1960s Vox (EKO) Electric 12-String Mando Guitar

How cool is this? I've worked on a few 12-string mando-guitar gadgets of various types but this is the first original Vox mando-guitar that I've had through the shop. They're a little hard to come by and, so I've heard, Ry Cooder was a famous wielder of such a critter.

This style of Vox Mando Guitar was made in Italy by EKO for the brand and has a Fender-y neck feel and sunburst look but the appointments, control layout, and hardware becomes very Italian the moment you start scrutinizing the details. The knobs are almost Mosrite-like.

Aside from having to rewire it (the original 3-way and jack were toast and the grounding was odd), it got a level/dress of the frets done by Ancel and a lot of tweaking of the bridge and setup to get it playing its best. It's now playing beautifully, however, and I've got it strung in unison ("as god intended") which is a good match for the saddles which don't adjust for string-to-string intonation.

I wish I'd had time to record a video because it sounds tremendous. Something about the lighter-weight body, aluminum bridge materials, and high voice all turn-out to give this thing a shimmery, sweet, lighthearted kind-of voice. It makes you want to play it.