The Floyd Rose Style Tremolo

Many people find fault with floyd rose style tremolo systems such as the ones designed by Floyd Rose or Dimarzio. They are not as complex as some people have made them out to be. Here I hope to address most problems I find people have with these very useful tools.

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Browsing through articles and reviews, I found that many people are afraid of the floyd rose style tremolo systems that have become almost a staple of rock and metal. Guitarists will complain of their complexity, their limited tuning stability and how sometimes they won't stay in tune from the beginning. The first thing for me to address is to have your bridge set up properly by a local guitar shop, however if you have purchased a guitar that comes with one of these bridges automatically then there should be no problem. My Ibanez XPT was perfect from the beginning with an Edge III tremolo. However there are always exceptions and if you find fault with your guitar in any area bring it to a professional. When tuning these there are fine tuners on the bridge itself that are meant for tuning the instrument. Left will lower pitch, right will raise it. Most people begin to have their problems when restringing their guitars. If your guitar stayed in tune before it will again if strung properly. There is no pattern to follow while stringing these instruments. That is the most common misconception, nor does it matter if you replace each string individually or all strings are removed at once. When you put in a new string: 1. Set all fine tuners on the bridge to medium height. 2. With an allen wrench secure the ball-end into the bridge. 3. Tighten the string at the headstock to close to its normal tuning. 4. Finish stringing the guitar. The Important Part 5. The strings will not stay intune imeadiatly. Retune the instrument several times (this may take afew minutes) and make sure that all strings stay in tune at once. At first they all will become drastically out of tune. 6. (Only once the strings stay in tune) fasten the nut-locks with an allen wrench. Make sure that the locks are facing the proper direction. Mine have points on the top that are meant to run parrallel to the neck. 7. The guitar will most likely become out of tune now, using the fine tuners tune it. Your guitar should now be ready to play while staying in tune. Note - you cannot change tunings without changing the spring settings in the back of the guitar. I hope that my articles has helped those struggling with what is really an important advancement in music. If anyone has a problem with my article, and I know someone will, then either I am wrong and an idiot or they are an airhead who needs to do some research (I hope for the latter). I am 16 and it is very probable that I've screwed up. Also this is my first article please comment.

19 comments sorted by best / new / date

    supercool27
    for maggotpulse23's question u can also lock your tremelo so it doesn't pull up. the "tremel-no" supposedly works great. and then install an EVH d-tuna. but i learned recently that you have to lock your bridge one way or another to put one in.
    adrielchng
    I think you should include some string stretching steps, cause if we dont stretch the strings im sure we'll end up re calibrating the bridge once the strings are stretched after use
    sim_1113
    putting a rectangular pink school eraser under it blocks off your bridge and leaves the screw heads easily accessible with the allen wrench to lock the strings in the bridge
    RedJohnnyBoy
    Restringing and tuning double locking widdle stick systems can really test my patience but are real worth the effort.
    xXDrkndHeartXx
    Very nice article!! I've got a question about my own system though. I have a RG350DX with an Edge III in it. I've loved the system and it's never given me a problem until recently. The thing is, it returns to different a different pitch if I dive bomb or pull up on it. For example, I can play for hours and go crazy diving it all I want and it will stay in tune. But if I pull the trem back to raise the note it returns to a totally different place. Dive it and it returns normal again!! It's never done this before until recently. Any help?
    supercool27
    there is a tremel-no, i forget by what company, that locks your bridge. its an interesting piece
    supercool27
    what in this article could i have improved. incase i decide to write another. and i've installed a new original floyd rose by schaller so i know just about everything about these things now if anyone has any questions
    toomuchtoosoon
    hey this was a great article and really helpful thanks...oh and you spelled immediately wrong..maybe you should check spelling lol
    supercool27
    ya guitarman61178 is right, but most ppl can't afford several guitars. i believe you can lock your bridge, then you could change tunings at the headstock. however this would defeat the point of the tremolo. to do this i think you would setup your guitar for standard tuning and then slide something under the bridge with some overhang so that it stays. then you can detune at the head stock and the bridge will stay put i think i've heard of ppl doin this i could be wrong or they could have been. i've honestly never tried
    guitarman62278
    That's why guitarist have a few guitars with different tunings. One guitar for each tuning.I have a Jackson Warrior and i am able to go to drop D with no problem .
    maggotpulse23
    Alright man I have an Ibanez RGD320. I have a Floyd Rose but the guitar it self has a 26.5" scale so I have been trying to get into other tuning besides drop c (That is the main tunning it is used for) I have tried the fine tunning but they will not go near high enough for drop d/standard and they will not go low enough for drop b. I like to variate my tunning's a lot so this guitar has been nice but at the same time a big hassle if you have any recommendations I am more than willing to listen
    supercool27
    i found this all pretty simple, just tedious. watever floats ur boat tho rite? good luck finding a guitar that suits you
    canadianpenguin
    Awesome article! I'm now convinced that Floyd Roses are way more trouble than they'd be worth for me. Thanks!
    evan-simpson22
    its true what he's saying, you also have to make sure that the springs in the back are set up to fit the right string gauge you will use, you can adjust it by just tightening the screws in the back of the guitars, (or loosening them, depending on your guage). some people can have a bad first expeirience with them and that will make them hate the floyd rose forever, but if you have a great first experience, you'll love it forever, just like dimebag uses them.
    Stormymonday
    Yep..Strech the strings at the 12 fret several times first then when you lock um down..it will stay in tune! Good Article!