Tremolux 6G9-A restoration

Discussion in 'Shock Brother's DIY Amps' started by Prophetsnake, Oct 20, 2019.

  1. Prophetsnake

    Prophetsnake Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    About six months ago I purchased a 6G9 head in a very sorry state from a well known local musician. That makes this amp a bit special, so I'd like to keep it reasonable original and, at the same time, usable. It came with the bare wood head cab, very beat and no covering, and no speaker cab. So in spite of what I just said, I plan to convert it to a Vibrolux by putting it in a combo cab with an open back. I'll make that myself and build it as close to period as I can. I'll leave the very beat up faceplate on it, though.

    Incidentally, the same guy had two full to the brim lockups full of gear, including one of Rauri Gallegher's Vox AC-30s for sale, in reasonable condition. That was gone when I got there. Anyhow, way to large for me! He also had a 55 Les Paul, a 65 Strat, several dozen other miscellaneous guitars amps, mandolins. He died a couple of months after I bought this, but I did buy his last stage guitar, a cheap SX Strat copy, which is actually a pretty good instrument.

    So, the Tremolux. The innards I'd like to keep reasonable original, especially the moulded coupling caps. I have no way of testing those in situ, but I'll get an ESR meter and try them after I replace the resistors.
    I know, I'm probably dreaming about the caps, but I'm going to try them at the very least.

    Almost all of the resistors have drifted. I'm considering using carbon resistors throughout. I know they are noisier, but the must have been just as noisy in 1962, so all part of the charm, eh?

    The cathode bypass caps are junk as well, but I will see if I can't fit the new ones inside of the old doubles. It'll be fun to try anyhow.

    A couple of the pots were seized, including one oddball which I found difficult to get, but managed thanks to eBay - a 3.5M - speed for the tremolo.

    The PT seems to be intact. The OT is shot, and that's probably a mercy since it's an awful looking contraption that's been wired in with what looks to be the remnants of a power lead. I'd say it's what took the amp out of service god knows how many years ago.

    The socket pins are a lovely shade of green. I've tested a little contact cleaner though, and they seem to clean up okay, so hopefully I can save those. The vulcanised circuit board is intact, though it's very wavy. I'm hoping against hope that it will survive the trip out of the chassis and live to fight another day, but I think the insulator strip underneath ought to be replaced.

    Here are a few pics. Trempix1.jpg trempix2.jpg trempix3.jpg
     
  2. corliss1

    corliss1 Friend of Leo's

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    Personally, I wouldn't use anything on that board. With the amount of moisture it's seen the possible for future failure even if it tests good now is high.

    I would do this:

    -remove board. Pull all parts, clean board as best you can.
    -pull everything off the chassis. PT, tube sockets, faceplate, rear plate. Clean it up - use a wire wheel if you have to to get it nice.
    -clean up tube shields and doghouse cover
    -tube sockets may still be okay, but prepare to get new ones

    Assemble, rewire, and go from there. Definitely a labor of love, but it'll end up being a very nice amp even if there is little "collector" value left, for the people that care about such things.
     
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  3. Prophetsnake

    Prophetsnake Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Sure. I was planning on doing all of that with the exception of the coupling caps. I don't think they will be okay, but I was planning on replacing pretty much everything else, cleaning it, and then putting some power to them with no tubes in to see what they're like, then keep an eye on them after.
     
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  4. King Fan

    King Fan Friend of Leo's

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    Yeah, those molded blue caps might just be waterproof...

    Could the board likely be conductive, do we think?
     
  5. Prophetsnake

    Prophetsnake Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Yeah, you and corliss have me wondering now. I'm thinking that saving that board was a pipe dream. I'm considering pulling it out as-is and framing it now! Then I'd build from new everything. It shouldn't be that expensive in the end. I'd love to save those old caps, though, if for no other reason than to hear what they sound like for myself.
     
  6. corliss1

    corliss1 Friend of Leo's

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    Oooooh having the whole board displayed could be kinda cool.
     
  7. Prophetsnake

    Prophetsnake Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Oh god, I have been down this road before and I never twigged it! Deja vu! Must be a good idea if I thought it twice. I've justt ordered the bits to make all the new innards from Doug Hoffman.
    I hope I haven't done that twice.
     
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  8. BigDaddy23

    BigDaddy23 Tele-Meister

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    That’s a great idea!
     
  9. David Barnett

    David Barnett Doctor of Teleocity

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    Is that output transformer from Radiospares?
     
  10. Prophetsnake

    Prophetsnake Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    No idea, but I doubt it. It's probably something some tech back in the distant past had lying around and said "that'll work" when the amp was brought in fro repairs.
    I've been getting a little more intimate with what's there and seeing some god-awful bodging inside. There was a very funky terminal strip ( you can see it between the PT and eyelet board) attached with some wood screws. A lot of that translucent amber wire you used to see on power cords in the 1970s patching things up and al kinds of other nastiness. Having said that, all of the caps and resistors appear to be original.

    The PT is an issue, though. It has continuity throughout, but some of the leads have perished insulation which has been dealt with by slipping vey long shrink wrap or something like it over the, loosely. The wire itself looks ok except for the 6.3v CT which has been shortened to less than an inch and looks pretty beat up.
     
  11. David Barnett

    David Barnett Doctor of Teleocity

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    Have you looked under the doghouse yet?

    And I was thinking that RS would be what "some tech back in the distant past had lying around" in your part of the world?
     
  12. Prophetsnake

    Prophetsnake Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Well, if you are really interested, I could poke around it and see - post or send you a few pics? Looking at their site, it does resemble one or tow of the pics.
    It seems to be dead - I'm not getting anything out of one side of the primary - but just for fun I might see if I can revive it as opposed to using it as a paperweight.
     
  13. Prophetsnake

    Prophetsnake Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    Oh, and yes, I opened the doghouse. Five pristine original caps, which are all obviously going to be replaced. I bought five F&T replacements.
     
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