List the times your amps have failed you.

PBGas

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
7,498
I had my old JCM 800 combo amp go south on me before a gig. I had to use a Peavey Bandit as a backup. The amp failure was my much younger inexperienced self being the fault. Sat in the car all day in the winter and I took it out to our gig and fired it up right away. Nicely done! Poof!

My pre-04 Bogner XTC failed as one of the Winged C tubes went south before a gig. I actually had about 30 minutes so I put in a new fuse and pulled the 2 power tubes dropping it to 50watts and put the speaker in the 4 ohm slot. All worked great and the gig was saved! I was lucky that time!
 

Don A

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
6,737
Just a couple.

Back in the early '80s, my Fender Concert II 4-10 develop a hum requiring a filter cap to be replaced. I had it retubed at the same times. On the way home the amp shifted in the back of my car and I heard a loud bang. The reverb didn't work when I got home. A tube had cracked with the impact.

Several years ago I was getting ready for a gig and my tweed Deluxe clone went silent. I was 5 minutes from home and grabbed another amp. It turned out that the tweed Deluxe's PT had failed. By then, I worked on amps and repaired it myself.
 

Cosmo-D

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
10,265
Too many to recount, sadly, though luckily only a few times at a gig.
 

thesjkexperienc

^^^ I made this guitar^^^
Messages
4,819
The first 3 years I would need to get a new amp every 5 or 6 months because they would start on fire. Even my Champ!

I saved up and bought a Boogie MKIIB and it was my only amp for the next 24 years.

Now the better brands are really durable and great sounding. Only when a tube fails do I need repair work.
 

eigentone

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
9,078
Catastrophic tube failure (and smoke!) A few SS amps which failed and were not worth repairing. Numerous component failures. Points the manufacturer neglected to solder. Wrong component values from the manufacturer. Poorly executed mods which needed to be fixed. Cold solder joints. Replaced OT. Old amps with few original caps. Cap jobs. Multiple speaker failures and recones. Multiple cabs wired wrong. Many, many tube failures. Suboptimal lead dress. Excessive noise/hum which had to be rectified. Several amps which used components that were rated too low. I had an amp that randomly power cycled due to diode failures.

I'm not going to describe or enumerate everything - that is just a few minutes of recollection.
 

BADHAK

Member
Messages
10,218
Well I had a Marshall TSL combo that used to heat up and smell bad but I don't remember it actually failing. So nearly 40 years, hundreds of gigs, and a couple dozen amps and never had a failure.

And I've lugged a backup to most of those gigs :(
 

LaXu

Member
Messages
10,773
  • An Egnater Tourmaster head I had failed out of the blue. Would just not get any sound when taking it off standby. Had it repaired, never found out what was the issue, worked fine until I sold it a few years later.
  • Fryette PS2 did not work when I received it, very low volume. Broken phase inverter tube. Replacing the tube fixed it.
  • A couple of tubes have gone microphonic in other amps, requiring replacement.
Nothing failing during a gig thankfully.
 

ocripes

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,327
A used Fryette Memphis 30, a great sounding amp, crapped the bed twice at home and the last time on a gig where I had no back up. Club full of people, but close to home. I spent a bunch on that amp; tubes, shipping to Fryette, more tubes. When it worked, it was heavenly. After that gig, I bought a Blues Cube Artist and gigged the hell out of it no problems. That Fryette sits in a closet.
 

Ejay

Member
Messages
7,518
Never.

I dealt with corroded inputs, broken of pots, short powerdrops indicating tubes where at the end…but never to the point where it was a problem at a gig.
 

ToneDeVille

Member
Messages
5,543
One amp failure in 50 years of playing. During a gig 6 or 7 years ago my Carmen Ghia (head and 12" Z cab) fizzled out on the last song of set two.

I suspected a tube and a quick look during the break revealed this:
DbAzZf5.jpg

My Ghia is a 2001 and the tube was an original that had lasted approx 15 years.

Fortunately our keyboard player had a couple of spares tucked inside the cabinet of his B3 and I was back in business for the next set. After that I started carrying spares but have yet to need one.
 

Teleman

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,921
Seymour Duncan convertible amp went up in flames during a gig. The sad part is just before It burnt up it was the best it ever sounded. Had a Dr. ZMAZ 38 head stop working on a gig. Sent it back to the good Dr who got it up and running again.
 

PineEnclosure

Member
Messages
21
Back in '94, in High School, my band was playing a Sweet Sixteen party and our PA kept overheating, which it never did in our 2-3 hour rehearsals. We would play for 10 minutes till it would overheat and then have to bring it outside to cool down for a few songs and then bring it back. Then my Peavey Mach IV bass head which I used as a guitar cab popped too, and the DJ let us plug in to his rig. Glory Days indeed.
 

sahlomonic

Member
Messages
208
Only one amp, and it failed a few times - Jet City Earhart 50 (re-badged Cornford MK50HII). Handful of times would have zero sound. Once during a recording session, and a few times at gigs. Oddly enough after checking cable routing, fuses, etc for maybe 5 or 10 minutes it would eventually have sound and work just fine, but luckily never had it die on me while using it; just only on first power up for the day. A year or so ago I pulled the chassis and found the culprit but for the life of me can't figure out what exactly it was. It was something that stood out to me and I do remember repairing it, so it may have been the NFB wire with a bad solder joint at the speaker jack, or maybe the standby switch.

Had a close call with a Peavey XXX. Was my last gig with that amp before selling it. I had just got in a quad of =C= power tubes and was so anxious to gig with them that I didn't have time to bias it. Bad move. Those suckers redplated the whole gig, and I'm lucky they didn't pop or damage anything in the amp.
 

G Stone

Member
Messages
67
Maybe 3 or 4 times in 35 years, both tube and analog solid state. But luckily each time was in rehearsal or at home, not on a gig yet, knock on wood.
 

G Stone

Member
Messages
67
Blues junior mouse getting electrocuted.
I had the same exact thing happen. Either a mouse or a rat, couldn't tell, only the skeleton was left. The amp didn't fail though, it kept working. Found the mouse/rat when I took it apart to clean it up
 

tiktok

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
24,751
I had the fuse on my 50/50 power amp blow during soundcheck. Replaced it, played the gig.
 

Chic-Pop

Member
Messages
1,237
C-30 amp got knocked off the stand and cracked a tube. Didn't seem to have any affect during the gig, but noticed it afterward. Spring snapped in the reverb tank (that got noticed immediately)!
Once blew a tube in a Fender Champion during practice; it was just not cut out to play with the big boys...
 

Big Al Z

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
760
Never in 50 years. I did have a situation of bad power that my tube amp didn't like so I used the trusty Crate Powerblock for the gig. It certainly doesn't provide the tone of a tube amp but it's a great substitute for certain situations.
 

Guitar Dave T

Member
Messages
11,397
Damn.

in 45 years of gigging, only a handful.

'64 Super Reverb on a recording session back around 1980.
Blues Deluxe tube failure mid gig about 20 years ago.
'74 Deluxe Reverb phase inverter failed on a gig about 10 years ago.
'66 Super Reverb, screen/grid resistor mid gig in the 90's.
Marshall Origin 50 combo failed spectacularly, mid gig, in 2016.

After the '64 super failed and I had to finish the session with a just-awful sounding Sunn amp, I've always brought SOME kind of usable backup, sometimes a Blues Jr, once I used a solid state Fender Mustang II battery powered portable amp and an SM57 - but it got me through the gig with reasonable enjoyment.
 

Gasp100

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
25,999
Seymour Duncan power amp one channel started smoking with flames out the back. Fender twin falling out the back of our van and bouncing down the road. Jubilee went up in a puff because of a lightning strike. Blues junior mouse getting electrocuted. Think that's it.
My amp took a tumble this saturday off a 5 foot stage. Plugged it back in and did the festival no issues...
I used to travel with my Mesa 50 caliber plus and stick my clothes for the weekend in the back of the cab. I rolled it from the trainstation, hit a snag and dropped it breaking a power tube. Played a gig that night and it made it through.
I have nothing but love for most tube amps!
 




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