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Silvertone amp

11/27/1999 5:50 PM
J. Crow
Silvertone amp
Just got my Silvertone ("1481," I think?) amp in the mail (bought on ebay). I am looking for the "usual" information.  
Does anyone have much experience with these amps?  
Any known problems or easy mods?  
Know where I can get a schematic?  
Suggestions for replacement tubes? (2x6V6, 2x12AX7, 6AU6, 6X4)  
The stock 12" speaker has some small holes around the edge--do I recone or get a Weber? If Weber, which one do you think?  
P.S.: It's the same model amp that's pictured at this ebay auction:
11/27/1999 7:08 PM

Wow J.,  
That's the same as my very first amp I had in the early 70's. It was a cool sounding amp,(I remember it did the "turn up all the way and stand in front of it feedback" thing real well!) Since I couldn't play anything at the time, that's the coolest thing I could do, feedback and wank on the whammy bar of my old, funky first plank. (That was even before "Stranglehold"). Don't have any suggestions for you, except have fun with it. It just brought back memories for me, is all.  
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11/27/1999 11:28 PM

My buddy had one of these too when we were in high school. Very midrange tone. Cool tremelo with 3 channels! Try a Graphic Eq pedal. It will really let you dip out the mids, and boost the high end. Build a dpdt splitter box for channel switching! We all used to plug into it in Jr. high! Enjoy the amp! Mark
11/28/1999 4:49 PM
Psycho Bass Guy

I have one and think it sounds pretty sweet as-is. Mine has a Jensen 12" and the tubes were all Sylvania rebranded as Silvertone. FWIW, Sylvania's are more prone to microphonics than other old US stuff, and Sovtek 6v6's actually clean up the sound quite a bit. I'd leave Slyvania's in the preamp and trem, though. Those microphonics really make the trem sound better and the clean tone can use the added life. My amp does not like humbuckers and gets way muddy with them, but feed it single coils and you can get very close to Jimi's clean tone! As for replacing the tubes, if it does have any, experiment with different brands. It's a very simple circuit that really highlights differences in them.  
Not much to it that would need a schem. It's all laid out on the back of its control panel and its easy to see what goes where. If you have any problems finding those tubes just ask the guys here. I personally have all the ones it would need, but do tboy a favor and visit his sponsors(they're tube dealers) first. They should have them all too. Those are very common tubes!  
What kind of speaker is it? Mine is a Jensen, but yours could be something else. Silvertones used to be used as fun 'hack' amps and alot of them have been modded. I'd leave it alone or restore it if it was mine. If you want to play, just build yourself another amp. Those babies are too old and getting too far beween to just go tweaking on.  
Just my 1/50 of a dollar  
Psycho(the one, the only, the insane)>^}
11/28/1999 8:56 PM
J. Crow

I agree with you Psycho, I don't plan on hacking this one up.  
The speaker is shot, but by the basket code it's an Oxford 12 (Alnico). Some ham-handed wag apparently perforated the cone/surround by "missing" repeatedly and stabbing the cone with the baffle screws. Ouch. I've temporarily installed a newer Fender/Jensen ceramic 12. Thinking maybe a Weber P12Q soon. Is that Oxford worth reconing?  
The 6V6's are black-glass, and the only labeling left is "Van Nuys California." I have heard that black-glass equals suck. True or false? The rest of the tubes have no labeling at all. What's the deal with that "6AU6?"  
I can't get the trem to come on at all! I tried an Alesis FX footswitch, and when I step on it I can hear a faint click or pop coming from the speaker, but no trem. Ideas?  
11/28/1999 9:07 PM

Maybe the wag was just trying to emulate John Lennon's "Revolution" distortion!  
Seriously, I THINK Oxford's were supposed to be pretty good speakers. They used to come in Magnatones.  
11/28/1999 10:40 PM
Psycho Bass Guy

J. Crow,  
I dove into mine today just to remember what was what. Your trem is not working at all. Its default position is on, footswitch or no. The actual switch jack itself may be shorted; try cleaning it. The 6AU6 is the trem driver. It may be dead or it may not be getting power, since you mention the PT was rusted. Maybe the previous owner thought that speaker holes would give more distortion ala Rocket 88?  
[: )]It's a very clean amp and doesn't really have any overdrive, just bluesy breakup.  
As for black glass 6V6's, I have some JAN RCA's with black glass and they are the best 6V6's ever! As long as it works and does what you want it to, no tube is junk. (It just needs the proper home!) Put 'em on a tester and see what it says. Like I said, I have Sovtek's in mine, like them, and they are the old style ones, not the new 6V6EH's. If you need one and can't find one, I have an old RCA 6AU6A that tests as new that I would trade or sell ya for cheap.  
Psycho (even though this is a guitar amp, it's still me!)
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