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FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Strat project trem cavity.


United States

Ken Delano
Apr 14th, 2017 07:08 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Hi, new user here.

I'm building a Frankenstein of a strat starting with a cheap build your own kit. I got a genuine Fender (made in mexico) bridge to replace the flimsy Chinese one included in the kit. My problem is the trem cavity is not large enough to accommodate the new bridge because the block is considerably larger.

I'm debating between swapping blocks, or routing about 1/8 inch off the back of the cavity. Wanted to hear opinions from experts. Thanks.

P.s. I haven't held a playable guitar in over 20 years.

Moderator Emeritus
(with many stars)

NW Pennsylvania

Apr 14th, 2017 07:50 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

As long as you're getting your hands dirty, go ahead and rout (or chisel) some wood away.

It builds character.



Why do I keep fixing things that work?
Apr 14th, 2017 09:56 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

So, the Mexican tremolo screws 'Do' line up? If so, then that's half the battle there! Because some imports are spaced differently and is cause for plugging the holes and having to redrill.
Yes, if you have a router, then I would use painters tape and scribe the lines for your new cavity dimensions and cut out the area needed for the new tremolo. There are quite a few places where you can find the correct dimensions for this.
In retrospect, do the strings line up correctly over the neck with the new tremolo and are spaced out nicely to the neck? Sometimes, a slightly wider tremolo will cause the strings to be to close to the edge of the neck. If your alignment is good and you are comfortable with how it plays, then proceed to the routing you want to do. I feel this is the most important consideration you need to have before you do anything else!
Stew-Mac has routing templates for this type of install but you can get it done with taping off the front and back of the guitar, to protect the finish and marking off your work area.
Best regards and Welcome to the forum!
There are a lot of knowledgeable people here whom can offer much more information about the work you want to do, but do consider some of the information I have given you and I think you will end up more satisfied with the end result! Woody

Contributing Member


RonHalen Jokingly He Says
Apr 14th, 2017 10:33 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Chiseling is quite easy. If a pool route that way! +1 on the screws lining up.


United States

Ken Delano
Apr 14th, 2017 03:17 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Thank you all for the input.

Yes, the screws do line up, I did that research before ordering. I got out the calipers, and everything lines up, aside from the size and shape of the block.

I pretty much decided on routing soon after I posted. If I'm making a Frakenstein, I should go all in and not be timid.

FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Strat project trem cavity.

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