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Thread: Buying trouble...

  1. #1
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    Buying trouble...

    Here's a Silverface Deluxe Reverb I got in today. The new owner had a problem with a flaky mains lead so had cut off a few inches and reattached the plug. It still didn't work - good job it didn't. It's a US-voltage model fitted with an autotransformer for use on UK mains. The 240v mains plug is connected to a 2 pin plug. Plug-to-plug and probably just about as bad as it gets - the plug just drops right out of the bottom of the transformer. Plus the transformer metalwork isn't grounded.

    When I booked it in it seemed to be a straightforward lead replacement. It's a no-go for me as it stands and I would only be happy in replacing the PT with a UK spec model and re-fusing etc.

    Seems to be a common problem where new owners have bought an amp that comes with a load of trouble.

    img_20171130_161133434.jpg

  2. #2
    Senior Member nevetslab's Avatar
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    If I understand this correctly, the SF DR has a standard US primary PT, and there is an external Autoformer allowing 240V in and tapped down to 120V to power the amp. And, of course, poorly fitted mains interface plut/socket arrangement.

    Does the amp work / power up on 120V AC mains? Back here, I have to go with a step-up transformer to get 240V mains (I had sold my 0-280V 3KVA variac, and my Elgar AC mains power source is needing repair).
    Logic is an organized way of going wrong with confidence

  3. #3
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    Yes, it powers fine off 120v. The cable is open-circuit. Why someone would put a curly mains lead on an amp beats me anyhow. As a further safety issue, the 2-pin plugs have screw terminals and no strain relief.

    Easiest/neatest/safest route would be to replace the PT.
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  4. #4
    Ted
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    I sometimes fit a 240 to 55-0-55 toroid as a mains isolating transformer where the customer doesn't want "originality" disturbed.

    Real conversation from the other day:

    Me: "Your AC30 has a burnt-out mains transformer. It's going to need a new one"
    Customer: "But surely that will change the sound?"
    Me: "Yes. Because it doesn't make any sound at the moment"

  5. #5
    Supporting Member Chuck H's Avatar
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    Thing is, if a person believes there will be a detriment or improvement with a component change and it can't be proven one way or the other then that detriment or improvement will absolutely happen for them. They'll rush to their computers, plug in biased search criteria and inevitably find support for their perception. Making it real beyond a doubt in their mind. And nothing anyone can demonstrate will undo it.

    A tinter in a paint store was the person that matches custom colors to spec. Usually from a sample. That was my job when a guy came in with a quart of paint to be matched. He complained that no one could match his color and he was at my shop because he'd heard that I was the best (and I was ). I matched his color and a day later he was back saying it didn't match. So I took his quart back to the tint desk and compared it to the match I'd done. I made a very tiny adjustment and rubbed his paint next to mine, dried them and brought it to the counter. "No... I can still see it." So I went back to the tint desk and rubbed his paint next to his paint. That is, it was only his original paint next to his original paint on the next dried sample. I brought this to him at the counter and he said "It still doesn't match. I can see it. I think you were closer last time."... I have to admit that I enjoyed letting him know what I had done. He took his sample and the paint I had made and I never saw him again.
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    "The man is an incompetent waste of human flesh. He should donate his organs now to someone who might actually make good use of them." The Dude re: maybe I shouldn't say, but his name rhymes with Trump

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  6. #6
    Old Timer J M Fahey's Avatar
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    Always happens.

    Of course he was comparing just applied still fresh paint to old dried and oxygen cured one ...boy just let it age for at least 24 hours !!!!!

    Same as people cronically abusing new "Eyetahliann" Jensens because they do not sound like their 50/60 year old Chicago made ones !!!! WTF!!!!

    OF COURSE new ones will be brighter !!!!!!

    Not even considering that the Alnico ones already lost 50% Magnetic flux compared to Factory new.

    Modern Musicians may like worn aged Jensen sound, fine with me, but they shouldn´t cheat themselves that's the sound **LEO** heard when he designed and built those amplifiers 50/60 years ago, he only used new fresh out of the box ones, maybe still smelling of fresh glue or paint.
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    Juan Manuel Fahey

  7. #7
    Supporting Member Chuck H's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by J M Fahey View Post
    ...but they shouldn´t cheat themselves that's the sound **LEO** heard when he designed and built those amplifiers 50/60 years ago, he only used new fresh out of the box ones, maybe still smelling of fresh glue or paint.
    Not to mention the great tones on all those old recordings were done when those speakers were still comparably fresh! I love, love, love the tone on Jingle Bell Rock (Bobby Helms?). That song was recorded in 1957. Clearly a Fender amp and likely with two or three year old speakers in it. Most other renditions have a good tone too. Some are better than others. But the original is the best to my ears.
    "The man is an incompetent waste of human flesh. He should donate his organs now to someone who might actually make good use of them." The Dude re: maybe I shouldn't say, but his name rhymes with Trump

    "...less ear-friendly but handy for jazz." Leo_Gnardo

  8. #8
    Senior Member Enzo's Avatar
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    1957, yeah well, they also probably recorded that two or three year old speaker with a Shure 55 instead of a Neuman something, and they did it into a mono Ampex through an RCA board rather than Pro Tools through big Neve or something.
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    Education is what you're left with after you have forgotten what you have learned.

  9. #9
    rjb
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck H View Post
    I love, love, love the tone on Jingle Bell Rock (Bobby Helms?).
    He was the singer. Hank Garland on guitar.

    -rb
    In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is deemed mad.

  10. #10
    Supporting Member Chuck H's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rjb View Post
    He was the singer. Hank Garland on guitar.

    -rb
    I didn't know the guitar players name. I just knew Helms was the recording artist.
    "The man is an incompetent waste of human flesh. He should donate his organs now to someone who might actually make good use of them." The Dude re: maybe I shouldn't say, but his name rhymes with Trump

    "...less ear-friendly but handy for jazz." Leo_Gnardo

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