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Is it just me, or are Ibanez guitars garbage? Modular Synthesizers
Old 2nd March 2014
  #31
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Originally Posted by robare99 View Post
Love my Ibby's

I bet you know "Blue Powder".
Old 2nd March 2014
  #32
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Originally Posted by John Eppstein View Post
That's the infamous Fender 3 bolt neck with adjustable tilting mechanism. It was a "bright idea" that never worked properly (supposedly you could loosen one bolt and adjust the neck tilt with an Allen wrench through the little hole in the plate, then retighten the bolt and not have to take the neck off the guitar to add or remove shims. That's why they did it.) The thing always made for a loose neck fit that was easily knocked sideways off center and also killed sustain and sucked tone with the lack of firm mechanical coupling from neck to body.

That era of Fenders also had the worst necks ever (some of the wood they used was so green that the necks warped and twisted within the first 3 or so years and could not be straightened with a truss rod adjustment) and had pretty poor pickups as well.

I find it utterly hilarious that some fools are now paying vintage prices for that junk from unscrupulous vendors taking advantage of the "vintage" guitar craze. Sometimes an old crappy guitar is just an old crappy guitar.

Any Fender and most Squiers made after CBS sold the company are MUCH better instruments than the vast majority of tilt-neck 3 bolt Fenders.
So THAT was the intention behind the 3-bolt Fender neck. You described the problems that thing used to have to a T - luckily for me the neck was straight. I sold the guitar years ago, thinking that I had finally gotten rid of a dud. It blows my mind how much the damn things are going for since I parted with it - ahh the allure of "vintage" Fenders.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guitarmax_99 View Post
So THAT was the intention behind the 3-bolt Fender neck. You described the problems that thing used to have to a T - luckily for me the neck was straight. I sold the guitar years ago, thinking that I had finally gotten rid of a dud. It blows my mind how much the damn things are going for since I parted with it - ahh the allure of "vintage" Fenders.
Some of the 4-bolt necks of the 80s/90s also had the tilt adjustment as well.

I don't think it was the fact that there were 3 bolts that made the neck unstable. It was the poor sizing of the pocket and screw holes. G&L made 3 bolt necks all through the 90's and they never had a tuning stability issue.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #34
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Ibanez's instruments are pretty well made in terms of fretwork and fit and finish. But they make their own proprietary hardware (bridges, tuners, etc.) which is cheesy and cheap, and you can never get parts once that particular model is discontinued.

Ibanez has done several variations on the Floyd Rose type design - ranging from usable to "what the hell were they thinking?". They change their bridge designs every couple of years so you can never get bridge parts for last year's model. Yamaha does the same thing. I think they do this simply so you'll have to buy a new guitar instead of just replacing their cheesy bridge parts (which will inevitably break or strip). Having said all that, I hate floating Floyd-type tremolos anyways, but if I were in the market for a guitar equipped with that type of bridge, Ibanez would be my last choice, mainly because of their planned-obsolescence business model.

Those Steve Vai type guitars seem particularly cheesy to me. They're stupidly expensive, but there doesn't seem to be much difference between those and their $189 beginner guitars, except for the upgrade to a ****ty Floyd knockoff, the DiMarzio pickups, and of course the silly hand grip (what's up with that?).
Old 2nd March 2014
  #35
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Originally Posted by Hot Vibrato View Post
... and of course the silly hand grip (what's up with that?).
It's an anti-theft measure. You can chain your guitar to a radiator.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #36
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I have played some 70s guitars that were nice, some 80s/early 90s ones that were nice but not really a good fit for my style.

My guess is the low end is now made in China, Korea, etc... and are no worse then the other brands that have been destroyed by such practice (Fender, Gretsch, D'Angelico, etc...).
Old 2nd March 2014
  #37
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The Japanese Ibanez are still nice guitars. The hardware is made by Gotoh and is not cheap knockoff crap. The Premium models are Indonesian and can be hit or miss. They skimp on the details but can be made nice with some extra work. The other models with the weird bridges and trems I know nothing about and would avoid like the plague. They do seem to reinvent the wheel all the time with their tremolos and I don't understand why. You think they'd wise up since Vai and Satriani, their two biggest endorsers, only use Edges. I only have experience with their older Jems, Satch, RG, S and R series. They were all well made made but never liked those super thin RG necks. All their models are overpriced as most Strat type models are these days. And they use a lot of basswood for their guitars. I don't care what John Suhr or others say, I think it's garbage wood and don't understand why big name builders use it and charge a fortune. It used to be used for cheap guitars and somehow it's being used in high end stuff now.

I totally agree with John on the 70's Fenders. When I was 15 I had a 79 Strat that was totally unplayable. The neck had so much clearcoat I don't think it needed a truss rod. The clearcoat pooled up to the frets creating an almost scalloped effect. The frets were flat as could be and would not play in tune. The body had no forearm contour, as if someone forgot to shave it down. It also had so much paint I think the paint weighed as much as the wood. The neck was so sloppy you could slide a heavy pick in a gap between the neck and body on the topside. The pickups were a joke and hardware seemed like cheap pot metal crap. I played it for two years until I built one and it blew that piece of junk out of the water. I ended up trading it for a rack case.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Porto View Post
Some of the 4-bolt necks of the 80s/90s also had the tilt adjustment as well.

I don't think it was the fact that there were 3 bolts that made the neck unstable. It was the poor sizing of the pocket and screw holes. G&L made 3 bolt necks all through the 90's and they never had a tuning stability issue.
I agree that the poor sizing of the pocket / fit of the neck in that pocket that was the main problem. That being said, the 3-bolt design didn't help matters. Having experienced it first hand it really seemed that the odd bolt acted like a fulcrum and exacerbated the problem. Either way, it was far from their best moment design-wise.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #39
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Something about a "Premium" model being made in Indonesia doesn't inspire confidence.

I always thought they were made in Japan and some models were assembled in America. Like I said, my knowledge of them ends in the early 1990s.
Old 3rd March 2014
  #40
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Thanks for the responses guys!

I want to apologize for the aggravating thread header, because some people seem to have great experiences with Ibanez's. I posted this briefly after another frustrating run-in with my guitar not getting to tune. So from what I'm reading, is the jist of an Ibanez that you have to re-adjust the bridge whenever the strings are replaced or break? How does this register to when you break a string on stage? Is there any videos I could potentially watch that you've have great success with? A lot of the videos I've seen ended up to not be very helpful.
Old 4th March 2014
  #41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Googlesgod View Post
Thanks for the responses guys!

I want to apologize for the aggravating thread header, because some people seem to have great experiences with Ibanez's. I posted this briefly after another frustrating run-in with my guitar not getting to tune. So from what I'm reading, is the jist of an Ibanez that you have to re-adjust the bridge whenever the strings are replaced or break? How does this register to when you break a string on stage? Is there any videos I could potentially watch that you've have great success with? A lot of the videos I've seen ended up to not be very helpful.
No you do not have to re adjust the bridge, first you have to make sure the tension springs are set right on the bridge for the string gauge you are using. When you tune up the guitar, don't tune Hi E B G D A E, tune Hi E then the sixth string E then B then A then D then G, it makes for an more even tension. When you break a string on stage you pretty much have to stop playing, that is pretty much the deal with a guitar with a floyd style bridge. One of the handy things about this type of guitar is if you do break a string by the bridge leave extra wind at the top and just stick the string back in. Like John Eppstein was saying guitars with these type of bridges take a bit more to get a handle on, but once you do they're fine.
Old 4th March 2014
  #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Googlesgod View Post
Thanks for the responses guys!

I want to apologize for the aggravating thread header, because some people seem to have great experiences with Ibanez's. I posted this briefly after another frustrating run-in with my guitar not getting to tune. So from what I'm reading, is the jist of an Ibanez that you have to re-adjust the bridge whenever the strings are replaced or break? How does this register to when you break a string on stage? Is there any videos I could potentially watch that you've have great success with? A lot of the videos I've seen ended up to not be very helpful.
If you break a string on stage, you're screwed. This is not exclusively an Ibanez issue - any guitar with a floating tremolo is a PITA. Unless your technique requires the use of a floating tremolo, I suggest that you either stabilize your bridge so that it doesn't float, or get another guitar. It's just not worth the hassle unless you're a Steve Vai or Joe Satriani type player.
Old 4th March 2014
  #43
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Originally Posted by Hot Vibrato View Post
I... It's just not worth the hassle unless you're a Steve Vai or Joe Satriani type player.
… with 6 more identical guitars and a roadie or two.
Old 5th March 2014
  #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Porto View Post
Some of the 4-bolt necks of the 80s/90s also had the tilt adjustment as well.

I don't think it was the fact that there were 3 bolts that made the neck unstable. It was the poor sizing of the pocket and screw holes. G&L made 3 bolt necks all through the 90's and they never had a tuning stability issue.
+1. I have an early nineties 3 bolt ASAT and it is the most stable, reliable guitar I own. Well, that and my 1980 Tokai ST80 Strat. Which has 4 bolts!
Old 5th March 2014
  #45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Hahn View Post
… with 6 more identical guitars and a roadie or two.
I think you guys are exaggerating this, it's really not rocket science, and just don't leave old strings on the guitar.
Old 5th March 2014
  #46
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Originally Posted by Musiclab View Post
I think you guys are exaggerating this, it's really not rocket science, and just don't leave old strings on the guitar.
God knows I'm prone to exaggeration, but I could swear I saw a "rigs of the stars" video a while back with Vai's road tech and a rack of identical guitars. Okay, maybe it was 4, not 6.

There's a similar Lindsey Buckingham video with a phalanx of Turners lined up. Must be nice.
Old 5th March 2014
  #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musiclab View Post
I think you guys are exaggerating this, it's really not rocket science, and just don't leave old strings on the guitar.
It's not rocket science, but maintaining a guitar equipped with a Floyd-type bridge is a huge PITA. Players with an aptitude for mechanical things will get used to it, but it's still a huge PITA.

For anyone who plays with a locking/floating bridge, it would be stupid to do a live show without at least one backup guitar - breaking a string could cause an unscheduled set break.
Old 5th March 2014
  #48
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My first Ibanez was *really* good.
An RS1000, but I did drop some less "distorto" pickups into it.
Sold it for a Fender a few years later and wished I had added the Fender, after a while.

Anyhow, the infamous thing with the floyd designs, was that the curved edge that meets the stud gets worn/blunted easily... Even with original floyds.
Sends tuning stability up the wazzoo.
One model/brand (?) had a separate, hardened insert to mitigate that.
Old 5th March 2014
  #49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot Vibrato View Post
It's not rocket science, but maintaining a guitar equipped with a Floyd-type bridge is a huge PITA. Players with an aptitude for mechanical things will get used to it, but it's still a huge PITA.

For anyone who plays with a locking/floating bridge, it would be stupid to do a live show without at least one backup guitar - breaking a string could cause an unscheduled set break.
Since I've been playing professionally since 74, and been using as my main gig guitar, an Ibanez PL2550 with a floyd rose bridge , I can tell you it's really not a pita, and once you get comfortable with it, I find it very easy.
Old 5th March 2014
  #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musiclab View Post
Since I've been playing professionally since 74, and been using as my main gig guitar, an Ibanez PL2550 with a floyd rose bridge , I can tell you it's really not a pita, and once you get comfortable with it, I find it very easy.
I've made my living for the last twenty years working on guitars. I'm comfortable with it. But yes - it is a PITA. You're just used to it.
Old 6th March 2014
  #51
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I've broken strings playing live on a Floyd Rose without a backup. I can feed the string back into the saddle from the windings on the tuning post in less than a minute. I'd like to see someone restring a standard bridge that quick. Nothing pita about it.
Old 6th March 2014
  #52
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It's been years since I've heard about a problem with Ibanez, it seems like you may have gotten the short straw. I've owned quite a few over the years and don't recall having problems with any of them.
Old 6th March 2014
  #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darkknight91 View Post
I've broken strings playing live on a Floyd Rose without a backup. I can feed the string back into the saddle from the windings on the tuning post in less than a minute. I'd like to see someone restring a standard bridge that quick. Nothing pita about it.
Not a PITA? Every time you change the tuning of one string, the other five strings go out of tune, so then you have to tune those strings, then the one you just tuned is out of tune, so then you re-tune it, and then the last one you just tuned is out, so then you have to tune that one again, and then the others are out of tune... jeez. What a PITA...

Sometimes when you break a string, change it and tune it up, the other strings wind up being out of tune to the point where you have no more adjustment on the fine tuners, so then you have to unlock the nut screws and tune it all over again, and then lock the nut down and re-tune again. (If you say this has never happened to you, you're lying). If this happens to you on stage, your bandmates better know some good jokes to tell the crowd while you're busy monkeying with that thing.

Also, while changing a string in the dark onstage, you could easily lose one of those little allen screws, or that tiny little block that holds the string in place (it'll just fall right out if you're not careful), or you could lose track of your allen wrench.

I'm glad that after years of experience using a Floyd, that it's no longer a PITA for you, but to imply that it's easy and hassle free is simply disingenuous and misleading.

If I ever meet Mr. Floyd Rose in person, I'm kicking him right in the nuts - no introduction, no explanation - just a swift kick right in the groin.
Old 6th March 2014
  #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot Vibrato View Post
Not a PITA? Every time you change the tuning of one string, the other five strings go out of tune, so then you have to tune those strings, then the one you just tuned is out of tune, so then you re-tune it, and then the last one you just tuned is out, so then you have to tune that one again, and then the others are out of tune... jeez. What a PITA...

Sometimes when you break a string, change it and tune it up, the other strings wind up being out of tune to the point where you have no more adjustment on the fine tuners, so then you have to unlock the nut screws and tune it all over again, and then lock the nut down and re-tune again. (If you say this has never happened to you, you're lying). If this happens to you on stage, your bandmates better know some good jokes to tell the crowd while you're busy monkeying with that thing.

Also, while changing a string in the dark onstage, you could easily lose one of those little allen screws, or that tiny little block that holds the string in place (it'll just fall right out if you're not careful), or you could lose track of your allen wrench.

I'm glad that after years of experience using a Floyd, that it's no longer a PITA for you, but to imply that it's easy and hassle free is simply disingenuous and misleading.

If I ever meet Mr. Floyd Rose in person, I'm kicking him right in the nuts - no introduction, no explanation - just a swift kick right in the groin.
Wow!

I have to disagree somewhat.

You may have to retune it a couple times when you replace a string, but it really is not that bad. Yeah it sucks compared to a hard tail which takes less than a min. to replace and tune, but with a floyd I can be replaced and tuned in 2 min. This is why it is nice to have a backup guitar or two with you, but it really is not that bad.

Jim
Old 6th March 2014
  #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbridgman View Post
Wow!

I have to disagree somewhat.

You may have to retune it a couple times when you replace a string, but it really is not that bad. Yeah it sucks compared to a hard tail which takes less than a min. to replace and tune, but with a floyd I can be replaced and tuned in 2 min. This is why it is nice to have a backup guitar or two with you, but it really is not that bad.

Jim
It's funny that the Floyd users are all rallying to refute the premise that Floyd Rose bridges are difficult and problematic. You guys have adapted to the quirks of the thing and I applaud you for that, but again - to imply that a Floyd is easy and hassle-free is disingenuous and misleading. For most players, a floating bridge of any kind is not worth the mechanical headaches and tuning difficulties.

I certainly don't envy anyone whose tone relies on using a Floyd, but you're right - once you get used to its quirks, it's not that bad...

I work on guitars for a living, and it took me years (and lots of frustration) before I figured this out:

When setting up a Floyd, it's best to temporarily stabilize the bridge with a wooden wedge stuck between the trem block and the body so that the bridge sits exactly at the desired position (you need to over-tighten the spring tensioning screws, or the wedge will fall out). At this point, you can tune, adjust string height and intonation without the damn thing flopping all over the place. Once it's set up and intonated, lock the nut and then remove the wedge. The strings will go sharp (because you over-tightened the springs). At this point, simply loosen the spring tensioning screws until the guitar is in tune again. Works perfect every time.

I honestly don't mind working on a guitar with a Floyd, but I'd never play one - too much hassle, plus, you can't hold one note and bend another string, or the note you're holding goes flat. Not to mention that warbly sound that happens when you play a Floyd - it's just weird.
Old 6th March 2014
  #56
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot Vibrato View Post
It's funny that the Floyd users are all rallying to refute the premise that Floyd Rose bridges are difficult and problematic. You guys have adapted to the quirks of the thing and I applaud you for that, but again - to imply that a Floyd is easy and hassle-free is disingenuous and misleading. For most players, a floating bridge of any kind is not worth the mechanical headaches and tuning difficulties.

I certainly don't envy anyone whose tone relies on using a Floyd, but you're right - once you get used to its quirks, it's not that bad...

I work on guitars for a living, and it took me years (and lots of frustration) before I figured this out:

When setting up a Floyd, it's best to temporarily stabilize the bridge with a wooden wedge stuck between the trem block and the body so that the bridge sits exactly at the desired position (you need to over-tighten the spring tensioning screws, or the wedge will fall out). At this point, you can tune, adjust string height and intonation without the damn thing flopping all over the place. Once it's set up and intonated, lock the nut and then remove the wedge. The strings will go sharp (because you over-tightened the springs). At this point, simply loosen the spring tensioning screws until the guitar is in tune again. Works perfect every time.

I honestly don't mind working on a guitar with a Floyd, but I'd never play one - too much hassle, plus, you can't hold one note and bend another string, or the note you're holding goes flat. Not to mention that warbly sound that happens when you play a Floyd - it's just weird.
what's funny is your overreaction to a simple thing, I've been playing for 50 years I own lots of different guitars 3 of which have a floyd on them, as a matter of fact I rarely bother locking down the nut. I use this particular Ibanez not because of the Floyd but because it happens to be very versatile. Once you are used to the quirks it's really not a big deal.
Old 6th March 2014
  #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot Vibrato View Post
Not a PITA? Every time you change the tuning of one string, the other five strings go out of tune, so then you have to tune those strings, then the one you just tuned is out of tune, so then you re-tune it, and then the last one you just tuned is out, so then you have to tune that one again, and then the others are out of tune... jeez. What a PITA...

Sometimes when you break a string, change it and tune it up, the other strings wind up being out of tune to the point where you have no more adjustment on the fine tuners, so then you have to unlock the nut screws and tune it all over again, and then lock the nut down and re-tune again. (If you say this has never happened to you, you're lying). If this happens to you on stage, your bandmates better know some good jokes to tell the crowd while you're busy monkeying with that thing.

Also, while changing a string in the dark onstage, you could easily lose one of those little allen screws, or that tiny little block that holds the string in place (it'll just fall right out if you're not careful), or you could lose track of your allen wrench.

I'm glad that after years of experience using a Floyd, that it's no longer a PITA for you, but to imply that it's easy and hassle free is simply disingenuous and misleading.

If I ever meet Mr. Floyd Rose in person, I'm kicking him right in the nuts - no introduction, no explanation - just a swift kick right in the groin.
Sheesh, dude. Man up. It's no different than tuning a Bigsby. I can do an initial setup on a Floyd in 30 minutes. Action, intonation, etc. it never takes that long to change strings after that. If it's taken you years to get a handle on it, you're doing something wrong.
Old 6th March 2014
  #58
My guitar tunes itself out of respect.
Old 6th March 2014
  #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hot Vibrato View Post
It's funny that the Floyd users are all rallying to refute the premise that Floyd Rose bridges are difficult and problematic. You guys have adapted to the quirks of the thing and I applaud you for that, but again - to imply that a Floyd is easy and hassle-free is disingenuous and misleading. For most players, a floating bridge of any kind is not worth the mechanical headaches and tuning difficulties.

I certainly don't envy anyone whose tone relies on using a Floyd, but you're right - once you get used to its quirks, it's not that bad...

I work on guitars for a living, and it took me years (and lots of frustration) before I figured this out:

When setting up a Floyd, it's best to temporarily stabilize the bridge with a wooden wedge stuck between the trem block and the body so that the bridge sits exactly at the desired position (you need to over-tighten the spring tensioning screws, or the wedge will fall out). At this point, you can tune, adjust string height and intonation without the damn thing flopping all over the place. Once it's set up and intonated, lock the nut and then remove the wedge. The strings will go sharp (because you over-tightened the springs). At this point, simply loosen the spring tensioning screws until the guitar is in tune again. Works perfect every time.

I honestly don't mind working on a guitar with a Floyd, but I'd never play one - too much hassle, plus, you can't hold one note and bend another string, or the note you're holding goes flat. Not to mention that warbly sound that happens when you play a Floyd - it's just weird.
And that is your experience with floyd's, but that does not mean everyone shares this view or experience. I play and record guitar and run my studio for a living, so... Our experiences and views should be different. That does not make mine or anyone elses opinion wrong or irrelevant, as you seem to imply.

Proper setup is key with a floyd, once that is done, it is not so bad, well for me at least.

Now getting a new guitar with a floyd and doing a proper setup... that's sort of a pia (45 min.), and once done right it is smooth sailing from there.

Jim
Old 6th March 2014
  #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Musiclab View Post
what's funny is your overreaction to a simple thing, I've been playing for 50 years I own lots of different guitars 3 of which have a floyd on them, as a matter of fact I rarely bother locking down the nut. I use this particular Ibanez not because of the Floyd but because it happens to be very versatile. Once you are used to the quirks it's really not a big deal.
Who's overreacting? I simply stated that Floyds are a PITA. Does that somehow offend you?

I still contend that the "quirks" of a floyd are way too problematic for the average player. I work on guitars every day. It's my job. And I see the frustration people have with these things when they make an uninformed purchase and wind up with a locking tremolo without fully knowing what they're getting into. Many people have limited mechanical aptitude. With floyds, some people get it, and some people don't. For most, it's simply not worth the hassle.

Quote:
Originally Posted by darkknight91 View Post
Sheesh, dude. Man up. It's no different than tuning a Bigsby. I can do an initial setup on a Floyd in 30 minutes. Action, intonation, etc. it never takes that long to change strings after that. If it's taken you years to get a handle on it, you're doing something wrong.
It took me years to figure out that particular trick with the wedge (you should try it instead of just assuming I'm a dumbass). The Floyd Rose bridge itself is no mystery to me. I've been successfully setting up and assembling guitars equipped with Floyds professionally for nearly twenty years. No problems. No complaints.

Rather than to "man up", I'd simply prefer to not play a guitar with a floyd. The sound doesn't appeal to me at all, and they are a hassle. Like I said, I don't mind working on them, but I prefer to play a guitar with a hardtail (or a bigsby)

BTW - A bigsby is way more forgiving. No comparison.

I'm sorry if I offended you guys by saying that Floyd's are a PITA. I didn't mean to start a controversy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbridgman View Post
Proper setup is key with a floyd, once that is done, it is not so bad
I agree with that - once a proper setup is done, it's not so bad. I didn't mean to impune anyone's opinion. Floyd have their uses. Many players have adapted to their quirks and make amazing music with them. But to flippantly contend that it's easy and anyone can do it is simply not true.
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