Disabling a Floyd Rose?

Posted by Martin Lomas on Wed, 09/12/01 - 09:05:25.
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Hi Players,

Is there a way I can temporarily disable or "lock in place" the Floyd Rose tremelo unit on my Jackson Pro guitar?

I'd like to be able to do that when I don't need it, so that the pitch is more stable when the bridge is touched.

Thanks,
Martin

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Re: Disabling a Floyd Rose?

Put a Block of wood in between the body of the guitar and the floyd (under the floyd). that is called "blocking" and it usually works good if you do it right!

FEEDBACK

How to temporarily disable a Floyd Rose tremolo unit:

Following various bits of advice, I have now achieved a 100% effective solution, which I share in the hope it benefits others.

I measured, cut and sanded two bits of fairly hard wood to use as blockers. I'm not sure what wood I used, but I wouldn't recommend pine or particle board, for example. The dimensions were measured while the tremolo unit was held parallel to the body. In case you're trying some other angle, be careful not to obscure the string-retainer screws at the back of the tailpiece.

The pieces of wood are inserted into the back of the guitar, under the tremolo-spring screw-on plate. The thicker wood piece goes beside the back end of the tremolo keel, while the thinner wood piece goes beside the front end of the tremolo keel. The front piece doesn't appear to have much body-wood below to support it, but isn't a problem since the horizontal pressure is stronger.

I planned it so that the wood pieces need a good few taps with a mallet or similar to get them in, i.e.: they fit quite tightly. Each piece of wood is flush with the screw-on plate to further avoid movement. The tremolo-springs are removed, and staying out (otherwise the front wood piece cannot be flush with the screw-on plate). A test at this point showed the main tremolo/bridge unit to be very solidly in place, not moving either way.

For my Jackson Professional, the wood dimensions are:

For BACK of tremolo keel:
7.5cm (2.953") wide x 3.3cm (1.309") high x 1.5cm (0.591") thick

For FRONT of tremolo keel:
7.5cm (2.953") wide x 3.3cm (1.309") high x 0.9cm (0.354") thick

NOTE-1: The tremolo-spring cut-out in the back of my guitar is rounded at the corners. I did not round off my wood pieces. This means that contact between the wood pieces and the body is primarily at the corners. I have not noticed any particular change in tone or sustain. Presumably, one might get better tone and/or sustain with more of the wood in contact. To do so, I would need to make the wood pieces about 4mm (0.157") thicker each, then round the corners to fit.

NOTE-2: With the tremolo-springs removed, their metal anchor may be loose. I tightened it's 2 screws slightly and it is now firmly in place.

NOTE-3: Upon completion, the action, which was very low before, was now too low, causing buzzing all over. I simply adjusted it as usual by screwing the 2 tremolo studs counter-clockwise as necessary - no problem.

CONCLUSION

I'm really happy with this. The bridge does not move at all with normal occasional contact. Cutting the wood is the hardest part; other than that it's real easy. I think the whole arrangement would take about 10 to 15 minutes to undo - not bad at all.

Anyone: feel free to adapt and reproduce this text at will.

Martin Lomas
mlomas@home.com

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