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Pros and cons of decking / blocking a tremolo


oldschoolshred

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Ok sorry for those who have heard this question a million times but here goes:

 

For years I've taken it as a given that lowering a tremolo to be flush with the guitar's body by tightening the springs gives it better overall resonance and therefore fuller tone and more sustain. I myself have noticed more resonsance and vibration in my guitars and have been pleased with the change.

 

But now I'm hearing people say that's all a myth and that a floating trem rings out more. Since it's been so long since I've played a floating trem I can't even remember.

 

Comments please and keep in mind when comparing things that ALL ELSE BEING EQUAL.

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Interesting tutorial. Seems hard to calibrate the strings vs springs just right though. In my case, I don't whammy so my only concern really is maximizing tone quality and resonance. So I'm not sure if I'd try this.

 

Plus, a central part of my style involves bending one string combined with another not bent and as we all know, the tremolo sends the second note flat. I could never deal with that.

 

Thanks.

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I think I've broken one string one in 19 years of playing... but to each their own.

 

Decking is for guys who preform live and worry about breaking a string, and for guys that don't know how to properly set up a strat. It has been clearly demonstrated to me though my own experience that a Strat sounds like a strat when the back of the trem is off the body.

 

But you do what you like. :thu:

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I think I've broken one string one in 19 years of playing... but to each their own.


Decking is for guys who preform live and worry about breaking a string, and for guys that don't know how to properly set up a strat. It has been clearly demonstrated to me though my own experience that a Strat sounds like a strat when the back of the trem is off the body.


But you do what you like.
:thu:

 

This comment reminds me of Jimi Hendrix's Woodstock version of Red House. Half way through the song he breaks a string and you can barely even notice. He finishes the song great. I guess his strat must have been decked.

 

You must have a really light touch, cause I've broken plenty of strings. I don't think you can say with a straight face that it's a remote possiblity.

 

In any case, my primary interest with this thread is to see people's opinions on the TONE, RESONANCE, FULLNESS, and SUSTAIN of a decked trem.

 

Cheers.

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This comment reminds me of Jimi Hendrix's Woodstock version of Red House. Half way through the song he breaks a string and you can barely even notice. He finishes the song great. I guess his strat must have been decked.


 

 

I would think Jimi being Jimi, did not have a blocked trem but was able to compensate due to his guitar ability.

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I would think Jimi being Jimi, did not have a blocked trem but was able to compensate due to his guitar ability.

 

 

I think he might have had it decked but not blocked. If I think about it, he only really did divebombs. I can't think of an example of him going up on the trem. But I suppose I could be mistaken. In that case he must have been a magician cause he managed to continue rocking that version of Red House as if nothing happened.

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Just got a Strat--haven't unpackaged it yet, even--so I don't know what I will wind up doing--but I really enjoyed that video, and I thank you for posting it.

 

 

You just bought a strat and are on this site??? Dude, log off your computer and start rocking out!

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I think I've broken one string one in 19 years of playing... but to each their own.


Decking is for guys who preform live and worry about breaking a string, and for guys that don't know how to properly set up a strat. It has been clearly demonstrated to me though my own experience that a Strat sounds like a strat when the back of the trem is off the body.


But you do what you like.
:thu:

 

You're great, I suck. Okay, got it.

Too bad you don't know that I played with a floater for 20 years, but then, how could you?

The reason I switched was because I was playing more trad and country stuff, and trem gargle (or lack of) and oblique bends are important.

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In any case, my primary interest with this thread is to see people's opinions on the TONE, RESONANCE, FULLNESS, and SUSTAIN of a decked trem.

 

The tone does change by a small amount when you deck the trem. Wether you like it or not is probably an entirely personal question.

Sustain is in the setup, not the bridge. Imo, of course.

In a live situation i doubt that anyone would notice the tone difference anyway.

 

Personally, at home where i can hear minute details, i like the floating trem tone better, so even though i can appreciate the practical aspects of a decked trem i keep my trems floating.

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Plus, a central part of my style involves bending one string combined with another not bent and as we all know, the tremolo sends the second note flat. I could never deal with that.

 

 

You could use one of the many available trem stopper devices. I use a Super Vee Mag-Lok. It works well, but suffers from the same drawback they all have: it puts a very noticeable detent in the trem movement at the "at rest" position.

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This comment reminds me of Jimi Hendrix's Woodstock version of Red House. Half way through the song he breaks a string and you can barely even notice. He finishes the song great. I guess his strat must have been decked.

 

 

Only cowboys stay in tune anyways.

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I bet those who think blocking kills tone wouldn't know the difference in a blind listening test.

 

 

Listening is really not the same as listening while playing. What may be subtle and/or unnoticeable to someone just listening, may be very noticeable to the guitarist when playing.

 

As a guitar player, the mods and set ups I do to my guitars have a noticeable affect to me. I'm doing those things for me, not the listener.

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I think I've broken one string one in 19 years of playing... but to each their own.


Decking is for guys who preform live and worry about breaking a string, and for guys that don't know how to properly set up a strat. It has been clearly demonstrated to me though my own experience that a Strat sounds like a strat when the back of the trem is off the body.


But you do what you like.
:thu:

 

I have played Strats and Charvels live for many years. I have broken many strings. Trem is blocked on the Strats, and Floyds on the Charvels. Even without burrs on the saddles and such, strings break. You must either barely touch the strings, don't use your trem a lot, or have never gigged heavily.

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I have played Strats and Charvels live for many years. I have broken many strings. Trem is blocked on the Strats, and Floyds on the Charvels. Even without burrs on the saddles and such, strings break. You must either barely touch the strings, don't use your trem a lot, or have never gigged heavily.

 

 

 

 

Of course it happens, but for guys who don't play out, blocking a trem is not necessary.

Btw, you'll see no argument from me that blocking is a fine idea for a performer.

It's the idea that it hands down adds to one's tone that's misguided.

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Ok sorry for those who have heard this question a million times but here goes:


For years I've taken it as a given that lowering a tremolo to be flush with the guitar's body by tightening the springs gives it better overall resonance and therefore fuller tone and more sustain. I myself have noticed more resonsance and vibration in my guitars and have been pleased with the change.


But now I'm hearing people say that's all a myth and that a floating trem rings out more. Since it's been so long since I've played a floating trem I can't even remember.


Comments please and keep in mind when comparing things that ALL ELSE BEING EQUAL.

 

 

About tone I'll only say that I have never questioned how one of my trem guitars might sound better w/decking the vibrato. That's a good sign.

 

Pros:

1) Obv. tuning advantages...drop..and broken string will not ruin the gig.

B)Double stop bends can be in tune! (this is one of my least fav about floating)

 

Cons:

A) Vibrato cand ONLY go down and back to pitch. This is not ideal. It's the slight sharp....to slight flat oscillation that is VERY musical.

2) The beauty that is attained by raising the pitch, and increasing the string tension!!!! that makes it scream tonally as well as offering a million creative applications.

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