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What's the best Floyd Rose-type unit?

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  • What's the best Floyd Rose-type unit?

    Hi all, I am actually considering, heaven help me, putting together a Floyd Rose-equipped guitar, and I'm wondering what the best current Floyd-type vibrato unit option is? Obviously, the priorities are tone, performance, and durability. If I end up doing it, I don't want to go with a cheaper/compromised type FR, but I also am definitely not interested in dropping $1500+ on the rare earth, hardened vibranium (see what I did there? Vibr...never mind...) or whatever version. Having said that, I am interested in any more-or-less reasonably priced upgrades that make a significant difference, if anybody has any suggestions. It seems like there are several options out there these days...the original FR, the subtly named (oof!) FU Tone, Schaller (LockMeister?)...or others? The unit would be installed on probably a swamp ash body, and would also be down only, not recessed/set up to raise pitch.

    If I do end up pulling the trigger on this, I am pretty much decided on a Floyd, so, with total respect to Kahler or whatever else fans, I'm really just seeking out FR-type advice. Thank you for any input!
    Last edited by MikeRocker; 04-04-2021, 01:31 AM.

  • #2
    I'd say just get an Original Floyd Rose, or a Schaller Lockmeister, which is identical except for the logo, and can often be found cheaper than the OFRs outside of North America. You can obviously get bigger trem blocks and other upgrades (or so they are called) for them, but at present I would rather suggest that you don't overthink it. Just get an OFR and enjoy years if not decades of incredible tuning stability.

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    • #3
      Agreed. The OFR is great
      "Patience is key. Hard work is obligatory. And itís the decisions you make right now, not the habits of the past, that will shape your success in the future." - Janek Gwizdala

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      • #4
        These are priced well at Warmoth.
        https://www.warmoth.com/Genuine-Floy...-P545C693.aspx

        One option worth mentioning is the push-in style arm (FRTAPIP) from Floyd Rose.
        It's cheap and also has a slightly different pitch. The first bend by where it inserts is from a higher point but the bend itself is heavier to compensate.(meaning the bar runs flatter in it's middle section). The second bend looks very close to a standard, but it starts from that slightly flatter angle. The bar tips end-up at almost exactly the same height off the strings.


        IMO it's like halfway between the standard OFR arm and that of the edge-pro on ibby prestiges (second bend is flatter too on edge-pro arms, and they sit just a hair lower overall).
        Last edited by dave74; 04-04-2021, 03:13 AM.

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        • #5
          The Gotoh GE1996T is also a nice trem. It comes stock with a brass block, locking studs, has a flatter string radius than an OFR iirc, pop in arm, and bevelled saddles. Companies like Suhr and Vola opt for this bridge when using a double locker. I believe the original EVH Music Men also had them.
          Originally posted by dominus
          Your rant would sound better with an A8 magnet, it'll beef it up some without sacrificing some of the whine.

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          • #6
            OFR. I recommend black or chrome. IME, the nickle finishes start to wear off, the other colors may suffer similar fate.

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            • #7
              Wilkinson VS-100 is made better in my opinion, easy to install, and performs as well as a Floyd for half the price.
              aka Chris Pile, formerly of Six String Fever

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              • #8
                I think the best Floyd Rose is Kahler.
                Originally posted by Bad City
                He's got the crowd on his side and the blue jean lights in his eyes...

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                • #9
                  Ibanez LoPro Edge (the original Gotoh Japan one)

                  If you go with OFR, spend the $30 and get titanium saddle blocks (the cube things that lock the string in), the steel ones are machined atrociously and too soft - first they dent from strings, then get deformed trying to get the dented thing to still grip, and finally just get stuck and become a PITA to remove.
                  Last edited by Adieu; 04-04-2021, 10:09 AM.
                  "New stuff always sucks" -Me

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                  • #10
                    Schaller Lockmeister. Bar none.
                    Guitars:Gibson LP Trad ('57 Classics), Epiphone Les Paul Special (SP90-1 set), PRS SE CU 24 Flametop (TB5/PGn), Ibanez RG870RWZ (PATB set) & S761FM (TB16/STK-S7 m&n), Jackson DK2 (TB10/VRn/CRn), LTD MH-1000HS (TB15/Lil59n), ST213A (HRb/STK-S4 m&n) & TE212 (Hot Stack/A2Pn), Dean Cadillac 1980 (59 set), Squier VM JM (SJM-1 set);Effects:L6 Helix Floor, Digitech Drop & FreqOut, Mission Engineering EP1-L6;Shure GLX-D16;

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Synapsys View Post
                      Schaller Lockmeister. Bar none.
                      Isn’t a Lockmeister just an unbranded OFR?
                      Oh no.....


                      Oh Yeah!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Synapsys View Post
                        Schaller Lockmeister. Bar none.
                        I prefer my Floyd with a bar. Maybe the Lockmeister is better for players who don't want one.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by PFDarkside View Post

                          Isn’t a Lockmeister just an unbranded OFR?
                          Yes. I own both. No major differences

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                          • #14
                            The Lockmeister used to be about 30% less expensive than the OFR, but now the prices are ridiculous, at least here in the U.S. I'd just get an OFR if I needed a Floyd at this point

                            Alternatively, I've always liked the Gotoh version (GE1996T). Very nicely made and close to half the price of an OFR

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                            • #15
                              IMO it's worth the extra $80 to get the German OFR because all the screws and fine-tuner's threading are better on it.

                              The Gotoh does make up for some of that by having the brass block and push-in arm, but those are things that could be swapped anyways depending on taste.

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