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Calling Fender Bassman 135 Users!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Groovehunter, Apr 8, 2005.

  1. Groovehunter


    Dec 3, 2004

    I was wondering if somebody could shed some light on this slight issue I have:

    What it is - I have managed to prise a silver face Bassman 135 off of my friend who is no longer using it - he's owned it for a good while, but never uses it. I've used it intermittentely over the last few years (no more than 6 or 7 times) and he's finally taken the plunge and sold it to me.

    It's been sounding great up until recently where I've noticed the amp distorts and clips when I play through it. The tubes are mazda and I have a feeling these are very old and I doubt it's been serviced for decades!! However this never stopped it sounding beautiful! Untill recently that is.

    I was hoping somebody could shed some light on this and suggest what the potential problem may be or where it may be sourced. ie is it the wiring, the tubes, the caps?

    any advice would be lapped up thanks

  2. The 0x

    The 0x

    Aug 24, 2003
    Timonium, MD
    Probably your tubes are dying. The bassman 135 is an amp that you simply cannot put cheap tubes in. This is because it pulls more from 6L6s than they're designed for because of it's ultralinear wiring. Most 6L6s put out about 25 watts per tube. The bassman uses 4 of them, to try and get 135 watts out of them, meaning it's trying to pull 33.75 watts out of each one. So high quality tubes are a must, otherwise it'll just smoke them. I'm actually trading mine with Ben Clarke here for a Music Man HD130.

    I gotta admit though, at lower volumes, this amp does sound great clean. The overdrive is just too smooth for me. I am going to miss it, though. :bawl:
  3. I had the same problem with my YBA-3 and but it turned out to be a couple of bad capacitors not a tube issue. It seems that if the amp has not been used in a while and then you start pushing it the old caps that are in these amps will just melt down.
  4. Groovehunter


    Dec 3, 2004
    thanks for the stella advice people!! :)

    Now, can anyone recommend some top replacement tubes for this lovely head? whats the score with caps - they're only cheap to purchase aren't they?

    Thanks again

  5. it cost me around $60 canadian to have 3 caps replaced and a new 3 prong power cord added.
  6. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    Take it to an Amp Tech. My uneducated guess is without putting it on a bench and testing it, no one can advise you to what is wrong.

    Caps do funny things over time... you said it's been mostly unused for years. Let a tech tune it up for you.