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Quality and Consistency Bad experiences (jap?)

 
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Axeman
Plucker


Joined: 20 Aug 2002
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2002 3:30 am    Post subject: Quality and Consistency Bad experiences (jap?) Reply with quote

Having scanned through a number of the messages in this forum I am impressed by the lack of negative comments about these guitars.

It seems they have really got their act together.

The range of guitar styles across over 30years it truly impressive given that people here seem just as happy with a 70's model as a 2002 model.

I just wondered if anyone has had any bad experiences?

I am sure a few LR necks have gone the way of many a LP neck but that is only to be expected.

Be honest now!!

Have any of you had bad experiences with the Jap replicas or have they really had things so sorted for so long.

Mark
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javelin70
Guitar God


Joined: 09 Sep 2001
Posts: 822
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2002 5:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the overall quality of Tokai guitars is high, I've never seen a really bad japanese Tokai. Even the lower priced japanese Tokai's were good in the 80's, yes they had cheaper tuners/pickups but otherwise the finish was as good as the more expensive guitars. I have an AST-40 (late 80's) which was the cheapest strat replica and it's a great guitar. I managed to find a set of Tokai Klusons for it and the pickups are now Duncans and I love this guitar, the tone and sustain is excellent. It has a great one piece maple neck and an alder body.

Mike
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luis
Guitar God


Joined: 15 Sep 2001
Posts: 2359
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2002 6:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Axeman,when I took my Ls-70 to a well know luthier he was very impresed with the guitar.There was flaws:a little ciorroed ink inlays(that,s very minor) and a not well placed tune-o-matic he had to fix,but no problem.Other than that,top notch and very good quality,I like a lot this guitar.I will try to get an Reborn to compare and I will tell all of you.
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vaporboy
Guitar God


Joined: 23 May 2002
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2002 9:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Even the Korean LR is a very nice guitar
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loverockerUK
Guest





PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2002 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

null

Last edited by loverockerUK on Sat Mar 13, 2004 10:23 am; edited 1 time in total
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Gregert
Power chords are my friend


Joined: 14 Aug 2002
Posts: 34
Location: Norway

PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2002 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Only thing wrong with my mid 80's Goldstar is that the six screws holding the trem are not in a straight row, and that's pretty serious, making it impossible to set up a floating trem. This is not beyond repair, I know, but it is a serious screw up. Other than that, the guitar is a beauty, great tone too.
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Novosel
Guitar God


Joined: 23 Dec 2001
Posts: 244
Location: Vancouver, Canada

PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2002 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd have to say the only real complaint I have about my '80's Love Rock is that the strings did not line up with the polepieces of the bridge pickup, but they did over the neck pickup. This used to really bother me! I removed the bridge support screws, filled the holes with maple, and redrilled them over a hair to line up better, but the spacing was still incorrect. Finally, I filed down the saddles and recut slots for better alignment. It was a bit of a compromise because I didn't want to throw the spacing out too much from the neck pup.

I thought this might be a common Tokai problem, but I saw an '80's goldtop Love Rock in a shop once that was perfect. Incidentally, that goldtop (mine's a flametop) was a bit of a heavyweight but plugged into a Fender Vibroverb Reissue had absolute tone from heaven - the kind that will give you an immediate stiffy. And that was at low volume in a store.

I've owned a lot of guitars, including an original '59 Burst - and I will never ever put Gibson down - but I like the feel of the Japanese laquered necks in my hand much more than the nitro necks. Much less sticky IMHO
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Axeman
Plucker


Joined: 20 Aug 2002
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2002 3:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Novosel

Was the guitar new when you bought it? If not are you sure they were the correct pups?

All the LR's I have seen the string/pup placement are pretty much spot on,
I just wondered if someone had fitted some after market pup's and not got the right one for the bridge spacing.

Still looking at the few problems here either we all love our Tokai's so much we are all deluded or as I suspected they have got the quality thing off to a fine art.

I am sure there would be a lot more problems than this if the same question was asked of Gibsons and I absolutely positive it there would have been an even longer list with Fenders.

It just goes to show that if you don't slavishly follow fashion you can have your cake and eat it (a nice well sorted guitar and still have money to feed the kids).

Is there a thread anywhere for Tokais spotted with the rich and famous we all know about the Oasis relationship with Epi (in my opinion no where near the quality of Tokai). There must be some famous Tokai players out there.

Comments!!
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Novosel
Guitar God


Joined: 23 Dec 2001
Posts: 244
Location: Vancouver, Canada

PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2002 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Axeman,

I did buy my LR brand new in '88 and it has the original Tokai 57 PAF's in it. As far as I understand, there is no difference in pole spacing between a neck and bridge PU, or am I wrong? I'd really like to set it beside another Love Rock, or a Les Paul, and take some exacting measurements, because even though it's semi-corrected, it STILL BUGS ME!!

Oh yeah, the only other complaint I would have against Tokai is the noticable difference in cream colors between the PU rings and the pickguard. Way, way off. At least on the new ones, or maybe just Korean ones, because on my old ALS60 the color is bang on.

If I could ever figure out how to post a picture, I'd love to do it - she's a beaut!
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beerslinger
Guitar God


Joined: 06 Sep 2001
Posts: 106
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2002 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

E-Mail your pictures to this guy
fmunniksma@home.nl
Then when he posts them you can copy the url and paste
it to a post, like this.



http://members.lycos.co.uk/tokaiguitars/LS50.htm

That's my LS50
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lawtone
I only know 3 chords


Joined: 12 Jun 2002
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2002 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As a pro player having owned 17 vintage Fender/ Gibsons, my experience is that about 7 out of 10 vintage instruments are great sounding guitars. Regarding post 1968 Fender/Gibsons having owned about 30 I'd say 3-4 out of ten sound good. This includes Custom shop and Historics.

Regarding Tokais, having owned about 30 I would estimate 7 out of 10 sound great. The remaining three, though not great, are still good. A guitars tone is primarilly a function of the neck wood, body wood, finish and hardware. (Pickups are vastly overated as the source of good tone, and modern quality replacements are better in every way to their vintage counterparts) Without good wood no pickup can make a bad guitar sound good.

Tokai had a knack of finding good wood, used very thin poly finish(some models have nitro), and used high quality hardware. Some Tokai strats have actual steel tremolo blocks-crucial for vintage strat tone. Tokai pickups are good on some models, less so on others. Bottom line, Tokai lawsuit era clones are in my experience among the most consistently good sounding instruments ever built. Modern Fenders and Gibsons truthfully look a bit better than Tokais because they really load on the finish and fingerboard dye. In conrast, Tokais seem to have a much more primitive look to them which is IMHO much closer to what real vintage guitars are like. I have no experience with Korean or newer Japanese models. They may be as good, but lacking any experience I have no opinion.
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javelin70
Guitar God


Joined: 09 Sep 2001
Posts: 822
Location: Sweden

PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2002 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I only want to add that I'm very impressed with the quality of the new japanese AST-50. The finish on the guitar I bought is excellent, the alder woodgrain is already showing through the paint = thin paint. The neck is tinted yellow to look old. A few things are not as good as in the 80's, the pickup switch is of lower quality and the trem has deeper string holes like the newer Fender strats. It does not affect the tone much, the tone and sustain is excellent. Considering that this guitar is priced like the TST-50's were in the 80's (50000 Yen) it's a bargain.

Mike
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willivory
Power chords are my friend


Joined: 28 Apr 2002
Posts: 34

PostPosted: Wed Aug 28, 2002 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I currently own a Reborn Old (LP type) and a '64 replica Springy Sound Strat with a rosewood board and a V-neck. These are both wonderful instruments in their own right. I've owned well over a hundred guitars, including three pre-CBS Strats as well as a Relic, and can afford anything I want within reason (well, maybe not a '59 Burst). I only point this out because there seems to be a lot of emphasis on this forum about Tokai offering a lot of "bang for the buck", suggesting that the quality and tone are good, considering the price. In my opinion price shouldn't even be the main issue where purchase of a Tokai is concerned. Now, I admit I haven't played the newer models and both of my guitars are from the "lawsuit" (I already know there never was a lawsuit so please don't remind me) era but I can assure you they are as good as anything I've ever owned and played, if not better. These instruments were both made in Japan. That's important to mention because I've also owned a Japan-made reissue Strat and Tele. These were great instruments as well. I bought them because I wanted something inexpensive to gig with and the quality shocked me. I believe the Fender-made guitars may be better than the American-made ones and there are quite a few people on E-Bay who feel the same way. Anyway, the band I play with does a lot of Allman Bros. I used the Reborn Old to gig with once and fell in love with the sound (reissue Gotoh PAF's) and playability. Using a '63 Bassman, '64 Fender Reverb Tank, and a Tube Screamer didn't hurt, either, but the tone would have made Duane proud. Now I'm not so sure I want to gig with it again lest it get damaged in some way. And this was going to be my inexpensive "player". In summary, I'm a fan of these guitars and as long as they don't catch on in popularity too quickly, we'll all be able to afford Mercedes quality at Ford prices. Life is good!!!
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luis
Guitar God


Joined: 15 Sep 2001
Posts: 2359
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2002 7:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

willyvory,Billy Gibbons thinks as you do
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