The double locking tremolo system after its introduction in the 80’s took the guitar world by storm. Some of the biggest rock names had the system fitted to their instruments. Decades later, the double locking tremolo remains the preferred hardware of choice for numerous guitar manufacturers.
Also known as the Floyd Rose (named after the inventor), the hardware works in a similar way to a vintage style tremolo. However, it takes its functionality a notch higher. The Floyd Rose allows users to lock the strings at two places on the guitar; the bridge and the nut. The guitar strings are inserted into the locking saddles on the bridge.
Adjustable tightening bolts at the back of the bridge hold the strings in place. Fine tuners, one for each string, are also fitted on the bridge. This allows users to tune the guitar if temperature changes or extensive tremolo use get the strings out of tune. The locking nut shares a similar locking design and it’s used in place of conventional bone or synthetic nuts.
Three metal plates are fitted to lock 2 strings each and an alley key is used to tighten the lock. The design prevents strings from sliding over the nut and falling out of tune when using the whammy bar. Here are some reasons you should consider a double-locking trem system.
It does the job
The Floyd Rose works extremely well. If set up correctly, a guitar with a double-locking trem system can take a lot of abuse without going out of tune. Mash the tremolo arm against the guitar body or pull notes sharp as far as you can, the strings come back to pitch. On the standard trem, the string shifts position on high friction points on the nut and bridge.
As a result, the strings go out of tune fairly quickly. The design of the double-locking trem system guarantees tuning stability. By incorporating a locking nut and saddles, the strings hardly move along friction points.
The double-locking trem system has opened new possibilities for guitarists. Over the years, players have raised the bar. They have incorporated new sounds and tricks in their playing and the result is a wide variety of playing styles. After the introduction of the new hardware, notable players quickly set up iconic styles.
EVH started the diving bombs while Brad Gillis used harmonics with pitch raises. Joe Satriani, on the other hand, incorporated vocal-like techniques using the bar to create slurs between the notes. A new take on the double-locking trem system was introduced in 1987, the recessed locking trem.
This is achieved by carving out a section underneath the tremolo unit. As a result, players could ascend and descend the pitch. If you are an advanced player looking to get out of the rut, the double-locking trem system is exactly what you need.
Big names use it.
Guitarists look up to advance players for tips and guidance. Aside from their skills, the instruments they use is key. Some unique styles introduced by advanced players are only replicable on particular guitars. Eddie Van Halen was the pioneer of FLoyd Rose usage and his unique guitar style drew interest to the new hardware.
Other big names like Steve Vai, Kirk Hammett, Brad Gills, Tom Morello, Allan Holdsworth and Synyster Gates have influenced guitarists to use the Floyd Rose to achieve new playing styles and sounds. Since icons are using it, there is a high possibility the double-locking trem system is what you need to advance your style and explore new realms.
The double-locking trem system is perhaps one of the most impactful hardware for guitarists across the world. It opens doors to new possibilities.