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  1. #1
    Little Dreamer
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    04.03.05 @ 01:54 PM
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    Default Tinkering with Frankenstein project yields great results

    My favorite local guitar shop recently accquired a few of those new Charvel EVH guitars (a black and yellow and my favorite, the white and black). As I played it blissfully, I noticed that the tremolo springs were in an unusual configuration. Instead of three springs separated by one space on the claw, there were only two and they were angled. I thought that this might be a solution to the stiffness of the tremolo action on my recent project. Scene 2: My dank, unfinished basement. I make the modification and start to retune to compensate for the sudden lack of tension. I had to struggle briefly to get the guitar to return to standard tuning but once I got it there, I noticed something that seemed dissapointing. The action seemed too high for comfort but I started to play and magically the strings weren't stiff at all. They were very easy on the fingers and with no buzzing. Plus, the bridge was now angled so that I could pull the strings sharp if I wanted to. Delicious!

  2. #2
    Romeo Delight throb's Avatar
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    07.20.17 @ 08:35 AM
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    Sometimes, when you remove a spring from the back of a guitar, you have to also tighten the two screws that hold the spring claw. this way, the tremolo won't sit on an angle and give you tuning problems when you rest your palm on it.

  3. #3
    Good Enough
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    11.17.15 @ 08:56 PM
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    I make the modification and start to retune to compensate for the sudden lack of tension. I had to struggle briefly to get the guitar to return to standard tuning but once I got it there, I noticed something that seemed dissapointing. The action seemed too high for comfort but I started to play and magically the strings weren't stiff at all. They were very easy on the fingers and with no buzzing. Plus, the bridge was now angled so that I could pull the strings sharp if I wanted to. Delicious!
    trob is right ...
    By removing your spring, you have caused less tension on the bridge causing it to lift from the body and raise your action. My guess is that your guitar did not have a floating trem to begin with and your guitar is in need of a setup.
    I'd start by loosen the tension on the strings and screwing in the two screws holding the trem claw until the brdge lays flat on the body as it once did. Make sure the bridge stays in this position when the guitar is brought back to pitch. If your action still seems high, try adjusting the two pivot screws on the trem. If it still seems off, you may need a slight truss rod adjuctment.

    Or if you like it that way, you can just leave it alone.

  4. #4
    Little Dreamer
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    Yes the action is higher and the tuning may be slightly less stable but somehow I find it comfortable. When the bridge is flush with the body I find that the tremolo action has too much resistance for my tastes.

  5. #5
    Top Of The World
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    11.27.17 @ 03:32 PM
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    Default Well...

    ...I think what the others are trying to say is that, usually, when guitars are "setup" in the manner that you have described yours to be in, there are endless tuning/ tone problems, mainly tuning problems. It wouldn't be surprising if at some point in the near future, you decide that being able to "pull up" on a tremelo system that was designed to be blocked against the body isn't worth the trade-off in tuning/ tone stability. Most people do.

  6. #6
    Unchained m e a n s t r e e t's Avatar
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    yup the first thing I did when I got my Strat was remove 2 of the 4 springs. The trem angles forward due to lack of tension but you can counter that by tightening the spring claw screws.

    IMO, any Floyd with more than 2 springs is way tight for my tastes...2 is even very tight.

    I have a Gibson with a Kahler from 1985 that works like butter. Floyds just have a tighter feel which sometimes works to your playing advantage. They all have their advantages and the various tentions have distinct sounds when bending.
    Talkin Some New Kicks

  7. #7
    Romeo Delight
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    11.19.05 @ 06:49 AM
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    need help

    Since we are on the topic of bridges Id figure Id let everyone know that I have a Washburn with a Wilkinson Bridge.

    I really enjoy this bridge, it floats so its not flush against the body. Its kinda a mix between a Stratocaster bridge and a Floyd Rose..
    However, it doesnt lock so it can go out of tune but if your work it well by lubing or using graphite shavings from a pencil on the nut it lets the strings slip.

    Anyone else own one, whats your thoughts?

    As far as the string tension, I think I got two springs angled in the back of my Washburn and I want to lower the tension a bit more as well as the action. I'm already tuned to Eb.... and I use 10's I guess I could go for a lighter gauge of string.

    The strings already get a bit of fret buzz on the high E string, and I dont want that. The action is to high for me at the higher frets like 12 and up to 24 (because the guitar neck slightly bows like most do..not alot though)

    When I try to do fast runs at the 12th fret and up I feel like a midget trying to run hurdles at the Special Olympics ....I got small hands lol

    Ive adjusted the bridge and its flat and I lowered the whole bridge hight by the mounting screws. I also lowered each string saddle slightly.

    Is thier anyway I could lower the action at the higer frets (towards the bridge)..without causing buzz at the lower end of the neck (towards the nut)? Would adjusting the four attachment screws of the neck to the body change any of this, or perhaps finishing the frets by filing or sanding them?

  8. #8
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    11.17.15 @ 08:56 PM
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    I've never tried a Wilkinson trem, but I've heard nothing but good things.
    I'm a big Floyd fan, but I have to admit ... my PRS trems take a beating and ALWAYS return to pitch.

  9. #9
    Romeo Delight
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    12.22.09 @ 08:02 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pilotrcm
    Since we are on the topic of bridges Id figure Id let everyone know that I have a Washburn with a Wilkinson Bridge.

    I really enjoy this bridge, it floats so its not flush against the body. Its kinda a mix between a Stratocaster bridge and a Floyd Rose..
    However, it doesnt lock so it can go out of tune but if your work it well by lubing or using graphite shavings from a pencil on the nut it lets the strings slip.

    Anyone else own one, whats your thoughts?

    As far as the string tension, I think I got two springs angled in the back of my Washburn and I want to lower the tension a bit more as well as the action. I'm already tuned to Eb.... and I use 10's I guess I could go for a lighter gauge of string.

    The strings already get a bit of fret buzz on the high E string, and I dont want that. The action is to high for me at the higher frets like 12 and up to 24 (because the guitar neck slightly bows like most do..not alot though)

    When I try to do fast runs at the 12th fret and up I feel like a midget trying to run hurdles at the Special Olympics ....I got small hands lol

    Ive adjusted the bridge and its flat and I lowered the whole bridge hight by the mounting screws. I also lowered each string saddle slightly.

    Is thier anyway I could lower the action at the higer frets (towards the bridge)..without causing buzz at the lower end of the neck (towards the nut)? Would adjusting the four attachment screws of the neck to the body change any of this, or perhaps finishing the frets by filing or sanding them?

    -Get a really good fret dressing with fall away.

    -Get set-up with .001"-.003" relief and 1/16th" action @12th.

    -Shim the neck so the distance between the fretboard and bottom of strings is the same at the nut as the highest fret.

    Should have nice low, consistent action up and down the fretboard.

  10. #10
    Romeo Delight
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    11.19.05 @ 06:49 AM
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by the breadman
    -Get a really good fret dressing with fall away.

    -Get set-up with .001"-.003" relief and 1/16th" action @12th.

    -Shim the neck so the distance between the fretboard and bottom of strings is the same at the nut as the highest fret.

    Should have nice low, consistent action up and down the fretboard.
    Cool man, thanks for the tips

    ...but what does "shim" the neck mean? I think I know what you mean by fall away frets, you have to file the frets so that one doesnt vibrate on the other as you go up the neck right? Sounds like I'd have to leave that to a luther pro or Id kill my neck .

    I appreciate your help.

  11. #11
    Romeo Delight
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    Default

    Shimming is putting something in the neck pocket to tilt the neck. Where you put it in the pocket depends on how your looking to angle the neck. Fall away is sanding the upper register frets a little lower than the rest.

    When your setting the action real low (for me lower than 1/16th) you can sometimes get buzzing in the upper frets, sanding in fall away will take care of that.

    Just to clarify, I do relief @ the 9th and the action @ the 12th.

    Hope this helps!

  12. #12
    Don't Touch the Dog There axebrian's Avatar
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    01.28.17 @ 02:56 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pilotrcm
    Since we are on the topic of bridges Id figure Id let everyone know that I have a Washburn with a Wilkinson Bridge.

    I really enjoy this bridge, it floats so its not flush against the body. Its kinda a mix between a Stratocaster bridge and a Floyd Rose..
    However, it doesnt lock so it can go out of tune but if your work it well by lubing or using graphite shavings from a pencil on the nut it lets the strings slip.

    Anyone else own one, whats your thoughts?

    As far as the string tension, I think I got two springs angled in the back of my Washburn and I want to lower the tension a bit more as well as the action. I'm already tuned to Eb.... and I use 10's I guess I could go for a lighter gauge of string.

    The strings already get a bit of fret buzz on the high E string, and I dont want that. The action is to high for me at the higher frets like 12 and up to 24 (because the guitar neck slightly bows like most do..not alot though)

    When I try to do fast runs at the 12th fret and up I feel like a midget trying to run hurdles at the Special Olympics ....I got small hands lol

    Ive adjusted the bridge and its flat and I lowered the whole bridge hight by the mounting screws. I also lowered each string saddle slightly.

    Is thier anyway I could lower the action at the higer frets (towards the bridge)..without causing buzz at the lower end of the neck (towards the nut)? Would adjusting the four attachment screws of the neck to the body change any of this, or perhaps finishing the frets by filing or sanding them?
    I bought a Carvin DC400. I wasn't sure about the Wilkinson. I had to go that route as Carvin didn't offer a floyd lefty. I'm am very satisfied with it. I'm amazed at how well it stays in tune. I have Sperzel locking tuners and would recommend them with the Wilkinson. Also, string changes are quick.
    ####......###,
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    February 10, 1978...The day that changed the Rock N Roll guitar world!!!

 

 

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