The Fender Squire Stratocaster is one of the best electric guitars in its league. It might not be a budget guitar out there, but it is worth the price. However, the Squire Strat isn’t really above faults. Even if they aren’t that huge, but you can certainly do a little sprucing and get some upgrades to make what’s good even better.
More related info – guitar care tips
If you own a Fender Squire Stratocaster or are planning to get one, read this article to know all about the types of upgrades you can do on your guitar.
These recommendations apply to all different Squiers too:
- Squier Mini Strat
- Fender Squier Bullet Strat
- Squier Affinity Stratocaster
Tuning Machines Upgrade
Tuners are what holds the guitar strings in a place so that they create the exact vibrations that are required. Tuning is not one of Squire Strat’s fortes. Many guitarists complain that they have to adjust the tuners frequently. If you have this guitar already, then you would know. Hence, tuning upgrades like Fender locking tuners is one of the most common upgrades sought by the owners of these guitars.
A good set of tuners will cost you around $100 to $1450. You might find the price to be a little on the higher side, but once you get this upgrade, you can finally relax that you will not have to spend time tuning every now and then.
Tremolo System Upgrade
One of the reasons for the untuning of this guitar frequently is the tremolo system. Many guitarists like this guitar, but complain about the tremolo system as it simply does not do a favor to the tuning. This is why many choose to lock the tremolo bridge in its place. Guitarists like Eric Clapton locked the tremolo on his Fender Squire Strat. In fact, he was one of the first famous guitarists to do this. And many of us agree to this decision of his.
If you are someone who loves doing those signature bends that only tremolo bridges can give, you will have to learn to love the good and the bad of the Squire Strat. But for most of us, the frequent untuning is a tad annoying, and hence, locking the tremolo seems like a better option.
There are plenty of these available and have varying costs. But once you lock your tremolo, you will have to get used to playing on your guitar with the up-gradation. Also, restringing your guitar will consume a bit more time.
Adding a Shielding Plate
During the 1950s, Fender used to use a shielding plate to make a shielding plate made of aluminum under the scratch plate. These guitars were a huge seller back in the time. The tunes that it produced has a thicker and more earthy sound. It might be a good idea to add a shielding plat on your Squire Strat to add that vintage feel to your music. But before doing so, we advise you that you look up audios or videos of this type of guitar to be sure how the music notes would sound.
Upgrade the Strings
All of us know that the old strings in your guitar must be replaced as they tend to get loose and thin as time passes. Even if they don’t break, they will produce weak tunes as compared to how they used to sound before. This is the reason you should upgrade the strings of your guitar frequently.
The sound that the Squire Strat produces comes as a tad thin to many guitarists. If you feel the same way, you can get a set of strings that are more gauzed. It will be hard to play at first, but with practice, you can easily master the skill in no time. Besides, heavier gauze strings send stronger signals to the pickups, which affects the music output. If you think that this will impact your music in a positive way, then a strings upgrade is certainly worth it.
Add Lube to the Lines
It has been well understood by all guitarists that friction is the arch-enemy of stable tuning over the decades. You aren’t in favor of blocking the tremolo; then, you can simply put lube on the lines.
This is a DIY upgrade and is simple to do. You will not have to pay any professional to get it done. Just take some petroleum jelly and carefully put it over the guitar strings at the guitar nut. Lubricating your guitar nut will lessen the friction and keep the tuning in place. Other alternatives to petroleum jelly that you might use are graphite, Chapstick, and silicon grease.
The Squire Strat uses three single-coil pickups – a bridge, middle and neck pickup. Upgrading the electronics in a guitar is one of the best things to do. Hence, this is one of the best upgrades you can do to your guitar. But this isn’t the cure for everything, but it is certainly an upgrade. I’d recommend brands like Seymour Duncan, EMG or D’Marzio.