The Yngwie Malmsteen Strat


I won’t reply to everything above (!) but I think I gave it 2-3 weeks before I decided to go ahead with the bridge swap. Apart from the high e thing, it also felt a bit alien to me to have the ‘vintage’ string spacing on one guitar whereas every other guitar I play has the modern one. So switching to the YJM strat it felt like I had to adjust my string tracking whereas once I replaced the bridge it felt a lot more like my other guitars in that respect.

Regarding the resonance/tone - I didn’t know the neck joint was a factor but I can definitely confirm that the YJM strat has a superior tone to many strats I’ve played. I worked in a music store for almost 10 years and we were a Fender distributor here in Ireland so I’ve played my fair share at all price ranges. To quote a friend when he played my YJM for the first time ‘it just sings’.

It really is a great sounding instrument.


The High E string issue is a players problem, and not a model related one.

It is truth that in the Yngwie strat, when you begin to play them, is easy to slip the high string out of the fretboard, but that´s because of bad technique.

It took me less than two weeks until my hands figured out how must I play the guitar in order to avoid that, and I didn´t have to analice it carefully in order to solve it, I just simply continued to play the guitar and I got it.

Anyway, the Callahams are very good bridges, so if one decided to go with them, they surely will be happy with the change. But it is not necessary.


Respectfully disagree. The high e on mine was -super- close to the edge. Combine that with how rounded off the frets are at the edges of the neck and it was really easy to lose that string over the side. It’s not a technique fault IMO.

I’m not saying of course that you can’t learn to avoid it, of course you can, but it’s a poor ergonomic choice to have a vintage spaced bridge on a modern width neck, it’s just that much more likely to cause issues like this.


Was the low E eaqually close to the edge?


Maybe not quite but yeah, closer than it is now with the modern string spaced bridge.


that sort of mirrors things he does with his strats where he changes the 3 bolt necks to 4 bolt etc


So what is a “modern string spaced bridge”? In early 90s I had a Washburn MG-series guitar that had very wide gaps between the strings and high E was far from the edge. My current guitar has a Gotoh GE-103B and the E is very close to the edge. I slip it sometimes and blame old habits, but probably I am just being sloppy and lie to myself about it.


id love to see a clear pic of a Malmsteen high e string to see how close it is to the edge of the neck.

I got to looking at my RG340. I have a Dimarzio Super Distortion F Spaced bridge pickup and the high e lines up perfectly

Id be shocked if the Malmsteen high e is closer to the edge than mine. I never payed it much mind and I just went and looked at it in context of this thread

I dont have issues with the high e but on occasion I do accidently push the low E off the neck when doing descending licks


I took two separate shots of the edges cause the tiny phone lense exaggerates the fall off, I angled those shots to better represent the distance as it’s in your hands.

I can’t remember if that’s any different than a regular strat, I really like it being close cause there are pull off licks I’d find harder to pull off without the scalloped and string on the edge with my pinky.


I stand corrected, that IS crazy close on that high E. My RG340 has a bit more room than that

Then I have some cheapo guitars like a “Stagg” strat copy and also a cheapo Epiphone SG and they have even more room than the RG340 does


I’ll just say again that I forgot it was that close since it ceased to be an issue within days of having it.

I’d think now I’m used to hanging out so close to the edge I’d probably find a regular neck getting in the way :smiley:

But is it just that the scalloped make it feel narrow? The frets are the same widths arent they. I can’t imagine these necks being any narrower than the standard fender dimentions, nor is the bridge spacing any wider, does the YJM depart from the fender standard?


That must be a bad nut string slot spacing. I think It looks crazy. It is way too close to the fingerboard edge. Or is it supposed to be like that?


in this thread the consensus was that the neck needed to be moved over a bit. Note the one answer that said Malmsteen models sometimes need the neck to be cheated over so that the low e was the one closer to the edge


They’re made like that, the strings are prefectly parallel to the edge when set up corectly.


That’s exactly what I said, a bit of yaw adjustment may be required. I did it to mine when I got it new too.

For me it’s a standard thing to do a full setup on any guitar I get, specially bolt-ons. With the guitar in tune, I unscrew the bolts a 1/4 a turn, one should hear a creek, this is the neck shifting ever so slightly for a better snug fit in the pocket, adjust the neck angle ( yaw - side to side axis ) and tighten the screws in a certain order, and that’s it, you never have to do that again.

This is an old luthier trick to get a snug fit.

I belive this thread is over thinking the string edge issue, as others have said in many forums, it’s a non issue if you give it a chance, most people trying a YJM arent goign to be halfassed about it anyways, it is what it is. YMMV


At the risk of stating the obvious - if both e strings are close to the edge because of the wide spacing of a vintage bridge with a modern width neck then tilting the neck isn’t going to solve it really - it will just bias the issue towards a different string.



Yep very true, any guitar you get and know you are gonna keep is better with a fresh set of strings and a custom setup.


We’re beating a dead horse here.

I’ve read an interview with YJM addressing this “issue”, he recommended aligning the neck correctly.

There are many things that make this neck unique. This is yet another subtle design choice.

These guitars are not handmade. They have had many iterations, each refining the model further. If that’s the way they are all shipping, the obvious point here is they’re all also consistent with his design choices.

I haven’t touched another guitar in a while, I’d imagine I’d find the added space to be a flaw, that’s my perspective.

Your perspective is different, and you are not willing to put in the time & effort to utilise this design choice to it’s fullest, you see it as a flaw, fair enough.

If a “feature” is perceived to be a flaw by some, then, by all means, do move on.



And given these YJM guitars, they’re a very peculiar animal, not everybody’s cup of tea. You’ve got to be a fan to get the most out of them I reckon, couldn’t imagine playing them with different string gauges and setups.

YJM nailed the vibe and feel on this one, and the goods do take a while to unlock, a bit of a grind fest, but better this than some idiotic computer game :wink: