Help with Squier JM JM bridge, tuners, and tremolo replacement

Discussion in 'Squier Offset Guitars' started by rocknpop, Nov 8, 2019.

  1. rocknpop

    rocknpop Squier Talker

    Age:
    37
    4
    Nov 6, 2019
    Chicago
    Hi guys, hope you can help. I’m looking to upgrade the following parts in my Squier JM JM:
    - tremolo bar (original feels cheap and the bar keeps falling, and the guitar doesn’t return to correct tuning)
    - bridge (original is not the correct radius and the high E string is almost impossible to keep on the board)
    - tuners (I hate how cheap these feel, need something that has a high gear turn ratio and is high quality)

    I’m hoping you can suggest parts that are direct drop in replacements as I don’t want to get too deep into mods.

    thank you!!
     
    Kenneth Mountain and Rat cam 68 like this.
  2. so1om

    so1om Squier-Axpert

    Age:
    52
    Feb 10, 2010
    Chicago
    Tuning issues generally stem from strings getting caught in the nut. What gauge strings are you using and is the nut properly dressed?

    Is the bar pushed in all the way? I've had the bar in my Jaguar since 2012. And the one in my Bass VI since the early 90s and they never fall out. There is a possibility that the collet that the bar fits in isn't snug. To remedy this, remove the trem assembly and with the bar pushed in all they, used pliers to compress the collet around the bar.

    With the combination of not the original bridge and possibly issues with the nut -along with it sounds like the guitar is not even set up, that should take care of tuning stability.

    As for the tuners, the JMJM has some of the most highly regarded tuners so I have no clue about what you'd use for a drop-in replacement. I don't know if I've ever rightly heard of someone wanting to replace the ones on a JMJM or on the Vintage Modifed, Classic Vibe series guitars.

    Is your guitar completely stock? Pics?
     
  3. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Dr. Squier

    Age:
    43
    Sep 27, 2014
    Canada
    None of those things you mention need changing or doing on the JM JM.....

    There is a tension adjustment for the arm.....and tuning is because of improper setup or strings not stretched enough, or nut slots and string trees lubed

    The bridge is the right radius for the 9.5" fretboard (a lot of online resources claim it's not, but they're wrong and it is), and the neck out of alignment is an easy fix by loosening the 4 neck screws 1/4 to 1/2 a turn, manually aligning, and re-tightening.

    The tuners aren't cheap they're high quality 14:1 Kluson vintage split shaft style - are you stringing them properly with the string end cut first and shoved into the center hole in the tuner?

    You can spend $500 on parts but nothing will improve if you don't fix the root of the problem which is a full setup and understanding how all of the parts work together....all of these problems you're having now would happen even on a $3,000 Custom Shop Fender Jazzmaster.....

    Welcome to the forum!!
     
  4. glmino

    glmino Squier Talker

    59
    Nov 11, 2018
    MidWest
    Super good advice... Seems the elephant in the room is the neck, like Guitarmageddon quickly pointed out! After the screws are a bit loose, just push the neck while holding the guitar's neck with a grip under the nut and push it towards the fat string... Great advice for sure Guitarmageddon!!!
    And also, Welcome to the forum!!

    Mike
     
  5. duceditor

    duceditor Squier-Axpert

    Age:
    72
    May 29, 2014
    The Monadnocks, NH USA
  6. Guitarmageddon

    Guitarmageddon Dr. Squier

    Age:
    43
    Sep 27, 2014
    Canada
    Awesome thread - but the J Mascis Jazzmaster has a Gibson type tune-o-matic fixed bridge so setup is a bit different....I know you're highly experienced with JM's - do you have advice for the OP on trem setup and adjusting arm stiffness?
     
    Kenneth Mountain, quitter and glmino like this.
  7. so1om

    so1om Squier-Axpert

    Age:
    52
    Feb 10, 2010
    Chicago
    I think the bar isn't pushed in all the way. Or the collet issue.
     
  8. glmino

    glmino Squier Talker

    59
    Nov 11, 2018
    MidWest
    Yup, Worth a thousand words...!
     
    Kenneth Mountain likes this.
  9. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Squier-holic

    Age:
    40
    Oct 5, 2014
    Gilbert, AZ
    -Best upgrade is a AVRI made in USA trem. Even on those, the trem bar sometimes won't stay in place, and you do need to pop it in just like the JMJM, as everyone else mentioned. The bar + trem, new, will cost you about $100, and drop in ready.

    -Even if your bridge is not correct (use a metal gauge under the strings), you can slot the saddles accordingly to get it dead nuts perfect. To solve the E string problem, there is the neck bump move mentioned above, or a buy a new TOM bridge with no saddle slots and customize your own string spacing. I'd get a roller bridge though, I use ABM 2400s and they ain't cheap anymore. The Wilkenson type is pretty well-liked and I think you can get one for $20. Note, rollers will not match the radius, but I also like to bump up the e strings anyways. You will need conversion bushings too, but I don't know the thread size on JMJMs. So, drop in ready too if you find the right conversion bushings. New TOM, just make sure to get the right post size.

    -The tuners are high quality, and they will keep the guitar in tune. What's so cheap about them? If you want to spend more money, Gotoh splits, the same basic tuner, are some of the highest quality Kluson-types around and only cost $35 bucks. Ratio is 15:1 and generally a drop-in fit, but the bushings may not be, so you might have to ream the holes or keep the nickel bushings (potential hardware mismatch).

    Good luck, post pics!
     
    Kenneth Mountain and so1om like this.
  10. Scarabeus

    Scarabeus Squier-Meister

    101
    Sep 15, 2015
    I use...
    • an AVRI trem (as for the arm... you just gotta push it in hard)
    • Wilkinson roller bridge
    • Wilkinson EZ-Lok tuners
     
    Kenneth Mountain likes this.
  11. quitter

    quitter Squier Talker

    Age:
    30
    5
    Nov 11, 2019
    Lexington
    I love and hate that Wilkinson roller bridge. If you lube it it seems to work wonders but I hate locking it etc.
     
    Kenneth Mountain likes this.
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