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Whole sh*tload of mods for Crate V18...

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  • Whole sh*tload of mods for Crate V18...

    I've been modding these amps (which went on clearance for $150) for 4 months now and have posted a whole bunch of mods over at ppwatt.com and The Gear Page:

    http://www.ppwatt.com/crate

    http://www.thegearpage.net/board/sho...d.php?t=464873

    I will get them posted here as well one of these days. ppwatt.com does require you to register and log in to view the posts; the gear page does not. I've also posted some stuff on Harmony Central as well under my username of sssteeve there.

    At this point the one mod that seems to be working best for everybody is my Soldano SLO conversion. I plopped the SLO OD preamp into the Crate V18 (and V33H) and the results are simply amazing. Great distortion, with sustain to last for days, or use lower gain preamp tubes for some downright pleasing blues tones. The circuit responds to your playing, and to the settings on your guitar, much better than any of the production amps out there. And would give many boutique amps a run for their money. Here is what my color-coded layout drawings look like for this mod:

    http://www.blueguitar.org/new/schem/...ion-layout.gif

    http://www.blueguitar.org/new/schem/...ion-layout.jpg

    Steve Ahola
    The Blue Guitar
    www.blueguitar.org
    Some recordings:
    https://soundcloud.com/sssteeve/sets...e-blue-guitar/
    .

  • #2
    Have you re-written a schematic with the mods so we can see what is different in the actual topology?
    Bruce

    Mission Amps
    Denver, CO. 80022
    www.missionamps.com
    303-955-2412

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Bruce / Mission Amps View Post
      Have you re-written a schematic with the mods so we can see what is different in the actual topology?
      For the other mods, yes, but for that one I don't think I scanned it yet because it is just the standard SLO schematic.

      Funny thing was that the topology was essentially identical (it was just the values of some of the caps and resistors that were different- except for two resistors bypassed with caps). My thought on that was that the engineers started off with the SLO design and just changed some of the values so that it was different enough to patent. IMO definitely not a "white room" design, but who knows...

      You can find all of my "Crate Crap" in this folder, listed under the amp model:

      http://www.blueguitar.org/new/schem/misc_mod/

      Steve Ahola

      P.S. The Trainwreck Liverpool and D*mble ODS conversions (in the folder above) required rerouting most of the circuitry on the PCB, partly because the tone stack was after the first stage rather than the fourth stage...

      EDIT Here are my preliminary schematics for the V33 SLO Conversion:

      http://www.blueguitar.org/new/schem/...hem_preamp.jpg

      http://www.blueguitar.org/new/schem/..._power_amp.jpg

      I need to draw up a schematic for the V18 which shows the extra switches I am adding: Pentode/Triode, Bright, Presence and Mid-Boost. With the V33 I did add a switch to change the Clean channel to a Crunch channel not reflected in the preliminary schematic.
      Last edited by Steve A.; 01-29-2009, 07:41 PM.
      The Blue Guitar
      www.blueguitar.org
      Some recordings:
      https://soundcloud.com/sssteeve/sets...e-blue-guitar/
      .

      Comment


      • #4
        Looks like these guys are gone pretty much everywhere.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Ben N View Post
          Looks like these guys are gone pretty much everywhere.
          Musicians Friend sold out of the $149 V18-112's in October but there are a lot being sold on eBay and craigslist (the stock amp sounds like sh*t to me so I think that a lot of people are trying to dump them).

          The entire Crate V-series line is being discontinued and they are encouraging tubeheads to buy their new Blackheart line. $450 for their 15 watt combo...

          Yeah, it is a bit depressing to work on all of these mods for an amp that is being orphaned but it keeps me out of trouble...

          Steve Ahola
          The Blue Guitar
          www.blueguitar.org
          Some recordings:
          https://soundcloud.com/sssteeve/sets...e-blue-guitar/
          .

          Comment


          • #6
            I have one of the v-18 crates. I like the trainwreck mod and the SLO mod. Anyone do a '76 or '83 Marshall mod? (even though it sounds good to switch the cathode wires around on v1 of the Marshall). I think these little guys are asking for a mod like this.

            Comment


            • #7
              Thank you Steve for your remarkable work!
              keep on keepin on folk, you are doing great, thank you oh so much.

              #I retrofitted my crate V18 with 2 very old Echolette 12 inch Speakers and just because of this mod, the Amp started to sound a great lot better then ever before!

              with a couple of other mods to the tonestack of the amp, i have to admit that i am more of a a fender guy, the amp started to sound the way i like it to sound.

              i had to do my mods the old fashioned way, build like a spider, free floating above the pcb but who cares, any old tube radio has been build the same way and some of them work to the very day, so the method is proven.
              kind regards
              stefan

              Comment


              • #8
                Thank you Steve for your remarkable work!
                keep on keepin on folk, you are doing great, thank you oh so much.

                #I retrofitted my crate V18 with 2 very old Echolette 12 inch Speakers and just because of this mod, the Amp started to sound a great lot better then ever before!

                with a couple of other mods to the tonestack of the amp, i have to admit that i am more of a a fender guy, the amp started to sound the way i like it to sound.

                i had to do my mods the old fashioned way, build like a spider, free floating above the pcb but who cares, any old tube radio has been build the same way and some of them work to the very day, so the method is proven.
                kind regards
                stefan

                Comment

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