Orange OR 80 Restoration

Posted by on September 1, 2014 in Amp Repair, Electronics Repair, General, Unused | 0 comments

A 1972 Orange OR 80 amp that had been beaten hard came to me recently for a full restoration. I wish I had the “before” photos, but I was camera-less at the time. It sounded really bad and looked even worse. It was covered in grime to the point that the torn and tattered orange tolex was nearly black in places. The power switch was snapped off in the on position, and the AC cord was frayed. The controls were all scratchy. It was rough. I replaced the 40+ year old electrolytic capacitors, power switch, AC cord, HF Drive pot, screen...

read more

Tube Screamer True Bypass Mod

Posted by on July 17, 2013 in Amp Repair, Electronics Repair | 0 comments

I am now offering the same True Bypass Switch mod to Ibanez TS series pedals such as the TS-9 Tube Screamer that the major pedal guys are doing. True bypass switches both the input and the output, so when switched off your signal is completely disconnected from the circuit. Without it, only the input is switched, leaving the output of the circuit still connected to your signal path, which can load down and drain a small amount of your signal, although that is not a big problem with a TS-9 in particular. But really, this mod is a reaction the...

read more

’65 Deluxe Reverb Reissue rewire

Posted by on May 11, 2013 in Amp Repair, Electronics Repair, General, Home, News | 0 comments

This project will be to remove the printed circuit boards from my ’65 Fender Deluxe Reverb Amp (made in 2010) and replace them with real, old style point to point wiring with beefier quality components. I will wire this to be an exact Fender AB763 circuit. Notice the small, inexpensive components, ribbon cables, push on connectors, and thin wires going to the tube sockets. It is all done to keep costs down. Not only do these modern manufacturing practices not sound as good as hand wired point to point, they are not as reliable. Here is...

read more

Up And Running!

Posted by on February 21, 2013 in Amp Repair, Electronics Repair, General, Home, Tweed Deluxe Build | 0 comments

Here it is folks, my 5E3 Deluxe Tweed amp! Had to tweak a couple of things, but overall very pleased with the result. Everything dialed in to spec really nicely. A couple of changes made thanks to the talent and guidance from a few of the excellent electronics forums. Here’s a shot of my work before two small wiring changes. I love this amp circuit,  it’s just great. Smooth, raw, mellow, aggressive, compressed, sustain for days, whatever. It’s hard to not get a good sound out of this circuit. Disregard the alligator clips on...

read more

Number One 5E3 chassis completed.

Posted by on February 17, 2013 in Amp Repair, Electronics Repair, Home | 0 comments

Today I put the finishing touches on my first 5E3 chassis. Now it’s time to go through initial power up testing. First a dim bulb current check with no tubes. Check. Then with the RCA NOS black plate rectifier tube. Check. Then putting in the pre-amp tubes and looking at the signal with an O – scope at the end of the pre-amp section. Everything looks great so far, and very quiet. Next we put in the JJ 6V6 output tubes. Happily, the amp is quiet and works, but I have some voltage and output dissipation questions that are better left...

read more

Speaker Arrives

Posted by on February 15, 2013 in Amp Repair, Electronics Repair, Home | 0 comments

The speaker I ordered from Weber Vintage Sound Technology  arrived today. It was hand made especially for my order by the good folks in Kokomo, IN. I chose the Weber 12A125A 30 watt with light doping. That means it is a 30 watt, 8 ohm, 12″ speaker with an 11oz AlNiCo magnet. It has a 1.25″ voice coil, curved seam and ribbed cone. Doping is the black goop applied to the edge of the speaker to dampen it. Weber’s description is, “Woody, reedy, early 60′s Fender tone. Tight low end, detailed high end. Compressed and...

read more

Circuit Board Build

Posted by on February 12, 2013 in Amp Repair, Electronics Repair, Home | 0 comments

Here are the two circuit boards populated with all components tacked in with the exception of one coupling capacitor I’m waiting on. You can see that the eyelets are not fully soldered in because pretty much every one of them is getting a wire connection  so that’s when they will be fully soldered.   New Old Stock (NOS) tubes from eBay. An RCA black plate and a Tung-Sol 5y3 recitfier tube. You really shouldn’t use modern day Russian made 5Y3 tubes in this amp because they aren’t exactly the same tube, and they...

read more

Building A Dim Bulb Tester

Posted by on February 8, 2013 in Amp Repair, Electronics Repair, General, Unused | 0 comments

Since I am holed up in the biggest blizzard New England has seen in a while, it seemed like a good time to build something every amp builder and repairman needs on the bench, a dim bulb tester. Funny name,  I know, but what does it do?  It is a simple current limiting device that is very useful when powering up amplifiers either for the very first time, or when one comes in with a potential power supply issue. It’s pretty cool, actually. It employs a standard household light bulb wired in series rather in it’s normal parallel...

read more

Let’s get this thing started

Posted by on February 8, 2013 in Amp Repair, General, Home, Tweed Deluxe Build | 1 comment

Started to populate the hardware. I am actually building two chassis at the same time, one for my combo and one for my pal Jack Murray, who will put it in a head cab for use in his studio. Jack made this web site. Jack’s cool. Here are the twins as of tonight. Mostly finger tight for now. Waiting on the pre-amp sockets, because I ordered the wrong size the first time, and the fuse holders, because I forgot to remember to order them. Mine has a violet lamp, Jack’s is green, because who has green?

read more


Posted by on February 8, 2013 in Amp Repair, Home | 1 comment

The parts have mostly all come in. I wanted to try to get everything I needed together first, but does that really EVER happen? There are some really good quality suppliers out there, and I decided right from the start I would cut no corners, nor use anything less than the best I could find for this project. The idea is to build a period correct exact reproduction of the 1955 5E3 Tweed Deluxe amp, probably the most recorded amp in the world, with the only exception being an update to the ground scheme to put it in the modern world. More on...

read more