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New Member, Counterfeit Tokai owner?
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travisbickle
I only know 3 chords


Joined: 18 Dec 2013
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 9:20 am    Post subject: New Member, Counterfeit Tokai owner? Reply with quote

Hi Tokai Forum! I notice the bulk of members I have read are from the UK area, and I hope that you will not mind a Yank (did not vote for BUSH!!) getting involved in the banter.
I have owned many ARIA and IBANEZ guitars, and I currently have 8 of them in the studio. I have always like FV shapes and neck feel, so when I read in several books that Tokai made a 'comparable' guitar to it's daddy, I was excited because Gibsons are overpriced and newer models tend to be on the 'cheap' side of materials and craftsmanship. I fell in love with a TOKAI Korina V FV55 (at least I thought)on EBAY:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/310778475524?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1497.l2649
I bought the guitar for $500 and did not ask the right questions, so I am to blame as much as anybody. Anyway, I got in touch with the Tokai factory after it arrived, as it had a CN1204***** SN on the headstock, and I feared it might be a counterfeit guitar when they informed me that the headstock on my V was for a FV47 model, and the CN #'s are usually 12 characters, not 11.
My main complaint with this guitar is the (set) neck angle seems to be set at a whopping 4 degrees, and to make it playable the bridge has to be extended to around 7mm (3/8") to eliminate buzzing with level frets and adjusted truss rod. Still, it sounds 'cheap' and 'clinky' even though I can set the intonation and use a Pearly Gates pickup.
I want out of this deal if I can determine if the axe is counterfeit, and since time is running out, and the Tokai people do not seem to communicate very well with their China sub, I am asking the knowledgeable members of the Tokai registry if I am the owner of a genuine or fake Tokai? Thank you for reading such a long post. I have other pics' if someone needs them to ID this thing.
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Reborn Old
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As far as I can tell, auction pics were taken down if the eBay auction revisions link is accurate.

I've only kept track of LS (Les Paul) MIC numbers, which are 10 or 11 digits in 2012.
That being said, it's common for MIC serial #'s to vary in length with multiple China factories making these,
and different models being assigned separate number ranges, which can involve an extra 0 with MIC models.

I can't comment on it being a fake, without detailed pics.
(not very likely anyway, especially with a Japan origin )
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travisbickle
I only know 3 chords


Joined: 18 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is a link to the Guitar with a serial # directly in series with mine. Like it is it's twin brother:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/310778492693?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649
And these are the pictures that my guitar was listed with.

Comparing them to these pics:
http://tokaijapan.com/catalogue/traditional3-vol27.html
One can see the obvious difference in what headstock should be on the Korina.
I am making plans to re-set the neck if it is a legitimate Tokai, and if not, I'll get a refund and find a way to buy a new one.
Thanks for your reply to my dilemma. I can post my personal pictures on Facebook, or directly to this forum if I can find a way to upload them on site. Thanks again.
Travis[/img]
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Reborn Old
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know zip about FV's, but looking at catalog 27, it looks like a basswood body natural finish FV-55 model with the black headstock overlay.

Did the guitar ship from California or Japan ?

I saw the $150 shipping price and assumed it was an overseas shipment.
Shipping within the US should be under $100, and even less if shipping priority.

Resetting the neck can be costly or next to impossible, if steam soluble glues weren't used.
I can't see Chinese manufacturers devoting the time or expense required to use luthier grade glues.


Last edited by Reborn Old on Thu Dec 19, 2013 8:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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travisbickle
I only know 3 chords


Joined: 18 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 19, 2013 8:16 pm    Post subject: California Reply with quote

The guitar shipped from California, and was $65 for me. I am 99.9% sure the seller would not be aware of it's counterfeit nature should it turn out to be bogus. His feedback is 1212 deals with no negatives, and he does not look like a hit and run guy having other Chinese Tokai models currently listed for auction. I am starting to think that maybe I jumped the gun and neglected to see that the axe was made in China, seeing it said Tokai, I just figured it would be from Japan. I guess they are all going for a 'bottom line' product, and let 'the buyer beware' is in the cards from all makers, regardless of prior rep.
I might look into reconfiguring the fingerboard (as in installing a new 'planed to angle' thing) if it is a real Tokai. I would have to be drastic because it will not sound right until this is done. Maybe I can get Warmoth to make me a custom ebony board to fit. It will be an expensive proposition in time for me, let alone the materials!!
I just can't figure out the headstock difference between my guitar, and the catalog provided me by Tokai in Japan. Looks like one hand doesn't know what the other is doing?
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JVsearch
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 2:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think you should worry about the neck angle too much - it should still be possible to get it playing well regardless of neck angle, unless the neck/frets are all over the place within their plane
(which is determined by the neck angle and can't really be changed).

LPs over the years have had neck angles up to 5 degrees. If your bridge is 7mm up off the top that doesn't sound too crazy to me. Although I'm not sure about V's.

The nut may also be an issue, and maybe the neck needs straightening a bit.

I have read somewhere about Vs having neck angles of 2 to 3 degrees which is similar to a vintage LP, but since they have the same type of bridge a V should be able to be set the same as a LP.

However your V has no adjustable tailpiece so that could be a bar to using anything other than a low neck angle, which would mean somebody got this version of the V totally wrong.

With a high neck angle and fixed low string anchor points you'll get a high string break angle and a lot of pressure over the saddles causing a tight less sustaining type of sound.
Is that the cheap and clinky vibe you're experiencing maybe? Might have to use different strings, maybe round core ones.

If you end up keeping the V you might have to put the other type of tailpiece on it. Cheaper than a neck reset!
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Diamond
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 7:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd like to know where this seller in the USA is getting all these Tokais from?

There's no way he got them from Tokai, they will never export G shaped guitars to the USA, only Strat and Tele models.

Travis
You should have done your homework before buying, the seller is not indicating made in Japan or China, but the 3 truss rod cover screws was the give away.
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CW
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 8:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Diamond wrote:
... the seller is not indicating made in Japan or China...


I don't think that's true. The seller does include M.I.C. in the description, which I would interpret as "Made In China". Can't say definitively why the seller used the initials rather than spelling it out...


CW
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Diamond
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 8:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CW wrote:
Diamond wrote:
... the seller is not indicating made in Japan or China...


I don't think that's true. The seller does include M.I.C. in the description, which I would interpret as "Made In China". Can't say definitively why the seller used the initials rather than spelling it out...


CW


Apologies, my mistake.

It says quite clearly...
Country of Manufacture: China

I'm not convinced this guitar is a fake.
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travisbickle
I only know 3 chords


Joined: 18 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 9:44 am    Post subject: Tokai has spoken! Reply with quote

1st!! Thank all who have replied with very informative inputs (all).
I believe that the seller has been changing the method of describing where the Tokais' were made, and for my particular sale, I don't believe there was ever a mention of China, and the subsequent auctions have been edited. I do really believe if he is selling bogus Tokai guits, he is totally unaware of it, given the volume of successful transactions he has completed (1212, 100%).

The Neck Angle on all the high end set neck V guitars of this style has been a set rule of 2.3 degrees. I have never had to jack the tuneomatic close to 1/2" off the body to get the action to play from one end to the other. The first thing I do when I get a guitar, is to make sure the truss rod will adjust and is not broken. Then, I check fingerboard and fret levels with my guages, and if OK, I proceed to use Ernie Ball Slinky's (10-46) which are actually 'Heavy' by today's R&R standards, and are all I use on any of the other ( 24.75" scale guitars. The Frets are old jumbo style #149 (but a real bad job, looked like someone was learning by the file marks), but they are leveled, probably after the 1st gent tried and screwed them up.
Anyway, if the truss rod is junk, it can actually twist the damn neck, and I think that is the case here.
The folks at Tokai think it is a 'fake' and want me to get real closeups of the truss rod adjuster, the headstock including the nut, and the rear of the neck at the headstock. I think the latter picture is because there is a scarf joint on this neck, and on a high end Korina finish of any type, I have never seen a scarf joint.
Have any of you other owners experienced a high end Tokai with set neck that is not a 1 piece neck?
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Mick51
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

High end? No. Nor are any high end Tokai guitars manufactured in China.
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carl300367
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 12:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Tokai has spoken! Reply with quote

travisbickle wrote:


there is a scarf joint on this neck, and on a high end Korina finish of any type, I have never seen a scarf joint.
Have any of you other owners experienced a high end Tokai with set neck that is not a 1 piece neck?


thats the point this isn't a high end tokai it's made in china

personally i know nothing about flying v's but purely the 3 screw trussrod and the bridge would have suggested to me a MIC model

high end tokais that are MIJ are as good if not better than the gibson models in many peoples opinions as for the MIC its more on a par with basement level epiphone

IMO wouldnt have more than $200 for that if at all

description on ebay link does say MIC
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travisbickle
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that's a good point. Now I'm wondering if they have ever contracted any Korina finished FV55 to China's factories. i believe that if they did, it was a bolt on neck guitar. The Headstock is a definite giveaway according to people in Japan.
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carl300367
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 3:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

here you go set neck made in china not fake reputable uk dealer

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Tokai-Flying-V-Electric-Guitar-Korena-Finish-FV48-KOR-/400540760027?pt=UK_Musical_Instruments_Guitars_CV&hash=item5d4216f7db
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travisbickle
I only know 3 chords


Joined: 18 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2013 4:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well that is bad news for me. That is the guitar in question, and I will be the first to review it as 'Junk'. Thank you. Case Closed. No More Chinese guitars for this old man.
One way to look at it, at least he is asking a little more than what I paid for this dog!! :
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