I'm leaning more and more towards hard tails.... but I really really want to try a Kahler. Its devotees swear up and down that it's leaps and bounds beyond the FR, but I'd like to find out for myself. If it's really all that, then I would want one badly. I also want to try a whammy pedal... maybe that'd be better. Get two of 'em so I can go up and go down without having to fiddle with a switch or anything.
I do love the Bigsby. I'd love to get a Gretch hollowbody that has one. I can yoink on that thing all day. Different beast than the FR or Kahler, of course, but plenty fun just the same.
Anyways, my trouble is I usually play on pure clean... more difficult to get sustain, and the wood/pickups matter a lot more whereas distortion is a matter of effects and knobs. Anything that has any noticeable effect on sustain and tone is far more of a negative effect if you're on pure clean most of the time. SRV had a mixture of dirty/clean running simultaneously and he had the Fender trem with big fat 13 gauge strings. I don't know of any gripes about the Fender trem killing the clean too badly.
Also, with strings that big you pretty much have to snip the ball ends. The other end, on the fatter strings it tapers down so that you can actually thread it through the bridge and into the tuners. Of course, that wasn't the hard part. Dang thing was way hard to set up with 13 gauge strings... might be easier with 9s, I guess. I never tried.
Let's see... I put 12s on a hard tail the other day. That took about 15 or 20 minutes. If I put 10s on it, it would take about 10 minutes. It took me an hours to set up an FR with 13 gauge... getting it to stay in tune and all. And I would have to buy multiple packs because they'd just keep popping out and getting all warped during the set up process. I guess the thing wasn't built with big fat strings like that in mind. But SRV is hard evidence that the Fender trem can be made to handle them with aplomb.