The Charvel and Jackson Page (Under Construction)

CHARVEL PAGE HERE. Link to spreadsheet HERE Guests can add comments there also.

Intro: This will be a database of good sources of info along with my personal collections and discoveries.

Personal Collection

My personal album. Please note that most of these images weren't meant to document anything initially, just images I took at the time so excuse poor camera work. Guitars seen are Charvette 400 bass, Charvel Model 1B, Charvel Model 2B, Jackson Concert Bass EX, Charvel Model 4B, Jackson RR3, Dinky Std, a hard to find these days Jackson guitar soft case, Charvel Fusion Custom, Jackson Stealth Pro (rare), and Concert Bass V (rare). See the album for individual comments.


-Classic Jackson Database-

  1. Jackson Soloist
  2. Jackson Dinky
  3. Jackson Super Dinky
  4. Jackson San Dimas
  5. Jackson Fusion
  6. Jackson Rhoads
  7. Jackson King V
  8. Jackson Kelly guitar and bass
  9. Jackson Warrior
  10. Concert Bass
  11. Grover Jacksons
  12. Later 90s Grover Jackson and Jackson Stars
  13. Links
  14. References
  15. Catalog

Click here for secondary, newer, rarer, and more obscure Jacksons!

First some facts or myths or whatever else is worth noting:

- Body size: Is it 7/8 of a Stratocaster? Soloists and Dinky’s have a smaller body, but be aware Jackson had 'strat style' guitars in the 80s with a strat body. Check the 1988 Catalog for example. Guitars with 22 frets as opposed to the typical 24 frets will have an altered body shape.

-(Concerning older 90s era Jacksons) Does the right lower horn cutout mean it’s a short scale Fusion? Good catch, but no. Charvel was kind of doing this for a moment so that the horn scoop signified Charvel and Charvette 24.75 scale guitars. While Jackson would continue that on their Fusion line they would also use it on other guitars, such as the Dinky Reverse line and later some DK2s.

-Are all of the Profession line guitars the prized USA killers? Only the top models that ended with a ‘Pro’, not to be confused with “Professional” were the ones with the highest specs and the ebony fretboards. To make it clearer, a Rhoads Professional could be a EX, and STD, or a Pro. Only the ‘Rhoads Professional Pro’ is the top one. That being said, the entire line of MIJ guitars, especially the ones made before the line was fizzled out, are amazing intruments.

-Professional subcategories: Pro was the highest level unless there were other special editions. You got the ebony fingerboards, MOP inlays, the highest quality pickups, bridge, and hardware, the best finish options, and extra active electronics if available. They are the ‘USA’ killers. The XL versions had the general looks of the Pros but with rosewood and lesser electronics. You still had real MOP inlays but not the Jackson logo. When you remember that the overall craftsmanship on these is very high it’s not very far off. STD or ‘standard’ were under XL and had a plainer appearance such as dot inlays. Typically however hardware and electronics are identical. Use this to acquire them cheaper since some may misidentify the plain appearance as something cheaper. EX were the most basic and is where it gets interesting as there aren’t any standards. A Dinky EX has a completely different setup than a STD with 22 frets vs 24 and HSH pickups vs HSS. a Rhoads EX is different construction (bolt-on vs neck-thru) than a Rhoads Std. Yet a Concert bass EX is… exactly identical in everyway to a Concert XL except sharkfin inlays!!

Here’s some other oddball Professional suffixes you’ll find. The Fusion line has a LT, SS, SP, Plus and SX. See their entries for details. Dinkys have AR, SP, RV-S, RV-H, and HX. Stealths have a HX and a LT but it isn’t really related to the Fusion LT. Think they ran out of suffixes? Me too!

-Later Jackson Subcategories: Custom shop is ‘Custom Select’ or 'Masterbuilt' if more premium. A guitar is customized based on templates offered for various models. Regular production USA made Jackson become ‘USA Selects’ in modern times. Expect top level hardware, pickups, and all finish options. The highest imports become Pro Series. In the past this would be MIJ, like the ‘Professional Series’ but now may be other countries such as Mexican or Indonesian. They have good pickups, top hardware and other upper options like ebony fret boards. ‘X Series’ are mid level imports. Originally Japanese these may also be from Indonesia or China. Expect mid range pickups and hardware such as Floyd Rose Specials. ‘Artist Signature’ may been somewhere in between the Por or X series depending on guitar. ‘JS Series’ are value range starting late 90s. They sport cheaper Jackson branded pickups and hardware. Initially they had extremely basic appearances but later Jackson refreshed the line with more premium and better looking specifications.


Jackson Soloist: Jackson’s other signature model (see Rhoads entry), these are neck-thru superstrats. The first was completed August 28, 1984. Early distinctions were between the Soloist Custom: neck-thru, 24 frets, ebony, bound fretboard, and ‘sharkfins’ or pearl dots and Soloists Student: the same but rosewood, no binding, and pearl dots only. Both of course were of equal quality. Floyd Rose, Kahler, and string through body were some options and Seymour Duncan’s were stock until 1985 when Jackson started to use in-house wound pickups. The finishes were pretty much whatever. Ontario era brings some changes such as the JT-6 bridge and an archtop option. In 1990 Soloists became a regular production model. An asterisk means that the model or specs of such are dubious and clarification or further research is needed.

Signature Soloists


Jackson Dinky: Called ‘Dinky’ for the body size, they feature “a lighter body with high-speed playability” according to Jackson. These are bolt on guitars, otherwise identical to the Soloists in many flavors. Assume they have a compound radius 12” to 16” fretboard, maple bolt-on 24 fret neck, and standard volume, tone, and three or five way toggle unless otherwise noted. Asterisks mean more information and research is needed.

Signature Dinkys:


Jackson Super Dinky: Not the Japanese domestic ‘Super Dinky’ which is what we’d consider a ‘Fusion’ but a short lived ‘smaller and lighter.. ultra comfortable and compact’ Dinky with a thicker rounder neck, quoted at 21mm at the first fret from the 1996 catalog.


Jackson San Dimas: This is more of a Charvel thing, but Jackson does have a few guitars under this label. These are more traditional super-strat styled guitars with strat bodies.


Jackson Fusion: A short lived but interesting line of guitars. They are all bolt on ‘Dinky’ body 24.75 scale guitars with 24 frets and a locking tremolo. They also feature basswood bodies and sculpted heels, and maple necks with ebony or rosewood fretboards. Perhaps to take on a more Gibson-ish tone, many of these featured humbucking/rail pickups in the neck and middle positions. The last was the Fusion ‘FX1’ from around 1996.


Jackson Rhoads: The famous guitar ‘Jackson’ was made for essentially, a collaboration between Randy Rhoads and Grover Jackson. This database is meant to document production models rather than custom shop guitars and prototypes but let’s touch on it a bit. The Rhoads is an asymmetrical Flying V shaped guitar which Randy nicknamed ‘Concorde’ after the aircraft. There are a few prototypes but they all look close to production models aside from the vintage style tremolo. I will cover the normal models here also some special ones like the Roswell Rhoads. (The Roswell 'Star' is Custom Shop also). Unless noted, these are neck-thru with 22 frets and a 1 vol/1 tone/three-way toggle.

Signature Rhoads:


Jackson King V: This is an aggressively styled guitar named after ‘King’ Robbin Crosby of Ratt. The V-shaped design spawned from a custom Jackson he’d play, a ‘Double Rhoads’ (a V guitar comprised of the ‘long’ wings of a Rhoads. This was never a regular production model). Later Dave Mustaine would be the face of this guitar among others. The King V was designed as a smaller version of the Double Rhoads to accompany more average sized players. These guitars are traditionally two humbucker designs with a tremolo, but not always. Other design specs vary as well, such as 24 or 22 frets, knob/control configurations, the fretboard, etc.

Signature King Vs


Jackson Kelly: An aggressive vaguely Explorer shaped guitar named after Bradford Kelly of Heaven in the early 80s (more specifically a ‘Special Explorer’ which had a larger ‘King Kelly’ body size than modern Kelly guitars). Since then many other players like Marty Friedman have made it a Jackson family mainstay. Kelly guitars usually have a typical Jackson neck, two humbucker pickups, a locking tremolo, 24 frets, and a neck-thru or bolt-on neck. That is not always however, there 22 fret versions with accordingly altered body dimensions and of course the three different body sizes overall. (See additional references at bottom)

Signature Kellys


Jackson Warrior: An X shaped guitar with each point resembling a Jackson headstock. Introduced late 1989 and designed by Mikey Wright, a Jackson R&D, the shape was discontinued (and apparently unpopular) a year later after the USA and Pro models. In 2001 however, it was reissued and continued to be a brutal design earning its namesake. Usual specs include 24 frets, fast Jackson neck, a tremolo, and two humbucking pickups. Unique to the initial models, the USA and Pro are the 24.75 scale and have three slanted in reverse rail pickups. See Links section for more history.

Signature Warriors


Jackson Concert Bass: A four string bass Jackson offered at least as early as 1984. The classic Concert Bass is a four string 34 inch scale neck-thru or bolt-on bass with 21 frets using a p-bass (J-20) neck pickup and a jazz single coil (J-150) or humbucking (varied) bridge pickup along with the J-2000 Bass preamp later. It has the ‘custom’ and ‘student’ options as did many classic custom shop Jacksons. During the 90s the Concert bass had three ‘Professional’ series variants and a ‘Performer’. In 1998 the line was drastically redesigned into several four and five string variants, passive and active. In 2002 it received another redesign as the CMG Concert bass and finally in 2012 using a similar look to the previous the current JS and X Series Concert basses.

Signature Concert Basses


Grover Jackson: Japanese Market only Jacksons with equivalents to the USA domestic versions, but with different specifications, finishes, and sometimes completely unique models and variants. These are sometimes Team GJ or Jackson Stars, but it’s the same builders. (see section)

Grover Jackson Soloists: Japan only Soloists with the usual neck-thru design, compound radius, 24 frets, 25.5” scale, etc unless noted.

Grover Jackson Dinky: Also includes subcategories, Dinky Axe a Dinky with a slightly different body shape and Super Dinky which is Fusion (24.75”) scale.

Grover Jackson Randy Rhoads: Rhoads models.

Grover Jackson King V: King V models

Grover Jackson Kelly

Grover Jackson Basses

Other models and signature guitars:


Later 90s Jackson Stars and GJ*: A similar story to the Grover Jacksons, these are usually Japanese made import Jacksons but for the domestic market there only. They consist of the typical classic Jackson shapes and styles, similar to worldwide market models but may also consist of unique models. Some are Jackson Stars custom shop instruments, USA made but sold only to Japanese markets, thus the Jackson Stars logo. GJ or Team GJ is for Grover Jackson. This is like the stars but later down the line. (A bit more research needed. Also some color codes needed)

Signature Jackson Stars: All with hardcases. 1996-9?

Jackson Stars USA: 1996-99(?) USA Jackson but sold under Jackson Stars. Being such they also have US graphic options for finishes: Lightning sky, black and white dragon, errie dess, snakeskin, skulls, flames, sunset, standing woman, multi colored dragon, speres, coral sea, turquoise stone. Of note is that although these are from mid to late 90s they feature ‘old school’ USA specs for Jacksons, such as poplar bodies over alder, Schaller tremolos over Original Floyd Roses, and a few downgrades at least ostensibly, like rosewood fretboards over ebony. To make up for that however, we can see a few guitar designs here that would later be implemented in the worldwide market versions, particularly with the Soloists and Dinkys below. All came with hardcases.

Grover Jackson Soloists: A few unique designs. Neck-thru and 24 frets, typical Soloists specs unless noted. Yes, the naming schemes aren’t pretty. Need finish color codes.

Grover Jackson Rhoads: Various Rhoads, some unique to this line, others familiar. As usual, I need finish color codes.

Grover Jackson Kelly Guitar and Bass: Various Kelly guitars, again some familiar, some a bit different. Color codes needed. 1999-?

Grover Jackson King V: Various King Vs, but unlike the others play it safe with not as much variations between them.

Grover Jackson Bass GJb and Lb: Various basses that closely resemble to the late 90s to early 00s Concert Basses but offer other attributes. All sport a unique ‘GJb’ logo on the 3 or 2x2 headstock. 1999-?

Grover Jackson Dinky, Arched Dinky, and Fusion: Various Dinkys and archtop Dinkys that resemble familiar models to us non-Japanese domestic folk. Also some Fusions in the line up with special variations.

Black Blood Series: All blacked out Jacksons! 1996-99? Come in all nearly all Jackson shapes. I will group these together as the catalogs do.

Grover Jackson GJr. Series: short scale instruments with built in speakers.

Grover Jackson MyG.: Seems to be an entry level collection. 1999ish. There are two Charvels in this series too, but they’ll be covered on the Charvel page.

Other: Uncategorized


-Links-

Guitarinside.com Extensive information on most but not all Jackson models, US and import. There is some missing information however and I can't get in contact with the owner.

Audiozone.dk Jackson Professional page. The downfall of this site is part of my motivation to get this webpage together. Charvel page here. Here is great information. Tremolo page here.

ImportCharvel.com.Information on early import Charvels. Features plentiful images and information on Japanese domestic models. Be sure to click around. Though watermarked there are some great looking catalog scans here.

Jackson Charvel Wiki. Here I link the pickups page because it's some what interesting. Overall not a fan of this place because there's hardly any articles and they're hard to find at that. Scattered and unfocused overall but feel free to dig around.

Usacharvels.com. Exactly what it sounds like with cool pictures. You can click and get stories about the guitar, since we're talking custom shop stuff here. My only issues is that it is zombie. The forums are dead and lots of the external links are long gone. Enjoy while it lasts.

Jcfonline.com.This is the ONLY somewhat alive location dedicated to these guitars. Images are often broken due to file hosting issues. There's a wealth of info but buried deep. There are a mix of old timer contributors and hit and run 'ask a question in a topic and never return' members. That's not bad, but it does mean that threads will stagnate quickly.


-Additonal Reference Material-

  1. Info on Jackson Dinky HX. A prototype of only 100. Sources from Jcfonline: (1) (2) (3) (4)
  2. Information on Roswell Rhoads from themusiczoo. Click here.
  3. Information on original 'King' Kelly on Jcfonline. Click here
  4. History of the Jackson Warrior by Vincent Roarden. Click here. Watch for a (harmless) popup!
  5. Some info on the Jackson JPB Basses on Talkbass. Click here

-Catalogs-

Jackson catalogs modern: here

Archived catalogs: here

Japanese market catalogs: here

Jackson Price lists: here

Charvel catalog mega page, including JPN only: here

Charvel Price lists:here

Charvel 1989 Catalog:(scans and price list)