Reinforcing Floyd Rose Cavities

Removing a regular tremolo bridge and installing a Floyd Rose is something that most repairers will do from time to time. Going the other way isn't quite so common though. It's generally a bit more rare to uninstall a Floyd in favour of a non-locking trem. 

And, in this particular instance, it threw up an issue that had to be dealt with.

The Floyd was to be removed from this Strat and a new non-locking trem installed in its place. Firstly, this meant plugging the existing Floyd post holes and drilling for new holes a little farther back. 

Incidentally, here's something worth stating for the benefit of those researching this topic. You'll find information online that the Schaller 3801 bridge will retrofit a Floyd. This isn't the case exactly. While the 3801 shares the Floyd's unusual post spacing, its overall footprint is smaller and it will not intonate if you don't move the posts back as I've done here. You'll need to plug and re-drill 6mm farther back. Sorry—no drop-in retrofit for you.

This new post hole is dangerously close to the cavity.

When I drilled those new post holes (you can see the new hole overlaps the plugged one in front), the treble side hole was dangerously close to the cavity. I wasn't prepared to take the risk that this thin sliver of wood wouldn't crack or break in the future. 

Best to play it safe and add in a little reinforcement here. 

Because there's plenty of space between the new trem block and this front cavity edge, I shaped a piece of wood to run the full width of that edge—not just a chunk to glue into that recess behind the post. This should give things a bit more strength and further reduce the risk of catastrophes. 

Gluing reinforcement strip to trem cavity wall

Reinforcement strip in place

I'll sleep a bit easier knowing that this post is less likely to break through the cavity wall some night the owner gives his whammy a wiggle. ;-)