"Blackfaced" silverface: increase or decrease resale value?

Triocd

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
850
Looking for a silverface deluxe reverb and there's one locally for a good price but it says it's been blackfaced. Is this a concern? I would think any work other than basic maintenance is a possible concern because you never know the skill and knowledge of the person doing the mods. Am I right to be concerned?
 

C-4

Member
Messages
15,526
Your concerns are duly noted and quite true.

If this particular amp has indeed been correctly black-faced, you are getting an amp which was returned to the specs of the better era for black-faced amps.

Have a qualified tech check it out to make sure it was done correctly, and you will be getting a good amp.
 

kinmike

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,107
Most people do the BF mods therefore you are saving money. As long as they were done correctly as C-4 mentions!

Mike
 

70 Mach 1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,927
cost me a $150 to convert my 69 SF V-lux by a reputable tech. this included all the Blah blah blah while he was in there factor. plus another $75 for the big caps

its prob a few bucks worth of parts that i could have done myself but i decided to pay for his knowledge and expertise.

as C4 said and with any used T-A purchase have a tech check it out. it will be the best $50 bench fee you ever paid.
 

NewLeaf09

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,609
I have a blackfaced Vibrolux Reverb and I grin every time I turn it on. I don't think the conversion is rocket surgery. As far as value, I don't know - mine looks like it was rode hard and put up wet most of its life so I was more interested in what it sounded like than what it might sell for later.
 

elicxirmixer

Member
Messages
284
If you have a tech you trust (or the personal know how), I would go ahead and buy the amp if the price is right and it's working.
The silverface is old enough that you'd probably want it looked over anyways. And as others have mentioned, the cost of parts isn't overwhelming. So someone should be able to "correct any mistakes" a previous modder may have made.
 

ripgtr

Member
Messages
12,774
There isn't a ton of dif between BF and SF on the Deluxe.

When I bought my '76 DR, I was at a store that had 3 or 4 of each, bf and sf. I picked the sf one. They all were a bit dif from each other and all very similar. all sounded great.

The circuit differences are not that big on a deluxe. I do know mine had the suppressor caps already removed, maybe some other stuff may have, though I didn't see anything else when I was in there. I replaced the filter and cathode bypass caps a while back, and gave it a go going over.

If it sounds good and is a good price, grab it. My sfdr had been my go to amp for 15 years now.

Note: A few years back, I replaced the 715 caps in my tweed deluxe clone with Sozu. I heard a noticeable dif. So, I did the same on my SFDR. No change, sounded exactly the same to me. It had those blue blob caps (not the same as the blue ones in a bf), and I think they are perfectly fine. Some people think the later coupling caps are an issue, don't know about other ones, but the blue ones in my SFDR were as good as the fancy ones. I'll probably put those back in, next time I get some time and tear the amp apart. Which will probably be a long time, lol
 

0018g

Member
Messages
1,901
There isn't a ton of dif between BF and SF on the Deluxe.

This, especially the closer you get to '68.

It wouldn't bother me at all. Even if it wasn't done perfectly, if the amp works and there's no DAMAGE it's easy and cheap to tidy up.
 

71strat

Member
Messages
10,337
I think Eric Johnson uses/has used both a 65 Deluxe Rvb, and a 71 Deluxe Rvb, both with JBL D120Fs. Steve Howe used Silver Face Dual Showman/Twin Reverbs/JBLs. Whether they were modded I don't know. Never heard they were. Theres 0 wrong with most any SF Fender vs BF. Shouldn't be compared vs Better. Different is Better.
I had a 69 SF DS as my #1 amp from 73-2001 x 2 Altec 418H. Still have it. Modded now.

When I had my 69 Dual Showman gone over by Richie Hall about 200 hours ago, I had him Blackface it, he also put an ODS mod to it. You can switch the mod Off/On when plugged into the 1st channel, with the Bright Switch. It turns it into a fire breather, that sounds like no Fender Ive ever heard. Its also noticeable louder. Crushingly loud vs stock. No Need for any Dumble ODS pedals, that's for sure. I use it with 2 x Altec 418H, 2 x 1 x 12 Celestion Creams, or 2 x 1 x 12 x hemp coned JBL E120s in ported cabs.

Richies brother Dana was also personal friends with Ken Fischer, and was voted by the Trainwreck forum to build the Ken Fischer Tribute Amp, and they also really know Dumble circuits. They also supply Hi Tone with VVR, and have been friends/neighbors for 45 years.

IMHO Fender SF amps are highly underrated, and also generally have robust transformers vs modern. Ive never had 1 problem with my 69 DS. And Ive cranked the crap out of it/Altecs

If you would buy the modern = with the same type wiring scheme ect, the amps would be 3 times what you can get the used 1s for. Even if they need a recap. As long as the Transformers are in good shape, half the battle is won.
 

drbob1

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
30,242
It depends a little. If the amp is showroom clean, with all matching numbers and stock caps and sounds great, you might want to have left it alone for a (weird) collector who wanted a 74. MOST SF amps are slightly more desirable if they've been well blackfaced so it wouldn't stop me from buying it. OTOH, unless the mods were done by someone truly famous I wouldn't pay MORE for it.
 

Average Joe

Member
Messages
12,508
It would lower the value for me. Stock is stock. Silverface usually sounds great.
I'm not sure it's reasonable per se, but if I was a buyer this would be my line of reasoning as well. If for no other reason, then as a bargaining angle
 

Stormin

Tele's and Plexis
Messages
4,201
Looking for a silverface deluxe reverb and there's one locally for a good price but it says it's been blackfaced. Is this a concern? I would think any work other than basic maintenance is a possible concern because you never know the skill and knowledge of the person doing the mods. Am I right to be concerned?

It really depends on how late of a Silverface it is (i.e. which circuit they're BF'ing) as to how involved the mods get. That said, BF'ing an SF is not a bad thing. I have a '71 SFDR, which I believe is an AB868 circuit. In my case, the mods are really around the power circuitry, not the tone circuits, so BF'ing doesn't get me much. A newer amp like an A1172 circuit would require more mods in the preamp than mine does and thus be more work to perform correctly. A late SF amp with pull boost gets more involved...

Find out how old the amp is and what circuit it has and that'll guide you as to how much work has been done.

If it were me buying it, I'd be much more concerned with the amp having an original transformer / choke set. To me, that's about the only original parts that are irreplaceable. The factory speakers were typically crap, the original filter caps would have need replaced by now and certainly the power tubes would have been replaced. The rest of the amp (except components replaced for BF'ing) should be original.
 
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calfzilla

Cynical Hack
Messages
3,870
If you were going to BF the amp, you've saved money. But don't let the seller try to command a higher price because of it. it doesn't add to the "value" of the amp from a collector's POV. I've seen many a person try to sell a SF amp for $300-$400 more than what a SF in good condition is worth just because "it's been BF'ed".
 

dcbc

Member
Messages
2,416
As a seller, I wouldn't add to the price because it was Blackfaced. But if it were done recently by a reputable tech, I would talk up the fact that it had been recently serviced by said tech to try to get a higher in the range price.

As mentioned, with old Fenders, they all sound a bit different. A good tech will get them sounding their best. That's a better selling point, regardless of whether the tech left a silverface circuit stock or blackfaced it.
 

Silent Sound

Member
Messages
6,667
I personally prefer the silverface version. They hold together a bit longer and since this amp is only about 22 watts, earlier breakup isn't a necessity. But, lots of people like the blackface, and for good reason.

Since it's modded, it might hurt the value a bit to a collector. But, since it's modded, it might raise the value a bit to a player who was gonna have that mod done anyway. In either case, so long as it was done properly, I don't think it would have a huge impact on it's value. Silverface amps were made in fairly large numbers, so their value is based more on reputation and tone than collectability. And as other's have pointed out, there's just a few bucks in parts to swap out to turn a silverface into a blackface DR, or vice versa.

Same thing with a cap job. To a collector, it might hurt the value a bit. To a player, it would likely increase the value a bit, since they'd probably want to have that done anyway. Though, to be honest, I don't know of many collectors interested in Silverface Fenders. Not serious collectors anyway. And if they were, they would be looking for closet queens or museum pieces. Stuff with original tags, paperwork, and the like.
 

67super

Member
Messages
1,504
It would lower the value for me. Stock is stock. Silverface usually sounds great.
I agree with this. I have an early 68 which is already %100 AB764 and a 78 which is much later. All I did to the 78 was replace the electrolytic caps which should be done anyway and the amp sounds great. The DR changed very little over the years, even the bias circuit remained unchanged.
 




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