April 30th, 2012, 07:25 PM
On a trip this past week to the Ft. Worth area (specifically Granbury), I visited a shop called Caleb's Guitars, and got to play a '73 Fender Butterscotch Blonde Tele through an old Fender Silverface Bandmaster head and cab. Sweet! :grin:
I didn't get pictures of either the guitar or the amp, but here's a pic from the Net of the type of piggyback amp configuration I was playing through.
Haven't read much on here about SF Bandmasters. Anyone else own/have experience with one?
April 30th, 2012, 07:39 PM
I had one that was turned into a 2x12 combo amp. Fabulous amp. Sort of between a Deluxe Reverb and a Twin Reverb which is not a bad place to be.
April 30th, 2012, 08:06 PM
Sure these are nice amps, the one in the photo, drip edge, is a 68/69.
They have a little bit of bark to them with some reasonable gain, 40 watts. The big speaker cab is typical for the era, the big amps ruled the day, Vox, Marshall,Sunn etc...this was nothing more than the same ole' 2x12's in a BIGGER box...
The amp head was pretty much the same as earlier heads with some updates from the BF era, nice, clean...reliable.
I used a 73 BM head for awhile, like it fine...
Kool amp in the photo..
May 1st, 2012, 03:39 PM
That SF trim with the drip edge could be a '67. The larger cab was introduced with the last of the Bf amps in early '67....so that cab coudlbe good for a '67 from and later.
Bandmasters have ethe small output tranny which saturates early and 'sings' a bit earlier/more than say a Super REverb.
May 1st, 2012, 05:30 PM
That SF trim with the drip edge could be a '67. The larger cab was introduced with the last of the Bf amps in early '67....so that cab could be good for a '67 from and later.
220, 221 whatever it takes...
May 1st, 2012, 05:59 PM
My understanding is that there were not a lot of upgrades to the Bandmaster from the Blackface to the early SF as shown in your photo. I have a '64 BF model and it does sound amazing. I love it, and the tremolo is very nice. I have a matching 2x12 cab from 1964 and it just sounds so good.
May 1st, 2012, 06:21 PM
"upgrades"???? Teh firstBF BAndmaster was the AB763.....JUly of 1963. That schematic was kept the same until May of 1968. ....and most of us would not consider those changes in the AC568 circuti to be upgrades.
TPrior, no problem. ASpen Pittman got a lot of people confused with the info in his book on CBS, pre-CBS, BF and SFdelineations. For instance, he states that all BF Fenders are pre-CBS and that SF FEnders are the first CBS amps and were intorduced in 1968. Hmmmm....the papers were signed on Jan 4, 1965. From that point on until sometime in the early '80's---1983???; everything Fender was "CBS".
And....the first SF FEnder amps were produced in April, 1967.
May 1st, 2012, 06:46 PM
69 Silverfaced Bandmaster Reverbs and they are great R&R amps. One has been modded to a Vibroverb circuit with a 69 Showman output tranny to make it a bit beefy and happy with 8 OHMs. The other is all original and someday going into a Super Reverb cab with a quad of Celestions.
Yes, I like them a lot even though I NEVER get to play them out.:sad:
Paul in Colorado
May 2nd, 2012, 02:56 AM
The other guitarist in my first band had a SF Bandmaster with a homemade cab with a JBL D-130 in it. His guitar was a mid '60's ES 175. His playing style was kind of a cross between David Crosby and Dan Hicks. His rig sounded perfect for what he did.
May 2nd, 2012, 02:38 PM
I have little experience with old Fender amps, and I "don't know much about [their] history," as the saying goes. That's part of why I started this thread. I knew I'd get some "schooling" here, as T Prior put it.
It sure was fun playing through that rig. For quite a while, my kid brother and I were the only customers in the shop. He picked up an acoustic/electric bass, plugged in, and we just started jamming.
The only price tag I saw on that piggyback configuration was hanging off of the head, marked at $799. I didn't even ask about it, because: 1) I didn't have that kind of cash to buy it; 2) even if I'd had the cash, I didn't have the room. Our four door sedan on the trip was already full (3 people, 2 guitars, 1 amp).
But could $799 have been for both the head and the cab? Seems like that would be kind of high for just the head.
May 2nd, 2012, 03:49 PM
799 would be about right for the head and cab. But for 800 you can still find blackface Bandmasters with the cab.
May 2nd, 2012, 03:52 PM
This is a Bandmaster, NOT a Bandmaster Reverb, correct?
May 2nd, 2012, 03:58 PM
Had a 73 BMR Head, a 210 DIY cab [still have] with an Weber 10F150T and a Fender BlueFrame Alnico 10 [1990 paper former]. That was some sweet tactile waves on tap I can tell you.
I had sold it and now have a Brown 63 Pro which is a totally different animal and a dirty bird by comparison.. Also sweet and tactile with a lot less of the mids all scooped out like the BF/SF circuits. Like having a zendrive built in kinda/ sorta...
It is all good IMO. ;)
Back to the BM/BMRs. With a Small Bassman size 212 cab quite the rig if at or near factory specs.
Modern Equiv also well worth a nod in the SS 60 Watt head and similarly sized [if not exact] smaller 212 cab. And dead sexy to the Fender Showman fan in all of us. ;)
May 3rd, 2012, 04:29 PM
I have a 69 BMR that I converted to a combo. I wanted a Vibrolux with a 12" and a 10" speaker, and it had to fit in the front seat of my pickup along with 2 guitars & food for the trip home.
I have a few issues with it, and sometimes I think "damn this sounds thin", or it breaks up sooner that I would like for say playing surf music, but every time I record the amp it sounds phenomenal, and it didn't break the bank to build it. No one cries too much when you mod them up a bit as well. Slower tremolo mod is worth doing, as is a switch to take out negative feedback. If you can find a place where you can turn the amp up to stadium levels it really is a nice amp for rock-n-roll.
May 4th, 2012, 06:56 AM
The first good amp I ever had was a Vox Cambridge Reverb (15 watts, 1-10" speaker) that I bought new in '66. It wasn't loud enough to gig with, so I talked my dad into loaning me the money to trade it in on a blackface Bandmaster in early '67. I was fortunate enough to get one of the last horizontal-cabinet ones right before they went to the tall cabinet. It was a great-sounding amp--the band I was in was playing a lot of school auditoriums and gymnasiums and the like, and I don't remember the Bandmaster ever not being loud enough--of course, I used to run it on 10! Eric Clapton was my hero, and I could pretty much nail his tone with my SG through that Bandmaster (my big claim to fame when I was in high school). After a few years, I missed having reverb, and I thought I needed more power, so I traded the Bandmaster in on a '70 Twin Reverb. Big mistake--1970 was the worst year for Twins (at least, mine was a dog)!
May 4th, 2012, 12:34 PM
I will say out of the few Supers and BMR [similar wattage SF amps], the BMR was easier to put up with the power at lower volumes than the rest, especially the Ultra Linear Super, but I also use 210s and not 410 when I used the BMR...
That said the UL are like what 70Watts and one Super was the Pro-Tube which is 60 Watts, I will add in the DeVille212 which also was a lot less easy to control the power of when that much power was not needed, also 60 Watts.
Other than the BMR I learned to use a Les Luis with the 60+ watters to take some bark off, and was successful doing so. Adding a little tweed flavor at the same time which worked well and I recommend if yo gott use a 6-+ Watt Fender on a smaller room say where a cranked Princeton would be a better choice yadi...
As I said, I replaced the BMR with with a Brown Pro, 40W also, but potentially a lot grindy-er. Point being 40 [tube] watts seems to be my ceiling, and may be the case with others, their Mileage Varring possibly. ;)