When did B.C. Rich turn to shite?

Discussion in 'Guitars' started by Goes211, Feb 21, 2013.

  1. Goes211

    Goes211 Active Member

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    Am I wrong or were B.C. Rich guitars at one time considered some of the best instruments you could buy? Growing up in the 80s, they were over $1,000 when that amount of money was really a lot for a guitar. I used to drool over the Mockingbirds, Ironbirds, Eagles and Warlocks hanging in the guitar stores. A lot of the big name players used them back then.

    No you can buy a BC Rich on CL for $80, and they seem to be associated with beginners. What happened?
     
  2. SonVolt

    SonVolt Well-Known Member VIP Member

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    The name "B.C. Rich" ruined it for me.... it always sounded like a cheap pawn shop brand. It even sounds worse than "Peavey" and that's saying a lot.
     
  3. duncan11

    duncan11 Well-Known Member

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    I personally never liked the way they looked. Too sharp edges. I played a few at stores just to check out in the late 80's/90's but never was sold on them. I kinda viewed them as the 'brand name of off brand' guitars. Like Kramer. I don't get the popularity of Dean guitars either. I've always thought that brand was shite, and still do. For the metal cravings I may have had to own a 'shredder' type guitar, I'd go for a Jackson.
     
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  4. Goes211

    Goes211 Active Member

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    How old are you? I was thinking that the name and its association with 80s metal/glam/hard rock probably taints the brand to younger guys who didn't come up in the 80s.

    To me, B.C. Rich always sounded top-notch, because the big rock stars played them. It was like Mercedes or BMW. But I was a kid and knew very little, so there's that...
     
  5. SonVolt

    SonVolt Well-Known Member VIP Member

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    34. The only brands anyone gave a shit about in my generation were Gibson and Fender. All pointy guitars were silly nonsense at the time. Even now, in 2013 this looks fucking stupid, tantamount to driving a truck with an 8 foot suspension life.

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. Goes211

    Goes211 Active Member

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    Exactly. That's what I thought. Each generation has their "thing". I worked at a guitar store in the early and mid 90s and every new guitar player wore a big bulky sweater in the middle of summer and wanted to play a Fender Jaguar or Mustang. You couldn't sell Ibanez, Charvel, Jackson, etc. for cost.
     
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  7. Goes211

    Goes211 Active Member

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    I also agree that the Warlock and the pointy guitars look silly, and I have no desire to own one. The odd thing to me is that they went from high quality to starter guitars. And they must sell a ton of them because they are all over the place. I can understand the popularity taking a dip as public opinion changes, but if they lost popularity how are they selling so many?
     
  8. poeman33

    poeman33 Well-Known Member

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    I've never owned one...but from the first time I heard of the brand and saw the guitars, I have never thought of them as a high end brand. To be honest, I have no idea where there were made when I first saw them in the early 80's. They just felt cheap.

    The first Kramers on the other hand...felt like very high quality instruments. That is one brand that has completely changed.
     
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  9. SonVolt

    SonVolt Well-Known Member VIP Member

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    Everyone likes to play what their idols play... but it's not like that anymore. Everything is niche now so there's plenty of room for Ibanez, Jackson, Gibson and Fenders to play along nicely. B.C Rich is still gay though :slash:
     
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  10. Goes211

    Goes211 Active Member

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    I always liked the big 'R' on the headstock. I think when they started to use the "signature" BC Rich logo, they looked cheap.
     
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  11. CaptainZero

    CaptainZero Well-Known Member

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    It does look like it could open a bottle with the headstock though.
     
  12. iron broadsword

    iron broadsword Well-Known Member

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    I paid $500 for a platinum warlock in 2000.. I was 19 and was into metal so yeah it looked neat... HORRIBLE guitar. Horrible tuning stability. Who puts a non-locking floyd rose style tremolo on a guitar?! Looked great though with the blue finish and chrome hardware, lol. I sold it to a pawn shop a few years ago and they are still trying to get rid of it. :D

    Hate the new headstocks too.. Adding horns doesn't make it better.
     
  13. crossroadsnyc

    crossroadsnyc Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    I need one of those for fighting zombies!
     
  14. blackone

    blackone Well-Known Member

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    In the 70's & early 80's the handmade ones were outstanding. The original shapes either you loved or hated, I love them, but they just went to wierd with things like the beast, and that horrible widow headstock. The new neckthroughs are amazing bang for the buck. I would recommend anyone to play an original if you get the chance, you can't believe how good they were.
     
  15. HeHasTheJazzHands

    HeHasTheJazzHands Well-Known Member

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    Sometime in 2001.
     
  16. Dogs of Doom

    Dogs of Doom Moderator Staff Member

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    Back in the '80s, most brands figured out if they made a cheap beginner model, they could sell many more guitars. I remember when the trend started & a Fender rep told me the reasoning was that 90% of sales were due to a teenager wanting to start playing guitar. That would put the purchase under mommy's duties.

    What do you think mommy would do if the cheapest guitar was $1000+? Especially thinking that Jr will probably lose interest in a few months. Probably not buy a guitar, but convince the kid he wants a clarinet. So, they settled on a price point & that was under $200 ($199), which meant that Fender would now outsource to Japan to mass produce guitars, so they could still meet that price point & make a profit. This was the beginning of the Squire MIJ series. They have revamped this by outsourcing in lower cost countries & trying to make a middle ground MIM series.

    Other companies had to follow suit.

    When I was playing bass in the '80s, I traded an Ibanez Artist Sunburst for a B.C. Rich Warlock bass. At that time, they had just started making Japanese versions, but, the one I had was a US model.

    I hated that thing. It seemed to have a longer scale than the modern ones & didn't have the horned headstock. Seemed the cuts were not rounded on the butt either. What did I hate about it? You could not let go of it, or the headstock would fall - slamming to the ground. Sound wise, it lacked any top end. The bass frequency was robust, but sounded muffled compared to my other basses...

    But, yes, in the '80s, everybody was competing to get the mommy purchase. You must remember, that if it weren't for all these cheap beginner models, the companies would not be able to afford to R&D & Mfgr on the high end models that we all drool after.

    You must consider that some of these "cheap" models of back then many are considering them good enough to be their main guitar today. Gibson buying out Epiphone was their entry into that market & you'll see many people proudly playing "high end" Epiphones today.

    The trend has gotten to make them cheaper & cheaper & offer as many price points as possible. It kinda muddies up things, if you aren't careful, especially when buying on the used market. People rely on that to try & get more than they paid at Guitar Center for a $100 Affinity Strat. You'll see them all year on Craig's List selling for around $100 to even someone trying to sell them for $300...

    I'm not up on what the Japanese luthiers did to come out w/ econo models though...
     
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  17. Goes211

    Goes211 Active Member

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    Yes. This is what I'm saying. They were VERY nice at one point.
     
  18. Marival

    Marival New Member

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    My very first higher-end guitar was an NJ Deluxe Warlock model.

    [​IMG]

    I still have it and it's still one of my favourites. Whenever I pick it up it's like shaking hands with an old friend.

    In terms of BC Rich as a company I agree that their offers nowadays are rather unappealing. They do offer very well-built neck-through models though. But when you walk into music stores and see the BC Rich models on offer it's mostly the ugly-ass bronze series or some other bottom of the spectrum models.

    Their release for this year (so far) is a series of ugly looking 7/8 string Gunslinger models that are just terrible in my opinion. The 8-string model has a scale length of 26,5 for crying out loud.
     
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  19. Grunch

    Grunch New Member

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    Yes, you are wrong.
     
  20. HeHasTheJazzHands

    HeHasTheJazzHands Well-Known Member

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    I could of sworn they were 27'' like the 7-string.

    But yeah, those new 7 and 8's were so goddamn bland... :(

    And besides those and the new Pro X series, they were almost absent from NAMM.
     

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