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Thread: OFFICIAL PRS TREM SET UP DETAILS.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
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    U.K
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    Default OFFICIAL PRS TREM SET UP DETAILS.

    I desperatly needed this info a while ago, and eventually obtained it myself as a novice,after months of going on stupid forums and getting no where,with all these so called prs experts, who most of them never even bothered replying to my call for assistance. so i will give the best prs official trem setup info on the planet. which you will also find very contradictory to what most of you tell every one to do, if you bother to help them.
    Most of you just repeat over and over what it says on the prs web site, (like sheep), those setup specs are for using after doing the things, im going to tell you.
    FROM PRS
    THERE IS NO SPECIFIC MEASUREMENT FOR THE SIX PIVOT SCREWS,YOU WOULD WANT THE BRIDGE IN THE CAVITY AND RESTING ONTHE BODY.
    INSTALL THE SCREWS AND LEAVE ABOUT 1/64TH PASTTHE BOTTOM OF THE KNOTCH UNDER THE SCREW HEAD.
    YOU WILL WANT ALL SIX SCREWS LEVEL WITH EACH OTHER. WHEN YOU BEGIN SETTING THE BRIDGE YOU WILL WANT THE BACK EDGE TO SIT ABOUT 1/16TH OFF THE BODY.THE BRIDGE SHOULD SIT PARALLEL WITH THE STRINGS, AT THAT POINT YOU WILL BE ABLE TO REFERENCE THE SETUP GUIDE ON THE PRS WEBSITE. This email was sent to me by matt king at PRS c/s stevensville MD


    Next one from prs UK.
    When correctly set up the PRS trem is very stable and will require minimal retuning under normal use, it has an odd quirk whereby large string bends will put a string out, but a light tap on the trem arm will bring it back to pitch.If you are suffering from tuning problems beyond this then some adjustment of THE PIVOT SCREWS WILL BE REQUIRED.

    First you should check that there is a gap of around 1.5 mm between the guitar body and the bottom of the bridge plate, while its floating, you should also check that when viewed from behind, the treble and bass sides of the trem are equidistant from the guitar top so the trem is level when floating.
    If not then a lot of adjustment is required, so you must begin with no string tension because if you dont then while adjusting the pivot screws more tha a quarter of a turn you could put ridges in the screws, and burr the knife edges on the trem plate.

    ADJUSTING UNDER TENSION.
    Generally speaking if certain strings go out of tune then the corresponding screws are misaligned. It will probably only be a small amount, so put the guitar on a work bench, rest the neck on your left shoulder, grip the body and hold down the trem arm, tilting the trem arm up,using your left hand and have a good look at the screw notches and knife edges to spot any misalignment, use your right hand to then adjust the relevant screws while keeping the trem tilted.
    DONT TRY TO GET THE SCREWS LEVEL BY LINING UP THE SCREW HEADS, as the distance from the screw head to the knotch can vary between screws,so the heads might look right but the knotches arent in line. After this wobble the trem to settle it in,and retune,use the trem and check tuning again, if not in tune check the screws again.

    ADJUSTING WITHOUT TENSION.
    Start off by detuning the strings, and unhooking the springs,now start on the screws, the aim is to get each of the six knife edges sitting in the deepest part of the notch on its corresponding screw while satisfying the above criteria regarding general trem positioning,tilt the trem to see knife edges and notches .
    Once your happy with the alignment hook up springs tune up and adjust the spring tension so the trem is at a right angle to the pivot screws,when tuned to pitch,stretch the strings tune up give the trem a good bit of action to settle it in ,re tune. Now use the trem again and check tuning;; Instructions now as per " adjusting under tension" ANY LARGE ADJUSTMENTS TO THE PIVOT SCREWS WILL AFFECT THE TREM HEIGHT,AND IN TURN THE ACTION, use individual saddle height screws to compensate for this.

    i wish someone had given me this important info months ago and saved me a lot of wasted time going on forums, to get it right first time. ENJOY!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Palm Harbor, FL
    Posts
    110

    Default

    I don't care for the " ADJUSTING UNDER TENSION" part. That's a good way to kill the knife edges on the trem.

    John Mann posted in another thread here how to do it:

    - Remove strings, bridge and associated hardware.
    - With the bridge resting on the guitar top, I install mounting screws, making sure that each screw is adjusted so that the shaft v-grooves are all exactly the same height. I use a 2.5mm hex allen wrench as a "feeler gage" (the same idea as you would gage a spark plug gap. The flats of the wrench should fit between the top of the bridge plate and the underneath surface of the screw head. When you have it correct, it should slid snugly in between. If it's too close the bridge will rock up slightly! Double... Triple check this step. An incorrect adjustment could easily ruin your new bridge!
    - Install claw (if necessary) and the return springs, adjust to desired tension. Factory specs are that the bridge be parallel to the top of the guitar with a 1/16" gap.
    - String up guitar, tune to pitch and test for smoothness and accuracy of return to “zero position”.
    - Repeat any of the above steps as necessary. DO NOT adjust the mounting screws with strings at full tension!!! Detune guitar!!!

    John Mann

  3. #3
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    Sep 2012
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    U.K
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    thanks pete, i tried it, works bloody brilliant, its taken me a year to find good people like yourself,with worthwhile information like this, i see on john manns site ,that he plans to bring out a video on setting up a prs properly, nice,!!thanks again, regards rixrox.

  4. #4
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    Apr 2012
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    baltimore, md.
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Bedford, NH 03110
    Posts
    119

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Bedford, NH 03110
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    Bedford, NH 03110
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    Default

    I mean no disrespect... but please, please, please IGNORE this post !
    NEVER adjust any type bridge under string tension. This is a BAD plan, and always results in some form of damage.
    Please take the advice of experienced pros available to you, both here on the various forums and locally at reputable repair shops, who have performed setups on many guitars successfully, for many years... not someone who knows enough to be dangerous...

    Quote Originally Posted by rixrox View Post
    I desperatly needed this info a while ago, and eventually obtained it myself as a novice,after months of going on stupid forums and getting no where,with all these so called prs experts, who most of them never even bothered replying to my call for assistance. so i will give the best prs official trem setup info on the planet. which you will also find very contradictory to what most of you tell every one to do, if you bother to help them.
    Most of you just repeat over and over what it says on the prs web site, (like sheep), those setup specs are for using after doing the things, im going to tell you.
    FROM PRS
    THERE IS NO SPECIFIC MEASUREMENT FOR THE SIX PIVOT SCREWS,YOU WOULD WANT THE BRIDGE IN THE CAVITY AND RESTING ONTHE BODY.
    INSTALL THE SCREWS AND LEAVE ABOUT 1/64TH PASTTHE BOTTOM OF THE KNOTCH UNDER THE SCREW HEAD.
    YOU WILL WANT ALL SIX SCREWS LEVEL WITH EACH OTHER. WHEN YOU BEGIN SETTING THE BRIDGE YOU WILL WANT THE BACK EDGE TO SIT ABOUT 1/16TH OFF THE BODY.THE BRIDGE SHOULD SIT PARALLEL WITH THE STRINGS, AT THAT POINT YOU WILL BE ABLE TO REFERENCE THE SETUP GUIDE ON THE PRS WEBSITE. This email was sent to me by matt king at PRS c/s stevensville MD


    Next one from prs UK.
    When correctly set up the PRS trem is very stable and will require minimal retuning under normal use, it has an odd quirk whereby large string bends will put a string out, but a light tap on the trem arm will bring it back to pitch.If you are suffering from tuning problems beyond this then some adjustment of THE PIVOT SCREWS WILL BE REQUIRED.

    First you should check that there is a gap of around 1.5 mm between the guitar body and the bottom of the bridge plate, while its floating, you should also check that when viewed from behind, the treble and bass sides of the trem are equidistant from the guitar top so the trem is level when floating.
    If not then a lot of adjustment is required, so you must begin with no string tension because if you dont then while adjusting the pivot screws more tha a quarter of a turn you could put ridges in the screws, and burr the knife edges on the trem plate.

    ADJUSTING UNDER TENSION.
    Generally speaking if certain strings go out of tune then the corresponding screws are misaligned. It will probably only be a small amount, so put the guitar on a work bench, rest the neck on your left shoulder, grip the body and hold down the trem arm, tilting the trem arm up,using your left hand and have a good look at the screw notches and knife edges to spot any misalignment, use your right hand to then adjust the relevant screws while keeping the trem tilted.
    DONT TRY TO GET THE SCREWS LEVEL BY LINING UP THE SCREW HEADS, as the distance from the screw head to the knotch can vary between screws,so the heads might look right but the knotches arent in line. After this wobble the trem to settle it in,and retune,use the trem and check tuning again, if not in tune check the screws again.

    ADJUSTING WITHOUT TENSION.
    Start off by detuning the strings, and unhooking the springs,now start on the screws, the aim is to get each of the six knife edges sitting in the deepest part of the notch on its corresponding screw while satisfying the above criteria regarding general trem positioning,tilt the trem to see knife edges and notches .
    Once your happy with the alignment hook up springs tune up and adjust the spring tension so the trem is at a right angle to the pivot screws,when tuned to pitch,stretch the strings tune up give the trem a good bit of action to settle it in ,re tune. Now use the trem again and check tuning;; Instructions now as per " adjusting under tension" ANY LARGE ADJUSTMENTS TO THE PIVOT SCREWS WILL AFFECT THE TREM HEIGHT,AND IN TURN THE ACTION, use individual saddle height screws to compensate for this.

    i wish someone had given me this important info months ago and saved me a lot of wasted time going on forums, to get it right first time. ENJOY!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    7300 feet
    Posts
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    Default

    John, thanks for your contributions here.

    I have a question about this. I have an ME Quatro on which I can't quite get the action low enough - it's about 1/128 (maybe a bit more) over spec with the high E string saddle screws backed all the way out (i.e. saddle is sitting the bridge plate. And - I'd actually like to go just a bit lower than the PRS spec.

    My question is this: you (above) and the PRS website indicate detuning before adjusting the trem mounting screws to avoid damaging the knife edge. But in thinking about this - doesn't this essentially force more pressure onto the knife edge, as now all the force is applied in the direction of the trem springs? Or am I missing something here?

    If so, in my case (wanting to lower the action slightly): would it be better to remove the strings, remove the trem springs, lower the bridge plate by turning the mounting screws clockwise a quarter-turn or so, then re-assembling? Or is that going overboard?

    Thanks,

    Dave
    Dave

    PRS and Strats...

    Axe FX II and tube amps...

    Yes, I am a Gemini.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Aurora Illinois
    Posts
    773

    Default

    Nope that is the correct way to adjust without the possibility of damage to the knife edges, I just slack the strings and remove the springs because if you remove the strings they tend to break and the locking screw after a time or two.
    PRS 408
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Bedford, NH 03110
    Posts
    119

    Default

    You do not adjust string height by adjusting the bridge mounting screws.
    Use the saddle height adjustment screws!

    If the bridge is mounted correctly (1/16" float), the truss rod adjusted correctly, there is rarely a time that the saddle height adjustment screws won't be able to resolve your string height issues.

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