AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

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ChrisDesign
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AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by ChrisDesign » Mon Jun 29, 2020 11:13 am

Hi

Is there a playability/ tone difference between the Mexican and AVRI tremolo?

Where is the best place to buy an AVRI tremolo if it is better?
"I own a '66 Jaguar. That's the guitar I polish, and baby - I refuse to let anyone touch it when I jump into the crowd." - Kurt Cobain

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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by tribi9 » Mon Jun 29, 2020 12:12 pm

Do you mean Cinco de Mayo? 🤔

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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by adamrobertt » Mon Jun 29, 2020 1:45 pm

YES. The Mexican trem SUCKS. I have both a Thin Skin JM and a 60th Anniversary, which is a Mexican model. The American unit is vastly superior. I put one in the Mexican guitar and it’s much much better.

I’d go with Angela.com or darrenreily

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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by JVG » Mon Jun 29, 2020 3:03 pm

I feel that the practical differences between AVRI, Mex and Japanese vibrato units are frequently exaggerated on this forum. I have guitars with all three (not on the same guitar, surprisingly), and have been able to compare directly.

The AVRI uses thicker metal than the others, and this is a reason commonly cited as making it “better”. More ‘vintage correct’ definitely, but nit necessarily ‘better’ or worse.
The AVRI has a heavier duty spring that gives the impression of being more sturdy when the arm is pressed.
There are also differences in the arm collet and the lock, but again, i don’t really feel there’s a significant quality difference.

Overall, the AVRI is more true to the original design, and looks more ‘solid’. I think this ‘solidness’ is what often gets equated to ‘quality’.

In use, i doubt anyone would notice a tone difference between units, and the playability is a matter of personal taste. A lot of people feel more secure with the extra spring tension of the AVRI, although in my experience they all keep tune equally well (assuming the guitar and unit are properly set up). If you’re a really heavy/vigorous vibrato user, then the AVRI would probably suit you better.

So yeah, there are clear differences between the units, and if i had to pick one it would be the AVRI, but I don’t feel they are ‘night and day’.

Cheers!

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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by adamrobertt » Mon Jun 29, 2020 3:29 pm

JVG wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 3:03 pm
I feel that the practical differences between AVRI, Mex and Japanese vibrato units are frequently exaggerated on this forum. I have guitars with all three (not on the same guitar, surprisingly), and have been able to compare directly.

The AVRI uses thicker metal than the others, and this is a reason commonly cited as making it “better”. More ‘vintage correct’ definitely, but ‘better’?
The AVRI also has a heavier duty spring that gives the impression of being more sturdy when the arm is pressed.
There are also differences in the arm collet and the lock, but again, i don’t really feel there’s a significant quality difference.

Overall, the AVRI is more true to the original design, and looks more ‘solid’. I think this ‘solidness’ is what often gets equated to ‘quality’.

In use, i doubt anyone would notice a tone difference between units, and the playability is a matter of personal taste. A lot of people feel more secure with the extra spring tension of the AVRI, although in my experience they all keep tune equally well (assuming the guitar and unit are properly set up). If you’re a really heavy/vigorous vibrato user, then the AVRI would probably suit you better.

So yeah, there are clear differences between the units, and if i had to pick one it would be the AVRI, but I don’t feel they are ‘night and day’.

Cheers!
I'm telling you, I literally just A/B'd a US unit and a Mexican unit. I understand that they're technically essentially the same (minus the lock), but the Mexican vibrato felt COMPLETELY different in every way. The action of the vibrato with the screw tightened all the way (for maximum travel) resulted in the same action as the US unit set up for the lock to be funcitonal (about halfway). Probably a really weak spring... also the arm/collet rattled a lot and felt flimsy. It also didn't return to pitch very well, I frequently had to pull back up on the bar to get it back into true even with light use.

The differences are small, but they are definitely there. Of course they sound the same, but that's not really the point.

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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by andy_tchp » Mon Jun 29, 2020 3:30 pm

JVG wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 3:03 pm
The AVRI uses thicker metal than the others, and this is a reason commonly cited as making it “better”. More ‘vintage correct’ definitely, but ‘better’?
Absolutely, unmistakably better.

The entire collet broke out of the plate on my Fender Japan assembly, repeatedly, even after re-assembly with red Loctite.

The threads were cut poorly allowing some flex, coupled with there being not a lot of 'meat' for the collet threads to bite into. Regardless - the whole unit was rendered junk. This was on a guitar I'd purchased brand new, one of the supposedly vaunted 'Q series' instruments.

No such issues with 3 x AVRI assemblies I've had in the decade since.

Sometimes that bit of extra thickness and/or material hardness and precision matters. There is a LOT of spring tension to counteract going through that small interface of parts!


Not a hassle worth saving $20-$30 over, that's for sure. Buy from Darren Riley because he's a nice guy and doesn't gouge on shipping like the other company that was mentioned.
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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by timtam » Mon Jun 29, 2020 7:08 pm

As far as I know there is no trem that is made in Mexico.
https://darrenriley.com/product-categor ... -tremolos/

The trems on most MIM guitars are mostly the lock-equipped South Korean-made 0076232000 / 0076232049, which is on the Classic Player and others. The OEM company that actually makes these is uncertain. Likewise I don't think we know who actually makes the Japanese trems.
Image

The origin of the non-lock trems on cheaper Asian Fender/Squier guitars is uncertain. Whether these are all the same trem or come from several different sources is unknown.

Fender's own trem presses are all in California as far as I know, and used for the AVRI and Am Pro trems - basically the same trem with different collets/arms.

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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by JVG » Mon Jun 29, 2020 7:55 pm

Yep you’re dead right about there being no Mexican made unit. The one i Erroneously referred to as Mexican is actually the Korean-made unit that you mentioned, as installed on some Mexican fenders.

The comment about the Japanese collet reminded me that i swapped out all my collets for Stay-trems, so that’s why i never encountered collet issues!

I still feel like my Japanese and Korean units (with Stay-trem collets) function as well as my AVRI units, and they’ve all had a pretty vigorous workout.

Cheers!

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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by ChrisDesign » Mon Jun 29, 2020 11:20 pm

Interesting. My Mexican Standard’s tremolo has no lock, so I guess it’s the lowest quality part? Korean made?

Would swapping the Mexican collet for a Staytrem collect be sufficient an upgrade, or do the differences go deeper. I feel a lock is necessary to zero in the balance between string and spring tension (as designed) but maybe I’m giving that balance point too much credit.

Does anyone know a UK seller? Darren Riley May be great, but he’s across the ocean from me.
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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by gusgorman » Tue Jun 30, 2020 1:04 am

andy_tchp wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 3:30 pm

The entire collet broke out of the plate on my Fender Japan assembly, repeatedly, even after re-assembly with red Loctite.

The threads were cut poorly allowing some flex, coupled with there being not a lot of 'meat' for the collet threads to bite into. Regardless - the whole unit was rendered junk. This was on a guitar I'd purchased brand new, one of the supposedly vaunted 'Q series' instruments.
Another experience with a Fender Japan similar to this... I've got a CIJ Jazzmaster (with an "S" serial number which I think dates it around 2006) and the whole trem system collapsed in on itself a couple of years ago. tbh not sure what the problem was as someone else rebuilt it

edit: I just searched through my emails and at the time he said "Iv'e fixed & rebuilt the vibrato unit as the locking washer had snapped"

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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by adamrobertt » Tue Jun 30, 2020 7:42 am

ChrisDesign wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 11:20 pm
Interesting. My Mexican Standard’s tremolo has no lock, so I guess it’s the lowest quality part? Korean made?

Would swapping the Mexican collet for a Staytrem collect be sufficient an upgrade, or do the differences go deeper. I feel a lock is necessary to zero in the balance between string and spring tension (as designed) but maybe I’m giving that balance point too much credit.

Does anyone know a UK seller? Darren Riley May be great, but he’s across the ocean from me.
That's the part I just swapped on my Mexican guitar for an American unit. You want the whole unit. The collet isn't enough. It is a worthy upgrade.

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Re: AVRI Vs Mexican Tremallo

Post by MayTheFuzzBeWithYou » Tue Jun 30, 2020 9:22 am

andy_tchp wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 3:30 pm

The entire collet broke out of the plate on my Fender Japan assembly, repeatedly, even after re-assembly with red Loctite.
This happened to mine too occasionally - also the arm got loose pretty often.
I exchanged it for a Mastery unit last summer and just added the spare Japan (JD12... series) unit with a Staytrem Bridge and Collet to my recently acquired and now modded VM Jaguar.

Depending on the song I use the vibrato either pretty hard or „just“ for surfy chords both with ZERO ISSUES!
I did not set up the lock(!) as I do upwards bends too (also the Mastery doesn‘t have a lock either) - works pretty fine for me.

On my custom made Jazzmaster I installed the AVRI unit also with a Staytrem collet/arm and bridge - and while the unit is - as stated above - sturdier and surely of higher quality - with the Staytrem (at both) the differences in play and feel got smaller...

I adjusted the Japanese unit’s spring to act as closely as possible as the AVRI (again, ignoring the lock - so if you need the lock this might not be true for you)
ChrisDesign wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 11:20 pm
Interesting. My Mexican Standard’s tremolo has no lock, so I guess it’s the lowest quality part? Korean made?

Would swapping the Mexican collet for a Staytrem collect be sufficient an upgrade, or do the differences go deeper. I feel a lock is necessary to zero in the balance between string and spring tension (as designed) but maybe I’m giving that balance point too much credit.

Does anyone know a UK seller? Darren Riley May be great, but he’s across the ocean from me.
I can‘t tell much about any of the Korean units used on Mexican guitars (yet) - if you want to seriously upgrade go for the AVRI instead of the Japanese (which is cool to equip with a staytrem if you already happen to have one - but if you don‘t - you‘ll get happier with the AVRI)!

If you have the money (and as you seem to live in the UK) the opportunity - get two staytrem arms (one US one import) and try it with the Korean unit first - if you‘re happy already, good! If not, get the AVRI! And use the now upgraded unit for your (future) Squier! 😜

I don‘t know of any UK shop (WD doesn’t) to have it in stock but if Thomann and Musicstore and Customworldguitarparts have it... I‘m sure your local/favorite music store should be able to order it too! And they are surely happy to make the deal for you instead of one of the big ones...

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