Dating a fender bassman
I had never worked on an amplifier before, but I had built and modified many guitar pedals, and I had the interest and the desire to get into this next phase of my hobby (read: habit).I immediately set out to do some research and see if this particular project was even possible for somebody of my ability.From BREME–(at)–Sat Jan 13 CST 1996 Article: 77538 of rec.music.makers.guitar From: BREME–(at)–(THOMAS BREMER) Subject: RE: Silverface Deluxe Rev Questions Date: 13 Jan 96 -0800 References: Path: utexas.edu! By 1968 deluxes usually left with CTS/EMINANCE speakers (Jensen had closed down) Once in awhile you can see the EIA code, CTS-starts with a #137-sometimes these are under the doughnut fender speaker label. I use this before buying a amp always-check all four transformers-will tell you if there has been problems along the way. On the bottom lower corner of the grill cloth was/is a 1×2 inch “JBL” plastic logo that Fender attached.
View the underside of the chassis (flashlight helps alot)look for the reverb driver trans.
A cursory Internet search told me that the AB165 (the designation for this particular iteration of the Bassman circuit) was made between the years of 19.
The silver control panel (hence, “Silverface”) denotes that it was built after May of 1967 when they transitioned from the “Blackface” cosmetics. Another indicator of the date of manufacture is what Fender aficionados call the “drip-edge”; a thin aluminum trim that surrounds the silver and blue grille cloth on the front of the amp.
My original idea was to gut the amp and restore it to original 1968 specifications.
After searching the Internet I saw that there were parts kits available for reconstructing the AA165, a slightly older, rarer, and therefore more sought-after circuit than its more ubiquitous successor.