Setting up a Jazzer

Discussion in 'Tech-Talk' started by Strato67, Feb 14, 2017.

  1. Strato67

    Strato67 Squier-holic

    Age:
    50
    Jun 17, 2013
    Texas
    I like the guitars...but man what a job setting them up. I worked on it for 3 hrs and I finally got it playing well...I had to tighten the tension spring down pretty good to keep it in tune...so the arm is popping up 6 inches off the body. I bent it down slightly to make it usable...has anyone had to do this?...I read where some guys will shim the neck to get the right neck angle. Any personal tips on setting up these little Squiers?...I would be most thankful.
     
  2. radiotech

    radiotech Squier-holic

    Apr 23, 2014
    Chicago
    Search Jag or Jazzy setup with the search tool Strato, we've discussed it extensively.
     
  3. duceditor

    duceditor Dr. Squier

    Age:
    70
    May 29, 2014
    The Monadnocks, NH USA
    Yes, setup on these can be a bit tedious. Not actually harder than a Strat, in my experience, but different and thus calling for a level of attention that for experienced players and set-er-uppers has long been unnecessary.

    As I just shared on a post by a new Jag owner, here's a link to my picture-full tome on the subject. https://www.squier-talk.com/threads/adjusting-a-jazzmaster-type-bridge.78986/

    A shim can be helpful. Especially if/when after everything else is right the strings tend to be hitting the upfolds on the bridge plate. (see post 5 in above thread). But another advantage is that setting up following the insertion of a small shim slightly increases the break angle -- possibly allow for either stronger plectrum work, or lighter strings.

    I did not find a shim needed on either my Jag or JM, but am thinking about adding one to the Jag during the next string change to see if it works better for me that way. Yesterday I actually knocked the low E out of its groove. A rarity for me.

    -don
     
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  4. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Squier-holic

    Age:
    37
    Oct 5, 2014
    Gilbert, AZ
    This shouldn't happen. What kind of JM do you have? You probably have zero up-pull too-- it should float. On any Jazz/Jag trem without a lock button, the adjustment screw is to adjust the arm position/spring tension only.
     
  5. Caddy

    Caddy Dr. Squier

    Nov 29, 2010
    Indiana
    You have that tightened down way too far.
    The back of the bridge (where the strings attach) should be be at 90 degrees to the surface of the body.

    On similar trems with the lock, the lock is used in setting up the trem tension. You adjust them until the lock slides in place without having to touch the trem arm. That actually puts it where the back of the bridge is at 90 degrees to the top of the body (as above).
     
  6. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Squier-holic

    Age:
    37
    Oct 5, 2014
    Gilbert, AZ
    Caddy, it seems setting the lock button properly limits choices on arm position, given the string gauge used and the tension of a given spring. I even read up that Jag and JM trems differ in vintage years--Jags having a shorter spring due to scale length. Did I read this here? Don't know if that is true or not.
     
  7. Caddy

    Caddy Dr. Squier

    Nov 29, 2010
    Indiana
    I am only stating what was printed in the manual that came with the new Jazzmaster I bought in 1965 and my buddy's 1964 Jag booklet. Also as is still said by Fender.

    That setup puts the arm right where it is designed to be and the correct tension on the spring, much the same as floating a Strat trem. Changes to the position of the trem arm can be made by bending the arm.
     
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  8. duceditor

    duceditor Dr. Squier

    Age:
    70
    May 29, 2014
    The Monadnocks, NH USA
    My own experience with such trem units on a Jazzmaster and a Jaguar is that it should be pretty much set and forget -- unless one changes the type of string so that tension at pitch changes.

    The VM guitars don't have the lock so one must, as Caddy suggests, use the string attachment bar (or the position of the vertical part of the trem bar) as a guide. But unless something is oddly wrong the system is really simple. Just balance the spring tension against that at-pitch string tension. Easy peezy as they say.

    Wish there was a way to see the setup in 3-D. I bet someone with Caddy's experience would immediately see what's off.

    -don
     
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  9. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Squier-holic

    Age:
    37
    Oct 5, 2014
    Gilbert, AZ
    So the different Jag and JM springs is bogus? Just curious.
     
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  10. so1om

    so1om Squier-holic

    Age:
    49
    Feb 10, 2010
    Chicago
    I don't think it would be bogus at all. Do the use different springs or are you saying changing them out for an aftermarket?
     
  11. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Squier-holic

    Age:
    37
    Oct 5, 2014
    Gilbert, AZ
    I thought I read it here, but now I don't know. I read that back in the early days of Jags and JMs, Fender used different lengths of springs between the models, due to the shorter scale length on Jags. They supposedly snipped off some of the coil (this sounds like something ol Leo would do). For all I know, it's just a internet myth.
     
  12. Strato67

    Strato67 Squier-holic

    Age:
    50
    Jun 17, 2013
    Texas
    Sorry fellas my second attempt a Jazzer...not gonna happen this thing will not stay in tune at all...now if someone wants it...let me know .. its getting the hell out of here..I will take a strat trem any day. Now maybe I am not setting it right.. ..but I followed all the steps..and its not suiting my needs...I have to have a guitar that will work out live...I think these need a better parts from the get go...Make me an offer it will be gone soon.
     
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  13. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Squier-holic

    Age:
    37
    Oct 5, 2014
    Gilbert, AZ
    @Strato67 We'll get it right for ya, I'm willing to bet we can, and if not, then I'll gladly destroy it for you for free! I'll even pay shipping!:)

    [I might of missed a NGD, but what kind is it?]
     
  14. Strato67

    Strato67 Squier-holic

    Age:
    50
    Jun 17, 2013
    Texas
    Its a VM Jazzer...its dead mint and fixing to be laying in the drive way....if you just look at it goes out of tune...I have never seen anything like it. Its trade bait or firewood one...I hope I can get something for this POS. I am going to build a Jazzer with Strat trem.
     
  15. Strato67

    Strato67 Squier-holic

    Age:
    50
    Jun 17, 2013
    Texas
    What are these things worth...in mint shape with a Duncan Quarter Pounder in the bridge?
     
  16. Caddy

    Caddy Dr. Squier

    Nov 29, 2010
    Indiana
    All I know is that once I set mine up four or five years ago I have not had to make any further adjustments (other than adjusting the truss rod when the weather changes in fall and spring). Seems to always be in tune when I pick it up, or after using the trem. Not that I do dive bombs, these were't designed for that, or was that in practice when these were designed.

    My VM Jazzmaster is one guitar that seems to stay in tune and that requires no constant tweaking.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2017
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  17. Strato67

    Strato67 Squier-holic

    Age:
    50
    Jun 17, 2013
    Texas
    After repeated attempts at setting this thing up ..I gave in and threw it in the fire pit......lol...J/K...its sounds glorious and plays great..but I think the tuners are the culprit...so I have some Gotohs that I know are solid...I will change them out tomorrow...I hope that is it..only thing else in the nut which is coming out to....the tone is there..gotta be able to surf on it and do subtle trem work on it in order to use it live. Not giving up yet.
     
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  18. BorderRadio

    BorderRadio Squier-holic

    Age:
    37
    Oct 5, 2014
    Gilbert, AZ
    Unless it has been surfing in saltwater, I doubt your tuners are the culprit, they are pretty solid as is. The nut would be my first guess--but nothing really wrong with the material, just a dress and polish. Got some nice pics of the bridge and trem?
     
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  19. Strato67

    Strato67 Squier-holic

    Age:
    50
    Jun 17, 2013
    Texas
    I did the nut...its cut a little deep...I think a good bone one would really help this guitar.
     
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