1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  

LA Talkbass readers - portaflex service tech?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by lexington125, Nov 1, 2013.


  1. lexington125

    lexington125

    Sep 11, 2013
    hollywood, baby......
    someday I will find 4 or 5 other guys who want to play the blues the way it was played before it became all about guitar heroics
    Asked this question once before, about 6wks ago, without much response. I've had negative experiences with my SB12 in that techs have pretty much come right out and said "gee, I've never worked on one of these before....."

    This is my baby, I've had her 30 years and it is my idea of the perfect amp. But it sat in storage for at least three years and I don't want to be responsible for toasting something when its turned on for the first time. In all of Los Angeles, there have to be a few TalkBass readers who have had great experiences when having their fliptop serviced locally - please point me to someone who has proven experience working on old ampeg portaflex amps. Thank you!



    Los Angeles area Ampeg (portaflex) service?

    I’ve had an early (1965?) Ampeg SB-12 since the early 80s. It was actually dead mint when I purchased it from a store in Cambridge for $180. The story was that it was a graduation present that the kid did not take with him when he left home and the parents finally unloaded it nearly 20 years later (1983 +/-)

    For the first ten years or so it was my ‘condo amp’ - my big rig was in our rehearsal space and the SB-12 was set up at home for practice and the occasional late night jams. When we moved to LA in ‘92 it started getting more use as I was no longer playing in very loud bands and the sb-12 was the coolest possible amp for backing up semi-acoustic songwriter gigs. But for the past five years it has sat in a storage space (in its padded Tuki style slip-cover) as work kept me busy and away from home.

    I’m starting to work with some guys on an old school blues project and the SB-12 will be the perfect amp for this band. But the power switch has not been turned on in several years so I’d like it to be checked out prior to using it. But this my baby and it is not a Fender clone; I don’t want to take it to someone who will be learning about portaflex amps by taking mine apart.

    This is LA, so somewhere there is ‘the guy’ that rich collectors and top session cats use to keep their B-15’s in top shape. I know he will be busy, and expensive and possibly difficult to deal with, but that comes with the territory – can anyone point me toward the LA portaflex guru? (if there are two in LA, I’d prefer the Hollywood/Burbank guru to the Venice/Malibu guru)

    Thanks (sorry if this has been discussed in prior threads, my search didnt find the kind of guy I'm looking for)
     
  2. PM Johnk_10, he is in T.O. and WELL worth the drive. The man is an artist and farts soprano when working with/on equipment. :)
     
  3. senp5f

    senp5f

    Jan 27, 2008
    Santa Barbara, CA
    There's a guy here in Santa Barbara named Andy Webb who is the go-to guy in town and does really good work on tube amps. He might be willing to take a look for you. Send me a PM and I can send you his email address.
     
  4. "Farts Soprano"? Really Mr B! How bold! :D
     
  5. lexington125

    lexington125

    Sep 11, 2013
    hollywood, baby......
    someday I will find 4 or 5 other guys who want to play the blues the way it was played before it became all about guitar heroics
    PM Johnk_10, he is in T.O. and WELL worth the drive. The man is an artist and farts soprano when working with/on equipment.


    Thanks, this makes more sense the second time around...... I received a similar response when I asked the question the first time, but that was before reading many of JohnK's posts. I've since been to his website and he does seem like the right guy. And I didn't get your T.O. abbreviation the first time, I rarely get west of Coldwater Canyon, but Thousand Oaks is worth the drive to take good care of my baby.
     
  6. OP, at a bare minimum the amp will need to be powered up slowly using a Variac or a lamp box. This will allow the caps to reform slowly and possibly avoid a blow out. If the amp has never been re-capped you should consider having that done too. The amp should then be good to go for another decade or so. :)
     
  7. Certainly meant as a complement to John, he is meticulous, thorough and capable.

    Sorry, I spent most of my life in Southern California. Spent so much time driving between Santa Barbara, Ventura counties and Los Angeles, Orange counties it is all a blurr. Californian thing T.O. = Thousand Oaks, L.A. = Los Angeles.....:) If it had two words we got lazy :p
     
  8. That he is, there is no denting that! :)
     
  9. dmarotta

    dmarotta Supporting Member

    Feb 15, 2008
    Affilated wirh Markbass and Musicman
    Classic Amps Mike 818-621-7814 in North Hollywood
    He rebuilt the cabinet on my 1960 B15 and got rid of the rattles. Also went through the amp and installed capacitors as needed. Sounds incredible
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.