Ampeg SVT-CL Tube Retainer

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Eolson, Apr 21, 2014.

  1. Eolson


    Apr 4, 2011
    Sparta, WI
    I'm replacing the tubes in an Ampeg-SVT-CL. I purchased this some time ago and never replaced the tubes. The sound just isn't there any more, no high end or mid-range and just a muddy bottom end. When I pulled out the guts there are stickers on top of the tubes that say 04. Is this 2004? Have I been running these tubes for 10 years?!!?

    I noticed the tube retainers have some almost like baking soda buildup on them. What should I clean this off with? I have some military grade corrosion spray for electronics. Do I need to avoid oil, fingerprints, etc on the new tubes?
  2. beans-on-toast

    beans-on-toast Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2008
    It is hard to say what it is that looks like baking soda. Is it possible that the stickers on the tubes have dried out and gone to dust and this is what you see? It could also be something that was sprayed on or it could be oxidization. Try wiping it away with a damp cloth. If it doesn't come off, try whatever works. If it is oxidization, it won't come off easily. Replacement retainers are available from if you want to replace them. You have to ensure that you buy the correct size.

    There are no concerns with fingerprints on the tubes. It never hurts to wipe things down with a soft cloth so that it looks neat.
  3. Eolson


    Apr 4, 2011
    Sparta, WI
    Thanks Beans...I'm also wondering about the retainer springs touching the tubes. I'm considering Electro-Harmonix 6550 tubes and they have a large bloated belly that may or may not touch the retainer springs. Do you think that will be a problem.

    As far as the baking soda residue, I should have said its looks like the same white residue that occurs on old batteries.
  4. beans-on-toast

    beans-on-toast Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2008
    Clean the residue, if the retainers look like there is no oxidation I wouldn't worry about it. What you are describing is not something that I've seen. You never know, someone may have applied a high temp lubricant because the retainers were rattling and it dried up.

    As for the springs, look for a high temperature silicone tubing that you can slide over the springs to prevent them from rattling against the tubes. Teflon (PTFE) tubing also works well.

    A good source for small quantities is Surplus Sales of Nebraska. Search on their site for sleeving and tubing. You can also find these items at Amazon. Look for the correct inner diameter and color.
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2014
  5. B-string

    B-string Supporting Member

    No concern with fingerprints on tubes (unless you murder a guitarist with your amp). The springs should NOT be resting on the glass, this invites cracked tubes.
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