NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

For guitars of the straight waisted variety (or reverse offset).
User avatar
raphaël
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 680
Joined: Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:42 am
Location: Moëlan sur Mer, France

NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by raphaël » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:26 pm

Hey,

This might be my most exciting NGuitarD post since a long time.
I've been dreaming about one of those for the past 15 years, don't know why I didn't pull the trigger earlier.

I'm a Vox thinline guitars addict...I was looking to buy a Cheetah, Ultrasonic or Super Lynx but they are highly cost prohibitive for me and they rarely pop up near me.
But with knowing more and more and more every day about guitars AND History, I understood Eko was producing those guitars for Vox.

I had an Eko Trump II, which was basically a Vox Typhoon, but I stupidly sold it 3 years ago because I needed money for the family car.
I'm kicking myself since then because it was a great guitar.

And yesterday, after a killing 3 months wait (long story), I received this marvellous 60's Eko 290 aka Barracuda, which is basically a Vox Super Lynx:
Image
Image

The guitar is in a great shape and I love everything about it:

The headstock,
Image

The "reverse-headstock" tailpiece and the bridge cover,
Image

How yellow the binding is,
Image

The cheesy spaghetti stamp,
Image

And the simple in line vol/tone/vol/tone knobs.
Image

The guitar has Vox pickups...
:'( they are magic :'(
:-* :-*
Image

The neck is a perfect fit to my hand, frets are good and the fretboard is daaaaaark. I'm pretty sure it's ebony.
The tuners are awesome. I have the very same on my Crucianelli Les Paul and they definitly are great tuners. The guitars are staying in tune heavenly.
Only missing the trem bar on that one.

SOOOO!!!

This was one of my dream guitars, and for once, I'm not disappointed.
I used to own guitars, amps or pedals I thought they might change my life as a musician when I was gasing very hard on them. I've been disappointed almost every time.

But not here!!!
This Eko is an instant keeper, an instant main instrument and foundation to my sound.

Plus I wanted an ES shaped guitars without humbuckers and without being a Gibson, and there it is.

Oh I know, it's not even a Vox, it's just an Eko...but it's the very same guitar...and waaaaaaaay cheaper.
I actually feel some pride about it being an Eko and not a Vox 8)

Cheers!!!
raph

User avatar
kosmonautmayhem
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 5425
Joined: Sun Mar 14, 2010 8:26 am
Location: Chicago

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by kosmonautmayhem » Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:48 pm

This is a stellar NGD post for all the right reasons!

Congrats! I like it a lot!

User avatar
antisymmetric
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 2912
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 11:32 pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by antisymmetric » Thu Jan 18, 2018 4:12 pm

Lovely!! :) :-*
Watching the corners turn corners

User avatar
nanamour
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 388
Joined: Wed Aug 14, 2013 8:22 pm
Location: Space City, Texas

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by nanamour » Thu Jan 18, 2018 4:20 pm

Lo adoro!
raphaël wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:26 pm
The tuners are awesome. I have the very same on my Crucianelli Les Paul and they definitly are great tuners. The guitars are staying in tune heavenly.
Only missing the trem bar on that one.
Those would be Van Ghent tuners, are they are indeed a quality piece of kit! They were common on Hagströms, higher end Ekos and Goyas, and even some Gretsches (in open-backed form) for a time.

I love the ones on my Hagstrom Viking, both in function (tuning stability) and form (minimalist heft of the tuning keys and the teardrop covers), so much so that I purchased a second set with plans to mount them on my Jaguar partscaster somewhere down the line.

User avatar
Shadoweclipse13
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 5444
Joined: Fri Feb 07, 2014 9:22 pm
Location: Stuck in the dimension of imagination

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by Shadoweclipse13 » Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:34 pm

Love everything about it!!!
Pickup Switching Mad Scientist
http://www.offsetguitars.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=104282&p=1438384#p1438384

User avatar
antisymmetric
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 2912
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 11:32 pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by antisymmetric » Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:02 pm

nanamour wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 4:20 pm
Lo adoro!
raphaël wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:26 pm
The tuners are awesome. I have the very same on my Crucianelli Les Paul and they definitly are great tuners. The guitars are staying in tune heavenly.
Only missing the trem bar on that one.
Those would be Van Ghent tuners, are they are indeed a quality piece of kit! They were common on Hagströms, higher end Ekos and Goyas, and even some Gretsches (in open-backed form) for a time.

I love the ones on my Hagstrom Viking, both in function (tuning stability) and form (minimalist heft of the tuning keys and the teardrop covers), so much so that I purchased a second set with plans to mount them on my Jaguar partscaster somewhere down the line.
Van Ghents even got installed a few New Zealand-made guitars- I have them on my Commodore, and although they're on the edge of being just a bit too worn, they're staying on the guitar because they're just so pretty! :-*
Watching the corners turn corners

User avatar
BoringPostcards
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 4311
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2009 8:50 am
Location: Newfoundland

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by BoringPostcards » Fri Jan 19, 2018 6:33 am

I LOVE EKOS!! I am so jealous of you right now, bud! Enjoy it in good health!
"Can you please pass me a jug of winter light?" - Lee Ranaldo
Poster formally known as Skiptracer/ZenJenga

User avatar
Despot
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 5034
Joined: Fri Jul 20, 2012 9:11 am
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by Despot » Fri Jan 19, 2018 8:29 am

antisymmetric wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:02 pm
Van Ghents even got installed a few New Zealand-made guitars- I have them on my Commodore, and although they're on the edge of being just a bit too worn, they're staying on the guitar because they're just so pretty! :-*
Yeah ... I have them on my Goya/Levin acoustic, and iirc they were also installed on the old Levin electric that I had.

I've seen them on '60s Gretsch guitars too.

They're good tuners, but like Grovers tend to be a little heavy in my opinion. I've just received a replacement double line Kluson for the ES345 in the post - I've been looking for one of these for the longest time! But what strikes me as most obvious is how light they are .. not just compared to Grovers or Van Ghents ... but compared to anything.

User avatar
Stereordinary
Expat
Expat
Posts: 10536
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 11:55 am
Location: Vancouver, WA USA
Contact:

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by Stereordinary » Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:11 am

That is a damn good looking guitar.
Save up for your dream guitar.

User avatar
shadowplay
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 22316
Joined: Thu Sep 27, 2007 4:30 am
Location: Glasgow. Scotland
Contact:

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by shadowplay » Fri Jan 19, 2018 11:45 am

Bellissimo!

I think I could get into old Italian guitars like I'm into old Italian cars.

D
Low value person.

User avatar
HorseyBoy
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 955
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2012 12:39 am
Location: Harlan County

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by HorseyBoy » Fri Jan 19, 2018 2:24 pm

Lovely! That thing sure is a looker. :w00t: Congrats.

User avatar
PorkyPrimeCut
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 20897
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 7:46 am
Location: London
Contact:

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Fri Jan 19, 2018 2:43 pm

Very nice indeed! I often wonder if the fretboard on my Ultrasonic is ebony. I'm sure I read somewhere that they were Brazilian Rosewood but I'm not 100% on that. It looks the same as yours.

Are you familiar with the Vox Cygnus? From what I gather it's an Eko-branded guitar with all the built-in effects that the Cheetah had. I only discovered them about a year ago & find them fascinating. They have all these slightly different quirks to the Vox guitars - different designed block inlays, more scattered control plates & a strange looking bridge with plastic saddles.
There were even variations with different names that had different looking pickups. It's unclear if they were the same Ferro-sonics that the Vox guitars had but under different shaped covers. The most enigmatic one has to be the Cygnus Ingrosso, a custom order built, that has a strange lever close to the bridge. I'm not sure if it's a variation on the palm wah or just a selector switch of some kind.

Cooler still, they custom-made some with deeper bodies, like the Vox Grand Prix, but in black!!
Last edited by PorkyPrimeCut on Mon Jan 22, 2018 6:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
You think you can't, you wish you could, I know you can, I wish you would. Slip inside this house as you pass by.

User avatar
Pacafeliz
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 15237
Joined: Sun Jul 29, 2007 6:34 pm
Location: Cococologne, Germany

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by Pacafeliz » Sat Jan 20, 2018 12:03 am

Raph, once again you scored a great one congrats!
I'd seen some of these go by but didn't like the look of the white plastic pickups - it gives a bit of a cheap look on the otherwise"rustical" looking guitar, if you know what I mean... But maybe some day... (you know me...)

Rock on!
i love delay SO much ...that i procrastinate all the time.

User avatar
raphaël
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 680
Joined: Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:42 am
Location: Moëlan sur Mer, France

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by raphaël » Mon Jan 22, 2018 5:59 am

Thank you guys for all your nice comments!!!

I never thought about the fretboard being Brazilian Rosewood. I'll check that with "my" luthier next time...which will be soon enough, I have a small ground issue...as well as a pickup selector tiny issue, nothing overwhelming though, still completely playable ;) .

The Cygnus I am aware of...I actually had a conversation with myself about it recently : do I like the body shape or not? The waist seems too wide for my tastes...but I like it somehow.
Reminds me of one of my other dream guitar, the Höfner 4575 (the version with blade pickups).
Pacafeliz wrote:
Sat Jan 20, 2018 12:03 am
...the look of the white plastic pickups - it gives a bit of a cheap look on the otherwise"rustical" looking guitar, if you know what I mean...
I know what you mean.
BUT !!!
The beauty is in the details, look :
Image
A nice 5 ply pickup surround matching the 5 ply binding :-*
I only wish it could have yellowed as much as the binding.

Anyway,
I had time to play with the Barracuda this week-end.
It definitly is an awesome guitar, very not-cheap at all. It can easily compete with my former '67 Coronado in terms of finish and build.
Those pickups are incredible, very bright and yet very warm at the same time. The tone pots are perfect, I can have some Tele twang and some very dark sounds, but still very usable and beautiful.
I remember those on my Tramp II (and not Trump II :fp: ) where smaller, those ones are larger. No idea what they are.
Those Van Ghents are really nice tuners, the guitar doesn't need to be tuned, and this for the past 5 days, with new strings. This is great.

I know I'm honeymooning VERY hard, but I feel this one will be in my life for a very long time.
I can't put the guitar down...as soon as I have 2 minutes in front of me I grab it and play it as long as I can (sometimes it's only for 30 seconds, but they feel good :D ).

Another thing.
I've experimented something very new.
I've recorded two songs this week-end with the Eko...two songs I had played and recorded many times since the past 10 years or so (yes, I might have 10 versions of each) without being completely happy with them.
And suddenly, they are what I had in my mind, just because of how the Barracuda sounds and how it makes me play.
This is very weird but very liberating, kind of an obvious fact.

I definitly should have pulled the trigger way earlier :D :D !!!!

User avatar
PorkyPrimeCut
PAT. # 2.972.923
PAT. # 2.972.923
Posts: 20897
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 7:46 am
Location: London
Contact:

Re: NGD - 60's Eko Barracuda

Post by PorkyPrimeCut » Mon Jan 22, 2018 7:07 am

raphaël wrote:
Mon Jan 22, 2018 5:59 am
I never thought about the fretboard being Brazilian Rosewood. I'll check that with "my" luthier next time...
I'd bet it's ebony, to be honest. The grain on my Ultrasonic is much, much tighter & blacker than my '59 Jazzmaster. The more I think about it, the thing I read was literally a photo of a Vox guitar with some random info underneath it. Probably written by someone who assumed it was Brazilian Rosewood because it was so dark.

raphaël wrote:
Mon Jan 22, 2018 5:59 am
The Cygnus I am aware of...I actually had a conversation with myself about it recently : do I like the body shape or not? The waist seems too wide for my tastes...but I like it somehow.
Reminds me of one of my other dream guitar, the Höfner 4575 (the version with blade pickups).
Aaah, those Hofners are lovely. My good friend up in Leeds has something pretty similar to your dream guitar. It has the blade pickups & the in-built effects but fewer pickups & switches. The body is actually thinner than my Ultrasonic..

Image

Image

...A Hofner 4571/E2/TZ

The fuzz circuit is very different to the Vox one. I guess you could describe the Vox circuit as a kind of "wasp in a jar" fuzz. The one on the Hofner has a much darker growl to it. A completely different beast. Great sounding though! I think it's got silicon transistors, like the Ultrasonic.
You think you can't, you wish you could, I know you can, I wish you would. Slip inside this house as you pass by.

Post Reply