Cats Eyes 12-string parlour guitar - Japan or China?

Tokai Forum

Help Support Tokai Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


New member
Nov 10, 2023
Reaction score
Hi All,

My first post on this forum, but I've been a lurker ever since picking up a gorgeous Tokai Japan 335-copy (UES166) a year and a half ago. Anyway, this post is about a 12-string parlour guitar I picked up recently, which was advertised as being around 25 years old and made in Japan, but is missing its model and serial number on the sticker (these are blank!). I suspect it may be significantly newer and made in China (is the TTG12 listed in this thread? It has the same EQ system).

Either way, it's a really fun little guitar, and while the fret-work isn't perfect (it will need some attention on the higher frets to play perfectly) it sounds pretty good.

Pictures below are from the ebay listing, but I'm happy to take others if needed. The scale length is short (~22.5inches, I think).

Many thanks!



  • s-l1600.jpg
    232.4 KB · Views: 0
  • s-l1600_002.jpg
    281 KB · Views: 0
  • s-l1600_3.jpg
    263.4 KB · Views: 0
  • s-l1600_4.jpg
    222.8 KB · Views: 0
  • s-l1600_5.jpg
    218.5 KB · Views: 0
  • s-l1600_6.jpg
    253.1 KB · Views: 0
  • s-l1600_7.jpg
    155.3 KB · Views: 0
It is tough without a serial number, but the Gibson style flower pot in lay is something I have only seen on Chinese models.

It also uses the Gibson style Tokai logo normally seen on Gibson clones.

Here are similar headstocks on Chinese models in the 2015 catalog

Screen Shot 2023-11-26 at 10.03.21 AM.png
Thanks for that! I think everything's pointing in that direction. And while it's a nice enough guitar, and I'm still pleased to own it, in many ways it doesn't seem to be up to the standards seen in my Japanese electric.

Still, a short-scale 12-string is fun to have around, and tuned up to F# it plays pretty well! The right strings may bring it to life further: currently it has some rather light ones that might be making it a little anaemic-sounding.

Last edited:
Btw, this is not a parlor guitar. Parlors are tiny. This is more like a jumbo or a concert body.
Thanks! Yes, it's that kind of shape, but what you don't get from these pictures is that this is a small guitar. I think it's almost certainly the TTG12 linked to earlier, which is described as a 'Traveller Guitar' on that list (the scale length is 22.5", I think). Certainly not the classic parlour guitar shape, I agree, so I probably should have been more careful with my description.

All the best,


Latest posts