Well i finally did it... I converted my Super Champ into a head!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by rockindillo, Jun 4, 2008.

  1. rockindillo

    rockindillo Member

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    Well, after threatening to do so for a couple of years, I finally did it... I built an amp head cab for my trustly old 18-watt Fender Super Champ combo.

    It's a classic 1983-model Paul Rivera-design Super Champ of the kind which are now highly sought-after and much revered - and with good reason. These are quite superb little amps - 100% point-to-point wiring (the last ones Fender made) and probably the loudest 18 watts you'll ever hear.

    I've had this amp from new (of all my amps, I think this is the only one I can say that of) and it's served me very well, but I've always found its 10" speaker and small cabinet cramped its style, making it a tad thin-sounding, certainly compared to the sound plugged into an extension cab.

    Last year, I started seriously jonesing on the idea of getting a great-sounding low-powered head to use with a couple of nice cabs I have - a custom open-back 2x12 which started life as one of my mate Dave's Wolftone prototypes and a little closed-back Marshall 1x12 I originally bought to use with my Crate Powerblock. I also have another Wolftone cab, an oversized 1x12, which is just crying out to be turned into a 1x15, just as soon as I can find the right 15" speaker - no easy task in the UK, where nobody seems to market the right kind of relatively low-powered 15!

    Around that time, I started messing around with the idea of getting a Dr Z Maz 18. They're brillant little amps, but pricey and I'm not as flush a the moment as I was, so I started looking again at the Super Champ.

    About £10 worth of pine shelving from B&Q, a fair bit of sawing and sanding, a tin of oak-tinted varnish and a few bits later and here she is...

    [​IMG]

    I'm really pleased how it's turned out. I was orginally planning to put metal corners on the bottom and top back corners to protect the finish (I even sanded flats on the relevant corners to fit the metalwork) but it looked so good without them (even allowing for those flats!) that I've left them off. (If anyone's in the market for some genuine Fender amp corners, let me know...)

    [​IMG]

    I was also bidding on eBay for a flat metal early 60s Fender badge, but the price got silly and I've decided I it looks better without a badge anyway...

    [​IMG]

    Virtually the final cosmetic touch arrived in the mail from the States today... a set of cream early 60s-style Fender knobs which gives it a real "boutique" vibe, I think you'll agree... One more tweak to go... and I just can't decide whether to replace the red Fender jewel lens with a blue, violet or green one!!!

    Decisions, Decisions!
     
  2. rockindillo

    rockindillo Member

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    Here she is with the 2x12 cab....

    [​IMG]

    ... and with the Marshall 1x12...

    [​IMG]
     
  3. nsriley

    nsriley Member

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    Looks cool and easy to use with various cabs! :)
     
  4. blackba

    blackba Supporting Member

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    Very nice, classy looking.

    Great job building the cab. I agree with you about the logo, it looks fine without it...
     
  5. SQUAREHEAD

    SQUAREHEAD Supporting Member

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    Looks awesome!!
    Nice job, Bro!!

    Keith
     
  6. 2555SL

    2555SL Member

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    Great job! I’ve been thinking about doing that same conversion for my old Super Champ for some time now also, and in much the same way. The great thing is that when done, it’s only about a 5-minute job to slap it back into the original SC combo cab when you want that for any reason. Your pine looks great, but I plan on hunting down some type of exotic hardwood just for the fun of it. Like you, I plan on not using any metal corners… much like the little boogie head is was trying to be back in those days. Nothing cooler that seeing a SC head sitting on a big Marshall 4x12! How’s it sound through the 2x12? Quite impressive I imagine.


    If I ever get around to converting mine, I plan on sticking with the stock knobs and jewel lamp, as well as using the original Fender logo. Not sure if I’ll use stock-looking SC grill cloth or maybe a boogie-esque wicker for the front. Hmmmm, decisions, decisions.


    Once again, great job! I downloaded all your photos for future reference. ;)


    Here’s my old SC, still wearing its pre-surgery, black tolex tuxedo. Cheers!

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2008
  7. Last Nerve

    Last Nerve Supporting Member

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  8. mrodrigues

    mrodrigues Member

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    man, what a great little set up! really is great in that format now man!! sweet deal
     
  9. andyc

    andyc Member

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    Nice job! That looks great! I love the cream knobs and no Fender logo. Just cool looking. :AOK
     
  10. BBQLS1

    BBQLS1 Member

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    That is pretty sweet looking, but I'd miss the portability of the little combo.
     
  11. GuitarDude

    GuitarDude Member

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    dude thats awesome!!!! great job!
     
  12. Structo

    Structo Member

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    Looks sweet!
    I went to amp heads recently from using combos for years.
    Much better for tubes.
    And the flexability to change spkr cabs is great!
     
  13. leffects

    leffects Member

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    Great work man... I really liked your style.
     
  14. Crikey

    Crikey Member

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    Sweet! :AOK


    Crikey
     
  15. 5E3

    5E3 Member

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    Good job! :AOK
     
  16. Squigglefunk

    Squigglefunk Senior Member

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  17. veldt666

    veldt666 Member

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    Spooky, I just did the same thing.
    Well I had Marc at Mongotone build mine into a solid mahogany head + a 1 X 12 CAB fitted with a Celestion Heritage G12-30H.
    I only have pics on my phone & dont know how to post them here? If I figure it out, I'll get some on, & by the way, it made a great amp even better.
     

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