1963 Vox Clubman II

Solid-body two pickup electric guitar

1963 Vox Clubman II
Model: 1963 Vox Clubman II
Pickups: Two single-coil Vox V1 pickups.
Scale: 25 3/16"
Body: Laminate body. 17 1/2" long, 13" wide, 15/16" thick.
Neck: Sycamore bolt-on neck. Stained (sycamore?) fingerboard. No adjustable truss rod. 19 frets. Width at nut 1 11/16"
Hardware: 2 volume and 1 tone control, white plastic knobs. Co-axial output. Open gear individual tuning keys.
Weight: 2.60 kg

The Vox Clubman, or V203, was one of the brand's earliest UK-built solid body models, though appearing after the Ace, Escort, Duotone, Consort and Soloist models, probably debuting in 1962. They were assembled in Vox's Dartford plant, using parts produced by Vox and other British manufacturers. There were actually two models initially, the Clubman II as shown here and the Clubman I with only a single pickup in the bridge position.

It went through a lot of changes early on, including a complete body/neck redesign in the first half of 1963. Despite this, some early 'old-design' examples were still shipping throughout 1963, and possibly into 1964 alongside the new design, using up old stock. This instrument, judging by the serial number, would have been one of the very last old-style Clubman guitars that shipped, most likely late 1963; some time after it was manufactured. It has a number of features by then largely phased out of Vox guitars in general: black bakelite scratchplate, L-shaped nut and combined Vox/model designation decal. Find out about other variations of the Clubman here.

The following description comes from the 1962 Vox catalogue, the only one to include the older design Clubman

1962 Vox catalogue Clubman I A fine quality single pickup solid electric guitar, distinctive styling in red or white cellulose finish. Polished neck with shaped head. Vox strings and pickup
Clubman II An advanced version of the Clubman I but with additional tone switch providing greater variety of tone. For solo or rhythm. A superior guitar at a very moderate price.

The Clubman was certainly an entry level instrument: lightweight and stripped of all but the most basic features, but perfectly acceptable for beginning guitarists. Over the few years of it's production it improved markedly, gaining superior woods, and hardware, but at this early stage the body was a very thin multi-layered laminate, whilst the un-radiused fretboard was (perhaps?) sycamore - but stained brown to resemble rosewood. It was fitted with a very simple tailpiece and floating bridge, but at least had two pickups.

A closer look at this Vox Clubman

Vox Clubman V1 pickups
The Clubman, in all it's incarnations had two single-coil Vox V1 pickups with chrome covers. In this case both are engraved with the Vox logo.
Vox Clubman floating bridge and tailpiece
The bridge was a very simple floating wood design, with no adjustability beyond it's location. Later Clubman had two-piece bridges that were at least height adjustable.
Vox Clubman tailpiece, detailed view
The 'hump' tailpiece is incredibly simple, lightweight, and cheap to produce: just a piece of pressed metal plate with string holes - also used on the Vox Stroller and earliest examples of the Shadow.
Vox Clubman coaxial output, and tone and volume controls
The catalogue description above suggests a circuit of two tone and one volume control, however this example has two volume and a master tone. The output is not a standard jack, but a TV-aerial style coaxial socket on the guitar side.
Vox Clubman with Vox standard tremolo
Knobs are typical JMI white plastic type, very widely fitted to Vox guitars at this time. Controls and pickups are mounted to the black bakelite single-ply pickguard.
Vox Clubman neck joint and neck plate
Vox did use some rather nice woods on it's mid-upper level guitars, however the Clubman fretboard is not rosewood, rather a lighter coloured wood (maybe sycamore) stained dark brown.
Vox Clubman II headstock decal

Vox Clubman headstock
The Clubman headstock was the same elongated style as the early Ace, Soloist and Duotone models; and with a strong resemblance to other guitars by another early UK guitar maker Fenton-Weill. It is conceivable that both brands used necks produced by a common supplier.
Vox Clubman reverse heastock
Reverse headstock detail. The Clubman had a one-piece sycamore neck, and was fitted with individual open gear tuning keys.
Vox Clubman tuning key detail
Note the serial number to the left of the low-E tuning key (admittedly somewhat difficult to read). UK-produced Vox guitars had a five digit serial stamped into the wood, though some later examples held it on the neckplate.
Vox Clubman neckplate
This Clubman has the smaller imperial-sized Vox neckplate (2 3/13" x 1 5/8") with no markings. The neck is held in place with four 1 3/8" screws. From early 1966 the neckplate of some UK-produced Vox guitars and most Italian examples held the serial number.
Vox Clubman reverse body view
Reverse body and bolt-on neck detail. With the exception of the Clubman bass, no other Vox guitar used the same shaped body.
Vox Clubman nut
Vox Clubman nut. Vox employed several different nut's in the early 1960s; this L-shaped plastic version was fitted to various early Shadow, Stroller, Clubman guitars and Clubman basses with zero frets in 1963.

Vox Clubman wiring

The Clubman circuitry was really very simple: just two volume controls and one master tone. Volume potentiometers are unbranded with no date codes, but values 1 MΩ logarithmic taper. The tone pot is 250KΩ linear taper. The capacitor is rated at .05 µF, and, as is common in UK Vox guitars, manufactured by Hunts.

The Clubman, and Clubman bass not only had the same body shape, they actually used the same bodies, scratchplates, pickups and wiring. A guitar could become a bass, and vice versa by exchanging the bridge and neck. When the Clubman guitar was assigned a new body style, the bass remained unchanged, preventing potential wastage of surplus bodies - although most later Clubman bass guitars were actually given a thicker solid wood (typically mahogany) body fairly soon after this point.

Vox Clubman
Vox Clubman wiring - a look under the scratchplate
Vox Clubman body, without hardware

Note the mahogany shim in the neck pocket of this guitar. This were routinely added to Vox guitars when setting up before leaving the Vox factory.

1963 Vox Clubman video clips

Although an entry level instrument, the Vox Clubman, with it's single coil V1 pickups is a really easy playing, and sweet sounding guitar. Very playable! Demonstrated here through an (also 1963) British WEM ER-15 head with Pick-A-Bass cab. Recorded with an Electrovoice RE-20 (left channel) and Shure SM57 (right), through a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 interface - all highly recommended gear!

Subscribe to our youtube channel for more vintage guitar and bass demos. Also, check out the longer, high definition demo of this guitar/amp here

Got an opinion on the contents of this page? Disagree with something written above? Please comment

Vox guitars for sale

Vintage 1964 Vox Clubman, Sunburst



Take a step into a time machine with this amazing vintage Vox Clubman electric solidbody guitar from the year 1964 and in a Sunburst color with a white pickguard. This English-built guitar was made from an extremely lightweight mahogany body with a soft V-profile straight maple neck and a comfortable rosewood fingerboard. Two Vox single-coils offer a classy yet powerful tone that can be mixed and matched by two volume and a tone knob. This guitar is in Good condition, with a few scrapes, dings ... more

1963 Vox Clubman II guitar JMI vintage - make me an offer



Nice condition Vox Clubman guitar built by JMI in the UK. You don't see many too many complete Vox guitars up for sale - most have some parts missing, but not this one! Great condition vintage guitar - some wear but nothing too serious. Original finish, original headstock decal. All parts present and correct, including fret dots and coaxial style output. Original floating bridge. Vox branded pickup covers. 5 digit serial number. Full working order. Been playing it a lot this week. Sounds great ... more

VOX CLUBMAN - made in U K.


C $595

Clubman - PROJECT: * missing: nut & bridge * 1 pickup has a faint output, needs a rewind * SOLD AS IS - NO RETURNS Allgemeine Geschäftsbedingungen § 1 Allgemeines 1. Für die Geschäftsbeziehungen zwischen der Firma music-outlet-shop und dem Kunden gelten die nachfolgenden allgemeinen Geschäftsbedingungen in ihrer jeweils gültigen Fassung. Abweichende Geschäftsbedingungen des Kunden gelten nicht. 2. Sämtliche Angebote, unabhängig davon, ob sie telefonisch, per Telefax, Internet, E-Mail ... more

1960's Vintage Vox Clubman Guitar With Case



Vintage early 1960's Vox Clubman electric guitar in an unusual transparent wine red colour. Two pick ups each with a tone and volume control. Very good low action and narrow width neck makes it very easy to play and it sounds great. This Vox guitar has only been played at home and hardly at all for the past 36 years. Some attempt was made previously at customisation, but switches etc have been removed hence the two holes in the pick plate. Different Jack socket. Some cracks in the varnish, due ... more

Vintage 1960s Vox Clubman V203 2 Pickup Red Electric Guitar 5 0lbs w / OHSC



Vintage 1960s Vox Clubman V203 2 Pickup Red Electric Guitar 5 0lbs w / OHSCThis wonderful little Vox Clubman (model V203) guitar was purchased from the original owner. It is one of the earlier guitars, with the 'Vox' labeled pickups. A truly special guitar! There are a few dinks throughout, but nothing significant. On the fretboard there are two dents in the rosewood, as pictured, but these don't cause any upset with playability. The jack input looks to be a later addition, with the old one now... more




Clubman - PROJECT: * missing: nut & bridge * 1 pickup has a faint output, needs a rewind * SOLD AS IS - NO RETURNS... more

Find more vintage guitars for sale at vintageguitarsforsale.co

There are 2 comments on this article so far. Add your comment

Comment on this article

Email address
Anti-spam question - to catch web robots
How many legs does a cat have?
pleximax Comment left 8th January 2017 21:09:21 reply
I have a very similar Vox Clubman guitar - how do you determine the body wood? You suggest it may be laminate or mahogany
vintage guitar and bass Comment left 8th January 2017 21:09:48 reply
There are several ways - typically the mahogany bodies are thicker - but the surest way is to look at the unpainted area in the neck pocket (take the neck off) - mahogany is a rich mid brown colour - the laminate wood will typically be a much paler colour. In many instruments the laminations may even show through the finish on the guitars edges. Finally, the laminate bodies tended to be used on the early sixties guitars - if yours is mid or late sixties it will most likely not have a laminate body (although there are most likely exceptions)



Facebook  Twitter  Instagram  Google+

Other Great Sites