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Kahler Or Floyd?

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Hey everyone,

I'm going to be buliding a 6 string guitar within the next couple of months. Basicaly a shred guitar. I'm currently up in the air whether to use a Floyd Rose or a Kahler system. I've owned several Ibanez's before and I really love Floyds. I know how to fix them, set them up....

Then I see this Kahler bridge that a lot of people really like (the 2300). I've noticed the guys in Slayer have them on pretty much every guitar they own. I've played a guitar with one before and i thought it was pretty slick.

So i put forth, what do you guys prefer. In the end it'll be my preference, but I'd like to get some input into the pros and cons between the two bridges.

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In the past 26 years, I've owned just about evey guitar, and every trem system. Alot of them were Charvels, with Kahler trem systems. I personally like them. There are naysyers, that will blindly spew out "Screw Kahlers! Get a Floyd!". Don't listen to them. You've played one, and apparently liked it. A properly maintained Kahler will stay in tune, wonderfully.

That said, I love Floyds, as well. However, most trem'd guitars I've owned that have had tuning issues have been floyd guitars. My two Kramers were the worst. If you go Floyd, stick with an OFR, or even an Ibanez Edge (IMHO, the best trem system, ever.).

With Floyds, you may have issues with blade edges. With Kahlers, you may have stuck rollers. Each have plenty of pull-up, provided the Floyd is routed. No warbles possible, and the Kahlers. And, actually, Kahlers seem to be making a comeback, currently. Each has their quirks.

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Floyd user here. Although in the early 80's when they came out i much prefered the Kahler in terms of design, engineering and not having to cut bloody great holes in your guitar in reality i much prefer Floyd's. I find Kahler's to be too fussy and spongy in feel compared to a Floyd - tone wise don't ask me as everything's been turned up to 11 for years. I suppose it's also down to what you want it for, me, i'm an 80's divebombert so a Floyd is derigour !

Jem :D

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ive used both and while i prefer a floyd

the kahler is also a great unit

now my pros and cons

floyd upside..functions and feels more like a traditional trem

locks strings at bridge. tuning more stable

Kahler upside..string height is indavidualy adjustable

no clipping the ball end and action remains the same

except on extreme dives.bearing loaded fulcrum points= smooth operation

Floyd downside...knife edges loose there edge in time.

action is affected on all downward movment.intonation is a pain in the ass

you must use shims to get desired radius other than standard 10-12"

Kahler downside.. non locking saddles. feel is differant than a standard trem

parts used to be hard to get. don't know if thats still the case

bottom line..solder the noose at the ball end and the nonlocking saddles

become a non issue on the kahler. the floyd does remain in tune better out of the box

its all about feel thus the only reason i prefer the floyd

the kahler in my opinion is a easier unit to set up and functions

great i may try a kahler again as on paper is a better unit

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Kahler jumped back into the biz last year and started supplying units. They're at www.kahlerusa.com. The most commonly used series they had was the 2300 series I believe. They have variations with aluminum/brass/steel.

I think i'm just going to use a floyd. I know them a lot better. I don't clip the ball ends on my strings though, i actually leave the ball end at the headstock. I pull the string tight and clip it just at the end of the bridge. I find i get the perfect amount of winds on the posts.

Thanks guys!

Edited by Canuck Brian
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I've used both. As stated above, both have their advantages and disadvantages. But for every player, there's a 'deal-breaker'.

For me, the deal-breaker was related to loss of sustain on some of the notes used with a softer dynamic. For me, it was the higher harmonics (like the second fret G string). As soon as I'd touch the bar, the note would just evaporate. Also... The 'warbles', although possible on the Kahler, were too soft and short in duration for my tastes.

They've also been making fulcrum trems for many many years. I've never played one but some friends of mine have and give the spider high marks.

I've seen the Kahlers on the Kerry King Models from B.C. Rich. I've also seen Kahlers on some of K.K. Downing's and Glen Tipton's guitars. Of course, Paul Gilbert and Bruce Bouillet used them back in the day too. But... Last time I saw Paul, he went with a hardtail and used a Whammy Pedal to trem effects. ::: shrug :::

Each unit has it's idiocyncracies. Although I prefer the Floyd trems (Edge, OFRs, Schallers, etc), each unit has it's place in the market. I will install one for any customer interested in them and it puts a smile on my face to see Gary back gaining more market share.

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The Kahler tremolo today is not the same one from back in the 80's. They have improved the design with more adjustment features. The good thing we like about their trems is you don't route away so much of the body and it can work on some semi-hollow bodies as well. They even have a version for carved tops now. They are good people, we have talked with them about using their bridges.

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I've only ever played on strat / Floyd bridges, however I have a spanking brand new Kahler 2300 still in it's packaging for my project, so I haven't had the chance to try it yet!

Incidentally the knife-edges on my Jackson F.R. are starting to go so I don't tend to use it that much now as it never goes back in tune properly :D

If it's a shred guitar I say go for it, if it's good enough for Hanneman/King .....Slayer only used F.R's when they need 7-strings because Kahler only make 6's. I'm looking forward to being able to set the tension on the arm too, my Floyd-Rose arm always ends up in exactly the wrong place !

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Hmm... I just bumped into this thread and was interested in how the Kahlers are engineered.

From what I can see, the only thing that actually pivots is the cam. What balances out the tension of the strings? Ie are there springs somewhere? Are they just below the bridge?

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I have a kahler in my roadstar, and I must say it feels a lot nicer to play on than a floyd (palm muting etc), individual string adjustment is also useful as the roadstar fretboard isn't 100 percent flat. I think the real strength of the kahler is that you can pull up the trem a lot more, especially if you have super low action, as with a floyd, as you pull up, the strings pull toward the fretboard. But, with a kahler, you can't drop the strings until they're all floppy, ie, floyd does better dive bombs.

Also, as someone said, if you have a nice wood guitar you don't have to ruin it to install a kahler, and even though my trem is really really old (early 80's?) it still feels indestructible.

However, the trem arm design of kahlers (I have an old US made kahler pro) is kind of retarded, it screws in like a fender bridge, and unfortunately with mine I can't find a stiff point so I can flick it up and down. The Ibanez edge pro trem arm, IMO, is much better.

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