Tube Amps / Music Electronics
For current discussions, please visit Music Electronics Forum. The sunn still shines online!

ampage archive

Vintage threads from the first ten years

Search for:  Mode:  

building your own chassis

6/1/2000 6:53 PM
building your own chassis
i was toying w/ the idea of making my own chassis out of copper to end up w/ a blackface fender style one. i have no idea what the best way is to do this, but id take a sheet of copper, and cut the corners (somehow) and then bend all for sides up at right angles to make a box. the allen chassis are done the same way it looks like, just really nice and perfect. the problem is the cutting and bending part (obviously), any one have any experiance doing this or any ideas?  
6/1/2000 6:59 PM
If you've never done sheet metal work before and don't have access to a sheet metal brake, it's probably worth your while to make some good drawings of what you want to turn out, buy the copper sheet, and have a real sheet metal shop cut and bend it up for you. Steel's OK to experiment on, 'cause it's so cheap, but sheet copper's pretty costly. Not a learner material.
6/1/2000 11:53 PM

I did this for my current project -a super reverb (although I used steel, not Cu). I have access to a CNC waterjet cutter which cut all of the chassis holes and shape for me, and then I made some 3/16" steel end bars.  
I used a sheet metal brake to bend up the ends kinda like so  
the first bend (the lip) was done on a standard brake, and the second (front a/o back) was done on a box brake.  
I then welded in the end bars and ground it down to be pretty.  
It took me about 20 hours of labor to put the thing together properly -- It would probably be better to take it to a machine shop and let them do it for you, unless you feel like you can do things similar to that mentioned above.  
By the way -- you might want to check out weberVST -- he has some blackface style chassis "in development" although I think they are supposed to be out soon, due to rather high demand. 80$ is probably as cheap as you could do it yourself.  
best of luck  
6/2/2000 1:36 AM
Nick Dolling

Hi Rich,  
I did more or less the same thing for my BF Deluxe replica. I used 1.6mm brass, which was fairly easy to work and chrome plated up nicely (IIRC the plating guy said it was preferable to copper). I cut mine out using a NC mill, which was great for the oddball shapes like an IEC power inlet and the power tranny, but there's no reason you couldn't do it by hand with a bit of patience. I also made mine a fairly elaborate shape, where all the top lips and sides/ends were folded from the one piece. This made it a lot more difficult and expensive to have folded. In hindisght it would have been better to just fold it like this (end view)  
_ _  
|________| and attach the ends afterwards. If you did it this way you might even be able to fold it yourself, although it would be very quick (4 folds, maybe 5-10 minutes) for a sheet metal shop to do it for you, so it would cost you bugger all (maybe a 6 pack?)  
You can see pics of my results here..  
6/2/2000 3:39 AM
Nate S.

I made up a print and a local sheetmetal shop welded up a 16 gauge stainless steel chassis for $60. It has the exact shape with sloped front and everything. With the homemade panels it is almost indistinguishable from the real thing. To make the panels I took some closeup images from ebay and converted them to cad images using KVEC. I then redrew them in cad using splines, crosshatched them and sent the entire image to a local electrical supplier who engraved them for $10.

  Page 1 of 1