Price paid: C$ 799
Purchased from: MCDC
Features: The Ironbird was made in 2011 from China. It was not offered in Canada and was special ordered from the USA. It has one EMG 81 bridge pick-up, one volume control knob, and a real floyd rose tremolo bridge; essentially everything you need! The top on it is spalted maple. The back of the neck is painted. The neck is set-in. It has 24 jumbo frets and the scale is about 25" long. The wood is "nato" whatever that means. // 9
Sound: Sounds great for metal and not bad clean. It's only got one pick-up and no tone control so you cannot really change the sound of this guitar. I've been playing through a Roland Cube 40 and a Metal Zone; it sounds great! I get feedback on on the high notes on the first three strings; it's probably something to do with the poor neck on this guitar. // 9
Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar looks killer but the set-up from the factory was terrible. The action was high. The frets were popping up from the fretboard and the high e string was getting caught under the frets. The fretboard is not entirely flat near the 15th to 24th frets and it causes buzzing. I've had it set-up about 4 or 5 times at my local shop but I'm still having problems with it. Also, the spalted maple top looks like a decal rather than actual wood.
The back plates on the guitar are different materials. One is ruffly cut and looks terrible. The screws for the back plates are different as well with one being counter sunk and the other not. The input jack is not flush with the body of the guitar. I opened up the back of the guitar and the ground wire was also disconnected.
On a lighter note, it's balanced pretty good and is comfortable to play sitting or standing. I also hate how it's stamped "MADE IN CHINA" on the back of the headstock - as if I want to be reminded. // 3
Reliability & Durability: It all seems good but no matter how many neck adjustments are done the upper fretboard is still uneven. I've owned 20 guitars, mostly from Ibanez and ESP/LTD and never had one fret pop up. I'd only gig with this guitar if I was using it for one song and only playing the low strings. // 3
Overall Impression: I really wanted to like this guitar because it looks so cool and unique but the construction of it is awful! The grade of this guitar is below my expectations. If you're hell bent on getting a B.C. Rich get an NJ model made in Korea; the grade is better. Otherwise, buy something else. B.C. Rich's off-shore quality is terrible compared to competing brands.
I've been playing for 6 years and owned about 20 guitars. I have this guitar on sale at my local shop - hoping to get some money back towards another axe. The poor sucker who buys it can either play with high action or hang it on the wall. // 4