Basic Setup

Below you will find simplified steps to help eliminate that dreaded low E string buzz and improve the intonation and overall “playability” of your Jag-Stang or Mustang.

Varying Factors (Things that will affect your setup.)

  • String weight/brand of strings: Heavy strings will have a lot more tension on them when tuned than lighter gauged strings. This eliminates some of the “Low E Buzz”.
  • Tuning you play in: If you play in the popular flat tuning the strings will have less tension than if they were in standard tuning. This increases the likelyhood of “Low E Buzz”.
  • Playing style: How hard you hit the strings will affect your setup.
  • Personal taste: What kind of action do you like on the fretboard?

The following is just a guide to get you started with your set-up. Experiment on you own to get the sound/feel you want.

Tools Needed:

  • Electronic Tuner
  • Phillips Screwdriver
  • Allen Wrenchs(1.5mm and 2.5mm)
  • Patience

1. Set String / Bridge Height

  1. Tune your guitar to the tuning you usually use.
  2. Decide if you need to raise or lower your strings. To eliminate the “Low E Buzz” you may be able to raise the Bass side of the bridge while leaving the Treble side of the bridge alone.
  3. The bridge piece is adjusted by using an allen wrench in the top and/or bottom holes. There is a screw in the bottom of each bridge post that will raise or lower the respective end of the bridge.
  4. After making adjustments, be sure to re-tune your guitar. After re-tuning, check for the fret rattles and if you like the action or not.
  5. Follow steps 2-4 until you get rid of the fret buzzes or get the fretboard action you want.

1a. Intonation To check your intonation on each string, play a single string open(no frets held down), then play the same string at the 12th fret. They should give nearly the same reading on an electronic tuner. There are many technical descriptions about getting the correct intonation that involve harmonics(Play the 12th fret harmonic for each string, the tuning should be exactly the same as playing the open string). This following is a simple method for setting the intonation on your guitar. Each string saddle(6 adjustable saddles on the bridge), can be moved to make the adjustments.

  1. Tune your guitar to the tuning you usually use.
  2. Hold down the 1st string at the 12th fret and check the pitch with the tuner. (playing the 12th fret harmonic gives a more accurate tuning)
  3. If the pitch is sharp(higher than your open string tuning), the string saddle needs to be moved back or toward the whammy bar part.
  4. If the pitch is flat(lower than your open string tuning), the string saddle needs to me moved forward or toward the neck.
  5. Make sure to re-set your open string tuning after each string saddle adjustment. Then redo steps 2-5 until the open string tuning matches the 12th fret tuning. Also repeat for each string.

Note: Besides being able to move each string saddle individually , the entire Jag-Stang bridge can be moved forward or backward. I found that “pulling” the bridge back as far as possible helps the overall intonation.

2. Set Pickup Heights

After you have the desired fretboard action and intonation you need set the height of each pickup. The following is a table of the “recommended” distance between the pickups and the strings. You should try different heights for different sounds. The string/pickup height measurements are taken from the brochure that Fender® includes with new guitars.

Bass side: 4/64"
Treble side: 3/64"

Single Coil
Bass side: 6/64"
Treble side: 5/64"