Does anyone here uses a tremolo stabilizer? - Jemsite
Ibanez JEM, UV, JS & Other Signature Models For discussion of Ibanez JEM, Universe and JS (Satriani) guitars only.

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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-26-2020, 02:26 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 115
Does anyone here uses a tremolo stabilizer?

My Genesis stays in tune fine, but is not perfect, after a while it goes slightly out of tune like one hairline sharp or flat, maybe one or two strings, almost always the high ones, where bending happens the most, even so is a huge difference compared to guitars without locking tuners and cheap floyds that go out of tune daily, but I was expecting perfection, maybe my expectations were too high and I was expecting these systems to stay in tune forever.

I kept the guitar in perfect tune for like 2 weeks with regular playing and not using the bar at all. If I use the bar, it stays in tune, but not forever, so I usually dont use it much

The strings are not new, like 2 months old. I've checked the nut block, no ridges, the way the strings sit on it, I've checked the nut screw is tightened properly. The string lock screw is tightened well.

This is my first floyd trem type so me being inexperienced may also have to do with it.

I had it setup by a good tech. I don't think I have an issue with the knife edges or anything, otherwise, everything would go out of tune, but I'm going to take it to my tech again to have everything inspected again.

Technically, as long as you have a floating bridge, eventually, it will go out of tune, a good setup will alleviate this and make it very likely that the guitar returns to zero point, but a tremolo stabilizer, if installed correctly, will ensure it 100% that it returns to zero point.

Most people who have these installed, especially the ones with cheaper trem, claim it makes a big difference in tuning stability.

Steve Vai uses this Ibanez backstop, but apparently, has it set softly, even so, it still provides some tuning stability. They don't block the tremolo. He doesn't have the need to set it hard as he doesn't want bar limitation and he has the best tech in the world to setup his guitar before any playing anyway, he will always be in tune lol.

I have never played with a stabilizer so I don't know how it feels, I never use the bar much anyway, so I'd rather have better stability even if it means sacrificing some bar range

Last edited by Fowleri; 11-26-2020 at 02:37 PM.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-26-2020, 03:28 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
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Re: Does anyone here uses a tremolo stabilizer?

I went the route of the back stop, and 2 other similar trem stabilizers in the past and they ruined the feel of the floating bridge. Eventually I removed them and I'll never go back. I've learn that it's important to regularly lube the tremolo posts for the bridge so that it always returns to zero. The edge trem is probably the best floyd style trem you can buy. Recently a tech on here (Rich from Ibanezrules.com) mentioned that chap stick is actually great for this. I have used 3 in one oil, some guys use d'addarios friction remover. My last setup on my 1991 540r I used chap stick. Lubing those posts is essential to keeping it returning to zero. chap stick is nice because it lingers a long time. Oils over time seem to just... stop working. It seems like I was lubing the posts on my gotoh floyd fairly often... I still need to chap stick that one lol. But give that a try it should solve your issue.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-26-2020, 05:13 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Does anyone here uses a tremolo stabilizer?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JsXLine6 View Post
I went the route of the back stop, and 2 other similar trem stabilizers in the past and they ruined the feel of the floating bridge. Eventually I removed them and I'll never go back. I've learn that it's important to regularly lube the tremolo posts for the bridge so that it always returns to zero. The edge trem is probably the best floyd style trem you can buy. Recently a tech on here (Rich from Ibanezrules.com) mentioned that chap stick is actually great for this. I have used 3 in one oil, some guys use d'addarios friction remover. My last setup on my 1991 540r I used chap stick. Lubing those posts is essential to keeping it returning to zero. chap stick is nice because it lingers a long time. Oils over time seem to just... stop working. It seems like I was lubing the posts on my gotoh floyd fairly often... I still need to chap stick that one lol. But give that a try it should solve your issue.
but to do that i would have to remove the whole bridge, right? basically, ruining whatever setup was done by my tech? i dont know but im going to ask him to lube them

but chapstick has oil too, I dont see whats the difference maybe cause is thicker?

i dont use the tremolo much if at all, yes they affect the feel of trem cause they make it work like a fixed bridge but the stabilizer moves, you can still use the bar depending on how you set it

look at Vai, he has the backstop on all his guitars and he can whammy like crazy but he has it set soft, that's why and i think he has them because he places his hand on the bridge, i play the same way he does, hand on bridge and fist closed or slightly closed
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-26-2020, 05:56 PM
 
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Vai uses the back stop more for stability with double stop bends. Joe satriani doesn't use it at all. When you bend any string the others will go slightly out of tune, a back stop greatly improves this issue.

But to do this you don't have to ruin your setup, all you need to do is remove one trem spring at a time so the trem can pop off, then put the chap stick on, reinsert the springs and you're back where you were. As long as you keep your nut clamped you're golden. Those back stops are tough to find... And expensive. They average around $200. Believe me they're not necessary. Vai was the reason I bought mine too. I saw a video of him and a rig rundown... He talked about the backstop and my eyes bugged. I had to have one. If you arrange your 3 springs in an arrow shaped pattern or just use 4 your double stop bends improve a hell of a lot, and so does the stability when palm muting.

Last edited by JsXLine6; 11-26-2020 at 06:06 PM.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-26-2020, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: Does anyone here uses a tremolo stabilizer?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JsXLine6 View Post
Vai uses the back stop more for stability with double stop bends. Joe satriani doesn't use it at all. When you bend any string the others will go slightly out of tune, a back stop greatly improves this issue.

But to do this you don't have to ruin your setup, all you need to do is remove one trem spring at a time so the trem can pop off, then put the chap stick on, reinsert the springs and you're back where you were. As long as you keep your nut clamped you're golden. Those back stops are tough to find... And expensive. They average around $200. Believe me they're not necessary. Vai was the reason I bought mine too. I saw a video of him and a rig rundown... He talked about the backstop and my eyes bugged. I had to have one. If you arrange your 3 springs in an arrow shaped pattern or just use 4 your double stop bends improve a hell of a lot, and so does the stability when palm muting.
so where do put the oil or chapstick on the posts or the edges or both?

i watched that interview years ago lol but you also have to remember these guys have great techs who setup their guitars before any playing they do, so it will be well setup and in tune for them to play, a regular folk dont have that option, just gotta retune or pay for another setup thats where the stabilizer can simplify things

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-26-2020, 06:39 PM
 
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You can put it on both or just one or the other. I get they have great techs. My guitars always come back to zero though. Maintenance is essential to keeping your guitar, regardless of style, in tune and functioning perfectly. Setup is not terribly difficult once you get familiar with how and what to do. Balance of spring and string tension is the foundation of keeping a floater in tune.

Now from time to time you'll have to adjust some spring tension to stay in tune because with changes in temperature and humidity, the neck moves slightly, changing the tension of the strings. That's the benefit to these modern guitars with roasted maple necks, graphite reenforced trusrods and stainless frets. Maintenance is cut in half because of that.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-26-2020, 06:44 PM
 
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Just to put it in perspective... Both my original edge 540r and my lo pro edge 540r are 30 and 32 years old. They stay in perfect tune weather I pull up or dive down. Lubing the posts is key.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-02-2020, 08:45 PM
 
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Re: Does anyone here uses a tremolo stabilizer?

The chapstick idea makes a lot of sense to me and I will be switching to that in the future. Removing the bridge should have no affect on the setup. I have pulled an Edge back, popped the springs off the claw and removed the bridge from the body. Replaced a pickup and put the bridge back in, pulled it up and popped the springs back onto the claw(small flat screwdriver works great) and the guitar was back in tune and ready to go. As long as the claw doesn't get moved and the studs are locked, everything should remain just as it was before removing the bridge.
post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-14-2020, 11:55 PM
 
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Location: alamogordo, NM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JsXLine6 View Post
Vai uses the back stop more for stability with double stop bends. Joe satriani doesn't use it at all. When you bend any string the others will go slightly out of tune, a back stop greatly improves this issue.
I never understood the logic behind this when it came to the Backstop. When you bend strings, it pulls the trem block away from the Backstop, which still allows detune to occur.

The only exception is the Hipshot Tremsetter, which actually attaches to the trem via one of the spring holes in the trem block to hold it still until you overcome spring tension.

I have tried several different styles; Hipshot, Backstop, Arming Adjuster, they always came back off and sold. I guess they just aren't my thing.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-15-2020, 06:58 AM
 
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Re: Does anyone here uses a tremolo stabilizer?

The Hipshot and the Backstop won't do anything for the double bending unless they are set up in a certain way and that is by increasing the tension of the strings and having the Hipshot or Backstop with enough tension on their springs to match the force created by the guitar springs. That's how you achieve zero point.

However, in doing so, the trem becomes much stiffer and you loose the ability to flutter.

Steve Vai said a few years ago that he uses the backstop for two reasons:

to avoid the little vibration that can happen when strumming;

to help him raise the guitar with his Whammy bar! (main reason why he uses them!)

The trem setter works much better for the double bending and for a Drop D. But of course, the trem will be harder again and won't flutter.

Hope this helps
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-15-2020, 12:18 PM
 
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Location: alamogordo, NM
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Agreed. Somewhat. The Tremsetter can definitely be set up to keep the bridge stable during bends and possibly tuning the E down. But, as you mentioned, it makes the trem stiff and forget about flutter.

However, it doesn't matter how stiff you set the Backstop up, as soon as you bend strings, the block moves away from the Backstop and detune occurs.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-22-2020, 05:24 AM
 
Join Date: Dec 2020
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Re: Does anyone here uses a tremolo stabilizer?

Oh Yes, I have tried it before.
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