Mustang Tremolo setup

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Urinate Forever
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Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by Urinate Forever » Mon Jun 11, 2018 10:58 am

I just got an MIJ '65 RI Mustang and ordered the correct vibrato arm online. Got it on there and it goes totally out of tune when I use it. This is probably a common problem, I think, and was wondering what everyone does to make it more usable?

Thanks

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Horsefeather
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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by Horsefeather » Mon Jun 11, 2018 11:28 pm

I cut a slot in mine and put Jazzmaster guts in it, as I found the Mustang vibrato design to be a horrid piece of shit. Look close and you can see where the posts chewed up and elongated the holes in the plate. Never again! Also absent is the giant cigar that prevents one from picking close to the bridge. I don't know what Fender was thinking when he came up with that crap. Especially since he already had these parts in the bin.

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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by Jazzmastervsjaguar » Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:47 am

First off, You need to remove the unit take the springs and place them lower on the pivot polls (there are 3 locations for the springs to go) I use .11s and put my springs on the lowest rung for the highest tension all tuning issues are gone.

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Second: The Mustang/jag vibrato mash up is lovely!!

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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by HNB » Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:43 am

With any tremolo guitar, I normally string it up and use the tremolo a bunch, tune it, use the tremolo a bunch, tune it.... repeat until the strings stay in tune. New strings kind of need to stretch a bit to get stable with tremolo. This is how I do it with any tremolo guitar. :)
[Christopher]

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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by Urinate Forever » Thu Jun 14, 2018 9:41 am

HNB wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:43 am
With any tremolo guitar, I normally string it up and use the tremolo a bunch, tune it, use the tremolo a bunch, tune it.... repeat until the strings stay in tune. New strings kind of need to stretch a bit to get stable with tremolo. This is how I do it with any tremolo guitar. :)
The problem with the mustang being that it doesn't return to the same position, though.

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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by HNB » Thu Jun 14, 2018 10:21 am

If you exaggerate it both directions it does for me. All the way down you can push it an all the way back so the bridge tilts forward in the cup and then back.
[Christopher]

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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by Maggieo » Thu Jun 14, 2018 10:50 am

I put the strings in from the front and wrap them around the back:

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1965 Fender Mustang, September 12, 2017 by Maggie Osterberg, on Flickr
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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by HNB » Thu Jun 14, 2018 12:35 pm

Wrapping them around and under is how you are supposed to put them in. Some people take the tube off and turn it around so you can string it straight though. With TOM bridges installed it still works pretty well because those sit taller and you get a good break angle.
[Christopher]

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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by MechaBulletBill » Thu Jun 14, 2018 12:52 pm

First, make sure the nut is properly cut and lubed up with graphite, graphite+vaseline nut sauce type thing, white grease, whatever. Then:
Jazzmastervsjaguar wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:47 am
You need to remove the unit take the springs and place them lower on the pivot polls (there are 3 locations for the springs to go) I use .11s and put my springs on the lowest rung for the highest tension all tuning issues are gone.

Image
Do this and if you're still having problems, screw the tailpiece [cigar tube] down so that you can't pull it up, only divebomb. It *should* stay reasonably in tune.

Failing that, get an old unit from the 60s/70s because they're much better.

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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by Urinate Forever » Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:58 am

Thanks, everyone. Have it apart now, trying to move the springs. Cannot for the life of me get this spring to move enough to even it get it off the post that screws into the tube.

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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by blimpage » Fri Jun 22, 2018 2:59 pm

Horsefeather wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 11:28 pm
I cut a slot in mine and put Jazzmaster guts in it, as I found the Mustang vibrato design to be a horrid piece of shit. Look close and you can see where the posts chewed up and elongated the holes in the plate. Never again! Also absent is the giant cigar that prevents one from picking close to the bridge. I don't know what Fender was thinking when he came up with that crap. Especially since he already had these parts in the bin.

Image
Whooooa, I would love to know more about this. Got any photos/tales of the process?

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Re: Mustang Tremolo setup

Post by Jazzmastervsjaguar » Tue Jun 26, 2018 7:49 am

Urinate Forever wrote:
Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:58 am
Thanks, everyone. Have it apart now, trying to move the springs. Cannot for the life of me get this spring to move enough to even it get it off the post that screws into the tube.
It's tough I go with the needle nose small flat head screwdriver method.

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