Just got my new Premium S920BK and am having trouble with tuning(I know, go figure). I like to go back and forth with different tunings alot, between standard and drop C and everywhere in between. I'm using Ernie Ball .11-.48's, so not too much thicker than what it came with. I have an older model Prestige and I remember the extreme frustration I had with changing strings/tunings before I had it blocked.
1. Ideally, i want to conquer this issue of changing strings/tuning without having to block the trem, as I feel ashamed to drop $1000 on a beautiful instrument and negate one of the coolest features that it comes equipped with. I've tried loosening one lock at a time, changing and tuning those 2 strings and locking them down, and moving on to the rest repeating the process and it is still not working. What am I doing wrong?
2. Is it possible to have a tremelno installed in this. From the looks of it, I don't think that there is room for it, but i'm not sure.
3. What about completely blocking the ZR from moving at all. One of the guys at GC told me that a friend of his got the same guitar and that its impossible. Is this true or false?
Some help please, I'm ready to get past this and start playing. Thanks.
Agreed with others that multiple guitars is the way to go here.
To answer your questions as best I can in order:
1) Getting the trem set up is essentially setting a balance between the spring and the strings: if you change one, you need to make adjustments to bring it into balance. As such, changing tunings, even one string at a time, throws things out of balance.
I used to use the fine tuners on my Edge to get a drop D. I would tune things up with the fine tuner in 90 percent of the way. Then, when I wanted drop D, I would drop the loe E using the fine tuner. I would have to adjust all of the other strings as well due to the Balance issue though.
2) Can't tell you about the Tremol-no.
3) It's always possible, depending on how far you want to go to get the result you want. A couple of well placed pieces of wood wedged around the trem block should keep the bridge from moving, but you (obviously) would lose all tremolo function.
If you decide to get a backup for changing tunings, my suggestion is a used Ibanez RG321MH. They can be had for fairly cheap, and they're solid guitars. They have a fixed bridge.