Strat Bridges: 2-point vs 6-point?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by TheLemon, Feb 20, 2009.

  1. TheLemon

    TheLemon Senior Member

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    Can anybody name the specific differences in tone that these different bridges have? (2 outer screws securing the bridge vs 6 screws)

    I've read somewhere that the 2-points were described as having a less "hard" tone, less sustain, but smoother trem-dips vs the 6-point which had a more agressive nature, and more sustain; but thats if I recall correctly.
     
  2. Eagle1

    Eagle1 Member

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    The best two post trems (Gotoh 510TS) sound pretty much the same as 6 screw mount and work a lot better.
     
  3. Bill Brasky

    Bill Brasky Senior Member

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    The vintage six-screw type bridges often come with vintage stamped style saddles and the modern two point bridges usually have die-cast saddles. I think it's the saddles that affect the tone more than the number of screws. A lot of people completely loosen the inner four screws on the 6 screw trem anyway, so they both are often only working with two points.
     
  4. Eagle1

    Eagle1 Member

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    Your missing the point ,a six screw bridge actually rocks on the wood this is why it sounds so good but also why it has friction issues ,and no amount of countersinking holes or unscrewing the middle four is going to help that much.
     
  5. benjammin420

    benjammin420 Member

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    ive used both 6 ans 2 screw designs and noticed no difference in tone or sustain. My current 2 point trem has vintage stamped saddles (same as a vintage 6 point as Bill Brasky mentioned), that may be where more of the tone is. The playability of the 2 point trem is fantastic, though, a dive bombers dream.
     
  6. TheLemon

    TheLemon Senior Member

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    Cool, thanks for the info guys; really helpful.
     
  7. * velcro-fly *

    * velcro-fly * Member

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    Which is why the Callaham vintage style bridge really is better and well worth the money. Read the product description for his explanation on the plate bevel ;)

    http://www.callahamguitars.com/bridges.htm

    BTW - I agree with you on all points, Callaham has solved that friction problem though.
     
  8. Eagle1

    Eagle1 Member

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    Gotoh have been doing this for over 20 years ,and it makes no difference because the top of the bridge plate still moves up and down on the screw as it pivots (try it.) Watch the plate closely, the screw head starts butt up against the plate and when it is depressed the same part of the plate is 2~3mm below it and at an angle of around 20 deg so the part of the bridge that they remove would not contact at all anyway . As much as six screw enthusiasts want this to be like a knife edge is just isn't.
     
  9. Mike9

    Mike9 Supporting Member

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    That's why I started notching my mounting screws like John Mann bridges. I can float my vintage style trems like a PRS, or screw them down tight to the body and they move and return to pitch much better than stock.
     
  10. Eagle1

    Eagle1 Member

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    So if you lift the plate off the body you would be better switching to the Gotoh 510TS two post as it has the best knife edge of any system available now, and without the full on contact of the plate pivot on the body the whole point of keeping the six screw is negated.
    The Mann trem is only like this because the bridge plate is too soft to have a proper knife edge the load is spread across five or six blunt ones in to the notched screws.
     
  11. Marcel

    Marcel Member

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    That's because the Mann (or PRS) bridge plate is Brass, right?
    I have always found this to be a strange choice as it is a very soft metal for using at a fulcrum point. Maybe the chrome or nickel plating is what makes it a little stronger...althought I doubt if that makes a big differents?
     
  12. Eagle1

    Eagle1 Member

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    Yes it's and a lot cheaper and easier to manufacture on a small scale than hardened steel,This is also why the Hipshot has its strange bar pivot .Neither of these it the "correct" mechanical solution to the issue ,more of a compromise brought about by small scale cost effectiveness hence buy the Gotoh 510ts (no compromises hear.)
     
  13. Marcel

    Marcel Member

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    ..and that's the reason why Sir John Suhr offers these great tremolo's too.
     
  14. buddastrat

    buddastrat Member

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    I use a regular old style Fender trem and they stay in tune amazingly well, even shaking it by the arm in mid air. You really don't need two post trems/locking tuners/lock nuts etc.. Someone brought in a Road Worn (Mexican relic) last week. Brand new, stock. Tune it once, and the guitar stayed in tune. I was getting some squeak and put a little lube under the tree and nut and it was good to go. dive bomb the E, shimmer some chords, or scream the harmonics. It stayed right where it was tuned. This is common with a regular Fender trems too.

    I've had a few American strats with two post trems and they didn't stay in tune as well, even with Sperzels!
     
  15. Marcel

    Marcel Member

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    Budda, I have great respect for you..but "a few"...that's grazy talk!
    How can a system with more friction points stay better in tune then a system with less friction points, as it is friction that is the problem here. Answer: it can not!
     
  16. buddastrat

    buddastrat Member

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    It just does for me man. And I don't do anything fancy with them like tie them or anything. I don't have as good luck with the two post trems/Sperzel setups I've had. I did have good luck with the Ernie Ball trem on those guitars. Those are two post.

    I like the stiffer feel of the trem and some odd reason that seems to help it return. The two posts trems feel soggy or kinda' mushy and doesn't seem like it comes right back in the same place for me. for me anyhow.
     
  17. Marcel

    Marcel Member

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    I have a Fender Strat with the Sperzels, floating Fender two-point tremolo and LSR nut: it didn't return in tune at first. Turned out that the knife edges of this Fender two point trem were blunt. After replacing the tremolo for a new one the problem was solved. It now stays in tune and the system is almost as good as a good Floyd system.

    A vintage Fender tremolo can return very wel in tune when the back of the base plate is 1/8" off the face of the body. This is what many people also call a "floating" tremolo. It is "sort of", but not like a two point tremolo that floats. Its just that the beveled front of the Fender vintage tremolo rests on the body, as Leo ment it to be. In this manner the Player can easely "correct" the tremolo if after use it needs a little help to return in tune. You can also set a vintage tremolo with its base plate resting flat on the body (no pull-ups possible) and slightly increase the tension on the springs to overcome friction points. Both these set-ups work very well. But this is not the same a real floating two point tremolo -IMO.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2009
  18. Blueswede

    Blueswede Gold Supporting Member

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    Maybe a dumb question, but can the Callaham bridge with the 6 screw holes be used on a strat that only has the two holes for the bridge? Thanks. Steve
     
  19. Jamster

    Jamster Supporting Member

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    If it's an Am. std trem, there's a retrofit kit.
    http://www.callahamguitars.com/up_amst.htm
     
  20. Boris Bubbanov

    Boris Bubbanov Member

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    You may have to replace you neck. The biggest drawback, IMO, in the vintage (wide mount array) 6 screw bridge design is 2 + 7/32nds is really pushing what an ordinary Fender Strat neck and fretwork can accommodate.

    Neck straightness and alignment, the cut of the nut have to be dead on perfect.

    2 + 1/16ths is unnecessarily narrow, tho. I like the freedom of this:

    [​IMG]

    2 + 1/8ths or a wee bit more, like a vintage Tele.
     

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