#1
Hi guys,

Earlier this week, I managed to luck into getting a Squier Strat for $75 in pretty much mint condition and with a case(they go for about $250-300 here new, in case you're thinking I'm crazy for being happy about it being 75), and while I am content with it, I'd like to go that extra mile and make a project out of it with my Christmas and birthday money(I'm also interested in tech work so the more experience I can get the better).

I'd like to replace the bridge pickup, the neck and the bridge/tuners, and as such I've got a few questions I'd like to ask:

1)What would be a good bridge pickup for me? I'd like to keep it single coil-sized, though stacked humbuckers work, and I'll be using this guitar for 60s/70s rock(Led Zeppelin, Uriah Heep, Black Sabbath, early Rush and so on) with most likely a little 80s hard rock/metal thrown in, no death metal or anything(I've got a Schecter for heavier stuff should I choose but my "metal" cred, per se, has been on a steady decline since I turned 15), and the pickup in my Strat's bridge is fine, but it's JUUUUUST a little too harsh/trebly. I still want something trebly, mind, but...

2)What's a good Strat trem brand? I've heard Hipshot is good, and I've heard good things about Gotoh too, but I've no idea about anything but ToMs and Floyds when it comes to bridges.

AAAAAAAAAAND

3)I've heard stuff about locking tuners and how they can pretty much make your tuning stability as good as with a locking bridge. Is this true, and if so will it manage under trem abuse going lower than a whole tone(I need to tune my Strat about every half hour of playing at the moment, and it's only had strings on it 2 days now) and do they make restringing an unholy, hour-long affair like restringing a Floyd?


Pardon the wall of text, guys, I tend to ramble. D= Thanks, any help at all is appreciated(even if you just want to come in and say I need a new amp, but I'm saving for a Jet City JCA50 half-stack so that shouldn't be an issue!)!
Quote by SlayingDragons
Nah, I prefer to tune lower. My tunings usually go into weird Hebrew symbols.
#2
1) EMG has some passive single coil pickups. I would reccommend you check out the site to see which ones your after
2) go with what you think is good. try out a hipshot or talk to some people at music stores about some other brands
3) get a locking nut system. they use it on guitars with floyd rose trems on them, and they should work if installed properly

Those are my ideas
#3
If you're looking for a stacked pick up, I say look at seymour duncans the Hot rails are good. But take a look on their site for other models and the one which suites you best
#4
You can get some really great budget Pickups from Guitarfetish. I've used both their single coils and "Dream 180" Humbuckers.

They have a really big selection of pups. There's def something to get the sounds you're looking for.

http://www.guitarfetish.com/
Main Gear:

Xaviere XV-870
w/ 2 "Dream 180" Humbuckers + Mid Boost Mod + Coil Tap

Peavey Classic 30

Modified Dunlop CryBaby Wah
Digitech Bass Synth Wah
GFS Twin Overdrive
Way Huge Swollen Pickle
Line 6 DL4
Boss ME-70

#5
1. Seymour Duncan Hot Rail. Very Versatile, will do any of those classic rock tones fine, although you then sacrifice the single coil sound at the bridge (which to me isn't a loss, as I never use my SSS guitars bridge pickup).

2. Measure the body thickness first, most Squiers are thinner than standard Fenders, thus the bridge sticks out of the body on the back and doesn't fit the cavity. I had this problem with my 20th Ann. Squier.

3. No, it doesn't take long to use locking tuners, hardly any longer than regular tuners. I have never found the need for locking tuners, just a decent quality tuner, string tree, and well lubricated nut (or graphtech) and I never have tuning problems. Although I don't abuse my trem. And strings after only 2 days will tend to loose tuning easier with trem use, as they are not fully stretched yet, unless of course you stretched them.
#6
Alright, thanks y'all! I think I'mma go with the Duncan Custom Staggered for my bridge pup, and a Hipshot 6 String US Flat for the trem. Anyone know about those locking tuners, though? If I'm going to go wack out of tune after a dive(I know you can't exactly go about being KK Downing on a Strat trem, but as for normal vibrato...) I might as well just get a hardtail.

EDIT:Oh, thanks Wylde! I've only owned FRs and ToM-style bridges before, so I'm still a Strat-noob. xD I'm gonna get a TUSQ XL nut on the neck I'm getting for it as is, so hopefully that'll help matters a bit(the nut's a little sketchy on the neck it's got, the high E string has a little bit of buzz at times). The body seems to be standard Strat thickness though, it's a Standard, and it's thicker than my buddy's Affinity, I know that much. I'll measure it just to be sure though. Thanks man!
Quote by SlayingDragons
Nah, I prefer to tune lower. My tunings usually go into weird Hebrew symbols.
Last edited by Enix165 at Nov 6, 2011,
#7
Quote by Enix165
Alright, thanks y'all! I think I'mma go with the Duncan Custom Staggered for my bridge pup, and a Hipshot 6 String US Flat for the trem. Anyone know about those locking tuners, though? If I'm going to go wack out of tune after a dive(I know you can't exactly go about being KK Downing on a Strat trem, but as for normal vibrato...) I might as well just get a hardtail.

EDIT:Oh, thanks Wylde! I've only owned FRs and ToM-style bridges before, so I'm still a Strat-noob. xD I'm gonna get a TUSQ XL nut on the neck I'm getting for it as is, so hopefully that'll help matters a bit(the nut's a little sketchy on the neck it's got, the high E string has a little bit of buzz at times). The body seems to be standard Strat thickness though, it's a Standard, and it's thicker than my buddy's Affinity, I know that much. I'll measure it just to be sure though. Thanks man!


Also, you will need an import spaced bridge I believe. The holes should be 2 1/16" from High E to Low E. The US is 2 7/32"
#8
Quote by Wylde_Life
Also, you will need an import spaced bridge I believe. The holes should be 2 1/16" from High E to Low E. The US is 2 7/32"


Ohhhh, I thought the US bit was just saying it was made in America or something. o-o I can be stupid about these kind of things and I haven't slept much the past week so I'm more stunned than usual. xD Thanks again man!
Quote by SlayingDragons
Nah, I prefer to tune lower. My tunings usually go into weird Hebrew symbols.
#9
No problem. There are a lot of small differences as far as dimensions go in strats, since there are so many variations and copies of the stratocaster. It is hard to learn them all, haha!