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tube amp - general maintenance suggestions

uncle fester

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hi all - I have a fender blues jr I bought new around '98 or so.  It's been sitting dormant the last few years, but have just started picking up the electric again.  I don't have any issues with it - but I have never done anything maintenance wise with it and was wondering if I don't have any issues, should I just leave good enough alone? Or if there were things that should be done, is it stuff I should be able to do or is it more of a 'take it to a tech' thing?

appreciate anyone's opinions on that.

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what Saturn says Bill.  Tube amps can be finicky, but if the tubes are stable, and not making any unwanted noises, (common issue with micrphonic pre-amp tubes) or dropping volume (Failing power tubes)

if you did need to do anything with it, pre-amp tubes are plug and play.  Power tubes would need to be purchased as a matched set, and once installed, the amp would need to be re-biased to properly run with the new tubes.

So, if it aint broke........

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I experienced the era when almost everything ran on tubes and local grocers had a tube tester stand in the front of the store, usually provided by Sylvania, GE or RCA.. Tubes are tough, designed to survive adverse conditions.. What Saturn says is true .. Not much care required, but if you rely on your amp for woking gigs you may want want some spares.. They can be hard to find on a weekend..

Like kidblast said matched sets of power tubes are important, a new power tube can cause its older mate to burn too hot and die or vice versa..

Tubes can be become microphonic when they get old and collect burnt material visible in the glass if the socket is on top, if on the bottom not quite as noticeable..

Tubes can last for years, depending on how hard you push them, but the clock is ticking..

There are many manufacturers of high quality tubes for music amps, including custom tubes to modify your sound..

One of my Ampegs used 6  6550's, 2 matched sets of 3. Usually had to get 3 matched sets of 2..

Edited by mihcmac
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On 10/17/2019 at 7:23 AM, badbluesplayer said:

Yeah - just fire it up and keep your fingers crossed, lol.  Should be just fine.

this is the guy I was going to suggest you check with, not to diminish anyone else's input. 

just use it. it'll let you know if & when somethings up.  have fun.

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