FDP Home Page / FDP Forum / FAQ's

The FDP is made possible by the following companies and individual members like you.
Please use the links below to show them we value their sponsorship.

Sweetwater

Yellowjackets Tube Converters

WD Music

MOD KITS DIY

Antique Electronics Supply

Amplified Parts

Apex Tube Matching

Jensen Loudspeakers


* God bless America and our men and women in uniform *

* Illegitimi non carborundum! *

Please help support us in our FINAL MONTH: make a Donation

THE FDP IS CLOSING AT THE END OF THE YEAR.

   
  Search the Forums  

FDP Forum / Fender Guitars: Stratocasters / Callaham block and saddles input

Previous 20 Messages  
Achase4u
Contributing Member
********

U.S. - Virginia

Oct 8th, 2018 10:25 AM   Edit   Profile  

I am of course biased as I used to work there and consider Bill an acquaintance. As far as tone as sustain, when it comes to say an MIM Strat with the real small block, yes I definitely noticed a difference. I think it may be less of a difference when it comes to the more substantial blocks found in the 2000's American Series Strats, though I don't know for sure. The MIM offers the biggest upgrade because those blocks(at least the one in my 2002) were quite small and made of zinc.

It's certainly possible that it changes sound just as saddle material on an acoustic can. It's all involved in the process however large or small the influence is, it's just hard to quantify.

What the parts do sound wise aside, they are definitely some of the highest quality parts for guitars out there. No doubt about it.

(This message was last edited by Achase4u at 12:26 PM, Oct 8th, 2018)

Big Joe

USA

Oct 8th, 2018 11:13 AM   Edit   Profile  

I have an American Standard and am looking forward to see how the Callaham saddles work with my Strat.

stratcowboy
Contributing Member
**********
****

USA/Taos, NM

Oct 8th, 2018 11:23 AM   Edit   Profile  

Yes, I agree...when upgrading something like an imported guitar with less than optimum parts, you are more likely to notice a difference.

Achase4u
Contributing Member
********

U.S. - Virginia

Oct 8th, 2018 11:29 AM   Edit   Profile  

I personally use the Callaham parts for their high quality and the tonal perks are just icing on the cake. I think they exist but I think everyone's idea of how big a change it is will be different, which leads to disappointment in some cases.

I like that the Strat bridges are close vintage repro's. I recall Bill having an original block scanned by an SEM to find the same grade of CRS etc. It's a nice reproduction with some modern upgrades.

Big Joe

USA

Oct 12th, 2018 09:53 AM   Edit   Profile  

Well I just installed new Callaham saddles on my ‘93 Strat.
While they obviously did not transform my guitar, I did notice, a bit more sustain and note clarity. All in all, this was a good $40 investment.

Achase4u
Contributing Member
********

U.S. - Virginia

Oct 12th, 2018 10:29 AM   Edit   Profile  

Glad that it worked out for you. It's one of those things that some people say makes a good effect, and some say they don't hear it, thus the contention.

I'm glad it worked out for *you*.



stratcowboy
Contributing Member
**********
****

USA/Taos, NM

Oct 12th, 2018 10:35 AM   Edit   Profile  

Amen.

Cal-Woody

USA/California

Why do I keep fixing things that work?
Oct 12th, 2018 11:27 AM   Edit   Profile  

One of the most important things to check is to make sure that the bridge plate is securely fastened to the tremolo block.
I'll take a good flat mill file and smooth the top of the block to make sure that it goes flush to the bridge plate. That is one of the most important things that can be done for your guitar when working on your tremolo setup. Then, if you have the right tap,clean out the screw threads to ensure a smooth and secure fitting happens. This is all just good maintenance for your bridge.

Achase4u
Contributing Member
********

U.S. - Virginia

Oct 12th, 2018 11:55 AM   Edit   Profile  

Cal is correct. When I would assemble the bridges for sale at Callaham, we were told to use gorilla strength to tighten the three machine screws down that hold the plate to the block. Important for max tone and sustain.

Once every so many years I'll tighten those suckers back down as much as possible.

Leftee
Contributing Member
**********
**********
********

VA

Oct 12th, 2018 12:49 PM   Edit   Profile  

They let you out of the zoo to work at Callaham?!?!?!?

Achase4u
Contributing Member
********

U.S. - Virginia

Oct 13th, 2018 02:15 AM   Edit   Profile  

Special furlough program for the gifted-grippers.

ejm

usa

Oct 13th, 2018 08:57 AM   Edit   Profile  

Big Joe: You noticed a difference.

However, when you made the change, did you also put on new strings, or did you use the current ones?


Achase4u
Contributing Member
********

U.S. - Virginia

Oct 13th, 2018 01:59 PM   Edit   Profile  

"However, when you made the change, did you also put on new strings, or did you use the current ones?"

Indeed there are many variables at play. It's so hard to isolate what changes we are hearing.

Big Joe

USA

Oct 13th, 2018 06:08 PM   Edit   Profile  

Good point .....New strings.. however, the strings on the guitar were only a week old with very little play.

(This message was last edited by Big Joe at 08:10 PM, Oct 13th, 2018)

Doc Sarvis
Contributing Member
**********
**********
********

USA/Salt Lake City

Tuned Strings and Tight Lines
Oct 14th, 2018 11:14 AM   Edit   Profile  

My two partscasters employ the Callaham bridge and block. My '62 AV, FDP, and '65 are stock. Is there a discernable difference to my ears? No

Big Joe

USA

Oct 14th, 2018 01:50 PM   Edit   Profile  

Like a said.... Not a big difference, but a bit clearer from the block cast saddles.
However, the Tom on my Heritage H555 showed a notable difference in clarity and sustain.

stratluvr
Contributing Member
**********
***

Alcohol- Because No

Good Story Ever Started by Eating Salad
Oct 14th, 2018 02:03 PM   Edit   Profile  

As mentioned before. If your Strat is an MIM or other import with a skimpy little zinc block, you will certainly hear a difference unplugged. Otherwise, if you an American steel trem block, you will not hear a difference installing a Callaham block. I bought one though when I built one of my strats and although they are superbly made. They are not heads and shoulders above a good American vintage Fender tremolo.

Leftee
Contributing Member
**********
**********
********

VA

Oct 14th, 2018 02:44 PM   Edit   Profile  

I echo stratluvr’s comments. In basic terms, a big one is better than a little one. The differences between the big ones and the the little ones, in their respective groups, is pretty small at at best. That’s been my experience.

Big Joe

USA

Oct 14th, 2018 04:02 PM   Edit   Profile  

I agree with Stratluvr and Leftee, which is why I only changed the saddles on my American Strat that was out of necessity because I had a few height adjustment screws on my block saddles that had stripped hex heads.
Since I was changing, my question was for input on the Callaham Vintage saddles....are they any better than Fender Vintage or the block style I had. After changing, I found that Callaham Vintage saddles added slightly better note clarity and a bit more sustain than the stock block saddles. Nothing transformational, just a bit better to my ears.
Thanks to all for the input.



(This message was last edited by Big Joe at 06:07 PM, Oct 14th, 2018)

Mike the marksman

Kansas City, MO

Oct 29th, 2018 09:38 AM   Edit   Profile  

I installed a Callaham block in a wildwood '54 thinskin strat I had 10 years ago or so (since sold).

I can't say I noticed a huge difference in tone but the functionality of the trem with the pop-in arm and "no slop" delrin insert was a big improvement over stock, and I would recommend purely on that aspect. The trem was so much more usable with the callaham block and arm.

(This message was last edited by Mike the marksman at 12:00 PM, Oct 29th, 2018)

Previous 20 Messages  

FDP Forum / Fender Guitars: Stratocasters / Callaham block and saddles input




Reply to this Topic
Display my email address             Lost your password?
Your Message:
Link Address (URL):
Link Title:




Moderators: Chris Greene  reverendrob  

FDP, LLC Privacy Policy: Your real name, username, and email
are held in confidence and not disclosed to any third parties, sold, or
used for anything other than FDP Forum registration unless you specifically authorize disclosure.

Furtkamp.com 
Internet Application Development

Copyright © 1999-2019 Fender Discussion Page, LLC   All Rights Reserved