Are casters on amps harmful?

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by Milspec, May 15, 2019.

  1. Mexitele Blues

    Mexitele Blues Tele-Meister

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    I rolled my Pro Reverb down the sidewalk and into Herman's Hideaway one night many years ago. Plugged it in, flipped the switch, and...

    Nothing.

    Found the rectifier tube nestled in tight next to the reverb tank.
     
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  2. studio1087

    studio1087 Telefied Silver Supporter

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    In college (1983) I had a Bandmaster Head, an Altair Power Attenuator and a 2 x 12 Celelestion cab that I put in the trunk of a rusted Ford Mustang with horrible springs and shocks. I promise you that the trunk of my car was hell compared to rolling an amp on nice casters. I’d walk out of a bar, put the stuff in the trunk and drive on gravel farm roads to get home from biker bars. Sometimes the amp head would move a foot across the trunk from the potholes and banging around. It just kept on working!

    So.....I can’t buy the “rolling caster damage” angle. No way.
     
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  3. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    I get what you are saying and have experienced, but maybe hard constant vibration is more damaging than occassional shock of a bump or a hard bounce? I don't know, that is why I threw this topic out there and seems that there is no consensus either.
     
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  4. cyclopean

    cyclopean Friend of Leo's

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    how long do you let it cool down?
     
  5. swampyankee

    swampyankee Tele-Holic Gold Supporter

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    I'm not a fan of casters on amps. Maybe across a smooth interior floor, but I'd be afraid of jarring something loose. My Twin, like all my amps gets carried every time. If I get too weak to carry then I'll get a 2 wheel truck with pneumatic tires.
     
  6. grolan1

    grolan1 Friend of Leo's

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    Back in the early 80's I had a 73 Pro Reverb fall out the back of a pickup bed going doing a gravel road (actually the driver fell asleep, went in the ditch, in coming out of the ditch the amp fell on the road). Still worked after the fall, but I still wouldn't use my casters on the amp only on smooth surfaces... I guess it's my silly choice!
     
  7. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have quite a bit flight cased gear... my Mesa rig and racks are all castered up and foam padded in cases but my JMP Marshall combo gear is often on its back on the hard plywood floor of a van or trunk floor of a car. It’s bouncing around more that it even would on rubber wheeled casters. Hit a sleeping policeman feature or brake quick and it’s flying... literally. Been going strong since ‘79, never lost a tube to physical damage as far as I am aware.

    I am going to put oversize 3” casters on it though with rubber wheels but mainly it’s to save my back and knees. I avoid the small, hard ones because they snag on every small crack or door threshold strip.

    Amp’s shake like hell for hours at a gig if being cranked. That is going to loosen anything if it’s going to come loose.
     
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  8. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Poster Extraordinaire

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    I would say the rubber shock mounts that Mesa use to suspend amp chassis are neat. Built in suspension.
     
  9. Durtdog

    Durtdog Poster Extraordinaire

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    After reading this thread, I'm going to abandon my idea of putting casters on my Pro Junior.
     
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  10. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    My conclusion from the thread is almost everyone who has actually used casters reports no negative consequences. So I would say it’s perfectly fine although a separate hand truck or moving skate with pneumatic wheels is certainly a good choice.
     
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  11. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    Repeat
     
  12. gridlock

    gridlock Friend of Leo's

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    I agree with your tech, I would not think of rolling an amp on an uneven or bumpy surface. Vibrations cannot be good for the amp.

    Plus I don’t like casters, to tippy, makes it hard to load the amp into the car, and I like my amp directly on the floor when jamming with others. I keep my amps on wooden furniture-moving dollies at home to keep them off the floor. I had a waterline break in the middle of the night in a previous home and flooded the entire house. Those dollies saved my amp collection.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2019 at 9:52 PM
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  13. ce24

    ce24 Poster Extraordinaire

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    From this thread I went out to harbor freight and bought 4 - 3" casters with the rubber wheels and made a dolly for my AC15 twin. Take it slowly n easy with the rubber wheels and I should be fine.
     
  14. Rich724

    Rich724 Tele-Meister

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    At my last gig I brought my Quilter TB 200 and stuffed it my backpack along with some other accessories. Also had a 1x12 cab and my Strat. I had over 100 yards to get back to my car with my gear at the end. I'll be 65 in a few months and it wasn't a problem. Casters or no, no more heavy amps for me.
     
  15. smokeygills

    smokeygills Tele-Meister

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    My Epiphone Constellation is massive and can only be moved easily by the built-in casters . Completely stock and only only two drifting caps on the power rail when I had it checked by tech a few months ago. Everything else has held up and it’s been rolling around since ‘65. [​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  16. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    I don't think the issue is anything immediate as much as it is cumulative in nature. My amps normally travel on the back seat, so although the amp might bounce around a little, it isn't really being shocked. But man, roll that sucker across cement (especially a sidewalk) and it is like a paint shaker. I wish I knew the definitive answer (if there was such a thing) to this question, but i guess I will just carry my amps until that day comes along.
     
  17. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    I do like those old Epiphone Amps, reeally don't come across them too often.
     
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  18. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    Wasn't vacuum tube equipment normally stuffed into Cold War-era fighter jets?
     
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  19. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    It sure was, but they never dragged them across pavement that I can recall
     
  20. KyAnne

    KyAnne Tele-Afflicted

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    Ya know........I "get that" BUT........if you were pushing/pulling that amp on a sidewalk in the MS Delta (where I'm from originally), it would be VIOLENTLY vibrating. ZERO smooth sidewalks there. Old pebble/rock gravel from waaaay back when.
     
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