Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Sink That Floyd Rose!

I received a question today about recessing a Floyd Rose tremolo bridge into the body of an electric guitar. Specifically, how thick should the body be? That's a good question since lowering the bridge would place the bottom of the tremolo block almost outside the back of the body depending on its thickness. In my experience, a 1-3/4" thick body will work as long as you back out the studs and increase the spring tension.

In fig.1 below, the bridge is level and recessed into a 1-3/4" thick body. As you can see, the bridge block extends out the back of the body. Not good! In fig. 2, the front of the bridge is raised up out of the body by backing out the studs. The rear of the bridge is pulled down into the body by tightening the claw, which increases spring tension.

If you want to keep the bridge level and recessed, a thicker body would be needed. Plan on 1-7/8" to 2" thick. Keep in mind that if you go this route, string action may end up too low. To prevent the stings from touching the frets or the tops of your pickups, you'll likely have to raise the front of the bridge and/or add some shims under the saddles.

I recommend sticking with a 1-3/4" thick body and setting up the bridge like fig. 2.

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