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Thanks to everyone for all of you help(the spitfire sound excellent!!)

6/10/1998 10:57 AM
Benjamin Fargen
Thanks to everyone for all of you help(the spitfire sound excellent!!)
Thanks to all who help me with my first succesful amp building project! I am very pleased with the outstanding tone of this amp!I have a Vox cambridge reverb and the clean tone is very close to this amp. I am pleased to say that the Fender blues jr. output transformer worked fine even after 3 1/2 hours of heavy playing(let's hope it lasts!). This transformer is an inexpensive alternative to use.  
Thanks again..this amp would not have worked if it wasn't for everyones great help and ideas! Benjamin Fargen.
6/12/1998 10:47 PM
Tony T.
Re: Congratulations!!!
Great Job! You've now joined the ranks of all of us who were/are sick and tired of junk or expensive boutique (although nice) stuff out there and had the intenstinal fortitude to go and build your own amp. Everyone at this wonderful place comes together to help each other in a unique and synergistic manner. OK I'm rambling now. I remember my first homebrew amp and the joy I got when I first fired that puppy up and hit the strings on my guitar for a response to die for. How about another!
Book Of The Day The Ultimate Tone, Volume III by Kevin O'Connor
Have you ever wondered if there is a better way to build a Bassman, Champ, Plexi, an 800, AC-30, Bulldog or Portaflex? Or you wanted to build an SVT with off-the-shelf parts? How about a master-volume amp that doesn’t change tone with the master setting? Everything you need to know is right here, including: proper grounding techniques, wiring methods, and mechanical considerations. Eighteen chapters cover the “iconic” amps everyone knows and loves, with schematics and layouts for each, along with the technical history of the product. Eyelet-board and chassis-mounted tube socket construction is used throughout, for easy servicing and modding. TUT3 is very accessible even if you cannot fully read a schematic and is a "must have" if you are going to build an amp for your self.

Note: The Ampage Archive is an Amazon Associate site. A small commission is paid to the site owner on any qualified purchase made after clicking an associate link such as the one above.
6/12/1998 11:02 PM
Benjamin Fargen

Tony, Thanks for the reply! I could barely sleep the night it all came together. I have a 63-64? vox cambridge reverb and a 63 princeton reverb and I never thought I could build an amp that sounded even half as good as a classic. The spitfire design comes close. I am going to add a tremelo circuit to the spitfire based on the vox tremelo design. I think for my next project I am going to build an early Fender clone...But I have not decided on a model yet....any suggestions?. I might try to do some kind of hybrid to see how it might sound. Hopefully I'll talk to you soon. Have a good one! Benjamin
6/13/1998 12:52 AM
Steve A.
One question...
    Since you were able to build a first-time amp project that probably sounds better than 95% of the amps at Guitar Center or Sam Asch, my question is this: why the heck can't the engineers and techs at the major mfgs come up with something as good- or even better?  
    I realize that sound is a matter of taste, but do they really think that we ALL want our amps to sound like Metallica or Joe Satriani? It seems like only the boutique amp builders actually try to recreate the sounds of the classic vintage equipment and perhaps extend the sound a bit into newer realms. So for vintage sounding gear, our choice is either to build it ourselves (with maybe $100 to $500 in materials) or buy a boutique amp for $1,000 to $2,500 (or pay over-inflated prices for an actual vintage amp).  
    Another advantage to building your own amp is that you can customize and fine-tune it to your own tastes so that it works optimally with the guitars you play. If you mainly play strats and think that the response is a bit too bright, you can add or change a cap or whatever to roll off the highs a bit. Or change some other parts to increase or decrease the gain, overdrive and/or distortion.  
    In the world of electronics, so much of it is digital and/or integrated circuits these days. I am totally fascinated with the magic of simple tube amp circuits (simple compared to millions of transistors on a computer CPU). Working on tube amp projects is one of the few remaining hobbies that will produce results far superior to the mass-produced junk generally available in stores. With most DIY projects in electronics, the learning experience is what's important and the actual product you end up with really can't compare to commercial products. (I need to try out some of the FX projects here, too, since they generally get rave reviews as well.)  
    Well, I better get off my soapbox... and glad to hear you got your Spitfire up and running!  
Steve Ahola
6/13/1998 8:05 AM
Mike D.

> why the heck can't the engineers and > techs at the major mfgs come up with > something as good- or even better?  
They would have to sell it for the same price as the vintage and boutique amps. There are only so many that can afford this.  
Anyway, it has occured to me that the DIY Gallery on this site is a rather "under-utilized resource". I assume it's because you need to negotiate with tboy to put content up there and you need to develop yer own html page. Is there any way we could develop a simple form (kinda like the one I'm typing in now) geared toward describing an amp? For example, you would have a "rectifier" field with a pull down list box containing (SS, GZ34, 5Y3, etc, with option of entering in an unlisted device.  
Another thing that would be useful here is a Glossary. You would think the world's premier guitar amp information resource would have a killer glossary!  
Then, as you're filling out your form, trying to descibe the sound of your killer DIY amp you can look up the meaning of "brown sound" and say, yeah that's it  
6/13/1998 12:12 PM
Benjamin Fargen

Good idea!!!!!!Benjamin
6/14/1998 3:08 PM
Steve A.

They would have to sell it for the same price as the vintage and  
boutique amps.
    What I had in mind wasn't necessarily a hand-wired eyelet board amp, but just a simple amp using circuits similiar to a tweed Champ or Deluxe, or the Spitfire Benjamin built. While pcb's make it harder to repair or mod the amps, I don't think that it would change the sound that much. Using modern manufacturing techniques I think that they could mass-produce and market Champ clones for under $200 and Deluxe clones for under $300. I guess the catch is that they just don't think that there is a large enough market for vintage sounding amps like those to produce them in large enough numbers to bring the costs down- or would they have to pay Fender to license the patented designs?  
    As for your idea of making a form to describe amp designs, I was once thinking of making up a database that would have all of the specifics of each tube stage for different amps (tube type, B+, anode resistor, cathode resistor, any bypass caps, grid and series load resistors, coupling cap, etc.) Ditto for tone stacks and power supplies so that the whole amp would be there in the database for reference.  
Steve Ahola
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