Started with an Eko Ranger 12-string for me and Eko Ranger 6-string for Val back in 1971.
Added an Eko El Paso black 6-string in 1976.
In 1977 (or was it '78) was looking for a second hand Martin and saw an ad in New Musical Express for a Yamaha FG580 Brazilian Rosewood 6-string - sold the Eko El Paso and bought the Yamaha. For the next 25 years this guitar was my constant companion.
Tried numerous 12-strings to play alongside my Yamaha FG580 including:
Yamaha FG312, FG412, FG412 Mk2
and many others that have faded with my memory
Eventually found an old early 70s Yamaha brochure showing the FG580 as the then top of the range, and next to it was a sister 12-string model FG630 - same woods, but with a slotted headstock. Spent best part of 10 years tracking one down, so now have the matching pair.
Val was looking for a smaller 6-string guitar than the FG580, and she immediately fell for a Taylor Big Baby - "somehow it just felt right" and it had a sound that cut through and blew away the sound of my treasured Yamahas... so much so that I decided to invest in new ones.
Bought a Yamaha CPX-15 and CPX8-12... sounded great in the shop, and at home, and through a PA... but didn't quite do it in acoustic performances at folk clubs.
Bought a Taylor 25th Anniversary XXV-DR dreadnought, and started looking at Taylor 12-strings.
Next was a Taylor 855 Indian Rosewood 12-string and a Taylor 810-LTD Brazilian Rosewood 6-string.
So the Yamaha CPXs had to go - sold the 6 to a friend and the 12 went in part-ex for a Taylor 810 CE Indian Rosewood 6-string.
And that's where we are today - for performing we use the three Taylor 800 series guitars, but still keep the Yamaha FGs, Taylor Big Baby and XXV-DR as they helped shape our current sound and are part of the family.
Thinking of adding another Taylor 12-string and maybe a nylon string and possibly even an acoustic bass... not sure we can justify the extra outlay just yet.
Jimmy & Val (jiva)