If you use any form of a Floyd Rose, you may have heard about how some of the most-respected versions are the ones made in Germany. These are made by Schaller, also known for their tuners and strap locks and pickups.
Since the Floyd Rose trem was pretty much exclusive to a certain guitar brand during the 80s, Schaller offered another design to other guitar companies. You could find these on brands that include Hamer and Charvel® Guitars and ESP Guitars, complete with the respective company’s logo. I have some of these, as well as some with the Schaller logo and they are all fine systems that are superior to many of the more cost-effective licensed double-locking trems on the market.
Alright, enough with the history lesson. lol!
Schaller came out with the LockMeister a few years back. It looks just like the original German Floyd Rose. Meanwhile, Floyd Rose expanded their manufacturing to Korea for the 1000 series and the Special series….both commonly getting lower marks from users than the German ones that are still made by Schaller.
A LockMeister became available and I jumped on it. Aside from the logo, it seems identical…down to the “made in Germany” stamp on the bottom of the baseplate. I decided to put it on the MIJ Charvel San Dimas Pro Mod (reviewed here previously). The Charvel came with the 1000 series Floyd Rose as OEM. So, yes, it’s an exact fit and does not require any modifications. The 1000 series had been upgraded with titanium saddles from Floyd Rose and a titanium sustain block from ‘guitarupgrades’ on eBay. For comparative purposes, I transferred the titanium hardware to the Schaller baseplate. Finished up the install, tweaked the intonation and off I went.
The LockMeister took me back to 80s once again. A time when the German Floyd Rose was ‘THE’ standard. Solid construction. Smooth movement. Excellent tone. And…it stays in tune like a champ. I’ve seen way too many 1000 series and Special series be prone to a bit of give, if only a little. The LockMeister is solid, just like you remember from when you had a mullet and shredded jeans.
And best of all, the collar on the tremolo arm stays put! The Korean ones from Floyd Rose have become notorious for loosening and not holding firm. The LockMeister, much like the German Floyd Rose, is much more solid. I prefer the old school arms, so I still ended up swapping it out.
The bottom line is that the Schaller LockMeister is at least as solid as the bridge they make for Floyd Rose. I have several original German Floyds from the 80s and I’d put this up against them as an equal.
It turns out the best part is that these are priced competitively and I found mine for much less than a new German Floyd Rose. So….if you are a little patient and can shop around a bit, you can find excellent quality at a more affordable price. I’d not hesitate to get another.
Darth Phineas is a long time music industry insider who provides his readers with unbiased reviews on musical instrument and guitar gear. You can read more of his reviews and check out industry news on his Facebook community Darth Phineas