Can USA customers really order from Tama’s Japan custom shop??Some may not know this, but if the drum size is listed in their product page, it can be ordered (a 16"x12" Starclassic maple bass is MAB1612[M/Z]). The bummer is, even with China production, it's still a "6-month wait" for anything not off the shelf (quotes 'cuz it's never the same duration). In addition, you can order a custom Starclassic kit from the Japanese shop, which has alternative colors available that are not available from the China shop.
From my basic observations, the weak link in any custom order is the drum shop. They wait to place an order to accumulate additional products for a better deal, thus delaying the order or, worse, making an incomplete order. Or they botch the detailed parts list and order chrome hardware instead of black nickel. Stupid stuff that ruins the experience for the buyer.