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Ever heard of Lawrence amps?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by CaseAce12, Oct 15, 2006.


  1. CaseAce12

    CaseAce12

    Oct 15, 2006
    I just got a Lawrence amp for free from my friend, and I can't find any information on it. I was wondering if anyone here could help me out with some details. All I know for sure is that it was made in Lawrence, KS by the Lawrence Co. It appears to be have two 15" speakers and a tube power amp. The clean channel doesn't work and the drive channel isn't too healthy. It kind of fluctates in volume, and is harsh when driven (due to the bad speaker, I'm sure.) I haven't gotten to the tubes yet (those blue cylinders are tubes, right?) because the screws are on there really tight. Any ideas as to whether this one is worth trying to fix up?
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    Thanks in advance for any advice you can offer.
     
  2. Can't help you on the Lawrence Amp, not familiar. The blue cylinders look to be capacitors which will hold a charge and you don't want to be in the discharge end of the line! Unless one of the more knowledgeable folks on the board can help I would recommend a tech look at it and hands away from the blue cylinders. :)

    First post, hey, welcome to the TalkBass!

    BC :cool:
     
  3. 62bass

    62bass

    Apr 3, 2005
    I don't see any tubes in that picture. Tubes are made of glass and don't look much like the blue capacitors. It could be a solid state amp. You're going to have to look around inside to see what it is.

    The speakers could be Altec or they could be a lesser quality speaker with an aluminium dust cap. You'd have to remove them to find out. It's possible they could be reconed.

    I've never seen one of these, but there were dozens of small amp maufacturers back in the 70s that never made it big for various reasons.

    It might be worth fixing but it's not something you'll be able to do yourselt if it needs parts replaced and speakers reconed.

    These days there are many more better sounding and more powerful combos around, so, based on cost, unless you get this really cheap it may not make much sense to refurbisg it. It does look unique though, and would make a nice conversation piece.

    Edit--I reread your post and see you got it for free. Then, it might make sense to fix it up. You'll need some help from someone who knows how to do it and can estimate the cost.
     
  4. CaseAce12

    CaseAce12

    Oct 15, 2006
    Well, after wiggling some wires and slapping the preamp, the clean channel now works and sounds pretty good. It's loud, too! I thought maybe the blue cylinders were tube protectors, but I guess it is solid state. I think I may turn this into a working bass amp/couch of some sort. Who wouldn't want a couch with built in subs?
     
  5. DaveDeVille

    DaveDeVille ... you talkin' to me ??

    ... just a thought ...


    does anyone else see " LOL " on the face plate ??
    :D
    :D
    :D
     
  6. chaotick

    chaotick

    Aug 15, 2006
    Raleigh, NC, USA
    I'm quite intrigued by this strange beast...

    Let us know when/if you find out about what it is and the specs.
     
  7. CaseAce12

    CaseAce12

    Oct 15, 2006
    I was playing around with it today, and the distortion channel has definitely seen better days. It isn't really a useable sound, and the harmonic distortion knob multiplies the nastiness. The clean channel, on the other hand, sounds quite nice to me. I've never owned a bass amp, but this definitely sounds nice with my Schecter 004 Elite with EMG soapbars. The grill says JBL on a tag in the lower right corner, but I can't get to the back of the speakers to verify. I'll try to stick a mirror in the port sometime so I can get some specs on the speakers. I think this was once a pretty high end system. Another interesting note is that the entire cab is made of some type of plastic, but the speakers are in a seperate interior wood cab. There is also a speaker phase switch on the power knob.
    A thought I had was that I live in Kansas, and this amp was made in Kansas, so it may have been some sort of special order or fairly custom build. Maybe Lawrence was a small boutique amp company from way back when? Who knows:meh:
    Oh well, I'm just glad that I can blare some bass lines and annoy other guys in the dorm :bassist:
     
  8. 62bass

    62bass

    Apr 3, 2005
    As I said in an earlier post, there used to be a lot of companies producing amps and only getting regional distribution. Sunn started this way but managed to make the leap to national distribution. Not many people remember Jordan amps but they were a good and a bit unique amp back in the late 60s. They were the first bass amp I saw that made powered speaker cabinets and pre-dated Acoustic. The Doors used them for a while in their early days. I think the biggest of the early ones put out about 70 clean watts. I don't know what they claimed in their advertising.

    In Vancouver, Canada, a bass player friend of mine started making a line of solid state amps called Gunn. They were pretty good, but as he was almost the entire company, he never could get beyond regional distribution and folded after a year or so.

    It's good you got this thing working and it sounds like you'll have fun with this amp for what you need now. It certainly is a conversation piece.
     

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