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DOINK! PING! SNAP! any strings that will last long in a trem?


fenrirlupus

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I've already broken 4 strings while tuning up a guitar for some newish player who decided to get a guitar with a floyd rose... He's not really happy about that, but i can't really seem to help it... I keep loosening the strings so i can adjust the action to get rid of fret buzz... and i'm sure that has something to do with it... (he asked me to get rid of the buzz...)

 

 

Is there any way to prevent this from happening? (i know, it'd be best if he used a hardtail... but he's not about to get another guitar, and he ignored me when i told him to get a hardtail as his first guitar...)

 

EDIT: and the trem in question is a licensed single-locking floyd rose.

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You didn't mention what guage strings this young whelp was having you install, Lupus ... maybe a heavier string would be in order.

 

Also, where are the strings breaking? If it's near the bridge, check to ensure that there are no sharp burrs of edges that could be cutting into the string.

 

Geeze ... Floyd Rose trems are a true PITA!

 

Jim

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I used to use Ernie Ball "Regular" Slinkys (.10's) on the guit that I had with a F/R double locker/fine tuner.........

Still use them on my Bigsby equipped Tele.

Never had a problem with either one.

 

Like Jim said, it's time to start looking for either "sharp spots" on the bridge, or nut lock...........or look for something thats causing them to kink or bind.

 

Is it the same string, or different strings that are breaking?

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Why were you loosening the strings to adjust the action? If you are trying to get to the truss rod, just pop a spring or two off the back (making sure the nut is locked). Or, if you really want get in there, take off all of the springs and just be careful not to twist the strings when the bridge comes off. When you put the springs back on, that sucker will be right back in tune...minus maybe the b & e. they might be half a step or less off. Floyds are a different animal and the typical laws of guitar physics do not apply.

 

Anyway, if you are breaking strings just from tuning/adjusting, something is wrong...or something is being done wrong. There isnt usually a typical nut that will bind the strings...the same goes for the bridge. Sounds like the strings were overworked.

 

EDIT: Just thought of something. Make sure the bridge is EXACTLY parrallel to the body. There might be too much spring tension. Basically, you have to get the guitar in tune, adjust the bridge up or down with the spring tension, retune, wash, rinse, repeat.

 

If you have not enough tension on the bridge springs, the trem will pull upward causing high action. Also, not enough tension will not let you tune the guitar. It will just keep pulling the bridge higher and higher.

If you have too much, it will pull downward and create too much tension on the strings causing them to break. Its a VERY delicate balance and takes some practice. The spring tension will make or break your guitar setup on a Floyd.

 

Remember, you can set the springs straight or angled to get the proper tension. I've had to swap out springs from a strat to get the right tension as well. Not all springs are made to the same degree of elasticity.

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Oh, another thing I forgot to mention...just like a "strat" type bridge (or maybe more so), the spring tension works in tandem with the spring clip and the depth of the screws into the guitar body. Once you get the springs set relatively, you want to fine adjust the bridge angle with the clip screws. I'd bet money that the clip screws are too deep, causing too much tension on the strings. That along with incorrect spring angles. You may even have to remove a spring, but thats really more of a preference thing. You can work around that by adjusting the clip screws.

 

Also, changing string guage, say going to a lighter size, will throw the whole thing out of whack severely, possibly causing you to do a whole setup. Unlike a typical bridge where changing guages only requires a small amount of adjustment (minus intonation if you are that picky).

 

With a floyd, its best to choose your guage and brand, and stick to it.

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EDIT: and the trem in question is a licensed single-locking floyd rose.

 

Hey Fenrir, what is a single locking Floyd? Is that the same thing as a speed-loader Floyd? If there is a locknut on it, my first paragrah in my first post stands. If there is no locknut, then disregard my first paragraph. Everything else I posted still holds true.

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Hey Fenrir' date=' what is a single locking Floyd? Is that the same thing as a speed-loader Floyd? If there is a locknut on it, my first paragrah in my first post stands. If there is no locknut, then disregard my first paragraph. Everything else I posted still holds true.[/quote']

single locking you don't cut the ball end off... and it's been breaking right at the ball end, so if there's a sharp edge, i don't think i can get to it. No, it's not a speedloader, a speedloader is double locking, but doesn't require a headstock or machine heads- speedloaders use special strings that attach to the nut and the bridge, and only require fine tuning at the bridge.

 

 

And you were mentioning keeping the bridge parallel to the body... How exactly might i do that? Should I add the 3rd spring that came with the guitar? The springs are already angled... and the bridge is getting a bit high off of the body...

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single locking you don't cut the ball end off... and it's been breaking right at the ball end' date=' so if there's a sharp edge, i don't think i can get to it. No, it's not a speedloader, a speedloader is double locking, but doesn't require a headstock or machine heads- speedloaders use special strings that attach to the nut and the bridge, and only require fine tuning at the bridge.

 

 

And you were mentioning keeping the bridge parallel to the body... How exactly might i do that? Should I add the 3rd spring that came with the guitar? The springs are already angled... and the bridge is getting a bit high off of the body...[/quote']

 

Actually, I think that IS a speedloader. I have a regular double locking and a speedloader. On the double locking, you either cut off the ball end or string them backwards and lock the strings at the nut and the bridge with allen screws. The speedloaders retain the ball ends and load through holes on the back of the bridge. Either way, as long as they lock at the nut, you can do the spring trick to loosen the strings.

 

Yes, if the bridge is angled, add the third spring and see how tight the bridge is. If the guitar is in tune and the bridge is being pulled toward the body, loosen the spring-clip screws a bit and then retune. Do this until the bridge is exactly parallel to the body. If the bridge is still too high, tighten the clip-screws in the same manner. The third spring should most likely go in the center and not be angled.

 

There are quite a few factors to take into consideration with these bridges...like, if you are missing a string or two, the bridge should start to pull downward due to lack of string tension. Also, when the strings get old and start to stretch, they will do the same thing....but ever so slighltly.

 

Now, my thoughts are that if you dont have enough spring tension, the strings shouldnt be breaking. They should either just pull the bridge on an angle, or not allow you to tune because of severe bridge angle and just keep pulling the bridge upward. However, if the strings are too light of a guage, I imagine it could do both....or a combination of bridge angle and not enough spring tension could cause too much string tension and break a string when trying to tune the guitar.

 

I agree with you 100% though. He should not have gotten a Floyd. As fancy and badass as they look, they are not for the new guitarist, usually. However, once you understand them and learn how to adjust them properly, they stay in tune better than anything else....until the strings start to go bad, Then they go out of tune like crazy. Picky, picky bridges, they are.

 

I hope all of this helps you out. Go ahead and pick my brain. I'll do what I can to get you guys going.

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Check for sharp edges everywhere and alignment.

Ive never broken a string doing my kramer with a floyd before. This is how i do it.

 

Wedge a bunch of picks in the gap where the floyd block is so it wont pull back. The trick with this is you have to tighten the claw up quite tight so the bridge would normally sit back into the cavity and not level and put the trem arm on the floor and push down on it then put pics in the gap on the back like mentioned before. Use enough pics so that the floyd rose is level with the body of the guitar.

 

Restring the guitar so its in tune (If the srews on the back holding the claw are tight enough the trem should stay level and not pull up)

Lock up the strings then slowly undo the screws evenly on the back until the bridge begins to lift up and the pics become loose. then remove the pics and tighten the screws till it looks level with the body and then fine tune up.

 

Doing it this way means the springs will never be to tight when setting up.

 

I made a trem block which is bolted to the back of my guitar so my floyd is only used for dive bombs and not for pull ups. I have the spring tention set so its just enough to pull back home so it easy to use the floyd. My block is also adjustable to set the level of the trem also.

Made it at work and boy it really helps keep it in tune!

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The trick with this is you have to tighten the claw up quite tight so the bridge would normally sit back into the cavity and not level and put the trem arm on the floor and push down on it then put pics in the gap on the back like mentioned before.

 

 

This is pretty much what I was trying to tell him. He needs to tighten the claw. I called it a spring clip. But...he needs to put that third spring on first, and then see how the bridge sits before tightening the claw.

 

Also, i'm not really into bridge blocking, but it is probably a really good idea considering the situation.

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