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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,
New to the site. Just came across a vintage Ibanez RG550. The serial number checks out as an '88 or an '89. The bridge pickup is stated as non-original, so no problem there.

A couple issues

A) Look at the images of this neck. It's smooth and no issues to the finish, but this discolored circular mark that runs down toward the fretboard looks a heck of a lot like a break and repair job. Can you guys confirm this for me? I'm no expert. It's a good repair if its repaired, but that's not how it was described.

B) The serial number is attached as a decal--the others from this era were all stamped to my knowledge. Was this sticker removed and replaced from another guitar in your opinions? Maybe a Roadstar series. Or could this be the original headstock?


Thanks!
 

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Serial is 1987, neck is standard scarf joint. I see nothing out of the ordinary and what would be expected here.
 

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There's no signs of a break, and that is a scarf joint, the way the Wizard necks were constructed for many years. Decal is normal too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
What is off about the color? You mean the color of the neck or the red of the guitar itself? I've definitely seen some period RG550s in this exact shade of red on Reverb, etc.

The neck looks nice without repairs, the only thing that bugs me is the color.
 

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What is off about the color? You mean the color of the neck or the red of the guitar itself? I've definitely seen some period RG550s in this exact shade of red on Reverb, etc.
I can be wrong but the body color seems to be lipstick red wich is great but they were made in 1991/92. The guitar serial is from late 80's, in that period
you have Road Flare and Five Alarm Red but they look more orange than red.
I would get it anyway, lovely guitar in great condition :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yeah, I see what you're saying. I definitely thought lipstick red. One possibility is it could be a Five Alarm (Maple neck), which do seem to be more of a true red color and has the black headstock--rather than matching red. I'm not sure though. I'm gonna grab it though, as the condition is just fantastic. Thanks for the heads up. See attached screenshot.
 

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Lipstick Red because of the metallic finish. Definitely not Road Flare or 5 Alarm. Nice guitar. Grab it and start shredding - congrats!
 

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Hmm, quite odd... That color definitely didnt exist in 87, but hey, putting an 87 neck on a 91 body isnt exactly rocket science. That said the "X" on the back is "weird" for sure, but that scarf joint looks awfully far away from where I recall it being. Neck looks rather "thick" for a 550 as well. What I can say for sure, is that thing has some heinous fret sprout going on, and that will definitely need some attention unless youre the type that likes the sensation of sliding your hand on a cheese grater lol. The inlays at the 12th fret also look wonky.

Honestly, the only thing thats not raising an eyebrow for me is the edge tremolo. Unless its a *really* good deal, maybe look for something else perhaps.
 

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Nice looking axe, seems well looked after for a 30+ y.o. RG.

Nothing wrong with the neck - the X looks like someone scratched it in, maybe where the mojo resides; the darker wood by the scarf joint is just the way light refracts against the grain. Scarf joint can be found quite far down the neck on early RGs, in the 3rd fret area. Looks good, no stress cracks by the locking nut bolts either.
 
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