Infrequent use of amp/possible issues caused

Discussion in 'Amps/Cabs Tech Corner: Amplifier, Cab & Speakers' started by Gear91, Feb 16, 2008.

  1. Gear91

    Gear91 Supporting Member

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    I have too many amps and not enough time. The reality is I have a number of amps, many very old ones, not being played or turned on for months on end. Is there a rule of thumb for how frequently an amp should be turned on/for how long/whether it matters if it is played/whether it matters if its just in stand-by mode? What happens if it goes, for instance, a year without being used? Any thoughts would be appreciated. (yes, the other solution is to sell but I am weak)
     
  2. Bonenut

    Bonenut Member

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    I like to turn on and play an amp at least once every six months. You're probably safe at a year but I wouldn't risk a vintage amp. 5 or 10 minutes should be enough time. Don't just turn it on and leave it on standby either because some amps have the filter caps on the cold side of the standby switch and you really want juice running through the whole amp anyway. If those filters don't get charged every six months they'll go south on you.
     
  3. Trout

    Trout Member

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    I try to turn on all my amps bi-weekly when possible but that may be more often than needed.

    My biggest fear with tube amps is capacitors. Regular use is far better than prolong idle periods especially after they have been used.
    I had to re-cap a 2 1/2 year old amp once that had sat about 2 years in the closet. Was not my favorite amp and at the time my space was limited.
    It was working perfectly prior to storing it, but as soon as I flipped the switch the trouble started. 30 seconds and the fuse blew.

    YMMV
    Trout
     
  4. JimmyR

    JimmyR Member

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    Yeah what they said. The main things to cause issues with an amp sat unused would be electrolytic caps and mechanical contacts corroding or getting dusty - that's jack sockets, tube sockets, that kinda thing. The mechanical stuff can be cleaned but the electrolytics may need to be replaced.
     
  5. Gear91

    Gear91 Supporting Member

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