Customizing an RG421 - build diary (56k no)

Discussion in 'Musicians' started by wilchelus, Jan 31, 2009.

  1. wilchelus

    wilchelus Member

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    So a few years ago I looked into purchasing a fixed bridge guitar. I was sick of floating bridges. When one day I happened upon a metallic dark blue RG421 in a local music store. The owner of the store had become a friend over the years, he even sold me my very first Ibanez.

    Anyway, I picked the guitar off the hanger and eagerly looked behind the headstock for 3 magical little words that would mean I would allow myself to purchase the guitar. "Made In Japan", is what she said...

    Stock with V7 and V8 humbuckers... No single coil... Oh well, what was the price? Not bad....Where's the nearest Dual Recto?

    She played well, and felt surprisingly like my RG570 but with a slightly thicker neck. Not to bad, I thought. So I made a deal with the owner of the store. A set of Dimarzio Evolutions for the neck and bridge were ordered, and I would take delivery of my 421 w/ full setup, Evo's, Dimarzio clip-lock strap, and Ibanez hardcase within a few days.

    Fast forward a few years and we're here. A while back I started looking into getting rid of my pickup rings. I got as far as pulling the pickup rings off and realizing how large (and incredibly ugly) the routed holes are.

    Originally this is what she looked like
    [​IMG]

    Soon after I started playing around in photoshop with different coloured pickups and knobs. I settled on black and white.

    A few phone calls later, and I started to curse Australia. "There'll be a couple of months wait on the white and black Evolutions if you order them now", is what I heard on the other end of the phone.

    I'm impatient.

    Give me stickers... bugger it.

    So I ordered a set of bobbin toppers at an extremely exorbitant price. (I took a scan though, so if I ever want another set I can a vinyl cutter here in Aus to cut them for me and less than 1/4 what I paid...*cough*)

    Ebay found me white and black volume and tone knobs.

    [​IMG]

    Still got those pickup rings though. I know people like them, and most don't mind them. I just prefer not having them.

    I started having a look around the internet for pickguards for the 421. It was difficult. There were none, and those that had advertisements for them didn't have pictures, instead showing a Jem or RG HSH for direct mounted pickups....and NONE were cut properly for the bridge.

    These places were also located on the other side of the world. I didn't want to risk it.

    So I turned to ETguitars and shot Ernie an email. A few emails, measurements and photographs and we were on our way. Flawless service from the man. Within the week I had this in my hands.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Cut with perfect fitment.

    [​IMG]

    This is where I started to get nervous... There's a drill there... and I'm going to have to use it...

    [​IMG]

    No turning back now...

    All the screws in. The guitar survived, and so did I!

    [​IMG]
     
  2. OP
    OP
    wilchelus

    wilchelus Member

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    Time to put the knobs back on.

    [​IMG]


    Now for some new strings :)

    [​IMG]

    Time to play...:D

    [​IMG]
     
  3. OP
    OP
    wilchelus

    wilchelus Member

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    I'm thinking of ordering a custom neck next. Either with a funky inlay, or no inlay at all but curly maple fretboard.

    Or I might have a custom paintjob done.

    Not sure which I'll choose yet.
     
  4. DJ Fusion

    DJ Fusion Member

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    Very tidy job man! Nicely customised, very tasteful too. :thumbup:
     
  5. spootmonkey

    spootmonkey Member

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    Certainly not to my tastes, but well executed. How much was the pickguard?
     
  6. Silent8ob

    Silent8ob Member

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    Since you went with the clear plexi pickguard, I think it's just begging for the custom paintjob...
     
  7. ChrisH

    ChrisH Member

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  8. OP
    OP
    wilchelus

    wilchelus Member

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    Thanks for the comments guys :).

    The guard was around $70 delivered.

    I'm leaning towards a swirl paint job atm. A couple of shades of Green (dark and neon), and Black. But I'm really not sure. :)

    I much prefer the feel of the plastic Dimarzio knobs.

    The guard was cut from a Jem pickguard template, but modified to fit snug around the Gotoh fixed bridge, not have the single coil route, and enable the mounting of the pickups from the guard.

    I really need to learn how to paint, so I can do it myself.
     
  9. DJ Fusion

    DJ Fusion Member

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    I like the white highlights, they bring out the sweet binding on the neck. :thumbup:
     
  10. shredder

    shredder Member

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    It looks cool, and has it's own personality now. You're a bit of a weirdo for not liking the pickup surrounds :p I'm the opposite, don't tend to like pickguards. My reasoning being that they're like the pickguards, but instead of just covering a small area they cover (and hide) half the guitar. But I can't argue with the way you've done it. The pickguard reminds me of one of the 2008 ltd RGs (I'd like to see it with that plastic peeled off but they want to keep it pristine).

    [​IMG]
    Click to view full-sized image!

    I should really get around to putting a neck Evo in my 570. Or something, to upgrade from the V7.

    It's annoying how they don't make as many of their guitars in Japan any more. I don't know the exact details; I know the Prestiges are still Japanese, and that the mid-range Ibanez's I've seen lately tend to be MI Indonesia. If the 570's are MII these days then that sucks, it wouldn't surprise me though. I've yet to meet a Prestige that beats my MIJ 570.
     

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