Pawnshop score - Little red and white Supro

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by infiniteposse, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. infiniteposse

    infiniteposse Member

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    I was just one of my local pawnshops and was about to pay for a couple of other odds and ends (funky Regal lapsteel and a Unidyne III Shure mic) when I noticed out of the corner of my eye this little red and whitr square on the floor behind the counter.

    I held my breathe and then asked the gentleman to hold on before he rang me up - could he grab the little amp for me? He brings it over and this thing is extremely clean for it's age. The tolex is amazing. The grill cloth has "Supro" enbroidered into it. It looks like someone mucked with the speaker cable at some point, but other than that, lovely. However, it wasn't priced so he said he wasn't sure if he could sell it or not...

    He looks on eBay for something similar and finds a beat older Supro for $203. I offer $200 and he counters, $205. I agree. Done. Yay!

    Tube complement is 5Y3-GT, 6V6-GT, AND 1 X 6SQ7. Almost exactly the same size as the Champ 600 re-issues.

    Anyone know anything about this particular model? I'll also be checking on the Magnatone/Valco group, so I'm sure I'll sort it out somehow.

    Mandatory pics:

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  2. trisonic

    trisonic Member

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    Cute little sucker! Easily worth that - consider what new small amps are going for - plus it's stylish plus plus it will only increase in value.

    Best, Pete.
     
  3. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Silver Supporting Member

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    :agree

    That looks like a dream practice amp. How does it sound?
     
  4. infiniteposse

    infiniteposse Member

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    There's some funky wiring happening around the speaker and a two-prong plug, so I'm going to let my tech bring it up slowly however he chooses to make sure I don't cook the tranny's accidentally. That's when the real $$$ starts to get spent:)

    I'm content to just look for now.
     
  5. pir8matt

    pir8matt Member

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    Give Jack White a call, he'd probably buy it sight unseen:

    [​IMG]

    I've heard he's got a thing for red and white vintage gear.
     
  6. infiniteposse

    infiniteposse Member

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    Here's a couple of guts shots:

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    [​IMG]

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    [​IMG]

    Looks like one of the caps is about to blow. Glad I didn't turn it on.
     
  7. erksin

    erksin Member

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    I think that's a mid-'50s Bantam.

    Is that a Rola speaker (285-???) in there?

    Cute!
     
  8. infiniteposse

    infiniteposse Member

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    Yeah, it is a Rola according to the codes. Isn't it cute though? :) I actually said that at the pawn shop. I mean, it's cool and stuff, but it's got to be the cutest amp I've ever seen. I think they'd sell a lot more amps if they all looked like this.

    Erskin - You need to come by and check some of this stuff out.
     
  9. nomadh

    nomadh Member

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    You're on a roll. I say you should go out and find that cup Jesus drank out of next :)
     
  10. Whiskeyrebel

    Whiskeyrebel Member

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    Change its cosmetics and switch that octal preamp tube to a 12AX7 and it could be the same as an Oahu that I have. Even the speaker looks the same. Were Oahu and Supro made by the same company?
     
  11. erksin

    erksin Member

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    I know!

    Actually, I'm waiting for my Skreddy Echo and a new speaker for my Reverberocket to come in then I was gonna give you a shout. I need to bring something cool for you to check out too!

    :rotflmao
     
  12. erksin

    erksin Member

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    Yep - Valco.

    They made Supros, Oahus, Gretsches, Nationals, and a few others.
     
  13. Whiskeyrebel

    Whiskeyrebel Member

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    Pardon me while I do the :bananadance of glee!

    One thing I notice on this amp is when you really crank it, the bottom end farts out. Is that usually the speaker failing to keep up or is it something going on in the circuit itself?
     
  14. erksin

    erksin Member

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    Could be the speaker, could be the filtering caps.

    Those Oahus kick ass!
     
  15. Fifthstone

    Fifthstone Member

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    Congratulations. That is an awesome score. Cool photos too.
     
  16. Jacobpaul81

    Jacobpaul81 Member

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    Nice Score! 200? I'd totally have bought it. I'm in love with little Valco models. Irony of course being, I don't own a single one.

    Just to augment Erksin's list, here's the list I've compiled. There's one brand I saw the other day, and forgot what the name is. I should have written it down!

    For sure, they built these:
    Valco
    Supro
    Bronson
    Mckinney
    National - Top Of the Line Valcos - The 50's nationals are beautiful tweed amps! I'm not crazy bout the looks of the 60's models, but they sure do sound awesome.
    Gretsch
    Oahu
    Airline

    Valco also built some amps for:
    Montgomery Wards
    Silvertone
    Harmony
    Danelectro
    Kay
     
  17. erksin

    erksin Member

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    Airline were the Monkey Wards amps.

    They also built a line of amps called English Electronics for some chain store in Michigan I think.

    I'm fairly certain they never built amps for Danelectro or Silvertone (Dano built the Silvertone stuff).
     
  18. Jacobpaul81

    Jacobpaul81 Member

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    Remembered the name: Fidelity

    I was too. Then I read and saw what I believe proves differently. Valco built amps for Harmony/Silvertone (they are the same company) during the 1940's-1950's. The 1300 model here is an example of a 40's amp: http://www.silvertoneworld.net/amplifiers/1300/1300.html

    Here's a website with a gallary of 40's era silvertone/harmonys built by valco:
    http://www.silvertoneworld.net/amps_40s.html

    Here's another one that's certainly a 50's model valco amp: http://www.silvertoneworld.net/amplifiers/1340/1340.html


    During that period, Valco also built danos. In the 50's Dano took over production of their own models, and got the contracts to build silvertone/harmony amps. So mid-late 50's and on should be dano built amps.

    PS: I'm going to end up being the valco expert who's never owned a valco. =( Gotta find me one!
     
  19. nmiller

    nmiller Drowning in lap steels Silver Supporting Member

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    1956 according to the serial number - the cleanest '50s Supro I've ever seen!
     
  20. duanesworld

    duanesworld Member

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    good deal. I love the stuff thats behind the counter. It seems like thats where I have spotted my best scores. congrats.
     

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