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Floyd Rose



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#1 Schnozzalee

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Posted 22 June 2013 - 09:30 PM

We've had a discussion about Bigsbys, so I thought I'd enquire about peoples experiences with Floyd Rose Bridges?? I've owned an '88 Jackson Charvel Star with one equipped, but I didn't use the bar at all (...I know); I tuned it maybe once a fortnight and it stayed, but off course you have to tune it 12 times (6 for the nut, 6 for the bridge).

There's the whole locking kahler vs floyd rose (licensed vs original) argument, but I'm wanting to ask how practical they are, in contast to the 2 point non locking trem I know & love.

All input greatly appreciated :)

#2 Angel

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 10:25 AM

Great tuning stability, as you'd expect, and a necessity if you want to do all that mad stuff. I'm not so keen on locking nuts, but they are a necessary evil with a FR. I have a Gotoh licensed one and many say that they are an improvement on the original. I do find them a little less easy to get subtle nuance out of.

Tuning 12 times?????? I can't say I agree with that! Tune, lock down and then maybe a subtle tweak or two on the fine tuners.

#3 BigRedX

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 10:59 AM

I've got 2 guitars with locking vibratos. A Yamaha-licensed model and a Schaller. Both a great and the tuning stability is awesome. They do need careful setting up if you change your string types or gauges, but once that's sorted they are completely problem free. Tuning is a doodle. Just remember the re-centre the fine-tuners when changing strings and then once the new ones are on, stretched, tuned and locked, all it needs is the occasional tweak of the fine tuners.

If you use one live you absolutely need to have a spare guitar, as changing a string is not trivial, and can only be done mid-set with the assistance of a guitar tech (who'll do it while you use you back-up guitar for the next song or two). Although TBH IMO guitarists who don't take a spare instrument on stage are fools and at some point will be letting down the audience.

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#4 Matt P

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 03:01 PM

i've got 2 Floyd Rose equipped guitars, one is an aria with a licenced one (not locking at the bridge) and my Richardson has a proper original Floyd Rose (locking at both bridge and nut).

i find that a long as you get the strings settled in and the nut locked down they stay in tune remarkably well, usually only requiring a minor tweak of a fine tuner or two (even when going from home to a venue) but as BigRedX has stated you do need a spare guitar for live use as breaking one string will pull the tuning out for all the other strings and replacing a string isn't something that you can do in 30 seconds!

i have never actually used the trem live though!

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Edited by Matt P, 23 June 2013 - 03:02 PM.

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#5 BigRedX

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Posted 23 June 2013 - 03:20 PM

Breaking a string on any guitar with a vibrato mechanism will cause the others to go out of tune unless they have a facility to stop upwards bends (which partly defeats the object of having one IMO). I don't think locking systems are any better or worse in that regard. Changing a string in a live setting isn't something I'd want to be doing, even in a break between sets. Just cahnging the strings in the comfort of my own home can be pretty daunting at times. I'm about to re-string my FretKing with the Schaller locking unit - wish me luck!

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#6 leschirons

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 07:21 PM

Had two guitars with genuine USA Floyds and both were totally trouble free. A Hamer Steve Stevens and an 86 Baretta. I could pick up the Kramer after a 6 week lay off and it would be in perfect tune. The other Floyd type I had (a Schaller) wasn't that precise and constantly needed fine tuning after a bit of abuse.

Most of the problems I came across with friends who owned them was them changing string gauges. Floyds are usually factory set up for 9-42s and the change to say, 10s requires a set up re balance tension etc.

If I was buying another guitar with a Floyd, it would have to be an original jobby. I love em.

(Had a Vai Universe many years ago and to be honest that wasn't bad at all)
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#7 RhysP

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 07:24 PM

View Postleschirons, on 24 June 2013 - 07:21 PM, said:

.... A Hamer Steve Stevens and an 86 Baretta.
Very nice.

#8 leschirons

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 08:02 AM

View PostRhysP, on 24 June 2013 - 07:24 PM, said:

Very nice.

Yes they were both great. Both ultimate rock machines.Yet another "in hindsight" regret as I don't have either any more. The Baretta also had the Dennis Klein "Eye" graphics. There's a SS Hamer floating about on US Ebay for £1,000. Quite rare these days but a great guitar and investment.

I did also have an early 85 Hockey stick Baretta with the infamous luthier headstock joint. It was in perfect condition when I sold it but arrived at the buyer's address in two pieces :unsure: Still we got it repaired and he's still using it 4 years later.
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#9 MacDaddy

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 11:49 AM

My Hamer Chaparral has a licensed Floyd. No tuning worries at all and I used to do silly Steve Vai and Vinny Vincent things :)

What I would say with floaters, is to be careful where you rest your palm when you play, as the slightest pressure on the bridge will make it move slightly and pull it out of tune.
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