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FDP Forum / Miscellaneous and Non-Fender Topics / Floyd Rose tips ?

Graywolf/Wa

Pacific N.W.

May 19th, 2018 09:48 AM   Edit   Profile  

Just bought my first ever guitar with a FR style (Ibanez) trem. Wow, this thing is weird. Seems like any little adjustment affects everything else. And I think changing strings is going to be a real PITA. Any tips or tricks for making peace with this "improvement" on the tremolo ?


Leftee
Contributing Member
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VA

May 19th, 2018 10:02 AM   Edit   Profile  

Change strings one at a time. I also block the trem to keep it steady while doing the string change.

Or you can block the trem and change them all at once if you want to dose the fretboard with your favorite whatever-oil.

Back in the day when I was in a band and had only one guitar it was a Kramer with a FR. I'd change strings a couple days before a gig. I'd string it up and center up the fine tuners so I had some range in them. I'd play the guitar for a while with the lock nut clamps loose - working the wang bar a bit to stretch the strings - tuning with the headstock tuners. When the guitar was holding tune pretty well I'd tune it again and lock the clamps down on the locking nut. From then on it was fine tuners on the bridge only.

To be honest, I am not looking to the first string change on my SG with the robo-tuners. The wang-bar guitar, not so bad.

(This message was last edited by Leftee at 12:03 PM, May 19th, 2018)

Peegoo
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Always

trust your cape
May 19th, 2018 10:05 AM   Edit   Profile  

Floyds require some specific approaches to maintaining them. They are fiddly pieces of gear, but there's nothing better if you're a wang-bar hero!

Apply a teensy drop of light oil to each knife-edge pivot point with the tip of a toothpick. A drop of oil is too much. Just a tiny bit. This keeps the vibrato operating smooth and quiet.

Never adjust the height of the bridge (via the the two pivot posts) with string and spring tension on the bridge. It damages the knife-edge pivot points.

When you change strings, have a deck of playing cards handy. Before you loosen the strings, slide a portion of the deck under the rear of the unit so you cannot lift the bar. It even helps to depress the bar a millimeter or two and stick a few extra cards in. This keeps the bridge level while string tension is off the bridge.

If this guitar is equipped with a locking nut, and it's your first locking nut, you will probably break a few strings before you start remembering to unlock the nut before rotating the tuning machines' knobs. For example:

"What th? I'm rotating the tuner and nothing is happ..." POINK!

Remember to reset the bridge's fine-tuner knobs to their center point before releasing the locking nut and retuning via the tuning machines at the headstock. This preserves maximum adjustability of tuning with the fine tuners.

Leftee
Contributing Member
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VA

May 19th, 2018 10:19 AM   Edit   Profile  

I used to run the ball-ends through the tuners instead of cutting them off.

I had no idea if that was right or wrong. There was no public innerwebs back then. But it worked for me.

I just looked at my Ibanez and see I have not done that on this guitar.

Which reminds me... this guitar is hanging right over the Marshall - like it's trying to tell me something.

Graywolf/Wa

Pacific N.W.

May 19th, 2018 12:09 PM   Edit   Profile  

Thanks guys, seems to make sense. Just gonna take a lot of getting used to. And yeah, it is a fiddly sob!


Leftee
Contributing Member
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VA

May 19th, 2018 12:43 PM   Edit   Profile  

I guess it was the times. But my only guitar for years had a FR.

It was my norm.

Weird

Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Always

trust your cape
May 19th, 2018 02:50 PM   Edit   Profile  

"Hi, Norm!"

Leftee
Contributing Member
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VA

May 19th, 2018 03:19 PM   Edit   Profile  

I feel like I should insert some Cheers reference here.

Cal-Woody

USA/California

Why do I keep fixing things that work?
May 19th, 2018 06:55 PM   Edit   Profile  

Or at least 'abby-normal'!

Where did you get that brain? Lol

Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Always

trust your cape
May 19th, 2018 07:24 PM   Edit   Profile  

"I...ain't got no body...!"

reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
Moderator

We all want

our time in hell
May 19th, 2018 11:51 PM   Edit   Profile  

The robotuners are a ton less finicky.

Just keep the manual close at hand, and take it slow.

Pinetree
Moderator Emeritus
(with many stars)

NW Pennsylvania

May 20th, 2018 12:06 AM   Edit   Profile  

A tip I read years ago, supposedly attributed to Brad Gillis (and it's worked for me), don't yank on a new set of strings with the nut unclamped.





5Strats
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Edmond/OKC

GospelBilly!
May 20th, 2018 05:10 AM   Edit   Profile  

NEVER take all the strings off, unless you have the trem bridge stabilized by using a block of some kind.

I have one Floyd-equipped Strat. I can't do any dramatic whammy damage without a FR unit.

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