1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

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1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby TELECASTER1954 on Tue Apr 05, 2016 11:19 pm

Guys, I have a couple of Brown era Fenders and a chance to pick up a 1961 Bandmaster with matching 1x12 cab.

I was told that all is original except the speaker and the electrolytic caps.

Tolex sure looks pristine to me - my other Blonds have knot "leak through" in areas..............

There seems to be more changed on the board than use the electrolytics to me but I'm a neophyte compared to many on this forum.

Advice and learnin' welcomed :-)

Rick

[url]http://[URL=http://s701.photobucket.com/user/Telecaster1954/media/1961%20bandmaster/bandmaster%201961%20front%20shot_zpsiry0iigo.jpg.html]Image[/url][/url]

[url]http://[URL=http://s701.photobucket.com/user/Telecaster1954/media/1961%20bandmaster/bandmaster%201961%20back%20shot_zpso6xc4to0.jpg.html]Image[/url][/url

[url]http://[URL=http://s701.photobucket.com/user/Telecaster1954/media/1961%20bandmaster/Bandmaster%201961%20board_zpsxd5rdgw7.jpg.html]Image[/url][/url]
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby Baron Von Machinenmann on Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:20 am

Looks straight to my eyes, if the price was right I'd buy that rig. :thumbsup:
ImageImageImage

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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby keithb7 on Wed Apr 06, 2016 4:34 am

Wow, that is a clean amp! 1x12 tone ring cabinet I suspect. Great find.

The cathode caps and bias caps have been changed. A 3 prong grounded cord has been added.
The 2 main power tube grid resistors have been changed. Newer metal oxide 1W resistors are in there.
I also see a newer metal oxide resistor on the bias board. Possibly 1 diode on the bias board too.
All this I would consider normal maintenance.

There is a high chance that the B+ caps under the dog house have been changed. I hope so. This is on the
underside of the chassis. That would also be expected maintenance. You should ask for photos, or at least
date codes on all the transformers. We can verify dates for you. This is really important to a vintage
amp, if you are paying a good dollar for a decent, valuable vintage amp.

There appears to have been a hole drilled in rear chassis. See the white plug through the Fender marking there?

Unless that amp has been hermetically sealed for 55 years, how could the tolex and grill cloth be so clean. It all
looks new. I'm not saying it's not original, but man, I'm suspicious. It's just too perfect almost for anything that old.
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby TELECASTER1954 on Wed Apr 06, 2016 11:44 am

Thanks for the critique Keith. I do have pics of the doghouse and I'll try to post it this afternoon. I asked and all tranny's are original but I did ask for the codes.

II'll also ask about the white plug - wonder what that could have been for.

I am tending to agree that the tolex/grillcloth is too perfect. I kept looking for pine knot "leak" spots and can't see anything. However if the coverings are new they sure appear to have been done well.............

Rick
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby keithb7 on Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:38 pm

My understanding is modern production blonde tolex is not the same as original early 60's.
The little bumps/pattern on it is not the same. Do you have another original blonde amp you
can inspect the tolex on? You can see the new re-issue blonde tolex on new Fender RI Blackface amps.
Fender is making FSR, Factory Special Run, amps in blonde. I have seen a new Princeton, Deluxe
and Twin offered in blonde.
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby keithb7 on Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:42 pm

One more thing I just noticed. There looks to maybe be another hole drilled, far left on the rear chassis.
Just left of the ground switch. I have a 62 Blonde Twin and there is no hole there in my chassis. That could be either a black round sticker or a plug. Hard to
tell from here looking at the photo. I'd ask about that too.
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby Dean Jr. on Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:19 pm

What is the date code on that bias adjustment potentiometer???? I don't think that is original..
I don't like the look of the tolex, either. The holes in the chassis indicate an amp that has been used. An amp that has been used doesn't have tolex or grille cloth that looks like that, ime. Where is a picture of the tube chart? IMho, these pics ask more questions than they answer.
At the right price, the amp could be something of interest. If it is priced as exc. cond, all-original; then it is overpriced, imho....if my suspicions are correct.
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby John Peden on Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:37 pm

I agree its could be an interesting amp at the right price. The faceplate is slightly bent on the script logo side indicating it has seen a bit of rough handling. The chrome corners on the cabinet are new and I'd bet the Tolex is also. The work on the circuit appears to be well done and the recovering also but it shouldn't be priced as all original.
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby TELECASTER1954 on Wed Apr 06, 2016 11:12 pm

I agree on all point made thus far. The more I see the more I ask!

Serial on chassis is 04582 placing it in the 1961 window.

The seller seems to be a good guy but took this on trade and I'm not sure how savvy he is about vintage stuff - like I am. LOL

He was ASKING $2200 - too darn much even for a clean, original example - much less what it looks like this amp truly is.

I asked for more data including all tranny codes (even though he said all are original), pic of tube chart, inside of cab pics (tone ring, the (should be) weird rear panel that SHOULD have 3 or 4 vertical wooden "slats" on it.

Here are a few more pics that may, or may not make things more clear.................

Thanks again to all you guys in-the-know for your time and sharing!

[url]http://[URL=http://s701.photobucket.com/user/Telecaster1954/media/1961%20BANDMASTER%20DOGHOUSE_zps8rieyfbb.jpg.html]Image[/url][/url]

[url]http://[URL=http://s701.photobucket.com/user/Telecaster1954/media/1961%20BANDMASTER%20HEAD%20FRONT_zpsdpeuiwdo.jpg.html]Image[/url][/url]

[url]http://[URL=http://s701.photobucket.com/user/Telecaster1954/media/1961%20BANDMASTER%20BOTTOM%20OF%20CAB_zpset1kucoi.jpg.html]Image[/url][/url]
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby ampdan on Wed Apr 06, 2016 11:45 pm

There is no way that is original tolex,hardware,glides(feet) etc. Chassis age looks right, not original though as others have mentioned.
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby keithb7 on Thu Apr 07, 2016 3:35 am

The more I look at it, now up close, I'd bet money that's not original tolex. It's just too perfect.
The whole amp looks like the work of Gregg Hopkins to me. He's in St Louis. http://vintage-amp.com/
You could contact him and ask. I hear he's as good as it gets for re-tolexing vintage amps. I bet he could
tell by looking at it, and possibly confirm or deny if it's his work. The inside has been meticulously cleaned.
Someone really took a ton of time and cleaned this amp beyond anything most people are even capable of.

From what I see so far of the tranny's I see no reason to worry. High quality work was done and the
tech chose good quality F&T caps. I suspect it's not how it was presented though. I'd challenge the
statement about all stock except speaker and electrolytic caps. To me, that's a $1500 US Funds amp.
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby TELECASTER1954 on Thu Apr 07, 2016 12:23 pm

Thanks again all. Keith, the seller emailed me after my last fluuy of questions and said he agreed the tolex was replaced. He wasn't sure about the grill and hardware but it is pretty apparent that they are way too clean also.

I also agree on the refurb quality - it looks like someone paid top dollar and got really nice work both cosmetically as well as electronically.

I'm just after something more original and, for me, I would be hesitant offering $1500. On the other hand, as a player, can you buy a NEW amp in the same vein for ~$1500?.

I dunno.

He also sent some additional inside cab photo's and it has been redone as well - at least new fiberglass backing on all sides. It looks like the original tone ring baffle is in place.

I was kind of worried that the entire head box and speaker cab were repros but now I'm thinking they were just re-done.............sigh.

Oh well, I did say to myself that this year I would get a tweed something (Harvard, princeton, etc) and/or an original Vox AC30.

I guess I'm still on the hunt!
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby keithb7 on Thu Apr 07, 2016 1:05 pm

Well good luck in your hunt. I just picked up a 100% original Tweed Deluxe. 1959 5E3. It sounds wonderful.

Image
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby Dean Jr. on Thu Apr 07, 2016 4:37 pm

I haven't taken the time to check out the 'net for asking & sale prices with consideration for originality and condition; but, imho if the amp were all original and happened to have original tolex, grille cloth and hardware that was that clean and had all-original chassis and circuit, then $2500 might be a bargain. Mint doesn't come around often, though. The Fender grille logo we see shows the usage of this amp if nothing else does. The logo has seen days that the tolex and the rest or the hardware have not seen, imho.
The latest VG book shows excellent condition for an all-original '61 with a Tone Ring cab like this one in the $2500-31000 range. This is the second version of the 6G7....the 6G7A, I would think. IF I were looking for a player Bandmaster of this type and the asking price were $1800, then we are having a bargaining session. At $2200, they would have to come way off of their asking price.....unless the amp just did everything I expected and wanted it to do. They still have to come off considerably. I think $1500 for this one is buy time if you know what it is and want it. I would not feel comfortable giving $2K for this amp..personal thing. This is the kind of amp that someone may be off into too deep, ime.
As for being able to buy a new amp like this for $1500??? Who builds clones of the 6G7A with an accurate tone ring cab for that price?
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Re: 1961 Bandmaster Under Consideration - Advice Appreciated

Postby TELECASTER1954 on Thu Apr 07, 2016 5:55 pm

Dean, I agree with you on all points - I am just not in the Market for a vintage amp (of any kind) with absolutely NO collectability value. If a (potentially) nice player were the target this would, perhaps, be a nice one as the rework appears to be done nicely and not cheaply.

Keith...........awesome amp - nice find!!!!!!!!!
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