1. Win a Broadcaster or one of 3 Teles! The annual Supporting Member Giveaway is on. To enter Click Here. To see all the prizes and full details Click Here. To view the thread about the giveaway Click Here.

Seeking current suggestions for 5E3 Amp kits / cabs / speakers

Discussion in 'Amp Central Station' started by heavypic, Feb 2, 2019.

  1. heavypic

    heavypic TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    59
    Joined:
    May 18, 2010
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Hey All,

    I am intrigued by all the praise for the Tweed Deluxe 5E3 amp clones and the great tone from these amps. I've searched and read several threads here on TDPRI and the net…some a few years old…so I’m hoping for some updated suggestions from those with experience.

    I would like to try a kit build. My soldering has been limited to guitars (pups, pots/caps, etc.), so I would need a kit with good hardcopy or online instructions….step-by-step. I viewed a couple online instruction vids for a 5E3 assembly and I think I can get it done. I like projects and prefer to spend $$ on quality components by saving on the DIY side of the project if the margin is worth the labor effort/time.

    I'm looking for current suggestions for 5E3 kits with good quality components; sources for finished tweed-covered cabinets (advice for combo vs. head/speaker cabs, optimal dimensions?); and speakers (12” or 15” alnico – brands/models).

    My favorite music is blues and classic/southern rock. My current amps include a BJ, DRRI, 2x12 HR DeVille and Bugera V22.

    Advice/suggestions appreciated! Regards
     
  2. caspersvapors

    caspersvapors Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    383
    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2008
    Location:
    CA
    Cabinet - Mather

    I believe Stew Mac has the most comprehensive instructions which you can download without buying their kit
     
    Jwalker99, DrPepper and David Barnett like this.
  3. kookaburra

    kookaburra Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,884
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2012
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ, USA
    Check out Trinity. I have an amp that they built, but everything I've read has been positive regarding quality and support.

    I received excellent customer service as I was in the process of deciding what to purchase.

    They have a 5e3 kit.
     
    AndreDanican and No457 Snowy like this.
  4. ce24

    ce24 Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    6,473
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    Location:
    Idahoastan
    I've been really happy with my Weber kit. Going strong for ten + years.
     
  5. keithb7

    keithb7 Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    4,957
    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2010
    Location:
    Western Canada
    I’ve done kits by Trinity, Weber, Boothill, and did my own piece-meal builds. All 5E3. For a first build, quality, I’d say Trinity. Weber 12A125 30W speaker.
    Weber 5E3 kits? Meh....Some low quality parts in there.

    These home build amps sound amazing.

    Or you can pay $5000 US for a new, dumb Fender Custom Shop relic’d 5E3 built out of reclaimed barn wood.
     
    Jwalker99 and AndreDanican like this.
  6. Milspec

    Milspec Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    5,425
    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2016
    Location:
    Nebraska
    I did a Weber kit, I found it to pretty nice, but to be honest it cost me far more than expected going in. Unless you are experienced with such building, you might be better off "buying off the rack" from a good builder. Lord knows there are thousands of builders out there and they almost all have a 5E3 build available.
     
  7. No457 Snowy

    No457 Snowy Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    326
    Joined:
    May 27, 2011
    Location:
    Australia
  8. Sarde

    Sarde Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    158
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2016
    Location:
    San Pedro, CA
  9. clintj

    clintj Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    4,957
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2015
    Location:
    Idaho
    Tube Depot makes a quality kit with good instructions. Good, as in both complete and no obvious mistakes such as improper power wiring that a beginner wouldn't catch.

    Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk
     
    Syrinx and No457 Snowy like this.
  10. RossL

    RossL TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    50
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2018
    Location:
    New Jersey
    I recently built the Weber kit. I bought my own transformers, capacitors and tubes.

    I bought Tone Clone transformers, Sozo blues coupling caps, F&T electrolytics, I had NOS USA made tubes

    I liked the Weber kit. I have built amps from scratch (before there were kits available) and didn’t need a lot of instructions. I can read schematics but I found the Weber Layout was easy to follow but this may not be the case for everyone.

    I wanted the best components I could find which is why I sourced the parts I did. And I am wanted the Weber speaker which was the main reason I bought the Weber kit.

    Whatever you decide it all takes time. If you have patience and preserve you will get there.

    Make sure you have a good voltmeter.....
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2019
  11. AndreDanican

    AndreDanican Tele-Holic Gold Supporter

    Posts:
    657
    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2014
    Location:
    Montreal
    I built a Trinity 5E3 and it turned out great. Stephen at Trinity was very helpful with questions. Highly recommended. I even made a video:
     
  12. gregjhonda

    gregjhonda Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    113
    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2009
    Location:
    Corry, PA
  13. Uncle Daddy

    Uncle Daddy Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,467
    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2015
    Location:
    Maldon, England
  14. heavypic

    heavypic TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    59
    Joined:
    May 18, 2010
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Hey all - Thanks so much for the advice. I've got some planning to do for this 5e3. Looking forward to it...

    Uncle Daddy: Thanks for the wisdom. However, no wife presently. I suffered too many years in a bad marriage. I'd do it again but now I've got a long list of 'no compromise' prerequisites...LOL!!! I probably won't find Eve 'till I get to Eden... but a 5e3 will help pass the time...
     
    DrPepper and Paul in Colorado like this.
  15. heavypic

    heavypic TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    59
    Joined:
    May 18, 2010
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Hey all - Thanks so much for the advice. I've got some planning to do for this 5e3. Looking forward to it...

    Uncle Daddy: Thanks for the wisdom. However, no wife presently. I suffered too many years in a bad marriage. I'd do it again but now I've got a long list of 'no compromise' prerequisites...LOL!!! I probably won't find Eve 'till I get to Eden... but a 5e3 will help pass the time...
     
  16. teleman78

    teleman78 Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    579
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2011
    Location:
    Miami, FL. USA
    Any kit that has Classictone transformers and decent filter and tone caps would be a good choice. As far Speakers go the Weber Signature Alnico 12 for $80 is amazing! Gets you authentic ‘50s tweed tones. I haven’t felt the need to try any other speaker on my Tweed Deluxe, it fits it perfectly. As far as cabs, Mojotone cabs are very good and usually they have sales on them.
     
  17. avspecialist

    avspecialist Tele-Meister

    Age:
    66
    Posts:
    181
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2019
    Location:
    Avon,Ct
    I would have to say the 5E3 kit from mojotone is a great way to go. it was my first kit I built. the layout that was supplied was excellent, the Heyborer transformers sound very good, I did make my own cabinet, but their cabinets are excellent. The best speaker is the alnico 12A125A from weber. it’s a fantastic amplifier. After you get it working, perhaps some RobRob mods can tweak it to your satisfaction.
     
  18. Silverface

    Silverface Poster Extraordinaire Platinum Supporter

    Age:
    68
    Posts:
    9,787
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2003
    Location:
    Lawndale CA
    I don't suggest building a kit until you have some fairly solid experience servicing tube amps - meaning you also have a good understanding of at least "basic" and " general tube amplifier" electronics.

    No offense - but if you are unfamiliar with safety rules, the different parts of a circuit, can't point out the high voltage wires and signal wires on a schematic, recognize which parts are which, their values and what they do in a particular position my feeling is a kit is "above your pay grade" :D. You wouldn't be "building a kit" - which is really just an easy way of buying all the parts - you'd be assembling an electronic version of a plastic model - except one that can kill you, even when it's not plugged in!

    I think your intent is actually very good, because you WANT instruction to be included.

    But sadly, most kits are sold with parts, schematic and a layout. Sometimes instructions that tell you what to solder where - but that's not "instruction", those are "directions". And many clearly state that they sell kits intended for buyers who "bring the electronics knowledge with them. A few throw in some really basic testing - but most don't. We regularly ask new builders to post their "voltage charts" - essentially a required part of the building/testing process to verify parts are simply soldered in the right place - and they don't have one, never heard of one, and there's nothing in the "manual".

    Back in the 60's & 70's some of us cut our teeth on things like Heathkit and Eico kits, which included logical, phased construction with testing after every section was built. Those were "educational kits" that resulted in high quality components.

    But nobody does that today. The *closest* I have found is a company in England producing kits of their own design plus some Marshall-like kits, and have fairly extensive documentation in pdf's and in their online forum.

    http://www.ampmaker.com/store/

    There may be others - but this is the minimum amount of instructional information I would suggest at based on your current experience level. With the common Mojo, Weber and other kits you may "assemble" an amp - but chances are you won't understand it.

    The biggest problem in "newbie" amp construction is not inexperience - it's impatience. The desire to get it done asap. And that leads to many problematic amps, while a years' study and progressively more complicated tech work leads to well built amps nd a clear understanding of why it works.

    I'm not trying to discourage you at all - I just want to encourage you to understand what you are getting into and (ideally) having the ability to take the parts for a f5F1 Champ, a schematic - NO layout - and build a working amp.

    Good luck.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.