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1982 Tokai Cats Eyes CE-2000T Vintage Martin-Licensed 000-45-Style Acoustic Guitar, Near-Mint w/ Case


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Up for sale, a 1982 Tokai Cat’s Eyes CE-2000T in near-mint, 100% original condition and in perfect working order, complete with the original hardshell case and factory paperwork. An extremely rare top-tier guitar only offered in the Japanese domestic market, the limited edition CE-2000T is a faithful iteration of a Pre-War 000-45.

Circa 1972, Martin and Tokai began an official partnership, in which Tokai was the exclusive dealer of Martin guitars in Japan, while also producing officially licensed Martin models for the Japanese market under the "Cat's Eyes" banner. On many Cat's Eyes models, the text on the serialized instrument labels would also directly reference Martin, stating "C.F. Martin & Co. Japanese Counterpart."

The Cats Eyes models are among the finest steel string acoustic instruments to ever come out of Japan, and features of the CE-2000 include solid tonewoods throughout and X-braced construction, a gloss French lacquer finish, a small maple bridge plate, and copious pearl inlay befitting Martin's 45 tier. Pairing a spruce top and Indian rosewood back and sides, this Tokai Cat's Eyes deliver the traditional tonal profile of the 000 body shape. Projection is ample, and the instrument is sympathetic to delicate fingerpicking and more authoritative strumming, offering exquisite detail and dynamic responsiveness. The lows are round and clear, the midrange is smooth, and the trebles have a sweet, sparkling cut. This CE-2000T weighs 4lbs 4oz, professionally setup here at Mike & Mike’s Guitar Bar with 12-53 bronze strings and easy-playing action.

The mahogany neck has a medium depth soft V-shaped profile carve, measuring .865” deep at the 1st fret and .945” at the 9th. The bound ebony fretboard has minimalist Pre-War-style pearl snowflake inlays, and the slender firewire has well-rounded crowns, only showing light wear beneath the plain strings on the crowns of frets 1-8. This guitar plays cleanly in all registers up the 24.9" scale, and the neck is straight, with the same 3/8" square steel tube reinforcement used by Martin beginning in the 1960s. The hand-carved bone nut measures 1 11/16” in width. The headstock sports a rosewood veneer and very cleanly executed pearl Torch inlay. The original gold-plated Kluson-style tuning machines turn smoothly and hold accurate pitch.

The carved ebony bridge sits flush with the top, and the carved bone saddle has ample room for future adjustment. The brown tortoise pickguard exhibits no shrinkage or separation, with some requisite scuffing along the strum path that extends slightly onto the top. Through the soundhole, the model and serial stamps are on the neck block, and the “Cat’s Eyes” stamp is visible through the soundhole as well.

The top and soundhole are both framed by multi-ply abalone binding. Exceedingly well-kept and crack-free, cosmetic wear on this guitar is limited to just a few imperceptibly light scratches in the clear coat of the French lacquer finish on the body as a whole. The neck profile retains its smooth gloss.

The original black tolex hardshell case is included, along with the original Japanese warranty card.