2. "Last year I had a peavey CS800 come
in. When I got the lid off a mouse jumped out of it! She took off - I took
off! Scared the piss out of me! The sad part is she had a nest of babies
in there. The owner of the store grabbed the vacuum and sucked 'em up!
I felt REALLY bad for the little guys..."
(AR: Mice don't help much unless they are on one of those little runners generating electricity! Would that be enough to run a high power PA amp like this?)
3. "I've got one more! The old store I
used to work at had a deal with the grad school system here in Nashville.
At the end of each year I got about 50 Rhodes pianos to fix. I found porno
mags, rubbers, cigarettes etc... inside of 'em. All from 6th graders. Hummmmm."
(AR: Those things don't help tone too much I would imagine. Kids these days... Why did they need all this stuff if they had Rhodes pianos to play?)
2. "On another amp, brought in because
it made funny noises, the nuts for the power tx had all come off and the
transformer, with the longest leads I've ever seen, dropped through one
of the speaker
(AR: Speakers don't work too good with transformers sticking through them.)
guy brings in a dead mint fmi b/f pro reverb....except
the baffle is gone. he's made his own with cdx
floor underlay plywood [ugh...tools in the hands of idiots]& badly attached reissue grille cloth. "can
you 'fix' it?", he asks....well, sure....but what about electrolytics, et. al. inside? want them looked at /
so i get the "go ahead" to do a full "once
over". believe me, in my professional judgment, this chassis
had never been pulled. so i pull it.
ladies & gentlemen.................chicken
bones!!! no shit! the chassis if full of chicken bones!!! either
someone in c.1966 is eating at his work station, or some kind of weird, evil, voodoo shit's been going
on....either way, these looked like chicken bones!!!! what can i say?????
i photograph just about every amp that
comes across my bench [andy, remember the super twin
reverb pics that scared you shitless?], but these bones flipped me out & i plum forgot to "capture the
moment"...but it did happen....just that way
thought you'd enjoy.....now go write that
---> mark n"
(AR: Voodoo? Chicken bones do make the amp sound more like Hendrix. But I'd say that they also are good for suppressing oscillation right? No? How 'bout for drawing Vultures?)
2. "My favorite was I got a call, "Can
you fix an amp for me, has lots wrong and 1 speaker is shot. I
sez, "No prob, I can fix any Fender and I'll get the speaker reconed.
So he shows up and there is a HUGE HOLE
in the front of the amp through the grille cloth. I turn
the amp around and look at the speaker (silver Vibrolux reverb). One of the 10's is DESTROYED.
I mean annihilated!
The bell is twisted a million directions and I look close and there are lead beads in the bottom of the
amp. I said, "You weren't kidding when you said the speaker was blown". He sez, "Blown???, I told you it was shot! Shot right through with a 12 gauge shotgun. Somebody got real mad at my
son-in-law who use to own the amp and took a gun to his amp" BANG!!!!
The good part was that I patched the baffle,
re-grille clothed it, and put a replacement speaker in it,
tuned the amp and she sounded FABULOUS. Those Fenders take a lickin' and keep on
(AR: This is a common technique I'll use if I get a really sorry excuse for an amp and I can't fix the amp. I find that 12 gauge with medium weight shot works perfect. Blast a hole in the amp then return it to the owner and say "I don't what happened man. I was testing it out and it made this strange sound... I think you should take this thing to an exorcist instead of an amp fixer..." Works every time. By then they REALLY want a Fender.)
2. I was playing my Quad Reverb one day (not even full bore, that's pretty loud for a Quad), and I noticed that suddenly no more sound was coming from the amp. I took the chassis out and played it, the sound was coming out of the speaker. I thought that this was going to be one of those horrible oscillation problems that you don't find but keeps coming back at the worst possible time (Murphy's Law guarantees this folks). Anyways, after a few hours of looking and thinking, I noticed that the aluminum shield stapled to the inside of the top of the amp had come down (I should have known, the amp was particularly hard to take out of the cabinet this time! Use your noggin!). It was shorting to the volume control. I nailed it back up and that was it.
3. I have some other not so remarkable stories from customer's amps too. One time I was given a Super Reverb chassis to bring back from the dead (had been blown for years). It had all kinds of strange and stupid mods to the circuit, but thankfully, no holes in the chassis! The power transformer was blown, and I noticed the fuse socket stuffed full of aluminum foil. After looking for a while, I noticed an innocent looking wire going from one leg of the heater circuit to ground. I have no idea why. The modder put this in, for what reason nobody will know. The power transformer was blown of course. Probably because the fuse kept blowing so the "tech" or whoever put aluminum foil in the fuse socket and that was it. The moral of the story? For the people just getting started working on amps, find out why something blows before you replace the blown component! If I had just fixed the mods and put in a new power transformer, I would have run the risk of blowing it!
Sorry about my stories! I'm sure I'll
find something as funny as the stuff above one day.
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Last updated 2/19/2000