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Thread: Amp Build: Ceriatone Kraken 50

  1. #1
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    Amp Build: Ceriatone Kraken 50

    Ok fine, it's really a Chupacabra. But it's got some voicing changes of my own and if the Yeti gets its own name... then this does too lol . All the Cali-type amps are the same anyway. Chassis, turret board, and all the hardware are from Ceriatone. I sourced everything else myself. Still waiting on the iron and a few components here and there. But figured I'd get this ball rolling.

    Without further ado, I give you... The Kraken!

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  2. #2
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    Chassis:








    Turret board:


  3. #3
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    Still waiting on transformers so I decided to just get started on the turret board.










    And some resistor porn lol.

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  5. #5
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    And here I am still doing true PTP... nice work!

    Justin
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    "When receiving a shock I emit a strange loud high pitched girlish squeak." - Alex R -
    "Sort of like not checking for toilet paper before taking a dump. ." - Chuck H -
    "All I ever managed to do with that amp was... kill small rodents within a 50 yard radius of my practice building." - Tone Meister -

  6. #6
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    Hi. Did you felt independent bias supplies works better in a plexy style amp from a sound perspective ? I.m asked cause I tryed and have my own thoughts. Please to share your own. Thanks
    Last edited by catalin gramada; 07-03-2017 at 09:50 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by catalin gramada View Post
    Hi. Did you felt independent bias supplies works better in a plexy style amp from a sound perspective ? I.m asked cause I tryed and have my own thoughts. Please to share your own. Thanks
    I don't think it's a sound thing. It just lets you bias each tube independently, which I think is a good idea. You don't have to worry about buying matched tubes.

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    Good to know. Nice job. Thanks

  9. #9
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    Good work, man! I'm a sucker for black FR4 board as well.
    On a side note, nice touch on the photos. The effect of the luminance has a smooth glassy look.
    If you don't need a drill press... well, then you don't drill stuff.

  10. #10
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    Beautiful work!

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    It's time for everybody's favorite part of building an amp—heaters!

    JK, it's the worst.

    Decided to run DC on V1 and V2; regular AC on V3-V6.










  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by FourT6and2 View Post
    It's time for everybody's favorite part of building an amp—heaters!

    JK, it's the worst.

    Decided to run DC on V1 and V2; regular AC on V3-V6.
    I think it was a good call going with the twisted pair this time. nice technique.
    Hey, has deviantart given you any shit for 3rd party hosting at all? Photobucket just dumped everyone's links with an unexpected update to their user agreement unless we pay $400 a year for 3rd party hosting privileges. I have a deviantart account I hardly ever use so I may switch to using them if you've had good experiences.
    mikepukmel likes this.
    If you don't need a drill press... well, then you don't drill stuff.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SoulFetish View Post
    I think it was a good call going with the twisted pair this time. nice technique.
    Hey, has deviantart given you any shit for 3rd party hosting at all? Photobucket just dumped everyone's links with an unexpected update to their user agreement unless we pay $400 a year for 3rd party hosting privileges. I have a deviantart account I hardly ever use so I may switch to using them if you've had good experiences.
    I couldn't find any tube sockets that were clocked/timed correctly. And I didn't want to drill new holes in the chassis for running bus wire. So I said screw it and did the twisting lol. It's such a pain in the ass.

    No, DiviantArt seems to be a good place to host. Just make sure to use the "scraps" folder for uploading/hosting and not your main "art" gallery.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by FourT6and2 View Post
    I couldn't find any tube sockets that were clocked/timed correctly. And I didn't want to drill new holes in the chassis for running bus wire. So I said screw it and did the twisting lol. It's such a pain in the ass.

    No, DiviantArt seems to be a good place to host. Just make sure to use the "scraps" folder for uploading/hosting and not your main "art" gallery.
    It really is a pain in the ass. I ended up having to replace my tube sockets after wiring the entire amp, and I've been putting it off for a solid two weeks because I have to redo the heater wiring
    mikepukmel likes this.
    If you don't need a drill press... well, then you don't drill stuff.

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    More progress today. Finished up the power section and did the power tube sockets, bias test points, impedance switch, and a few other things here and there.



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  16. #16
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    Hi FourT6and2,
    What kind of lead bending tool do you use?
    Thanks,
    Mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikepukmel View Post
    Hi FourT6and2,
    What kind of lead bending tool do you use?
    Thanks,
    Mike
    I use these:

    1. https://tubedepot.com/products/1-4-1-2-watt-lead-bender
    2. https://www.doreenbeads.com/stainles...UaAqjaEALw_wcB

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    A bit more today. Having routed a bunch of stuff now, I'm making some notes about how to do it better the next time around. And by better, I mean more OCD lol.

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  19. #19
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    Thanks FourT6and2!

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    Preamp tubes all done. In the home stretch now.






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    General lead dress question if you don't mind: In most tube amps I notice that the wiring going to the vacuum tubes always goes first down to the chassis, across the chassis, then up to the socket pins, except for the AC heater wiring. OK I understand the reason for twisting the Ac heater wiring, and keeping them up and away from the signal and power leads. But why do the leads to/from the tube pins run along the chassis? Thanks, MP.

  22. #22
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    Hey Mike,

    I've seen it said that it helps shield the signal wires from picking up stray fields that aren't heaters. Personally, I just think it looks neater (not that I use it, with all of my point-to-pointedness... also may help keep wiring from getting fatigued over many decades and breaking/sagging?

    Just my own threories...

    Justin
    mikepukmel likes this.
    "When receiving a shock I emit a strange loud high pitched girlish squeak." - Alex R -
    "Sort of like not checking for toilet paper before taking a dump. ." - Chuck H -
    "All I ever managed to do with that amp was... kill small rodents within a 50 yard radius of my practice building." - Tone Meister -

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikepukmel View Post
    General lead dress question if you don't mind: In most tube amps I notice that the wiring going to the vacuum tubes always goes first down to the chassis, across the chassis, then up to the socket pins, except for the AC heater wiring. OK I understand the reason for twisting the Ac heater wiring, and keeping them up and away from the signal and power leads. But why do the leads to/from the tube pins run along the chassis? Thanks, MP.
    How else would you do it? The wires come out the bottom of the turret board. What are you going to do? Bring them down and out from the turret board, then arch them up in the air over the socket? I guess you could do it that way. Here's another build I did a while back. You can see that the wires exit from the TOP of the board, instead of the bottom. And because of that, it made more sense to arch them up and over, then down to the socket. Another reason for this in that build is because I ran a bus bar for the filaments. And this way keeps the leads nice and out of their way.


  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by FourT6and2 View Post
    How else would you do it? The wires come out the bottom of the turret board. What are you going to do? Bring them down and out from the turret board, then arch them up in the air over the socket? I guess you could do it that way. Here's another build I did a while back. You can see that the wires exit from the TOP of the board, instead of the bottom. And because of that, it made more sense to arch them up and over, then down to the socket. Another reason for this in that build is because I ran a bus bar for the filaments. And this way keeps the leads nice and out of their way.


    Eek, not complaining at all, just trying to learn stuff. Fumbling my way, all 4 thumbs, though a first amp build. I started off trying to figure out what to do by scouring the web for photos of the chassis of the old amp I want to build. Most of the images are from higher production, mid 60's to 80's fender amps. The wiring/lead dress on most of the amps I found photos of ranges from just below acceptable to hideous. The wiring on your amp looks absolutely awesome. So, thought to ask what the electrical ramifications are for running the wires a certain way.

    This clip is from one of the better specimens I found.
    deluxe_full_chassis_bright_clip.jpg

    The lead dress is OK, but the wiring does get attached from the top, then humps down over the side of the fiberboard down onto the chassis.
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  25. #25
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    lead dress vs parasitic oscillations

    The main reason for asking around pro amp builders about lead dress was that I found some blog posts here and there talking about parasitic oscillation, but not good detailed explanations on exactly what causes it to occur or not. The main comments were: leads too long, general 'bad' lead dress issues. Since the amp Im working on is from off the shelf parts, the dimensions are going to be different from the original AB763 design. What I don't know, and would like to have some idea: is 1/4" extra lead length overall going to cause a problem, e.g. my fiberglass eyelet board is mounted on little standoffs, so the wiring is going to be uniformly different than if I had a fiberboard screwed to the chassis. If I put the wiring out the bottom of the board or over the top, will it be better one way? If my board is a non reverb board but its mounted in a reverb chassis, I can put the circuit board closer to the output tubes or closer to the preamp tubes, which would be better. etc, etc..

    Thanks
    Mike

  26. #26
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    You posted while I was writing. In answer to your question, no, I doubt 1/4" will matter much. The main thing with "bad" lead dress is keeping low-level AD away from heaters & power supply. One thing that can help is to keep any wires from running parallel to each other, and if they have to cross, try to do it at 90°. But when you're building from scratch, there is just a LOT of experimenting involved.

    Quote Originally Posted by mikepukmel View Post
    ... The wiring/lead dress on most of the amps I found photos of ranges from just below acceptable to hideous...
    You should see one of mine!
    http://music-electronics-forum.com/a...6-dscn6402.jpg

    I think there are a lot of factors involved with why manufacturers do it the way they do, mostly having to do with cost and time. Most of the amps you're looking at are probably from factories. The rule is, crank them out as fast as possible and as good-sounding as possible. The amp shown meets the criteria for noise-free open operation, and nothing more. I bet when they designed, they experimented til they found a layout that worked. Once they got it, quick, draw a picture and do ALL of them like that! For us, building one at a time, we can afford to take the time to both make it noise-free AND aesthetically pleasing. For a real treat, Google a Fender Super Twin Reverb.

    The other thing is, a Fender or a classic Marshall (pre-800) is a low-gain circuit. And so, it's really not as big a deal to position each wire to the precise millimeter. Start talking Mesa, 5150, SLO, etc, it's a bit more important.

    I've also seen beautifully wired amps that screech like banshees, because the aesthetic layout violated the electrical principles that get rid of noise. One thing I do like about an old Fender is that there's some extra length if I need to trim a wire for any reason.

    There's a whole other Trainwreck thread of three pages that mentions routing wiring wrong ON PURPOSE in pursuit of certain artifacts and interactions. It really is a great big old can of worms.

    Justin
    "When receiving a shock I emit a strange loud high pitched girlish squeak." - Alex R -
    "Sort of like not checking for toilet paper before taking a dump. ." - Chuck H -
    "All I ever managed to do with that amp was... kill small rodents within a 50 yard radius of my practice building." - Tone Meister -

  27. #27
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    Another fantastic build, thanks for the photo.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Justin Thomas View Post
    Hey Mike,

    I've seen it said that it helps shield the signal wires from picking up stray fields that aren't heaters. Personally, I just think it looks neater (not that I use it, with all of my point-to-pointedness... also may help keep wiring from getting fatigued over many decades and breaking/sagging?

    Just my own theories...

    Justin
    Thanks Justin

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    All done!

    Just doing some testing now. I'm using a 47K 5W pot wired as a variable dropping resistor. This way, I just clip it to the filter cap and I can tune all the voltages in the amp. Typical value is 10K. I set it to 18K, which is what the Yeti uses (higher voltages). And my B+ is a whopping 515vdc! That's without power tubes though. Once I stick some in, it'll probably come down a bit. I don't really have a set goal in mind. But I'll play it with a few of the resistor values I have on hand and figure out which one to use.

    I also got some new Tefzel hookup wire in some fancy colors for the next build. And I'm going to try to make the lead dress a little better next time around. I wanted to get this one done so I can start testing a few things first, tone wise.

    Current voltages with no power tubes and 18K dropping resistor:

    MAINS: 124.4VAC
    AC FILAMENTS: 3.47VAC
    DC FILAMENTS: 6.09VDC
    BIAS/PI SPLITTERS: -50 to -36VDC
    PT SECONDARY: 375VAC

    V1:
    1: 151VDC
    2: SIGNAL
    3: 1.47VDC
    4: FILAMENT
    5: FILAMENT
    6: 274VDC
    7: SIGNAL
    8: 2.47VDC
    9: FILAMENT

    V2:
    1: 226.1VDC
    2: SIGNAL
    3: 1.26VDC
    4: FILAMENT
    5: FILAMENT
    6: 381.5VDC
    7: 226.1
    8: 228VDC
    9: FILAMENT

    V3:
    1: 257.3VDC
    2: 26.2VDC
    3: 42.24VDC
    4: FILAMENT
    5: FILAMENT
    6: 245.2VDC
    7: 27.6VDC
    8: 42.24VDC
    9: FILAMENT

    V4/V5:
    1: 0
    2: FILAMENT
    3: 511VDC - 515VDC
    4: 509VDC
    5: -50VDC
    6: 509VDC
    7: FILAMENT
    8: 0

    B+: 515VDC
    SECOND CAP AFTER DROPPER (18K): 381VDC
    BOARD CAP AFTER DROPPER: 366.8VDC
    V1a: 151.7VDC
    V1b: 274VDC








  30. #30
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    Here's a clip. This is with a 10K dropping resistor. Probably my favorite value so far. The volume is as loud as I can get it without clipping the mic on my laptop, sorry lol. I'm working to upload the other clips with different voltages too. But it takes a long time for YT to process 'em. I'm still toying with a few parts here and there.

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  31. #31
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    Some cleans-ish

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  32. #32
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    Beau-tee-fulll! Sounds awesome.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikepukmel View Post
    Beau-tee-fulll! Sounds awesome.
    Thanks!

    Here's one last clip. I think I've finalized the various tone stack values and dropping resistor.

    mikepukmel likes this.

  34. #34
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    Clean and overdrive sound great. Thanks for posting the clips!

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