Trying to find a Premium neck - Jemsite
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-21-2012, 09:57 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Boston
Posts: 19
Trying to find a Premium neck

I just started a custom Ibanez built. I wasn't planning on it but stumbled on a nice red quilted top with dual humbuckers (my fav) on the bay for $40. Tossing in EMG 81/85 for a change of pace from my usual DiMarzios and an original Floyd from Germany.
For my other build I settled on the neck with a Wizard II from a DX model, not that it's a bad neck just not my thing. I also have a 1991 RG570 original Wizard and RGT42 (korea) of which I love the necks.
So in trying to find out what I really like in Ibanez necks (which is brutal - splitting hairs), comparing all the specs, playing everyone I can find in a store, I really prefer the 400mm radius and the 18-20mm thickness of the Premium - of course with the Prestige a very close second. I also played a Guerilla guitar and it's awesome and has the same neck specs as the Premium (18-20mm & 406mm radius (16")).

Now I'm trying to find one. I know there is ET to make them as the best but that's a long long wait right now and not very local. Ed Roman's site I went on to and he's an ass and heard it all over the Jemsite too and even that he's out of business. Just took a peek at Ibanez Rules too.
Has anyone seen one yet even if it is e-by?
I could be happy with a prestige but I want to be really really happy.

Thanks guys
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-21-2012, 10:57 AM
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Re: Trying to find a Premium neck

Hey Louis, I'm a big fan of the Premium neck as well. FWIW, your RGT42 has a WizII on it. If you find that comfortable, then you could possibly expand your search to include the WizII or WizIII. These two necks have the same profile and carve, but different widths at the heel.

What's most important is to know the width of the neck pocket in your body. There are two different width's available for WizII, III, and premium. All of the WizII's had a 56mm heel, WizIII and Premiums have a 58mm heel.

Hope this help a little.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-21-2012, 11:36 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Trying to find a Premium neck

I knew someone would catch that...
Yeah, I know it's a WizII on the RG42. Ibanez necks are baffling and it's really tough to do a custom build because I'm sitting here looking at 2 guitars with Wiz 2 necks on them and I love one and don't care for the other. Maybe one is US and one is Japan, haven't looked close enough.
So I checked on my purchase and fortunately the seller knew it was a 2004 RG320DX. So I'm taking a poor man's body and trying to make a monster.
So from your point I know it must have been 56mm because it wasn't until 2010 that they made the WizII to 58mm.
So now I'm plugging through the Ibanez Wiki for list of neck types, of which there are over 150...God.
Really glad you pointed that out because anything with a 18mm to 20mm that I want is a 58mm heel, which I don't have.

Stupid question - can the heel be slightly routed out 1mm on each side to fir a 58mm or does that ruin the whole concept and playability of the guitar to include the trem scale?

Option 2 would be to give up on the idea of the Premium and figure out which is most important to me...the 400mm radius or the 18mm to 20mm.
If I stick with 400mm the Options are a WizII but has to USA made not Japan, A WizIII but must be from 2001. The other is going with the 430mm radius and keeping the 18mm to 20mm. You get the point....
I have a headache now.

Then there's the custom build option...400mm radius, 18mm to 20mm on the thickness, and 43mm to 56mm on width.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-21-2012, 12:49 PM
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Re: Trying to find a Premium neck

To the can absolutely open the neck pocket 2mm to match the neck you want. I did it on my OOTS swirl to accept my Prestige7 neck:

Unfortunately, the only USA made necks for Ibanez were on the '91-'96 USRG's. They had the tension-free neck. Every other neck Ibanez has had has been asian. AFAIK, all the WizII are MIJ or MIK (mostly MIK.....your RGT is MIK). All WizIII's and Premiums are MII.

You do have several options open to you though.

My favorite would be to find a '97-'02 Super Wiz (17-20, 43-56, 430mm) With the SW you can either re-radius the fretboard to 16" and re-fret OR install a new 16" board with the wood species and inlays of your choice. AI guitars sells them on Ebay. You can also order one from Mai Guitars (I think?) or ET guitars........both are highly respected vendors here.

Another option is to pick up a MIK or MIJ WizII and, if your proficient with a palm sander, sand the profile to suit your own preferences. I did this on an '05 MIJ WizII. After re-profiling it and doing some mods on the body I sent it to LonePhantom. I'm sure I can get him here to comment on how he finished the neck and how well it plays now. You can see his blog on the guitar here:

You also have the option of finding a WizIII that will require either of the mods above plus opening the neck pocket on the body.

Last, your original thought of finding a Premium neck will give you a LOT of bonuses. Assuming your not thinking about the RG1xxv neck, The Wiz Premium will have ,by far, the best fretwork from the factory of all these options. You'll also get offset dots, 5-piece construction instead of the 1-3 piece of the previous necks, and a (possibly) matching quilted headstock. The pocket will obviously have to be matched. The only problem I see with this option is actually finding the neck. It may take a long time to find one. So far, the ebay "hacks" aren't parting out the Premiums.

Being that your in the US, I would send Chris @ Mai guitars an email, or PM him here ( Chris2112) about either a custom neck or fretboard. He does phenomenal work, and his prices are MORE than fair. At the very least, you would have a price to compare against finding a Premium or modding a used neck.

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-21-2012, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Boston
Posts: 19
Re: Trying to find a Premium neck

I love this guys are unreal.
I assumed that due to the trem mounting opening up the heel block would cause issues and you just made my day that I could go the premium road.
Not going to be easy to find or have done but this is the neck we're talking about, not a volume knob. So I'm in no rush to get what I truly want.
These options are incredible and I'll just leave it at that with my thanks.
I'll shoot you updates as I find out.
So as I said, this will be:
Ibanez RG320DX red quilted top body
EMG 81/85 set
Original Floyd Rose from Germany, black with a FU Big Block & claw/springs
and the neck...well, we know that will be killer somehow.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-21-2012, 02:26 PM
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Re: Trying to find a Premium neck

Sounds great Louis!!! Looking for ward to seeing your progress.

FWIW....there is the Premium RG920QMRD available. The RD will be a passable color (but not exact) to your DR 320QM


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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-21-2012, 05:56 PM Thread Starter
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Posts: 19
Re: Trying to find a Premium neck

Well, this will also have the EMGs and Floyd Rose Original and the Premium neck is identical to a Guerilla (but not over $2000) so it'll be my own Frankenstein. A bit of ESP, Guerilla, Ibanez. All my favs rolled into one. Obviously this will be my metal shred guitar.
Oh, and if I can avoid it I do not want the shark tooth inlays...I want this guitar to have a cleaner look, well, like the Premium. Since they've put the shark teeth on so many lower end Ibanez it just makes me think 'cheap' when I see them

Thank you again for all of your quick input and suggestions.

PS - Does ET do other headstocks besides Ibanez? Yes this will be an Ibanez body but I want to change the neck specs a wee bit than that of the Premium, not much at all really. The website is limited and didn't see much on the order form. However, I'd rather see quality work than an awesome website! If he's spending too much time in the shop to work on the website that's fine by me.

Last edited by louisj23; 04-21-2012 at 06:01 PM.
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