#1
I'm using a MIM Fender Strat that's been dealing with dropped tuning very well (Whenever going more than a full step up or down, I've been changing the gauge of strings to match the tensions on the neck). Recently however, I've been looking at lowering the tuning to B Standard and Drop A, but I've hit a problem. To have the low E correctly intonated in Drop C or C standard, I had to remove the spring at the back of the bridge to give enough room to stop the string sounding sharp along the fretboard. The issue now is that I cannot lower this any further, as the screw used to hold the saddle is too long, and would be touching the string, shown here.

The current gauge of the bottom string is a .064, and one of my friends advised me that he has a .080 on his 7 String PRS for a bottom A, and that this might solve my issues. The other option that seems obvious is to cut the screw, but that would mean I was limiting how much higher I could retune to, before having to replace the saddle nut.

Sorry for rambling, all I really want to know is if this is possible to solve or if I'll have to fork out for a second guitar to go any lower.
#2
A longer scale guitar might suffice, and with humbuckers, not single coils, if you want a heavier sound. I can't imagine an .080 on a 6 string, let alone one with single coil pickups. Just my opinion. A longer scale will give you more tension on strings, so you won't have to use as heavy strings. That's all I can think of solving it. Hope that helped.
#3
Quote by robbyoung
The current gauge of the bottom string is a .064, and one of my friends advised me that he has a .080 on his 7 String PRS for a bottom A, and that this might solve my issues.

That won't solve your issue. In fact, it will only make it worse. Btw, note that your friend has a 7 string (and you have a Strat); more on that later.

The other option that seems obvious is to cut the screw, but that would mean I was limiting how much higher I could retune to, before having to replace the saddle nut.

Don't do this.

Look, the fact is, when Fender designed Strats, they didn't design them for lower tunings. 90% of Strat players probably will play in E standard or maybe Eb. That's who Fender's target customer is. As such, the pickups are NOT the best for lower tunings (and therefore won't give you a good tone), and the bridges are not designed to handle intonation for lower tunings.


If you want to be tuning to B standard and Drop A (without issues), my advice is that you should either get a 7-string or get a baritone guitar (both of those options would be longer scale, btw). You are not going to have a perfect (or even good) setup with a Strat, for playing in B or Drop A. It's just not what the guitar is designed for.
Last edited by crazysam23_Atax at Aug 23, 2014,
#4
2nd guitar with humbuckers.
I shouldn't post when drunk..



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#5
Well as mentioned drop tunings can make it harder to intonate the guitar but the real culprit is the string gauge. The heavier the strings the more length you have to add to the open string to compensate for the increased diameter of the strings. The placement of the bridge and amount of adjustment just isn't there for these very heavy string gauges, hence the baritone guitar becoming popular. With a Strat if the back of the bridge is lifted (& it probably is with very heavy strings on it) the length of the string is shorter than it would be with the bridge flat down on the guitar top probably adding to your problem.
Moving on.....