At A Crossroads

Discussion in 'Ampage Area' started by Jeff O, Dec 31, 2008.

  1. Jeff O

    Jeff O Country Gent

    Sep 25, 2008
    The Motor City
    I've built 5 amps, but want to learn more.

    Problem is, there are no good sources!

    I was at Borders, but there were no specific books regarding tube amplifier circuits. If I took an Egnater or Kendrick build your own amp class, I wouldn't learn much more than I already know. I have a bunch of books (Weber, Bacon, Aspen Pittman) but they don't teach how to interpret and design circuits.

    I checked and their is nothing amplifier specific or even close at the local colleges.

    Any ideas? Books that would help? A way to learn the circuitry better?

    I'm supposed to be talking with a friend's landlord who is an old TV and Radio repairman. He's too old to do repairs anymore - if he was still active I'd apprentice for free. Maybe he'll take me under his wing and work with me regardless.
  2. Jukebox

    Jukebox Gretschified

    Jun 2, 2008
    Maybe offer to do some work at a guitar store under their repair tec?
  3. yettoblaster

    yettoblaster Synchromatic

    Oct 9, 2008
    Santa Cruz, CA
    Find an old RCA Tube Applications Manual/Handbook. I'm not sure they still print them, but they are ubiquitous around radio shops, Ham operators, etc.

    The tube manufacturers all produced these little reference books. I wouldn't be surprised if JK Lutherie or Weber or somebody had a version.

    Leo Fender basically just used tube applications manuals and his ears when designing his amps.
  4. Gretschy

    Gretschy Synchromatic

    Jun 11, 2008
    Do you feel comfortable working on other peoples amps? Maybe an ad on CL or the like for a discounted price might be the ticket. No better way to learn than experience (as long as you feel confident that you wouldn't tear anything up). Looking at all kinds of different circuits would be very beneficial IMO.
  5. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Admin Post
    I think that Antique Electronics Supply might be a good source for books etc. IMO the next step would be developing a feel for what is going on inside an amp by doing modifications. When I reads posts by experinced modifiers I find it humblig to say the least. While he works mostly on PCB amps I would suggest becoming a disciple of Bill M. He knows his stuff and publishes a lot of information on his site.
  6. NJ Joe G

    NJ Joe G Electromatic

    Jun 3, 2008
  7. wenzel

    wenzel Synchromatic

    Jun 2, 2008
    New Jersey
    Do yourself a favor and ask a pro that's been doing it for years, like my good friend at Raritan Guitars in New Jersey. Call them and ask to talk to the amp repair guy. hahaha, He's not a REALLY good friend, he's more like a repair guy to me. I'm not on a first name basis with him, but he had books of amp circuits that you wouldn't believe. Just ask him and tell him an Air Force guy with a silvertone 1484 sent you. I'm sure he'll steer you right. If nothing else, he can give you a book title or two and maybe a link to where he got them. Good luck Jeff! Go, Jeff, Go!!!
  8. getbent

    getbent Super Moderator

    Jun 1, 2008
    sunny california

    I think what would benefit you is an old textbook from the fifties... That is what I got turned onto when I got interested and it was a HUGE help. I paid the books forward however... and sent them on to someone who was interested... I'll hunt around to see if I can find a set... they give you the basics that you are looking for...

    I think Johnny Crash sent the books to me originally....
  9. Jeff O

    Jeff O Country Gent

    Sep 25, 2008
    The Motor City
    All great ideas!

    There are a few used bookstores, one that specializes in text books.

    Also I'm hoping that my friend's landlord will take on a project or two.
  10. Pappy

    Pappy Country Gent

    Jun 4, 2008
    Man, I saw this huge book at Barnes & Noble called something like "The Tube Amplifier book" or something. It was ridiculously huge, with two spiral bound books bound together in a bigger shell. Inside it had descriptions of a ton of amps and a ton of mods and circuits in there as well with everything from Vox to Matchless. It was crazy.

    I went home and looked it up on Amazon and let me say, it's much cheaper there. When I get back I'll see exactly what it was.
  11. Falconer

    Falconer Electromatic

    Sep 4, 2008
    Start your own targeted blog. Set specific goals for the participants. Get everyone talking about a tech challenge of the day.
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