stop to the tail piece to increase downward pressure.I have never used one but aparently work well.

Other options are the stay trem bride and the mastery bridge. Aparently these cure all the problems but I have never used them. They are also expensive and probably around half the value of the guitar.

When you press in the string and the buzz goes away it indicates to me a lack of downward pressure on the saddle allowing the saddle to rattle. A proper mustang bridge's saddles are tight together allowing no movement. Some aftermarket ones have a gap between the saddles allowing buzz.

Hope that helps.
The Mustang bridge that I bought was Fender brand. Funny, I thought that it would fix the problem considering it cost me $30. Can I remove the bridge posts that came stock with the guitar and swap them with the ones that came with the Mustang bridge without altering the guitar?

Going from .11 to .12 strings is tempting. Sadly, my wrist is starting to act up (I'm currently undergoing treatment for it) and increasing the gauge of my strings is not recommended. Hell, I tried putting .10 strings on the Jaguar and it the WORST thing I ever did. I immediately went back to .11s since they don't feel heavy when installed on a Jaguar.
 

Gar

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Not sure if the bridge posts would fit you'd have to try. Given that you can't change string gauge I'd suggest trying the buzz stop. The other thing to consider is the radius. Is the mustang bridge a 7.25 or a 9.5? You may not get the action to your liking if they don't match.
 

LSAR

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Is the mustang bridge a 7.25 or a 9.5?
That was a big factor in my going for the Staytrem bridge - most available bridges are 7.25 and the VMs are 9.5. It's realistically a very small difference I believe but it is a difference.
 
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filtersweep

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If the vibrato sustem is in the vintage position, you might try shimming the neck.
 
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NewDayHappy

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I'd bet that it's a combo of the relief and raising the saddle heights. Some buzz is normal, it's the age old debate, do you want a higher action for no buzz and more sustain? Or a lower action with a little buzz for easier playability?

Is there buzz on every single fret???? Try to narrow it down to where you're getting the buzz. You may have a neck that is too straight and not enough bow or you may have a couple high frets that needs to be dressed.

The tuning instability is likely the nut. I put vasoline in my nut slots and all my guitars stay in tune for a week untouched and I use 9s on my electrics and 10s on my acoustic, no tuning issues here, string gauge is not the issue. If you don't want to play thicker strings, don't do it, that isn't an acceptable fix IMO.
 

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