Jump to content

Entry for April 2020's Guitar Of The Month is open - ENTER HERE!


Routing That Pesky Floyd Rose...

Recommended Posts

...or "how I learnt to stop worrying and love the perspex".

Following on from my slightly exasperated post regarding the creation of my Floyd Rose routing templates, thought I'd give a quick test of the new templates for you chaps.

The willing victim, a couple of pieces of radiata pine laminated together to make up a body-ish sized hunk of wood. A centreline has been added to line everything up:


Master indexing plate. Everything is referenced to this piece. Can't see it in the photo but there is a line etched underneath that is placed over the centreline of the body:


First template is fitted temporarily just to mark the location of the stud holes. The rectangular cutout is for the sustain block route. If I were routing a real body the timber would be wide enough to leave the master indexing plate clamped to it throughout the whole process, but because my test piece is only 240mm wide I have to remove the clamps when I take it over to the drill press to make it fit on the table. The depth of the stud holes isn't critical at this stage, just need to get the holes started and fine tune them once the routing is completed. Drilled to a depth of 20mm for now:




Index plate and first template lined up again on the body, ready to start making a proper mess. The screws that hold the first template in are only threaded into the indexing plate and are countersunk so that they don't interfere with the router base. Wide washers on the screws clamp the template in place when the screws are tightened:


Get rid of some of the waste with a 20mm forstner bit and route sustain block cutout to a depth of 29mm:



First template gets removed and next template gets installed on the indexing plate. The extra height is necessary because the routes for the next stage are much shallower, and the bearing on the router bit would otherwise ride above the edge of the template:


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hog out some more waste for the next route, and follow up with a 3/8" pattern bit to a depth of 1/4". This sets the first depth for the Floyd Rose recess around the studs:



Next step is to route the back of the cavity to allow the trem to be pulled up. A little stop bar is fitted to the second template to limit the routers' movement to within 5/8" of the front of the last route. Change the router depth to 11mm and have at it:



The master indexing plate and all the templates can now be removed completely. There's a slight nick behind the treble-side stud hole where the crappy pine splintered, but otherwise it's looking pretty good:


A hole is drilled to help locate the route on the back of the body for the spring cavity. Doesn't matter where this hole is placed, just as long as it's as close to the front edge of the sustain block route as possible. As it happenned my hole was pretty much on the centreline anyway. Where the hole emerges on the other side is where a reference line perpendicular to the centre of the body is drawn. This line is drawn on the neck-side tangent of the hole and is used for aligning the final template:



Last template goes down, and routed to a depth of 16mm:



The back of the spring cavity is routed to an extra 12mm depth to allow the sustain block to swing backwards when the arm is divebombed:


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

The stud hole depths can now be finalised to a depth of 20mm with a 10mm bit on the drill press. Posts can then go in:


Test fit time. All looks tickety-boo:




And check to make sure the trem can go all the way up and down without rubbing against any of the routes:



  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice, thanks for sharing this!

I'm approaching the moment when I will have to do my first Floyd route, I will need to build myself a set of templates like these and I will probably be following this very closely.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks chaps.

Thanks for the info. Any chance there is a pdf or measurements for these templates available?

Measurements are available from the Floyd Rose website. Should also mention that the templates I've made up are for a FR Original. The only differences between the official template measurements and mine are that I've made the sustain block cutout slightly shorter to put more wood around the bass side stud, and a bit wider to allow the trem to dive lower.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Very cool! I'll have to look into making a set of templates like that sometime.

I have a set,but they are for a 7 string Floyd.I have the Stewmac "fit all" trem routing templates as well...not as good

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

@Curtisa, I'll need to route for my Edge Trem, I can probably use the same templates in the tutorial section right?

can I ask how you created these so cleanly in perspex?




Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't see why not. As long as the measurements are verified you should be good to create your own set of templates from there.

Nothing special about making the templates, just lots of patience trying to line things up before cutting. Anything that needs a straight edge was cut with a router fitted with a pattern-following bit riding on a square piece of plastic or MDF. From memory the only pieces that were hand cut were the outside edges of the insert plate that goes into the master indexer and the little stop bar that is used to route the well for the tail of the Floyd to allow trem upswings.

If this is your first attempt at making templates like this use MDF if you can. Perspex can be tricky to cut with a router, and is more expensive to replace if you mess up creating a template. The only real advantage pespex has over MDF for this kind of thing is it will wear longer (how many Floyds are you really going to install?), and it's handy to be able to see through the indexing plate to line up on a centreline.

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...