View Full Version : Have "I been had"?

08-13-2010, 04:10 PM
A little history about this guitar...

Roughly 6-8 months ago I walk into a local Guitar Center to buy some strings and misc. supplies.
As I usually do, I quickly browse the used gear looking for anything interesting. I see the usual suspects, nothing that I cant live without. I also happen to notice a Ibanez rg350dx sitting with the used guitars but it still has the plastic on the pick guard and other covers. I figure someone has just put it in the wrong area. I also notice the price on it is $185.

Now admittedly, I'm not very up to speed on newer Ibanez guitars. Especially the Korean/Indonesian lines. But that sure seems pretty damn cheap. I walked over to the new ones and they were priced at $400. So i checked out the "used" one a little closer and other than the worst set up I have personally ever seen. It looked brand new.

Questioning the "manager" (who's half my f'n age!!!) revealed that someone bought it (from another store), tried to change the strings and completely screwed up the trem and truss rod adjustments. Everything still worked and it still looked factory new but it was basically unplayable. So I bought it...

I took it home and did a set up and it played like butter. I noticed immediately the "edge III" trem is absolute garbage though. The edge didn't even really keep tune very well. The knife edges were already getting dull. It's so bad that I'm amazed Ibanez actually allowed their name to be cast into the metal. But I figure for the price I shouldn't really complain too much(but I still do).

I recently went looking for a "100" series OFR for an old Pacer Imperial project I was working on. I ended up buying a Floyd Rose "special" for it instead. For like $78 or something. Luckily I then found a screaming deal on an old German OFR that is happily balancing on that Imperial now. That left me with a brand new FR special just sitting in a box.

So I decided to put the Special on the 350. It was a simple upgrade as it basically dropped right in. I did have to remove a bit of the excess paint from the edge of the trem route. But that was easily done. The FR Special is miles ahead of the Edge III quality wise. It's not quite up to snuff when compared to the OFR but for the price you really cant beat it.

http://i36.tinypic.com/n4b2bp.jpg http://i35.tinypic.com/24d281i.jpg
(sorry about the crappy pics but my camera just died. I had to use my cell phone)

Next mod for the 350 will likely be a pup upgrade. The stock pups are HOT, VERY HOT. Too hot for my taste. But oh so much fun for a minute or 2...

So to recap I spent $185 on the guitar & $78 on the FR special. That puts me at just over $260 on what is a great player. And it's one I feel I can modify with reckless abandon. The neck is a bit thin and the board a bit flat but it's a nice contrast to all my 1980's Kramer necks.

I'm not sure what the general consensus is on the RG350dx. But with a few cheap mods I think it will be hard to beat. I cant believe how much guitar is here considering how much money I have spent... Even after a couple new pups. I still will have less than $400 in it.

So what do you think? Have "I been had"? I dont think so...

08-13-2010, 05:34 PM
:eusa_thin Yup, you were had. Better send it to me..I know how to properly dispose of them :thumbs:

A lot of times you can get a smoking deal if you are willing to do a bit of work and take a chance. :icon_bigg and the sweat equity makes the mojo better.:thumbs:

08-13-2010, 08:29 PM
well.. it's definitely a lower end guitar.. hence the cheap-ass edge3 trem.. trust me.. us ibby players hate that thing too.. cool thing is, it's a licenced floyd trem (yup) so a floyd drops right in.. better yet, an edge pro (better than any floyd out there).. but the thing to look for on these guitars are, frets sticking outside the neckline, the neck pocket not deep enough, crappy trem, muddy stock pups, and that's about it.. a few upgrades and you'll have a medium-end guitar.. play one of the old rg's and you'll be able to tell the difference..

08-13-2010, 09:56 PM
Oh, believe me. I have no illusions about exactly what this guitar is. Had it been priced at $400 or even $250 I wouldn't own it...

I'm very much a "bang for the buck" kind of guitar guy. My favorite guitars are late 80's "F" series Kramers. I own 4 of them. They are one of the best values out there as far as I'm concerned. Change out the pickups and they are every bit as good as the "Americans" of the same period. I dont get too hung up on country of origin when I pick a guitar. I tend to worry more about actual build quality and how well they play/sound.

This RG plays great. The fret work is fine. The action is lower than all of my other guitars with no buzz at all. Like I said I had this guitar for several months and played it very little. Not because it sounded particularly bad but because it required constant attention to keep it in tune. The new FR special has cheaply solved that problem. Now I can worry more about making it sound a little better. Given the money I have into it so far, I can still do that and not feel I've over spent.

08-14-2010, 03:43 PM
Yo 88, IMHO I think you have hit upon the Holy Grail of guitar ownership.:icon_wink You made me remember...back to the stone age days...when there WERE no hot rodded guitars. :icon_eek: When everything was stock. Period. Whether you played funk, rock, country twang, gospel, or hard rock everybody used the exact same guitars. :eusa_eh: Stratocasters were the only guitars with vibratos (tremolos) and Teles were, well, just as they are today...ice picks made out of wood. :icon_wink Gibson had some vibrato equipped guitars (that went out of tune if you even whiffed at the trem arm) but their humbuckers were soft and flabby sounding (but quieter than Fender single coils).

Then parts companies came along :notworthy like Schecter, Mighty Mite, Charvel, and Lawrence. You no longer HAD to have a guitar that sounded like the rest of the rabble playing live. I remember having an absolute blast switching out parts on my guitars. :eusa_clap A brass nut, a high mass stop tail, or a Bill Lawrence would keep me in heaven for weeks on end!

Did it make the guitar worth more? Hell no! But it made my guitar sound different from everyone else’s, made it easier to play (mostly :eusa_whis) and got me closer to “the sound” I wanted. But most of all it was fun! :icon_cool

:thumbs: I think you've got the right idea mang. Turning an economical less then stellar guitar, into your version of a custom guitar, is an idea that should be experienced by everyone...that is unless your already jaded :eusa_naug by the tons of great hot rod guitars available to buy. :eusa_snoo

08-15-2010, 05:38 PM
Congrats kt 88! Cool stuff.
And, that answers a question that was on here not too long ago, about what bridge would interchange with the edge III.

09-11-2010, 05:19 PM
That's a nice snag, man!
I also bought an RG350DX from a Guitar Center. I got mine for the whopping price of 150 bucks! It plays great! Trem is junk, don't even bother putting a bar on it. But, I'd like to hot rod it a little bit and it will sound killer!

09-12-2010, 06:21 AM
get an edge pro... direct drop in.. best trem out there..

09-13-2010, 08:36 AM
Hey Ibby

I'd like to see a sticky in the Ibanez section describing the differences between the Edge trems. Some of them are works of art. I just don't know the difference between them.


09-13-2010, 05:51 PM
http://www.jemsite.com/jem/trems.htm.. here's one..

09-13-2010, 07:28 PM
Thanks so much Ibbz....GREAT link....