Davoli Athena #unknown

Picture credit: 

Photos from online auction April 2010


The Amp Shop, Sherman Oaks, CA, United States

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This Davoli Athena bass was designed by the famous Italian guitar maker Wandre in collaboration with Athos Davoli. The black sound hole shaped pickup reminds me a bit of the Rick Turner Model 1, which came later. This pickup looks like two closely spaced single coils, since there are two raised parts. The four position pickup selector knob suggests that there are various combinations of these pickups (probably including humbucking mode). Two knobs are most likely volume and tone (you could work it out from the picture of the components in the control cavity). On the back of the body are three ferrules or inserts that look like they must adjust the pickup height.

The body is a single cutaway with a German carve, and a stripe or inlay inset from the top edge. The way the top and bottom overhang the sides like a violin bass although I can't tell whether it is a hollow bodied instrument (Wandre's guitars often were). The neck plate has six screws - Wandre was known for innovative neck construction including plastic covered aluminium necks and cantilever adjustment mechanisms, but this looks like a bolt-on wooden neck to me. The top of the headstock suggests a W shape (for Wandre?), the tuners are open geared types with pearloid buttons.