Bend with a Tele or a Strato

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by Jazz_175, Apr 7, 2015.

  1. Jazz_175

    Jazz_175 Member

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    This may be a dumb question but, since having a discussion with a friend and given that it might depend on many factors, is it in general more difficult doing bends with a Tele or a Strat because of the different bridges they carry?
     
  2. derekd

    derekd Supporting Member

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    Same scale, so you'd think same string tension. Assuming the same string gauge, I'd think any differences would be negligible. I've certainly never noticed any difference between my strat and my tele. Both strung with .11s. YMMV
     
  3. phazersonstun

    phazersonstun Member

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    I have both.

    With the same gauge strings, to me a Tele feels a little stiffer than a strat.

    Excluding hardtails, because Strats have a trem that will pull towards the nut a bit when you bend, it feels easier. But, you actually have to bend a bit farther than you would on a tele to get the note to pitch to compensate for the bridge pull.

    To what extreme depends on how your trem is set up.
     
  4. metropolis_4

    metropolis_4 Member

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    I'm not really sure I understand. More difficult than what?
     
  5. monty

    monty Member

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    Tele feels stiffer to me.
     
  6. cshelton

    cshelton Member

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    I've heard that a Strat bends easier because of the tremolo, but it is entirely dependent on the setup. Regardless, another vote for a Tele being more difficult to bend on.
     
  7. shane88

    shane88 Member

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    yep
     
  8. MartinC

    MartinC Member

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    Logic (and I'm usually logical) says that the effort needed to bend on a tele and strat should be the same.

    Somehow, my Suhr Classic (25.5" scale ... blocked trem) with 10s always felt like I was fighting it when bending. My G&L Classic (25.5" scale) with 10s (same brand) doesn't.

    I changed my Suhr to 9s and it now feels "right".

    Different neck shapes ... different length of string between nut and tuner post and between saddle and ball end ... not sure what else would explain it.



    Effort aside, the biggest contributors to ease of bending on any given guitar, besides the obvious string gauge, would have to be frets and action. Jumbo frets and a "medium/high" action = easy bending. If you get a chance, try a DGT ... they come strung with a typical set of 11s (top E, B and G) and fretted with massive frets ... you would swear they feel like 10s because of the frets.
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2015
  9. Rod

    Rod Tone is Paramount Silver Supporting Member

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    The length of string behind the bridge effects string tension, as does the string length behind the nut.... Also fret height. I can bend all day long with 6100 frets or jumbos, medium jumbos and smaller, it's more difficult. Same for vibrato...
    All that being said, my Teles feel stiffer.. And they both have Strat necks on them.. Haha
     
  10. Jazz_175

    Jazz_175 Member

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    Thanks for the answers.
    It seems most agree on the Tele being in general stiffer, but since that also depends on other factors, let's consider just one guitar, the Stratocaster and let's put it in another way.
    Is bending with the tremolo bridge completely parallel to the body stiffer than bending with the bridge forming a certain angle?
     
  11. Stratburst70

    Stratburst70 Member

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    I don't find a huge difference between bending on a Tele and bending on a Strat, especially since I usually set up my Strat whammy for only downward motion.

    The big difference, IMO, is when you have a floating whammy. It makes the bends easier, but you have to bend farther in order to reach the pitch you want.
     
  12. Jazz_175

    Jazz_175 Member

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    So, regarding my second question about the strat only, you are basically saying that setting the tremolo bridge parallel to the body (so that the whammy bar has only donward motion) will make the bends a bit more difficult.
     
  13. shane88

    shane88 Member

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    not if it's just sitting there

    if the springs are tight enough to pull the bridge onto the body so you have to overcome that tension before you dive then yes
     
  14. Windup 43

    Windup 43 Supporting Member

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    Teles have always felt a bit stiffer to me. Always have 10's on all my other guitars, my current Tele has 9.5's to compensate for the stiffer feel- nice compromise.
     
  15. Surfreak

    Surfreak Member

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    There seems to be this romantic myth that Teles "fight" more, in terms of playability, bending etc., and that you really have to "squeeze" the notes out of them to sound legit...

    In my experience, a properly set up Tele plays just as easy as any other guitar.
     
  16. C-4

    C-4 Member

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    I have found that 3 saddle bridge teles are harder to bend and play for me then the regular six saddle types.
     
  17. BlackOne

    BlackOne Member

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    I wouldn't say that Tele feels stiffer than a Strat while bending, but... While playing a Telecaster, I feel like it's begging me not to be nice to it! :rotflmao
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2015
  18. zztomato

    zztomato Supporting Member

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    If you find a general consensus, I can find a bunch of contradictions to that consensus.
     
  19. Mandrax

    Mandrax Member

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    It can vary. Some guitars are just stiffer than others. The Tele and Strat that I have now are pretty loose, but I've had some others in the past that needed a bit more effort for bends.
     
  20. metropolis_4

    metropolis_4 Member

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    I've heard that before as well and I don't really understand where it comes from. I spent years playing a 3-saddle tele with .11's as my main guitar and never felt like I was battling anything.
     

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