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FDP Forum / Fender Guitars: Stratocasters / Classic Player's 60s Strat Question


Los Angeles, CA, USA

Jan 9th, 2019 01:06 AM   Edit   Profile  

I just bought a used CP 60s in Sonic Blue (Faded). It's from 2015. I really enjoy it.

The trem is very stiff. I took off the backplate and saw there were three trem springs. I thought it would have five because it was stiff. How do I make it less stiff? Do I have to buy new springs? I thought the more springs the stiffer it is but it's only got three so I thought that would make it not so stiff.

Also just want to say whoever owned it before me (I bought it at Guitar Center) really had it set up nicely. The action was nice just like I like it. It played like a dream. I believe he tried to relic it in a Closet Classic type. The bridge saddles were slightly rusted and the tuning keys had some haze on it. You know slight oxidation but no actual rust. The screws looked slightly rusted too. There were a few dents in the paint but you can barely see them unless you are looking for it. I am not sure if the dents were on purpose or the previous owner had banged it on an edge of a desk or something. But man it looks great, plays like a dream and feels excellent.


(This message was last edited by TheShadows at 03:09 AM, Jan 9th, 2019)

Contributing Member

Just beyond Mars

there's a world of fools
Jan 9th, 2019 03:51 AM   Edit   Profile  

As a spring loads up (increases in tension) it offers increasing resistance. Meaning--springs are usually softer feeling in their early stages of tension.

Knowing this, the fix is to install two more springs. That will share the load with the original three springs which decreases the tension each spring sees, making the vibrato handle feel a bit softer.

You will have to loosen the screws on the spring claw to bring the back of the bridge back up to float after installing the two new springs.

Mick Reid
Contributing Member


American-made in Oz!!
Jan 9th, 2019 03:56 AM   Edit   Profile  

Hey Shadows.
The spring tension can be adjusted (increased/decreased) by turning the two screws that hold the "claw" to the neck end of the cavity.

Backing those screws out will lessen the pull on the springs thus lessening the tension on the vibrato/bridge. Just back them evenly so the claw is parallel to the bridge (ie: not cock-eyed).
If you get it too loose, just tighten them to what feels good to you.

Remember you want at least enough tension so when you're bending strings, you're not "chasing the pitch".

I'm sure others will have more advice, but this will get you started in the right direction.

Mick Reid
Contributing Member


American-made in Oz!!
Jan 9th, 2019 03:57 AM   Edit   Profile  

Peegoo hit "submit reply" first :^(

I don't dispute what P has said, but I have vibrato's set up with just 3 springs and they work fine for me. YMMV. "Feel" is a personal and subjective thing.

(This message was last edited by Mick Reid at 06:01 AM, Jan 9th, 2019)



Jan 9th, 2019 08:59 AM   Edit   Profile  

I disagree with the suggestion to add springs.

I also disagree with the suggestion that "chasing pitch" is such a bad thing. It depends upon your style and what you want. At some point it's unavoidable.

Bottom line is that these previous suggestions are things that you can try, and it *may* get you to where you want to be.

However, I'm still not sure what the problem really is. A lot of what to do depends upon what you really want, and I can't get that from your original post.

For instance:
1) We don't know how tight the trem claw is screwed in.
2) We don't know your string gauges.
3) A key component: We don't know how the six hold down screws on the front of the bridge plate are screwed in. If these are screwed in all of the way, that may be your biggest problem. You just got this from GC? I've noticed that a lot of their used guitars on the floor don't seem to have a lot of attention paid to set ups. ESPECIALLY those with Floyd Rose systems.
4) We don't know if the bridge currently is decked or is floating. For that matter, is the trem "blocked" with a piece of wood? (We're assumming that it is not, but......)

Someone who is familiar with Strat set ups could probably get it where you want it to be in about an hour or so. And also show you how to dink with it yourself. It's not rocket science.

It sounds like this is your first Strat. Welcome to the club/madness. ;>))

(This message was last edited by ejm at 11:01 AM, Jan 9th, 2019)


Los Angeles, CA, USA

Jan 10th, 2019 12:54 AM   Edit   Profile  

Thank you everyone for your advice on this subject. Now I have a better idea of how this works and can adjust it for the tension of the springs.

ejm -

My problem is I have never used a trem on a Strat that was so stiff before. I guess it's okay as I only use the trem a little bit in relation to how much I play the guitar but I was just surprised at how stiff it is. Maybe it's better for blues players?

Answers to your questions -

1) I don't know, I didn't mess with it yet.
2) String Gauges are - 10 to 46.
3) My bridge actually has 2 screws. It's the two point bridge like the American Standard type of bridge but has vintage saddles. You can say it's a hybrid of the two. But I am sure the advice you give will work on the two point pivot screw design as well.
4) I actually had the backplate off and looked at the springs and claw and whatever else is back there and was not blocked.

Actually this is my 7th Strat but I never had one with a stiff trem like this so first time I had to seek out help.

My first Fender was a new in 1996 an American Std Strat. and had a bunch since. But mostly over the years I was a Jazzmaster fan more of a Strat fan that's why over the years I have kept my Fender AV62 Jazzmaster I bought new in 2003 and have sold and bought Strats when I got the Strat bug. In 1996 I almost bought a Japanese Foto Flame Jazzmaster but went with the Strat but really wanted a Jazzmaster then in 2003 got my American Jazzmaster. But now I'm really loving Strats and this Classic Player 60s Strat is really nice.

By the way, I could adjust the trem based on advice here but I am fine with it. It works for me but I was just surprised at the tension as I never had that tension on previous Strats.

Thanks for your help

FDP Forum / Fender Guitars: Stratocasters / Classic Player's 60s Strat Question

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