faq
Stetsbar FAQ

What is the Stetsbar Warranty?
In the USA & Canada Stets Metal Arts Inc offers a life time warranty when the unit is installed by a qualified guitar technician. A 30 day money back warranty is providedif the unit is returned in "as new" condition. A restocking fee may be charged. Warranty terms will vary in other territories - please consult your local dealer or distributor.

How much pitch range does the Stetsbar have?
Different string gauges will have an effect on the amount of up and down pitch that can be achieved.

On a .009 to .042 gauge the open low E will have over an octave drop and perhaps more depending how it is set up. You should achieve about a third up on the up side.

Please keep in mind that heavier gauge strings will work the unit harder and less range will be achieved. It is recommended that .011 thru .048 gauge are the heaviest gauge used. Generally speaking we would rate the Stetsbar pitch change capability as similar to that of a well set up USA Fender Stratocaster style tremolo.

My Stetsbar just been installed and some strings do not return to tune!
Mounting and intonating the Stetsbar on your guitar doesn't always mean that the installation process is complete.

Once you have fitted the Stetsbar - and your new strings have stretched in - any return to tune issues will almost always involve the nut. When a tremolo operates, it stretches the string from the tuner all the way to the string anchor - over the entire length of the guitar. Each point the string passes over has the potential to cause problems.

The Stetsbar is a linear tremolo with the bridge and string anchor moving together so the nut is the only area where string friction or string catching in the nut slots may be an issue.

At its simplest this may be cured by using a guitar lubricant and we recommend you try products such as Big Bends Nut Sauce or GHS Graphitall Guitar Lube.

If this does not help it is most likely that the nut needs attention to set it correctly for working with a tremolo. The nut may need some of its slots widening or shaping - normally a skilled job requiring a good eye and a set of nut files. Any weaknesses in the nut can also be exposed when first used with a tremolo and the nut may sometimes best be replaced by graphite or other specialized replacement.

It is because of these issues that we generally recommend a guitar tech does the Stetsbar installation. How your guitar reacts with the Stetsbar (or any other tremolo for that matter) will determine what other work is needed to complete the installation.

Finally, you may also want to experiment with all nickel strings - these are generally more stable than other compositions.

What adjustments will I have to make after the Stetsbar has been installed?
Very few. We recommend you use a guitar lubricant applied to the nut from time to time if there are any issues in the guitar returning to tune (see above for the longer explanation).

Occasionally you may experience some play in the tremolo arm. If play does develop, then slightly adjusting one tension screw will remove it. Refer to the Stetsbar installation instructions.

I have a "string through body" guitar. Will a Stetsbar fit?
These types of guitar don't normally have any direct fastening points for the Stetsbar Stop Tail version.

In the past, customers have had bushings inserted in the body placed where a stop tail - similar to the Gibson stop tail - would normally be. These bushings are the fastening points for the Stetsbar tremolo.

The other option is to use our Luthier/OEM model which is fastened by the four number 8 wood screws supplied with the unit.

So, if you are looking for a direct mount tremolo without putting any holes in the guitar then we can't offer anything. But if you don't mind the modifications above then the Stetsbar will perform perfectly.

Obviously, the above work is not for the inexperienced - a qualified guitar tech must install it. This will ensure that the correct installation job is done, that you are happy and that we know that the job was done professionally and accurately.

This means that if you purchase a Stetsbar for this type of guitar it is a "one way street". No return will be considered although we will warrant the product as normal. If you are considering having this sort of job done then get your guitar tech to confirm that it can be done and contact us if there are any questions.

Can the Stetsbar replace my Strat tremolo?
Yes it can! From January 2010 Strat models are now available. The unit replaces the entire Stratocaster trem and clamps inside the trem cavity. The neck will need a shim installing (just like the Tele style Stetsbar) but we have found that the Strat micro-tilt adjustor can provide enough adjustment to avoid this. Like all retro fit models this install is totally reversible.

Can the Stetsbar replace my Kahler Tremolo?
In many cases it will - and at least it will cover the hole that was made in your guitar! The model with the bushing setup should be a direct swap for the Stop Tail Stetsbar. The Kahler unit that screws down can be replaced by the Stop Tail or OEM version with guitar modifications as we describe above.

Can the Stetsbar replace my Bigsby Tremolo?
In some cases it can. If your guitar is a hollow body then we don't have a Stetsbar version for that application. For solid body or semi solids it is best to get your guitar tech to clarify which Stetsbar model will work for you.

I have a wrap around bridge - how will the Stetsbar mount to it?
Until now there has been no direct mount for a "wrap around" bridge of the type often used on a PRS guitar. We are still working on a design that will perform to the usual high Stetsbar standards and mount to the original holes with no modifications to the guitar.

I have a unique guitar and I would like to know if a Stetsbar will fit
The Stetsbar was first designed as an "after market" tremolo for stop tail or Tele style guitars. We now have an OEM model designed for guitar builders. Any one of these may work for you but you will need to have the suitability of these assessed by looking at the following;

The primary measurements to be concerned with are -
a. String to body height at the bridge must be a minimum of 5/8 inch (in the Tele style this is achieved with a neck shim provided).
b. The stop bar bushing location must be 1 and 5/8 inch back from the bridge. (Tip - Measure this from the nut to the center of the bushings and then subtract the scale length. Measuring from the bridge is often awkward as it is at a 3 degree angle with staggered saddles.)

If I build a guitar what do I need to know for the Stetsbar to mount? OEM, Stop Tail or Tele?
For new builds we recommend the Luthier/OEM Stetsbar for a direct application. We will be happy to provide more details upon request.
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