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Tokai Love Rock possible 1985?
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GarysBlues
Plucker


Joined: 06 Mar 2007
Posts: 12
Location: New England

PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 2:03 am    Post subject: Tokai Love Rock possible 1985? Reply with quote

I ran across a Tokai Love Rock today at a Pawn shop. I put a Hundred bucks on it to hold till tommorow so I could research this a little. The guitar is a CS plaintop. Its a Two-piece maple top, center seamed. Its a twp-piece mahogany back and mohogany neck. The ONLY marking on it is a serial # 5031694. Has a Gibson headstock only with the little NIB in the middle. Looks like a LP Standard all the way around. Has a ABR style bridge on it. Pick-ups are Duncans but were probly changed. Has a OHSC with it that has a Metal emblem on front that says TOKIA GAKKI COM. The frets do-not have binding at the ends like Gibsons do. The Truss Rod cover is the same shape as those shown in the 85 cayolog on this sight. The fretboard is rosewood and a nice piece of wood. What Else.......I can't think of anything else? Any HELP? I'm new here but been playing since the late 60's.
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Novosel
Guitar God


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

PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 2:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The serial number seems to indicate it is an '85, and the dimpled headstock and "arrow" truss rod cover are correct for that date. I think this is maybe the last year they were readily available in the States. It sounds like an LS50 - or ALS as they were designated then - judging from the maple plaintop, which would be solid, not veneered (not that there's anything wrong with that!). A good guitar if the price is right. They sadly do not get too much love on Ebay, so I'm thinking anything in the ballpark of $600 US might be good? If I'm off the mark, I hope others will chime in.

Tokai has the most beautiful fretboards, and that original case is one of the best LP-type cases on the planet.
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GarysBlues
Plucker


Joined: 06 Mar 2007
Posts: 12
Location: New England

PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I pick up dirt cheap. I was just VERY CONCERNED on exactly what it is? A very close friend of mine has Pawn Shop in town and cffered me the guitar for $300. dollars. He showed me the pawn slip and he made $50. bucks off me. I looked it over and what you heard above are a few notes I jotted down. I was initially scared of the Korean/Japan thing but he said the orginal owner told him it was a 80's Japan made LP. So I gave him a hundred to hold it till today. There is NOTHING on the guitar but a serial # stamped in the wood. Then I proceeded to go crazy trying to find info on this baby! Very little info out here? Why is that. I have been hearing how good these guitars are for years. You never see them though. This is the FIRST TOKAI I have ever seen. I started taking guitar lessons in 67. So I'm not new to this. I have a Vinatge Guitar Book and their is only Two offerings in by ToKia...both Stratocasters. I found this sight by the Guitar Case and the metal emblem on it that said TOKAI GAKKI COM. That is was eventually bought me here. Thanks fr any help guys. I'll put up the photos tonight when I return home! Thanks again GARY
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GarysBlues
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Joined: 06 Mar 2007
Posts: 12
Location: New England

PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh I know what else I wanted to ask...........The serial, being a seven digit and starting with 503XXXX. How would you know it wasn't a 95? By the other appointments I mentioned? Is that the only thing that would make a 85 or a 95 different?
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Novosel
Guitar God


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

PostPosted: Tue Mar 06, 2007 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Gary,
Glad you got the guitar, those pickups are probably worth what you paid. I'm not any kind of an authority, so I really hope the experts will weigh in with the suble nuances. I'm sure there's a difference in the 85 and 95 serial number, and it may even be posted somewhere here buried deep in past threads, but the dimpled headstock is sort of a giveaway. Korean models, which are fine gutars in their own right, also have this dimple, but they have white backplates and a bevelled edge on the pickguard (the Tokai logo font is also different, thicker than the slender script of the MIJ, but thats tough to describe here). If you don't have these features, then you can eliminate MIK.

According to the old catalogues available at the Registry, it looks like the same shaped truss rod cover was used through both years - so that doesn't help - but I belive the dimple was only used for a couple of years (my '84 has it) to appease Gibson who were miffed about copyright infringment of the headstock shape. It was shortly after this the Tokai stopped exporting to North America, only to Europe and their domestic market, where they kept the "open book" headstock. A '95 would definetely fall into that category.

Tokai used to put a little black oval sticker with the model designation below the serial number - I don't know why people peel that damn sticker off! - or sometimes impressed into the fretboard at the 22nd fret, or sometimes written in one of the pickup cavities, but the solid plain maple top with lack of fret nibs seems to indicate maybe an LS50. I think the original owner upgraded the pickups because he knew it was a darn good guitar to begin with.

Well, Gary, I hope there's enough mis-information here to fire up the resident experts into contributing and educating us both!
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GarysBlues
Plucker


Joined: 06 Mar 2007
Posts: 12
Location: New England

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks my friend for all the help. It certainly appears to be a 85 ALS from my readings here. The case OHSC with the green lining and GAKKI plate on the side is a good indicator also. Besides that just the overall feel of the guitar. I now have some photo's so let mew see if I could get them up. Thet are not the best so I don't know how much help they will be. But I will take more today am hopefully have a steadier hand on the camera
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GarysBlues
Plucker


Joined: 06 Mar 2007
Posts: 12
Location: New England

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 6:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As I said I will definatly get some GOOD shots up today or tonight time permitting. Assuming its a 85 ALS as I believe it is. Would it have a long neck tenon? I went through the guitar yesterday, cleaned the entire guitar, polished the frets which are in excellent condition. Then I proceded to re-string and set-up. Its all done now and plays wonderfull. The Alnico II's are pretty good pups. I have played most of Seymour Duncans pups and still have Seths in two of my Hamers. That said I prefer DiMarzio's Paf-Pro, Paf-Joe and Paf Classic or Gibson's BB-Pro's. But the Alnico's are a welcome change. I originally bought the LP thinking I would flip it for a couple bucks. But next to my Gibson LP Standard, this actually plays and feels better and the weight is perfect at 8.5lbs. Don't get me wrong my Standard is nice but its new. This has that nice old Tone and worn in feel. Like a guitar that has been cared for and Loved for 22years. THAT is really what had me doubting its authenticy. It really is in nice shape for 22 years old. Well knowing now what I know about Tokai electrics. I guess I'll be keeping my eye's open for them.
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sneakyjapan
Guitar God


Joined: 12 May 2003
Posts: 1871

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 6:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

maybe if I drink a bottle of sake those pics will straighten out.
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GarysBlues
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Joined: 06 Mar 2007
Posts: 12
Location: New England

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 6:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know right.
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GarysBlues
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Joined: 06 Mar 2007
Posts: 12
Location: New England

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heres a few more shots of the Les-Paul a little better this time. Still not perfect though.
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Novosel
Guitar God


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

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 2:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is a sweet looking axe. For what you paid, I'd be tempted to have the cherry burst refinished to a faded ice tea colour, but that's just my personal preference. The finish would be poly, not nitro, practically indestructable, hence the shiney new look (I reliced mine - got tired of the showroom look after twenty years). The neck tenons on these are sort of semi-extended - they come flush to and are visible at the neck pup cavity. The long Gibson tenons, as you probably know, extended into the cavity, then got trimmed flush when the hole was routed, pretty much the same effect.

I put these guitars as better than the production model Gibsons, but maybe a tad under the Historic line - but not by much. Some of the poor quality control I've seen on Gibbys would never leave the Tokai factory.
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allthumbs
Sus4add11


Joined: 29 Jul 2003
Posts: 38
Location: Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What a great score! Congratulations and welcome to the family.
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sneakyjapan
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Joined: 12 May 2003
Posts: 1871

PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 8:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

might I recommend a tripod?
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GarysBlues
Plucker


Joined: 06 Mar 2007
Posts: 12
Location: New England

PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your right about the Tri-pod. And also about the Gibson comparisons. I have been playing Gibsons for years, I got away from them for awhile and played Hamers. In 06 I finally came back to the Gibson's with a Standard with BB-Pro's in it that I really liked. This Tokai is every bit as good as any production line Gibson I have played. From examining this one around the bridge and stop-tail area, I could see the QC is much better than Gibsons. The Stop-Tail is flush, and the Bridge is low. Yet the the strings do not hit the rear of the bridge....Translation.........The neck is SET perfedtly. You have to look and look to find a GIBSON like that. UNLESS you buy Custom Shop. Action is FLAWELESS on this guitar, and a super fret job. I'm VERY IMPRESSED with it.
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GarysBlues
Plucker


Joined: 06 Mar 2007
Posts: 12
Location: New England

PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2007 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have recieved a few private offer's? I am sorry I deleted all my incoming mail by mistake playing with my son on the computer. Again I am very sorry for no responding to you guys. I WILL SELL the guitar mak me a good offer and its yours. Send mail and offers to my private box here. Thanks in advance for your relpies. the LP is in excellent cond. and plays extremely well. Matter of fact it outperforms my LP-Faded Standard. These Tokai's are NO-JOKE! But I am more of a double cut guy!
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