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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi everyone, I don’t seem to be able to post in the new members introduction thread so I decided I’d just create an intro thread here, mods please feel free to remove if required.

I’ve been a Jemsite lurker for over a decade but didn’t sign up until 2017, I generally don’t get involved in forums as people seem too cranky these days, but I guess it’s polite to say G’day to everyone. Yep I’m from down under if you haven’t guessed.

I started playing guitar when I was about 8 and spent my early teenage years growing up through the hair metal/rock era and I guess I was part of the Eddie Van Halen school of guitar. That was until Vai just blew me away with the attitude song and his work with David Lee Roth. I was about 15 when the first Jems appeared in Australia but I didn’t really pay attention until the first florals and VBK’s were on display.

I will never forget the first time I picked up a Jem , it was a Jem 7 root beer and it was a revelation, I was instantly able to play things I’d struggled with for years. One thing in particular that will always stay with me, is when I took the Jem off the rack for the first time ever, I could feel the sculpted cutaway around the neck join, I instantly felt comfortable with the guitar, I’ve never had that experience since.

As a teenager the price meant that ownership would always be a pipe-dream. After I left school I worked for a few years in the industry mainly in sales and tech so I got to play the Jems regularly that way, but still could never afford one. It was interesting working in a guitar shop just as ‘Passion and Warfare’ dropped and we took delivery of the first Universes, I tried to play them but the whole 7-string thing totally did my head in (still does to a certain extent). I suffered a severe injury to my left arm that resulted in nerve damage, so my career in music was done pretty much overnight, given that I’d played since I was 8 it was utterly devastating and I was pretty lost for a while, somehow I ended up studying medicine and I guess financially it worked out for the best in the end.

Anyway, I’m realising this post is getting ridiculously long so I’ll cut to the chase, there should be a photo of my girls below. From left to right - 1990 EXB404, 2012 UV70P, 1989 JEM 777VBK, 1988 JEM 77FP, 2017 JEMJR, 2004 RG350FM

tl;dr… I’m old and live in Australia, I used to sell and repair guitars and amps in the early 90’s. After many years I own my two dream guitars, a near mint ’88 FP and an ’89 VBK that needs serious restoration work :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
The EXB404 bass is a restoration of a severely abused guitar which was originally white and had all sorts of engravings and marker scribbles all over it, took a while but it plays beautifully now. I’m a sucker for restoring abused guitars. In the old days I used to flip them to make a bit of cash on the side

The UV70P and 88 FP are in near mint condition, but the 89 VBK has had a very hard life and is in the middle of a serious restoration, I might start a thread showing the original condition when I bought it and the different stages during restoration, I expect it’s got another 3-6 months to go yet.

The JEMJR needs serious fret work and I’m going to install an original edge. I’ll probably post something about that journey in the future if anyone is interested.

I’ve had the RG350FM for about 10 years now and it’s the only one that fits the GR55 guitar synth pickup properly. I hate the tremelo with a passion so I’ll be locking that down with a Tremel-no very soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
G'day! And welcome!
Sweet collection!
Welcome aboard!

A great looking collection you got there :)
Thanks guys :grin2: it's funny how quickly a couple of guitars turns into several. I'm extremely lucky to have a supportive wife who loves Jems as much as I do (aesthetically anyway).

Interestingly, I joked about how she bought a Jem 77FP bedspread ( the one in the picture), I told her a Floral Jem would really complete the bedroom suite. Literally the following week a floral Jem came up for sale and she told me to go and buy it immediately! She's definitely a keeper, LOL.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Those gorgeoud green vine inlays made me remember I have not own any of them by now; time for a 777VBK/77FP search... that '88 FP looks awesome!
I've loved the green inlays since the day they came out. I could never choose between the FP or the VBK. I've noticed that VBK's are really rare in Australia, I think I've seen maybe 3 in my whole life down here. Different story with the FP's though, I see probably half a dozen go up for sale every year down here, but as far as first year 88's go, I could count on one hand the number of mint ones I've seen in my life.

I know from experience that the 80's Jems were problematic, I used to see heaps of them with serious neck issues when I worked in the industry. I noticed that they seemed to get better around the time they shifted to the LoPro edge trems, so that would be around 1991 I think? I don't know what they did, but there were way less neck issues, I'm sure Rich or someone would know the answer to that question.

I've always likened the early Jems to old Ferrari's or Lamborghini's, they are expensive to buy and maintain and they are really temperamental, but they go like lightning. Compared to something like a strat that I reckon is like a 50's Chevy that is built solid and goes forever with simple maintenance.

I'm more of a Ferrari guy, but that doesn't mean I don't appreciate a nicely done Chevy every once in a while.
 

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Thanks guys :grin2: it's funny how quickly a couple of guitars turns into several.
Absolutely...

I started with an RG770, ditched that for a Jem10th. Had a JS10 chromeboy on order but bailed after poor feedback on the first batch delivered, got a UV777BK instead. Found a 77GMC on TradingPost for a steal. Got a Jem90th, but sold that and went for a PGM90th. Eventually sold that too and got a JS1000BP. All in the space of a few years. Stopped playing for a while, but eventually started tinkering again, so I got a Washburn N4, a JS2410MCO, RGA8. My most recent purchase was a PGM Mikro. I'd love a JS1CR, but a 70% premium over a regular JS, simply for the paint, is a bridge too far. At least we aren't getting reamed in Aus anymore like we did in the 90s....
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
G'day fellow aussie.....sweet collection mate....cheers and beers :)
Thanks Mate!

Which side are you on? East or West? I was born in Melbourne, lived in Sydney for 25 years moved back to Melbourne in 2003.

Noticed you are into motorsport. I've got a VEII SS Walkinshaw pack, old man has a Tickford TS50 and HSV R8 with Walkinshaw pack.

Nothing better than V8 cars and loud guitars, Hahahaha!!:grin2:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Absolutely...

I started with an RG770, ditched that for a Jem10th. Had a JS10 chromeboy on order but bailed after poor feedback on the first batch delivered, got a UV777BK instead. Found a 77GMC on TradingPost for a steal. Got a Jem90th, but sold that and went for a PGM90th. Eventually sold that too and got a JS1000BP. All in the space of a few years. Stopped playing for a while, but eventually started tinkering again, so I got a Washburn N4, a JS2410MCO, RGA8. My most recent purchase was a PGM Mikro. I'd love a JS1CR, but a 70% premium over a regular JS, simply for the paint, is a bridge too far. At least we aren't getting reamed in Aus anymore like we did in the 90s....
I used to lust after the original RG770's, we had one in the purple neon in the shop I worked for. For some reason it didn't sell for ages, but at least I got to play it all the time while I was at work.

OMFG! 77GMC is my ultimate Jem. I've never seen one in real life and I'd sell all my Ibanez guitars to own one. Can you post a couple of pics?
 

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Thanks Mate!

Which side are you on? East or West? I was born in Melbourne, lived in Sydney for 25 years moved back to Melbourne in 2003.

Noticed you are into motorsport. I've got a VEII SS Walkinshaw pack, old man has a Tickford TS50 and HSV R8 with Walkinshaw pack.

Nothing better than V8 cars and loud guitars, Hahahaha!!:grin2:
Mate, im up in the northern suburbs....bordering on open padocks....real fun when bushfires show up.

yeah love my drag racing....currently building a 496ci HQ Sandman, keeping things beside the driveline original is proving to be a bottomless pit.:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Mate, im up in the northern suburbs....bordering on open padocks....real fun when bushfires show up.

yeah love my drag racing....currently building a 496ci HQ Sandman, keeping things beside the driveline original is proving to be a bottomless pit.:)
Wow, that's some serious displacement! Being a Q'y and also a Sandman that thing is definitely worth the love

I'm assuming from your username you have a UV7BK, damn nice guitars.
 

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G'day Corey, hot enough over there? We only hit about 43*C over here (about ~110*F for the US crowd). I understand you guys hit like 47*C (~120*F) or something last week. Crazy!
Yeah that was not fun,no air conditioning could cope...just shut down and threw in the towel. Hottest day ever in the city i heard. It's really not let up until today,finally a chilly 23*c....what a relief.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
That FP is stunning, great collection :)
Thanks jim777, it came out of nowhere that one, she was a bit of a case queen so there isn't a lot of fading of the pickups or discoloration of the clear coat and there's very little corrosion on the trem. She came up on Gumtree one day and the seller lived down road from me, I paid $3500 AUD (~$2450 USD) didn't bother haggling on price and secured it within the hour. Apparently the guy had 12 offers within that time.

I was originally saving my money for a floral reissue, I was expecting a 30th anniversary edition to be released last year, but it didn't happen. I've spoken to a number of people who were expecting the same, maybe that's why the florals are selling a bit quicker now and at higher prices, in Australia anyway.

When I was looking for one a couple of years ago, a good quality floral was going for around $2800 AUD (~$2000 USD), but I saw one go last week for $4500 AUD (~$3200). In my opinion it was a missed opportunity by Ibanez, but then again I'm not an accountant, maybe it wasn't worth it to them. I was prepared to pay up to $7,000 AUD (~$5,000 USD) for a limited run floral anniversary, but instead I bought three other guitars and some equipment. I always wanted a first year floral, so I guess it worked out better for me in the end, so maybe I should say thanks Ibanez for not making an anniversary edition? :grin2:

Cheers.
 
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