I just wanted to show you guys what I made yesterday.
I bought a Tremol-no for the Damien FR I just got, because I wanted to be able to do double-stops and increase the sustain, but retain the FR without much trouble. The Tremol-no works pretty well, but I didn't like keeping the cavity open.
I thought of modifying the stock plate, but decided to make a new one. I thought of using polycarbonate at first, but poked around the junk bins at my work and found a nice piece of .0625" thick stainless. It's a few thousandths thinner than the stock plate, but I can always shim it.
So I traced the original plate profile onto the piece of stainless, and cut it out roughly with the band saw. I regret not taking pics of the process, but it was at my workplace, and I didn't feel like taking the trouble.
I threw it on a mill and got it squared-up, then milled the sides down to match the overall size of the original plate. Once that was done, I measured and traced the opening size that I eyeballed on the guitar, and threw it back on the mill. I originally planned on using a 1" diameter end mill, but that's a lot of stainless to cut at once, so I started with 1/4" instead, and ended up just finishing with it. I think a rounded rectangle matches the overall shape better than a slot with rounded ends would, yeah?
With that done, I again lined up the original plate with the new, and traced the rounded corners and hole locations. I shaved down the fillets using the belt sander (bye eye, again), and drilled and counter-sunk the holes. All the measuring and cutting took me about an hour.
I spent about another hour with a hand deburring tool, the deburring wheel, and the polishing wheel to get it to look somewhat respectable. There are a few surface dings that I didn't bother to remove, and left the finish basically brushed more than polished. I did spend a few minutes on the front side with the polishing wheel and some fine medium.
After cleaning it good with alcohol, I gave the front side two coats of laquer. It would have been nice to actually polish the stainless to a mirror finish, but I lacked the time and motivation.
So here's how it turned out. Not perfect, but good enough for me!