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Author Topic: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem  (Read 875 times)

Offline Bbender

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Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« on: February 21, 2018, 01:57:36 PM »
Hello, I just bought a used Parker PM24 Pro (my first Parker), and I love the guitar, but I'm having problems with the tremolo, or more specifically; that the guitar often goes out of tune after using the trem.  Not an uncommon problem with tremolos, of course, but I have heard good things about the Parker tremolo, and was expecting/hoping it would perform better.   I've applied "nut juice" on the nut to make sure that's not the problem. 
When using the tremolo, the arm goes both down and a litlle bit up, of course, and sometimes it is still more or less in tune afterwards, but more than often the tuning goes sharp..  When watching the tremolo block movement on the backside, I can actually see that the tremolo block stops in different positions when pushing the tremolo arm only down, as opposed to just pulling it up..  (then the tuning goes sharp)  Pushing the trem arm down again, will bring it back to the right pitch (more or less..)  So the trem bridge seems to almost have two "preset positions"; one for arm down, and one for arm up..
I actually experienced the same problem with a PRS SE I had earlier..  What causes this, and is there any way to fix it? 
Thanks.

Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem

Offline sybersitizen

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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2018, 02:11:03 PM »
I'm pretty sure that model has a conventional multi-spring vibrato system much the same as a Strat (not the flat spring vibrato found in a Fly).

In any case, the problem you described can often be traced to strings getting hung up in the nut instead of sliding freely ... so the first thing to do is lubricate the nut. I use graphite powder, but liquids are also available. If you still have issues after that, it will be time to troubleshoot the vibrato system.
'01 Fly Deluxe|'69 SG Standard|'69 EB-3|Pignose Strat|Savannah SGO-16CE|Glen Burton GE47|Dean Vendetta 7-String|Loog 3-String|Fishman Aura Spectrum|Roland Amplifiers

Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem

Offline Bbender

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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2018, 02:27:32 PM »
Thanks for the reply.   Yes, it has a conventional three-spring tremolo system, and like I said, i have lubricated the nut.  The problem is apparently that the tremolo block "hangs up" in the wrong position after pulling the trem arm up..

Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem

Offline JamieCrain

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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2018, 02:41:06 PM »
Using a small screwdriver, tighten the screws at the top of the tuning posts. You’ll probably find them a little loose. Once they are tight, the tuners will be harder to turn, but the tuning will be very stable.

Also if they are locking tuners, ensure that you have the minimum amount of string wrapped around the post. More wraps = more potential slippage when using the trem.
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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem

Offline Bbender

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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« Reply #4 on: February 21, 2018, 03:27:12 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions, but like I said, the problem is that the trem block stops in a different position when pulling the trem arm upwards, so it seems that it has nothing to do with the nut and/or the tuning machines..

Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem

Offline sybersitizen

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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2018, 03:36:07 PM »
And the nut slots are sufficiently wide for the string gauge? If you're sure the problem is in the vibrato system, I suppose you have to go looking for points of friction there. Dunno what else to suggest.
'01 Fly Deluxe|'69 SG Standard|'69 EB-3|Pignose Strat|Savannah SGO-16CE|Glen Burton GE47|Dean Vendetta 7-String|Loog 3-String|Fishman Aura Spectrum|Roland Amplifiers

Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem

Offline jb63

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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2018, 03:55:26 PM »
What gauge strings are you using?

I put 10s on mine and had a problem kind of like this.
1) I made sure the nut slots were right.
2) I made sure to tighten up the screws on the sperzels.
3) I tried using 3 springs and then 4 & 5 (!) springs to get the term to float just right.

in the end, it was 4 springs that got it right, BUT I had to slightly adjust the big screws that go into the wood holding the spring rack into place.
with springs, essentially you are dealing with a more conventional guitar, so:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZULgwgThqg

The only important thing that is different from what's in this video, is that the parker bridge has to float freely and have nothing to catch it. So if you take off all the strings and springs, the bridge should flop around without anything gumming it up. Most of these were set up with 9s on them so I suspect that the 10s were what made so much adjustment necessary.

Once you get it in order (strings locked, etc.) stretch them out good enough with some wiggling and bends and retune about 4 times.
After that, you shouldn't experience any significant problems.

I hope this helps. Its a giant pain when it doesn't work the way you want it and you have some vibrato on your plate!

Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem

Offline Bbender

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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2018, 04:59:09 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions, jb63. 
I believe the strings are 10s, the nut slots seem to be quite fine, and the screws on the tuners are tightened.
The Parker tremolo is a different animal than the Wilkinson tremolo in the video you're referring to, although the basics might be the same. 
It came with three springs, and there aren't room for more..

Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem

Offline billy

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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« Reply #8 on: February 21, 2018, 08:06:58 PM »
What Jb said about spring tension. Also double check the nut, since you say it returns sharp, that usually means it’s binding somewhere.

Failing all that, then it is likely that your trem bearings are funky. Fairly easy and not too much money.

but I would really check the nut, even one string can cause it to come back sharp.
Billy

[always the beautiful answer who asks a more beautiful question.  e. e. cummings]

Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem

Offline jb63

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Re: Parker PM 24 Pro tremolo/tuning problem
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2018, 11:24:00 AM »
Really, I only included that video for the part about the screws, so that’s the ticket. You may have to go get another spring. Or replace the claw with one that has 4 spots for screws. Easier I would think I’d take it to a decent guitar shop. There is always a decent luthier in every town since it pays better (and more often) than guitar slinging.