How long has Ernie Ball been making the Stingray with the smaller bridge...anyone? I have a '96 and it still has the big bridge that comes almost all the way up to the pickguard (like the old ones). I like the way the new ones look also. I played a 2003 or so at a music shop the other day. The newer bridge doesn't seem to affect the awesome sustain you can expect from any Stingray but it does seem that their maple necks feel a bit cheap which is strange b/c I'm always impressed by Stingrays. BTW...I get me new one with the '81 neck soon...can't wait!!!