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Pros and Cons of a Floyd

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(@itchard)
Trusted Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 59
Topic starter  

Right. So I'm seriously debating buying either this MIJ Floyd-Strat, or a vintage Kramer. They're on ebay so obviously I can't play them.

What i need to know is, how much like a USA Strat whammy is a floyd, and having never played one, would I like it?

I'm quite into Van Halen (amoungst others) so this caught my eye. I'm really trying to work on dive bombs/tapping etc now, and as a sort of knock around guitar, it might not be a bad choice.

So yeah, any insight/information/suggestions would be helpful, thanks.


   
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(@coloradofenderbender)
Noble Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1106
 

The Strat whammy to the Floyd Rose is like comparing a 1940 car to a car of the 1980s -- they are very different. The Strat whammy is much more limited to the drop in pitch vs the floyd and the Strat can't really pull a note very sharp. The Floyd has much more "range."

Based on what music you mention, you will need a Floyd. Beware though, they are much harder to deal with: tuning, keeping intonated, etc., etc.


   
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(@peaveywolfgang5150)
Estimable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 128
 

floyds are just so much fun, if you want to do dive bombs and that sort of thing DO NOT GET A STRAT!!!!! i have never had a problem with my floyd and its just a cheap one at that, i say go for it and get a trem setter, it will help with tuning. goodluck


   
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(@gnease)
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Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5038
 

However -- and I don't mean this as a judgement -- if you are a self-acknowledged mechanical idiot and don't have a patient, mechanically-inclined friend or a good tech + $$, you will be challenged in dealing with the FR or the Ibanez equally-good/better equivalent. A FR system has far more potential for mis-adjustment than almost any other trem system, except maybe those on Steinbergers and Ibanezes.

Also, this has been noted on GN before in similar discussions: The less expensive FR ("licensed" in some cases, knock-offs in others), do wear out and require more maintenance.

Last point: Check out the Ibanez versions -- only on Ibanez guitars, of course. Ibanez makes some excellent "super-Strat" type guitars with locking trem systems that are great for the type of playing you are into.

-=tension & release=-


   
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(@itchard)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 59
Topic starter  

Its an Fender factory floyd, so I don't know how reliable they are.


   
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(@wes-inman)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 5582
 

I agree with Greg (Gnease), the Floyd is better, but they can be a real pain.

Now this is just my opinion, but both are gonna go out of tune. I don't care if it has locking nuts, if you do lots of big dives a Floyd Rose is gonna go out of tune.

With a Fender Strat you simply tune up again and you are ready to go.

But a Floyd Rose with locking nut is FAR more complicated.

1) You must loosen the locking nuts, so you better carry an Allen Wrench to the gig. :x

2) Now you must set all rear adjustments at the bridge in the middle. This allows you to tune both up or down in pitch.

3) Tune your guitar to pitch. The bridge must float parallel to the body of the guitar. If not, you have to take the plate off the bottom of the body and adjust the tension springs. If you like down-tuned stuff, you are gonna have to make adjustments because the springs will be set for normal tuning, they will pull the bridge back toward the rear of your guitar. This will usually raise your action and also completely throw your intonation out of whack. Your guitar will be out of tune EVERYWHERE.

4)OK, you've got the bridge floating level to the body with the guitar in tune. Now you retighten the lock nuts. You are ready to play.

You will be fine for awhile. If you do lots of dives your guitar is still gonna go out of tune, but you can retune using the adjustment screws at the rear of the bridge. But after awhile you are gonna run out of travel. You will have to start the process all over again.

Locking nuts cannot keep your guitar in tune forever. Even if they hold, strings stretch, so you are still gonna go out of tune.

So, others may love the Floyd Rose system, I've had guitars with Floyd Rose and found them very frustrating. I finally just removed the locking nuts altogether. When the guitar went out of tune (which it will), I simply used the tuners on the headstock to QUICKLY retune to pitch. I really don't like the idea of having to carry an Allen Wrench around all the time. They can be very hard to see in the dark at a gig. I left the adjustments on the bridge in the middle position at all times, so for me they were pretty useless.

And it is not just the strings slipping or stretching. If you break a string you are going to have to go through this long process again... loosen the locking nuts, tune to pitch, adjust the bridge...............

That's just my 2 cents. Strats go out of tune too, but at least you can quickly retune. But you have to have the spring tension correct on a Strat too.

It is not really that difficult to properly set up either, but it is time consuming. If you play gigs, carry a spare guitar.

If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis


   
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(@the-dali)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1409
 

I might be wrong, but that trem you are looking at isn't really a Floyd Rose trem, it is Fender trem with Floyd similarities. I think that this unit wouldn't require the ball-end cutting that is required on some Floyd's.

My own two-cents... the Floyds (and those similar units) are a PAIN in the rear. You can play like 95% of all the songs in the world with a fixed bridge or standard pivot tremolo, so they are extra hassle for little return.

-=- Steve

"If the moon were made of ribs, would you eat it?"


   
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(@coloradofenderbender)
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Joined: 18 years ago
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My own two-cents... the Floyds (and those similar units) are a PAIN in the rear. You can play like 95% of all the songs in the world with a fixed bridge or standard pivot tremolo, so they are extra hassle for little return.

Agreed. BUT, if 1980s hair metal is your bag, you kinda need one.


   
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(@gnease)
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Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5038
 

My own two-cents... the Floyds (and those similar units) are a PAIN in the rear. You can play like 95% of all the songs in the world with a fixed bridge or standard pivot tremolo, so they are extra hassle for little return.

Agreed. BUT, if 1980s hair metal is your bag, you kinda need one.

... along with a good conditioner (split ends repair formula) and diffuser for your dryer.

-=tension & release=-


   
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(@coloradofenderbender)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1106
 

Very true, very true!


   
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(@kalle_in_sweden)
Prominent Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 779
 

Yamaha has solved the locking nut problem on the RGX 520/620 guitars.
The introduced the "Finger Clamp" Locking System, wich is fast locking arm that releases the string locking in half a turn.
http://www.yamahamusic.com.au/products/musicalinstruments/guitars/electric/solid/rgx.asp#RGX620DZ

Tanglewood TW28STE (Shadow P7 EQ) acoustic
Yamaha RGX 320FZ electric guitar/Egnater Tweaker 15 amp.
Yamaha RBX 270 bass/Laney DB 150 amp.
http://www.soundclick.com/kalleinsweden


   
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(@trguitar)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 3709
 

If your into Van Halen go for the Kramer ..... seems like a no brainer to me.

"Work hard, rock hard, eat hard, sleep hard,
grow big, wear glasses if you need 'em."
-- The Webb Wilder Credo --


   
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