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ST85? Really?
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Suki
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Joined: 22 Feb 2013
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, thanks Jacco - good to have a definitive date for this one!
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Suki
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 9:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jacco, if I understand you correctly, Springys should all have 7 digit neckplates up to 1982? If so, how do we determine the ages 1978-1981 from the serial number? Are they sequential?
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jacco
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 10:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, you understood correctly.
It's quite easy;
All 7 digit serials starting with an 8 = 1978, 9 = 1979, 0 = 1980, 1 = 1981.
I have logged serials for a few years, was mostly interested in LPs but know from this info that 80035xx is late 1978.
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Suki
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 10:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah,that's really useful.

In that case, I have a '77 in my collection. It's in storage so I will need to dig it out, but I am certain it's got a 7 digit plate starting with 7.
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jacco
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would really love to see that!! (and at the same time doubt that it's a 1977 model).
No one ever has seen a 1977 Tokai LP or Strat.
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Suki
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm sure my mind isn't playing tricks on me, but I'll check. I do believe they produced Springys during November and December of '77.
I've heard all sorts of things like the neckplates were blank, and serials were stamped in neck pockets and the neckplates were narrower. I wonder if there is any truth in this or whether it's just guesswork...?
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jacco
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 11:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first Tokai catalog is dated april 30 1978. Of course guitars were preproduced but as I said, no one here as ever seen a 1977 serial number.
Indeed the earliest Springys have a narrower neck plate and also serial and/or model type stamped in the neck pocket as an extra, ie also the normal neck plate with serial and fretboard model stamp.
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Peter Mac
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Suki, Jacco

I have only seen 1 : ST-60 OW s# 7000105 stamped on neck base. I have photos of this guitar.
The first models did in fact have blank, narrow neck plate whilst the serial numbers was stamped onto the heel of the neck, starting 7000xxx. This system ran til mid 1978 when the plate was enlarged and serial numbers were stamped onto them. From the numbers I have seen, I would guess that fewer than 1200 were built like this.
I do believe that November '77 could have been the start date for ST models, but they were MY78 in features. They would start 7000xxx. Those first models would be maple neck only and ash body, even down to the ST-42. Rosewood and alder didn't start til late '78.
All stamped serial numbers on Fendoh models were random throughout Tokai's first 10 years - regardless of year.(excludes SS models) On production line, you grab a handful until they're used up and then grab another, and Tokai had up to 8 assemblers so do the math.
regards
Peter Mac
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Peter Mac
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 7:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jacco,
I have 12 files on 1978 ST's with ser# necks - the latest is 8001883.
The earliest neckplate I have is 8003036 (ST-60 BB) so somewhere in those 1,000 numbers the change was made. Can you check your LP numbers to see if any fall into that 8002000 and 8002999 pattern.

Thanks
Peter Mac
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jacco
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 1:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ha! Where were you guys when we asked for 1977 models on here?
Post pics of the 1977 models pllllease!!

Peter, my friend took my external hard disc with all the MIJ info with him on his world trip. I won't be able to access it for at least 6 months. So I am missing the complete overview, I do have some pics on this computer though.

I'm sorry, I was mistaken about the blank neck plate type, I should have known that, have plenty of pics of those. But hey, I'm a LP guy..
I believe the way Tokai did it was model stamp on neck pocket of the body and serial number stamp on the butt of the neck.

I know there was an overlap in time of use of neck stamping and neck plate serials, I have found both in non sequential order. I have also found models with a neck stamp AND neck plate serial , even with both being different on the same model. And I believe Marcus owns one with 2 different neck stamp serials.

If we take that in account, I wonder how this fits in the picture:

Peter Mac wrote:
All stamped serial numbers on Fendoh models were random throughout Tokai's first 10 years - regardless of year.(excludes SS models) On production line, you grab a handful until they're used up and then grab another, and Tokai had up to 8 assemblers so do the math.


Serial number stamping was used on ST models during a tiny part of Tokai production, ie only until the first half of 1978.
How would they have gone about using the neck plate serials. I guess these were pre engraved..

Here are some pics I found;


That's 8000760 & 8000664 on the same neck..





A very early 8000003 according to the seller





What abpout this early neck plate serial with normal width neck plate

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jacco
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 1:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Peter Mac wrote:
Jacco,
I have 12 files on 1978 ST's with ser# necks - the latest is 8001883.
The earliest neckplate I have is 8003036 (ST-60 BB) so somewhere in those 1,000 numbers the change was made. Can you check your LP numbers to see if any fall into that 8002000 and 8002999 pattern.

Thanks
Peter Mac


Hi Peter,

Last Tokai LS model logged in 1978 is 8002059.
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ampmaker
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 4:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought in the early years, the last 5 digits of the numbering scheme were continuous?

Don't know if it helps, but from my long-time-ago notes (covering about 150 Tokais), I see a '78 LS50 owned by guitargai (Ebay?) with 8001946 and the next I see is an LS50 with 9002203 ('79).

FWIW, the earliest and latest numbers I have are:
1978: 8000316 - 8001946
1979: 9002203 - 9008977

So I'd assume that there are no '78 serial numbers higher than 8002202 (which conflicts with what jacco says above).
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jacco
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 5:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi ampmaker, thanks a lot for your input!!

I first also thought that LS model serials in 1979 take off where they stopped in 1978, but this isn't the case. Although I have not found any other LS model in 1979 below the last serial found in 1978, there is one exception owned by a fellow forum member here, which a 2P neck early type 1978 Tokai but with number 9000202.
I think Tokai reserved low serial numbers in 1979 & 1980.
I haven't logged any guitars over the past 6 months or so but this was where I ended:


First & last found serial numbers for LS & LC models from 1978 to 1985:

1978 8000101 8002059
1979 9000202 8006403
1980 0006482 0011896
1981 1010458 1016397
1982 2010757 2013512
1983 3010827 3016105
1984 4016175 4023546
1985 5023553 5033966

Inkies:
1980 0100106 0104340
1981 1101575 1102089(5)

1980:
Reborn 0006482 0007430
Reborn Old 0007474 0009575
Love Rock 0009694 0011896


Observations:

1978:
Highest logged LS with ink serial stamped on the headstock is 8001777.
First logged LS with impressed serial on the headtsock is 8001922.

Because of production for Fernandes the total amount of LS is lower in 1978 (all Tokai made Burny's have 1978 serial numbers under 8001000).

1979:
Only 1 LS model found within the 9000000-9002000 range.

1980:
LS model serials start where they stopped in 1979, in between 0006403 and 0006482.

The 1980 Reborn is more rare than the 1980 Reborn Old.

Last documented LS with fretboard stamp is 0009384.
First stickered LS is 0009533 which is a Reborn Old.

Exception from the serial range is one example of a Reborn with 0008633 serial which falls well within Reborn Old range.

1981:
LS serials start at 1010000.

1982:
LS serials start at 2010000.

1983:
LS serials start at 3010000.

1984:
LS serials start where the stopped in 1983, in between 4016106 and 4016175.

1985:
LS serials start where the stopped in 1984, in between 5023547 and 5023553.
Grandy Gibson copies, which were also made by Tokai, share the same serialization.
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marcusnieman
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Joined: 22 May 2003
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 7:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The white 78 ST60 with the two serial numbers in the pocket is mine. One correction to make.... there are not two serial numbers on the neck. It appears that they put two different necks in the pocket and the ink stamps for both transferred. Here's the neck on the guitar:



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Peter Mac
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 7:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Guys,

Jacco - I will post the pics of the '77 for you. There are only 5. Ive also found a 2nd number 7000165.

I'm getting slightly confused with the jargon. Can we agree that 77 - E78 numbers are 'Inked' and neckplates are 'stamped' This inking was discontinued before the '80-'81 LS-50/60 2nd Factory inkies.

ampmaker : please consider that Tokai may have started new numbering each year (ONLY a theory) for the first 3 years, I am quite sure that if they were sequential but spread out between ST and LS/LC models then by 1980, a new sequence would have begun once they hit the 10,000 mark.
I do have a record of LPR in the RO number sequence.

I will at this time draw attention to a past member - Andrew Melching - who lived in Japan for many years and catalogued the 400 odd Tokai guitars he bought and sold. He very kindly sent me all his findings with pics, serial#, body ink and descriptions. Between his info and the records I'd kept from Tokai Aust. I was able to piece together a very solid body of features that are the basis of my book. I am currently seeking a publisher.
I would however be amiss if not to include a lot of the members from TF whose comments and diligence pushed and spurred me on, pointed out my miscalculations and found things that I had missed. Jacco, Marcus, I count you in among those "contributors" and you are among the members acknowledged.

regards
Peter Mac
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