Vintage Guitars
I'm happy with this
This website uses cookies to personalise content and adverts, to provide social media features, and to analyse traffic. When you buy through links on our site we may earn an affiliate commission. See terms and conditions

Vox Electric Solid Body Guitars

Solid electric guitars produced in the UK, Italy and Japan

Vox produced solid body guitars in the UK from 1961 until 1967, in Italy between 1965 and 1969, and Japan from 1969 onwards. Different guitars were available to different markets at different times. Initially JMI-made instruments were exported worldwide, but the Dartford plant could not fill demand. From the mid 1960s US guitar stores were stocking Vox guitars made in Italy by EME - a consortium made up of JMI, Thomas Organ co. and Italian guitar company Eko, whilst British Vox's were still produced by JMI. The two plants made noticeably different guitars.

Vintage Vox solid bodies like the teardrop-shaped Mark VI and the Phantom have made Vox guitars famous, and were produced separately in Britain and Italy, but there were very many lesser-known models produced throughout the 1960s, some of which sold in large numbers, like the Shadow, Stroller and Clubman, whilst some are incredibly rare, like the Apache and Scorpion.

UK JMI Vox guitars

The very earliest British instruments bear a remarkable similarity to certain early sixties models made by Fenton Weill; it is not clear whether these were manufactured by them, or a third company produced for both. Supposedly, Two UK furniture manufacturers (Stuart Darkins and then later, G-plan) produced Vox bodies and necks which were then assembled with Vox electronics at the Vox Dartford factory. It is tempting to suggest the differing models with the same names shown in the 1962 Vox Catalogue and 1963 Vox Catalogue represent the work of each company, although this is pure conjecture. Certainly Vox solid bodies were being produced at Dartford by 1965, at least to some extent. Certainly numerous prototypes and test models were made including the one-off Vox Kensington made for the Beatles.

The names of Vox guitars are quite interesting in themselves. Some clearly have musical references: Soloist, Duotone, etc. The name Soundcaster is clearly derived from Stratocaster, as was the instrument itself. Likewise Shadow almost certainly refers to the early sixties British band of the same name - actually THE biggest band in Britain at the dawn of the 1960s, and Vox endorsers too. Others are not so clear, but with the second world war still looming large in the minds of British citizens, it may be that many of these guitar names have military origins. During world war two there were British naval vessels named HMS Ace, HMS Consort, HMS Escort, and American aircraft named Phantom, Dominator, Apache, Scorpion and Marauder.

Italian Vox solid bodies

The JMI plant in Dartford could not keep up with worldwide demand, and production of additional solid body models was allocated to the Eko factory in Italy from 1965. As well as the much desired Mark (teardrop) and Phantom models, Eko produced a range of models not dis-similar to the UK Consort, and all named after British world war two aircraft (with the possible exception of the Vox Harlem): the Meteor (Gloster Meteor), Hurricane, Tempest (Hawker Hurricane & Tempest), Spitfire (Supermarine Spitfire), Bulldog (Bristol Bulldog, actually slightly pre-war), Super Meteor, and Harlem.

By 1967, with demand increasing still, a new plant was set up in Italy, producing a redesigned, but significantly slimmed down range of Vox guitars. This was in conjunction with JMI, Eko, and US distributor Thomas Organ, and was known as EME. The new solid body models were based on existing designs: the Phantom-styled Delta, Bulldog-styled Invader and Fender/Vox Consort-styled Thunderjet V260. Again, these three models had aircraft origins, but with production very much focused on the USA, American planes were chosen: Convair Delta Dagger, Douglas Invader and Republic Thunderjet.

Some of these guitars, both British and Italian, were fitted with built-in electronic effects, and it is perhaps these as much as anything that give Vox guitars their distinctive sounds.

Vox Mark VI Special
Vox Bassmaster
Vox Stroller
Vox Ace
Vox Shadow with original case
Six string
Vox SB1
Vox SB2
Vox Stroller V201
   1961 Vox Stroller Guyatone LG-50 style
   1963 Vox Stroller Guyatone LG-50 style
   1967 Vox Stroller
   1966 parts list
Vox Clubman V203
   1963 Clubman II
   1966 parts list
   1967 Clubman
Vox Ace V205
   1962 Vox Ace
   1963 Vox Ace
   1965 Vox Ace
   1966 parts list
Vox Super Ace V206
   1963 Vox Super Ace
   1966 parts list
Vox Shadow V208
   1963 Vox Shadow Guyatone LG-50 style
   1963 Vox Shadow
   1964 Vox Shadow | Soundclips
   1966 parts list
Vox Phantom VI V209
Vox Soundcaster V211
   1966 parts list
Vox Consort V212
   1963 Vox Consort
   1966 parts list
Vox Apache
Vox Dominator
Vox Duotone
Vox Escort
Vox Holborn
Vox Soloist
Vox Scorpion
Vox Phantom Mark III
Vox Mark VI V222
Vox Mark VI Special
Vox New Escort
   1966 New Escort
Vox Marauder
Vox Marauder Special
Vox Meteor V233
Vox Hurricane V234
Vox Spitfire V235
Vox Bulldog V241
Vox Super Meteor V242
Vox Harlem V244
Vox Thunderjet V260
Vox Delta V261
Vox Invader V262
Vox V.G.2

Nine string
Vox Mark IX V231
Vox Scorpion

Twelve string
Vox Bouzouki
Vox Phantom XII V221
Vox Mark XII V223
Vox Tempest XII V230
Vox Phantom XII Stereo V246

Japanese Vox solid bodies

Right at the end of the 1960s, Vox sold a number of rebadged Japanese instruments under the Vox marque. These included the Les Paul style sold body VG2.

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

Vox guitars for sale is funded by its visitors. When you buy through links on our site we may earn an affiliate commission. For more info see terms and conditions.
00 Vox Mark lll Guitar

'00 Vox Mark lll Guitar

Fredericksburg, Texas, 786**, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


Welcome to Street Dreams in Texas as we celebrate our 25th year in the classic and muscle car business. We also sell rare and hard to find rock and roll memorabilia. We are happy to offer one of those rare items. This is a '00 Vox Mark lll in this original zebra finish by Kevin Smith. Only three of these were done with this finish, this is #2 of only 3. This guitar features an alder body, thin C shaped maple neck with a 12" radius Rosewood fingerboard and medium jumbo frets, 25 5" scale ... more
eBay logo
Vox Mark IX 1960s Vintage 9 string guitar Sunburst w / hard case *FREE SHIPPING*

Vox Mark IX 1960's Vintage 9 string guitar Sunburst w / hard case *FREE SHIPPING*

Neosho, Missouri, 648**, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


This is a 1960's Vintage Vox 9 string electric guitar
The Low E, A, & D strings are single, and the Higher G, B, and E are doubled up
Plays great! Italian made
Tear drop shape
Appears to be all original except for:
It's missing the pickup selector switch tip, and missing the back upholstery piece,
The tremolo bar was replaced with a newer aftermarket one
She shows lots of wear throughout, with dings and nicks all over . I snapped several pictures, ... more
eBay logo


Ferndale, Michigan, 482**, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


When I saw the case I got real excited. Then I opened it and BANG! A mid- 60's Vox Phantom 6 in near MINT condition and 100% original. The guitar is so clean I thought 'is this a reissue'? No, it's the real deal in amazing condition. No wear, very few slight surface blemishes with a small dose of laquer checking and frets that look new with no playing wear whatsoever. A pure white pickguard with 'no' pick scratching. I did find 1 scratch next to the neck plate with a bit of wood exposed. The... more
eBay logo
1964 VOX Super Ace  For Repair  /  Restoration

1964 VOX Super Ace For Repair / Restoration

Mission, Texas, 785**, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


Non-functioning. For Repair and restoration. 1964 Vox Super Ace. Originally, this guitar appears to have been a fiesta red finish. There is evidence inside the body cavities. The finish was stripped, and the Vox headstock logo faded away after many years. The loaded pickguard works! These pickups are sought after, from what I've read. They are missing their covers, but they still work. The pots, including the 3-way selector, all work. They can be a little scratchy at times, but they work. No ... more
eBay logo
VOX MARK VI WITH  CASE Electric Teardrop Guitar 1966 Sunburst Made In Italy

VOX MARK VI WITH CASE Electric Teardrop Guitar 1966 Sunburst Made In Italy

Dallas, Texas, 752**, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


This vintage Vox Mark VI electric teardrop guitar from 1966 is a true gem for any guitar collector or enthusiast. Crafted in Italy, this right-handed guitar has a solid body with a beautiful sunburst color. It features a 6-string configuration and comes with a case for safekeeping. The guitar is in great shape and has been well-maintained over the years.

The guitar bears the Vox brand and series name, and is perfect for those who are passionate about music and want to add a unique ... more
eBay logo


Saint Charles, Illinois, 601**, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


VOX MARK 111 RARE USA GUITAR. Condition is Used
... more
eBay logo
Vintage 1966 Vox Hurricane Guitar Made in Italy w / Gig Bag

Vintage 1966 Vox Hurricane Guitar Made in Italy w / Gig Bag

Lancaster, Pennsylvania, 176**, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


Vintage Vox Hurricane electric guitar. Recently refurbished. Has a new tremolo arm, bracket, spring and metal string rollers from Phantom Guitar Works. The guitar was given a complete stripdown, deep cleaning and rebuild by me in my shop. The frets have been leveled, crowned and polished, the fretboard has been cleaned and conditioned and the guitar has had a professional setup with new D'Addario strings
The only issue is ... more
eBay logo
*VINTAGE!!!* 1960s Vox Meteor Electric Guitar, Red w /  *NEW* Gig Bag

*VINTAGE!!!* 1960's Vox Meteor Electric Guitar, Red w / *NEW* Gig Bag

Marietta, Georgia, 300**, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


This is a vintage, used instrument in working condition. Pickguard has some warping, but does not affect the playability of the instrument. This little 60's guitar has a lovely tone that takes the player back in time. This guitar is sold as-is, and includes a NEW padded gig bag


Thank you for supporting the Gift of Music Foundation! We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation working to democratize access to musical instruments and education to ... more
eBay logo
Phantom Guitarworks (Vox) Limited Edition Teardrop Hollowbody #10 of 20

Phantom Guitarworks (Vox) Limited Edition Teardrop Hollowbody #10 of 20

Ashburn, Virginia, 201**, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


This Limited Edition Phantom (Vox) Hollowbody Teardrop guitar is in mint unplayed condition. It is #10 of only 20 made. All Phantom®, Teardrop® and MandoGuitars® are hand-assembled in the United States of America with foreign and domestic parts
The bookmatched flame maple top pattern in the see-through red finish does not show up too well in photos but it's stunning in person.
... more
eBay logo
60s VOX SPITFIRE NECK - made in UK

60's VOX SPITFIRE NECK - made in UK



* refinished in red
* fingerboard was laquered
* new inlays installed
* routed for a locking nut
* tuner holes were made larger
* frets are fine

CHECK OUR SHOP OUT -------------->>>>>-------------->>>>>
... more
eBay logo
VOX White Shadow M Series Japan Keystone Blue vintage superstrat electric 60 80

VOX White Shadow M Series Japan Keystone Blue vintage superstrat electric 60 80

Betws-y-Coed, LL24***, UNITED KINGDOM


My guitar playing days are over alas, so here is one of the last of my once extensive collection?? I don??t know why I have been holding Onto this one?? Certainly not one of the most valuable or glamorous of my collection, just very playable?? Looking for a new home??
The Vox White Shadow was made between the years of 1984 and 1986. The White Shadow M Series was made in Korea in the late 80's and has a very different body shape
The Vox from the 60's was just called the Shadow, it was ... more
eBay logo




Vox Spitfire parts - made in UK:
* 3 pickups & covers (5, 4K & 5, 6K & 6, 2K)
* pots & switch
* pickguard appears to be not original
... more
eBay logo
Vintage Vox Hurricane Mitte der 1960er Jahre E-Gitarre in cremefarbener Oberfläche!

Vintage Vox Hurricane Mitte der 1960er Jahre E-Gitarre in cremefarbener Oberfläche!

Berlin, 10***, GERMANY


Hi! I am selling my used 1960s VOX Hurricane Electric Guitar. The guitar has a beautiful color to it and feels really nice. The guitar has cracks in the paint and there is wood missing from the nut area. When I bought the guitar the whole first fret buzzed but after getting my luthier to take a look at it he was able to make it play nicely again! Tuners are a bit tough to turn, but all parts are original. I changed the strap buttons to something more reliable, but I will still send the original ... more
eBay logo
Guitarra eléctrica Vox Consort 1963 / 4 JMI Dartford Kent UK

Guitarra eléctrica Vox Consort 1963 / 4 JMI Dartford Kent UK

Viladecans, 08***, SPAIN


Guitarra eléctrica Vox Consort, ideal para coleccionistas (las imágenes lo dicen todo) fabricada en 1963 y comprada en 1964 (lleva el sello del año de venta en el mástil y el número de serie en el clavijero), sin restauración, todo totalmente original, clavijero, ceja, clavija, trastes, mástil tensor, marcadores, posición, diapasón, mástil, cuerpo, pastillas, controles de volumen y tono, puente, protector o golpeador, 100% de origen!!
Vox Consort electric guitar, ideal for ... more
eBay logo
VOX Phantom EXTREMELY RARE prototype Chitarra Vintage Sunburst Guitar 1965-1968.

VOX Phantom EXTREMELY RARE prototype Chitarra Vintage Sunburst Guitar 1965-1968.

Foligno, 06***, ITALY


The Vox Phantom is an electric guitar, originally released in 1962 by the Jennings company. It is unique for its distinctive, pentagonal shape, which became part of the iconic representation of the British Invasion. Originally made in England, manufacturing was later relocated to Italy
Please note:
The guitar is working, very funny to play and in very good conditions considering his age!
The tremolo arm is working fine not affecting the tuning.
The circuitry is also ... more
eBay logo

Find more Vox guitars for sale at

There are 1 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 duck have?
Sonia Davey Comment left 5th June 2014 04:04:17 reply
Hi, I'm looking for a valuation of my fathers old Vox escort. He bought it in the early seventies from a band mate, but we do not know how old it was then. Possibly 1960s? Is there a way to find out its year? It's red, and seems to be in good shape. Any help greatly appreciated.


mailing list


Facebook  Instagram  YouTube

Other Great Sites

Recent posts on vintage guitar and bass

1971 Selmer guitar catalogue

1971 Selmer guitar catalogueScan of 1971 Selmer guitar catalogue showing the range of electric and acoustic guitars distributed by the company: guitars by Gibson, Yamaha, Selmer, Hofner and Suzuki. 1960s Selmer had always placed Hofner at the front end of their catalogues, no doubt these were the better sellers - but into the 1970s Hofner were slipping somewhat and only appear at the tail end of this publication, pride of place going to Gibson, and to a lesser extent Yamaha. In fact this is the last Selmer catalogue to include the many Hofner hollow bodies (Committee, President, Senator etc) that had defined the companies output for so many years - to be replaced in the 1972 catalogue by generic solid body 'copies' of Gibson and Fender models. A number of new Gibson models are included for the first time: the SG-100 and SG-200 six string guitars and the SB-300 and SB-400 basses.

1968 Selmer guitar catalogue

1968 Selmer guitar catalogueScan of 1968/1969 Selmer guitar catalogue (printed July 1968), showing the entire range of electric and acoustic guitars distributed by the company: guitars by Hofner, Gibson, Selmer and Giannini. Selmer were the exclusive United Kingdom distributors of Hofner and Gibson at the time, and this catalogue contains a total of 18 electric guitars, 7 bass guitars, 37 acoustics, and 2 Hawaiian guitars - all produced outside the UK and imported by Selmer, with UK prices included in guineas. This catalogue saw the (re-)introduction of the late sixties Gibson Les Paul Custom and Les Paul Standard (see page 69) and the short-lived Hofner Club 70. Other electric models include: HOFNER ELECTRICS: Committee, Verithin 66, Ambassador, President, Senator, Galaxie, HOFNER BASSES: Violin bass, Verithin bass, Senator bass, Professional bass GIBSON ELECTRICS: Barney Kessel, ES-330TD, ES-335TD, ES-345TD, ES-175D, ES-125CD, SG Standard, SG Junior, SG Special GIBSON BASSES: EB-0, EB-2, EB-3 - plus a LOT of acoustics branded Gibson, Hofner, Selmer and Giannini

1961 Hofner Colorama I

1961 Hofner Colorama IHofner Colorama was the name UK distributor Selmer gave to a series of solid and semi-solid guitars built by Hofner for distribution in the UK. The construction and specifications of the guitars varied over the period of production, but by 1961 it was a totally solid, double cutaway instrument, with a set neck, translucent cherry finish, six-in-a-row headstock, and Hofner Diamond logo pickups. Available as a single or dual pickup guitar, this sngle pickup version would have been sold in mainland Europe as the Hofner 161.

1971 Commodore N25 (Matsumoku)

1971 Commodore N25 (Matsumoku)Commodore was a brand applied to a series of guitars produced in Japan at the well-respected Matsumoku plant from the late 1960s to the mid 1970s - and sold primarily (perhaps exclusively?) in the United Kingdom. The models bearing the Commodore name were all guitars available from different distributors with different branding. Although there may have been some minor changes in appointments (specifically headstock branding) most had the same basic bodies, hardware and construction. Equivalent models to the Commodore N25 (and this is by no means an exhaustive list) include the Aria 5102T, Conrad 5102T(?), Electra 2221, Lyle 5102T, Ventura V-1001, Univox Coily - and most famously the Epiphone 5102T / Epiphone EA-250.

1960 Hofner Colorama II

1960 Hofner Colorama IIThe Hofner Colorama was the name given by Selmer to a series of solid (and semi-solid) body Hofner guitars distributed in the United Kingdom between 1958 and 1965. The Colorama name actually applied to some quite different guitars over the period, but in 1960 it was a very light, semi-solid, set necked guitar with one (Colorama I) or two (Colorama II, as seen here) Toaster pickups. Although an entry-level guitar, it was very well-built, and a fine playing guitar; certainly a step up (at least in terms of craftsmanship) from many of the Colorama guitars that would follow, and a good deal of the guitars available in Britain circa 1960.

1971 Epiphone 1820 bass (ET-280)

1971 Epiphone 1820 (ET-280) bassBy the end of the 1960s, a decision had been made to move Epiphone guitar production from the USA (at the Kalamazoo plant where Gibson guitars were made), to Matsumoto in Japan, creating a line of guitars and basses significantly less expensive than the USA-built models (actually less than half the price). The Matsumoku factory had been producing guitars for export for some time, but the 1820 bass (alongside a number of guitar models and the 5120 electric acoustic bass) were the first Epiphone models to be made there. These new Epiphones were based on existing Matsumoku guitars, sharing body shapes, and hardware, but the Epiphone line was somewhat upgraded, with inlaid logos and a 2x2 peghead configuration. Over the course of the 70s, the Japanese output improved dramatically, and in many ways these early 70s models are a low point for the brand. Having said this, there are a lot worse guitars out there, and as well as being historically important, the 1820 bass can certainly provide the goods when required.

1981 Gibson Marauder

1981 Gibson MarauderProduction of Bill Lawrence's Gibson Marauder began in 1974, with production peaking in 1978. But by 1980 the model was officially discontinued, though very small numbers slipped out as late as spring 1981. Over 7000 examples shipped between 1974 and 1979, and although no totals are available for 1980 and 1981, it is unlikely production reached three figures in either of these years. These final Marauders were all assembled at the Gibson Nashville plant, and had some nice features not available through the later years of production, such as a rosewood fretboard, and in this case, an opaque 'Devil Red' finish. It's a great looking and fine playing guitar!

1971 'Pick Epiphone' Catalog

1971 Pick Epiphone catalogWhen Epiphone production moved from Kalamazoo to the Matsumoku plant in Japan, a whole new range of electric, flattop and classic acoustic guitars was launched. Between late 1970 and 1972 the new models were launched and refined. This 'folder' catalog contains various inserts released over these years detailing four electric six-strings (ET-270, ET-275, ET-278, and thinline EA-250), three bass guitars (ET-280, ET-285, and thinline EA-260), three folk/steel acoustics, four jumbo flattop acoustics, two 12-string jumbos, four classic acoustics, and a banjo.

1981 'Gibson Specials' Pre-Owners Manual

1981 Gibson Specials Pre-Owners Manual'Gibson Specials' was part of the June 1981 pre-owners manual series, but unlike the other folders contained a mish-mash of different guitars: limited editions, test marketing and close outs. "You will find the unusual, the brand-new, and the bargain within this folder". End of line 70s guitars like the Marauder, S-1, and L-6S Custom mixed in with brand new models the The V, The Explorer and the Flying V Bass.
It was the largest folder in the series, with 24 inserts, (19 guitars and 5 basses): Guitars: 335-S Standard, Melody Maker Double, Marauder, L-6S Custom, S-1, RD Artist, Firebird, Firebird II, Flying V, Flying V-II, The V, Explorer, Explorer II, The Explorer, The "SG" Standard, Les Paul Artist, Les Paul Artisan, ES-335 Heritage, ES-175/CC Basses: Grabber, G-3, L-9S, RD Artist Bass, Flying V Bass

1970s Shaftesbury 3263 bass

1970s Shaftesbury 3263 bassRose-Morris were selling Shaftesbury-branded Rickenbacker copy instruments from the late 1960s right through the 1970s. The 3263 bass was one of the first models, (alongside the 3261 six string and 3262 twelve string) available from late 1968 until about 1974. The earliest incarnation was a set neck bass, produced very briefly in Japan. But production quickly moved to Italy. This bolt-on neck example was built by Eko, in Recanati, using the same hardware and pickups as fitted to Eko, and Vox basses built around the same time. It's certainly a fine looking bass, and not a bad player either.

1961 Hohner Zambesi

1961 Hohner ZambesiThis very early, and pretty rare British-built guitar is branded Hohner London. Hohner were, of course, a German company, better known for their harmonicas and accordions, but they were keenly expanding into guitars at the birth of the 1960s. This model, along with the Hohner Amazon and (particularly) the Hohner Holborn, bear some similarity with Vox guitars of the same period; furniture manufacturer Stuart Darkins constructed bodies and necks for both brands, with Fenton Weill assembling them using their hardware and pickups. These guitars do have some hardware peculiarities, and they are not the most adjustable of instruments, but they actually play very nicely, being solidly built out of some very nice woods. Check out the video on this page.

1963 Vox Super Ace

1963 Vox Super AceThe Vox Super Ace was a mid-priced British solid body electric guitar, produced by JMI at their factory in Dartford, Kent. It was broadly modelled on the Fender Stratocaster, and a sibling model to the dual-pickup Vox Ace. Both the Ace, and Super Ace (along with several other models), were redesigned in 1963 with a new body shape, headstock style, and pickup layout - only increasing the resemblance to the aforementioned Fender. The Super Ace had a 1963 price tag of 47 5S. It's a pretty nice playing guitar with some lovely sounds - check out the videos on this page, and in the Vintage Guitar and Bass supporting members area

1966 Vox New Escort

1966 Vox New EscortThe Vox New Escort was Vox's version of the Fender Telecaster, at a time when American guitars were out of reach for most British musicians. It was made by JMI in England, for the British market, and unlike the majority of other models, didn't have an Italian-made equivalent. But the New Escort wasn't a slavish Fender copy, adding Vox's stylish teardrop headstock to the tele-style body, with a stop tailpiece and two Vox V2 single coil pickups. And it's a pretty substantial, and nice playing guitar, with a very comfortable neck. Check out the images, specifications, and watch a video of it in action. There is also extra content in the vintageguitarandbass supporting members area.

1969 Fender catalog, Fender Lovin' Care

1969 Fender catalog, Fender Lovin CareCatalog scan. The 1969 Fender Lovin' Care catalog consisted of 48 pages of electric guitars, basses, amplifiers, steel guitars, acoustic guitars, banjos and keyboards. Like the previous catalog, this featured the company's guitars in a variety of interesting settings around California, from the Whiskey-A-Go-Go, to the Hollywood Bowl. Several instruments were making their first appearance amongst it's pages: the Telecaster bass, Montego and LTD jazz guitars, and the Redondo acoustic. It was the final catalog appearance, however, of the Electric XII, Bass V, Duo-Sonic, Coronado I and Coronado Bass I.

1973 Eko Ranger Folk

1973 Eko Ranger FolkThe Eko Ranger series of guitars was incredibly popular in the second half of the 1960s and through the 1970s, selling in very large numbers. The Ranger Folk was 1 1/4" smaller, and 1" shallower than the Ranger VI and XII - and with a narrower waist. Not a bad guitar; a little quiet, but pretty playable. These were great value in 1973, and because they sold so many, they are easy to find and excellent value today.

1966 Vox Symphonic bass guitar

1966 Vox Symphonic bass guitarThe Symphonic bass was built in the UK, by Vox parent company JMI. It was the Vox equivalent to the Fender Precision bass, and was one of the most expensive Vox guitars produced. It was actually a great playing bass, rather similar to the Precision in feel and sound, but was probably just too expensive compared to an actual Fender and consequently sold poorly. When Vox hit financial problems in 1968, unsold guitars and basses were passed on to Dallas Arbiter, who briefly sold the excess Symphonic bass stock as model 4537. This bass, although with a neck date of February 1966, was most likely one of the unsold Vox guitars sold on by Dallas Arbiter. Check out the bass, and the two video demos through 1960s Ampeg and WEM amplifiers.

1968 Shaftesbury 'Electric Guitars' catalog

1968 Shaftesbury catalogThe 1968 Shaftesbury 'Electric Guitars' catalog was just four pages long, and contained four guitar models: the six string Barney Kessel-style 3264; and three Rickenbacker-styled semi-acoustic models: the six-string 3261, the twelve string 3262 and the 3263 bass. Shaftesbury was the house-brand of major UK distributor Rose-Morris, and seems to have been launched as a response to the company's loss of it's distribution deal with Rickenbacker. The guitars were mid-priced, and built in (initially) Japan, and later Italy, by Eko

1970 Rose-Morris 'Exciting Electrics Wonderful Westerns Celebrated Classics' catalog

1970 Rose_Morris catalog1970 Rose-Morris catalog, dated April 1970. It featured 6 electric guitars, 32 acoustic guitars, 3 basses and 1 steel guitar. It contains the following instruments, over 20 pages: Electric guitars: Shaftesbury 3261, 3262, 3264, 3265, 3400; Top Twenty 1970; Bass: Shaftesbury 3263, 3266; Top Twenty 1971; Acoustic guitars: Eko Rio Bravo, Rio Bravo 12, Ranchero, Ranchero 12, Colorado, Ranger, Ranger Folk, Ranger 12; Aria 1674, 1675, 1676, 1679, 1680, 1695, 'John Pearse' Jumbo, 'John Pearse' Folk; Rose-Morris 15-11, Kansas, Georgian, Florida; Suzuki 1663, 1664, 1665, 3054, 3055, 3060; Tatay 1713, 1714, 1715; Peerless 3052; Steel guitar: Aria 3425

1971 Rose-Morris 'Exciting Electrics Wonderful Westerns' catalog

1971 Rose_Morris catalogThe sixteen-page 1971 Rose-Morris catalog featured electric guitars by Rose-Morris' own brand, Shaftesbury, and budget brand Top Twenty; aswell as acoustics by Eko, Aria, and for the first time Ovation. The catalog contains the following instruments: Electric guitars: Shaftesbury 3261, 3264, 3265, 3400, 3402; Top Twenty 1970; Bass: Shaftesbury 3263, 3266; Top Twenty 1971; Acoustic guitars: Ovation: Balladeer, 12 String, Glen Campbell, Glen Campbell 12 string; Eko Rio Bravo, Rio Bravo 12, Ranger, Ranger Folk, Ranger 12, Colorado, Ranchero, Ranchero 12, Studio 'L'; Rose-Morris Florida; Aria 'John Pearse' Jumbo, 'John Pearse' Folk

1972 Fender Precision bass

1972 Fender PrecisionA detailed look at an early 1970s Fender Precision bass guitar in custom black finish, with rosewood fretboard. 1972 list price, $307.50. The Fender Precision had been shipping since at least very early 1952 - with just one re-design circa 1957. This example, then, shows a model already two decades old, but barely changed since the '57 revamp. Fender got it right first time around, and although there are numerous minor cosmetic differences, the essence of this bass is effectively the same as it was in '52: a simple, single pickup instrument with a GREAT sound. Check out the demo video through an old Ampeg B15. It's no wonder this is the bass that everybody wants!

1967 Vox Stroller

1967 Vox StrollerThe Vox Stroller was the brand's entry level electric solid body guitar, fitted with just one pickup and a fixed tailpiece. Although aimed at student guitarists, it wasn't a terrible instrument, but did lack somewhat in adjustability, having no accessible truss rod and only a floating rosewood bridge. But this example is actually quite an improvement on earlier versions, with a standard 1/4" jack and a solid mahogany body. 1967 price £18 2s. JMI ceased UK guitar production in late '67, and combined with decreasing demand for the Stroller, this surely must be one of the last examples shipped.

1963 Vox Clubman Bass (left handed)

1963 Vox Clubman Bass left handedA nice example of the Vox Clubman II bass, built by JMI in Dartford, Kent in 1963. This is a lightweight bass, short (30") scale and very easy to play. It is an early example, and as such has a thin black scratchplate and side mounted, coaxial output jack. JMI offered left handed examples of their solid body Vox guitars and basses at 10% premium. Production numbers are unclear, but left-handed examples rarely come up for sale

1977 Gibson ES Artist 'prototype'

1977 Gibson ES Artist prototypeNot to be confused with the Gibson ES Artist launched by Gibson in 1979; this ES Artist was an early model designed by the Gibson research and development team in Kalamazoo in 1977, the instruments themselves constructed by Gibson artist Chuck Burge. It was planned for launch as a high end semi acoustic with 335-style construction (central maple block) and innovative circuitry - but was pulled at the last minute, being deemed too expensive. Apparently, several examples were produced with varying specifications, though exactly how many actually left the Kalamazoo plant is unclear. Certainly two guitars were sold to LaVonne Music by Gibson in around 1980. Read more about the development of this guitar, with details from Chuck Burge and the story of it's sale to LaVonne music

1959 Hofner Committee

1959 Hofner CommitteeThe Hofner Committee was a truly beautiful guitar produced in Germany, primarily for the UK market. It was a large bodied (initially 17 1/2") guitar with a carved spruce top, available as an acoustic or electric guitar. By the early sixties the carved top was replaced with a laminate, and although still a very fine guitar, the earlier carved top examples, with frondose headstock (like the example shown here) are far more highly prized amongst musicians and vintage guitar collectors.

1965 Gretsch Chet Atkins Tennessean

1965 Gretsch Chet Atkins TennesseanThe Gretsch Chet Atkins Tennessean, or model 6119 was Gretsch's best selling hollow body of the 1960s. This wonderfully faded example from 1965 was originally Dark Cherry Red, but has turned a mid-orange brown. The original color, however, can be seen underneath the pickup surrounds. 1965 specs: maple body, two-piece neck, Brazilian rosewood fretboard and Hi-Lo 'Tron single coil pickups. Nickel plated Gretsch Bigsby tailpiece.

1965 Gretsch 'For the Spectacular Sound of the Times' guitar and amp catalog

1965 Gretsch catalogThe 1965 Gretsch catalog, or catalog #32, featured 10 hollow body electric guitars, including the newly launched Gretsch Viking; four solid body electrics, including the Astro Jet - making it's only catalog appearance; just one bass, the single pickup PX6070; nine acoustics and 12 tube amplifiers. Pride of place went to the Chet Atkins Country Gentleman that adorned both the front and back covers. 24 pages, six of which are in full color.

Guitar Repair: fixing fret buzz and sharp fret ends

Guitar Repair: fixing fret buzz and sharp fret endsLoose frets are especially problematic in certain old guitars, but are generally very easy to fix. You'll be amazed at the difference you can make with just a few tools, a bit of knowledge, and a little time. Fixing loose frets can eliminate fret buzz, remove sharp fret ends, and greatly improve the tone of any guitar. If your luthier bill will be greater than the value of your guitar, definitely time to have a go yourself!

1966 Hagstrom 'worlds fastest playing neck' catalog (Merson USA)

1966 Hagstrom guitar catalogHagstrom guitars were distributed in the mid-1960s United States by Merson of USA. This eight page 'worlds fastest playing neck' catalog, printed in two-colors contained six solid body electrics, three solid body basses, two electric acoustic guitars, two electric acoustic basses and five acoustics.

1965 Hofner President

1965 Hofner PresidentThe President was produced by Hofner in Bubenreuth, Germany, specifically for Selmer, who distributed the brand in the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and other commonwealth nations. The President was a hollow body electric acoustic, available as a full body or thinline, and with blonde or brunette finish. It was a great playing guitar that sold fairly well in the second half of the 1950s, throughout the 1960s, and into the very early 1970s. The example shown here is a full-body depth guitar in blonde - and as a 1965 guitar, one of the last to feature the rounded Venetian cutaway. From late 1965 until 1972, the President sported a sharp Florentine cut. Naturally, such an electric acoustic suggests jazz and blues, but many of the original British Hofner President players were part of the rock 'n roll, skiffle and beat scenes of the late 50s and early 60s.

1963 1964 Fender catalog

Fender 1963 catalogue"The Choice of Professional and Student Musicians Everywhere" This eight page catalogue was included as an insert in the 1963 annual "school music" issue of Downbeat magazine (September 1963). As well as keyboards and pedal steels, this catalog contains seven guitars, three basses and ten amplifiers - from student guitars such as the Musicmaster and Duotone to professional models like the new Jaguar.