Originally Posted by trickae
Yeah i know, though they still have a large number of signed artists. Still I was expecting something far bigger, given that the custom shop was open to the public during ibz heyday in the late 80's early 90's.
The LACS was never open to the public. As djpharoah said, there were USA Custom, American Masters, and even some regular production models advertised as "Cusrtom Made", but none of those were made by the LACS facility.
One thing though, in the 90's when the LACS was established Ibanez, while a booming company, was still significantly smaller than it is today, and as such they catered to a lot of small artists, opposed to just a few bigger names. Hence why you see more interesting, older Customs.
The only "Custom" stuff offered to the general public was the ability to mix and match certain specs, more Carvin style, with the guitars coming out of Bensalem, PA. There was a time when the guitars with the "Custom Made" logos were assembled per dealer requests, hence why you find S540s with such mixed specs, stuff like hardware color, inlay design, pickup configuration, color, etc. were options that could be changed slightly.
Also, that's far from a small shop. Thanks to modern tooling you don't need room after room of work benches and huge machinery. Ibanez only has a few dozen artists who regularly get full LACS models.