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Older Cabinets, How Long Can They Last ?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Bubble, Jul 16, 2017.

  1. Bubble


    Apr 17, 2013
    I'm looking at a good deal on a 20 year old Peavy 410. How much longer do you think it might last at 1/2 it's power rating ? From what I read about speakers, cloth roll (what we usually get) surrounds last at least 30 years. But how about the cone, coil, and spider glue ?

    Home stereo woofers with foam surrounds are lucky to make it 10 years. I suppose it is cleaning solvent fumes that eat them up. A price to pay for getting full range at low volumes and power, loose foam surrounds move well at low volume.

    But pro speakers are said to last much longer. How much ?
  2. abarson


    Nov 6, 2003
    Santa Cruz
    Subbed as curious what the experts say.
  3. agedhorse

    agedhorse Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 12, 2006
    Davis, CA (USA)
    Development Engineer-Mesa, Product Support-Genz Benz
    40-50 years maybe?

    I have some pro audio speakers that are almost 40 years old, but treated well.
  4. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Snaggletooth

    Jan 2, 2015
    heart of darkness
    It depends on what they're subjected to, dampness, heat, etc.
  5. meatwad

    meatwad Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2008
    Smallville, USA
    My 17 year-old Ampegs are awaiting an answer...
    Aqualung60 likes this.
  6. Al Kraft

    Al Kraft Supporting Member

    May 2, 2016
    Northern Virginia
    I have two early 1980's 12" Scorpion loaded Peavey PA cabs that are favorites for use as monitors with the bands I play with. Every single part and piece is original. They have been treated well and stored in ideal conditions.
  7. BogeyBass


    Sep 14, 2010
    forever n ever....until
    go pretty good if not abused.
    then again some got abused and they doing ok to.
    some just die

    not a one answer question, variables indeed
    Coolhandjjl and Aqualung60 like this.
  8. I've got some 8" drivers from old combos that are at least 40 years old that still sound great. I'm no expert, but it seems they can go on for a while, depending on use.
  9. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    I have a 15" cab that is almost 30 years old.
    Still gigging with it.
    Good question, it was something I have never thought about.
    AlexanderB likes this.
  10. RoadRanger

    RoadRanger Supporting Member

    Feb 18, 2004
    NE CT
    I've found that the older the cab is the longer it has lasted ;) .
    GonePlaid, danosix, Saetia and 39 others like this.
  11. 12BitSlab

    12BitSlab Supporting Member

    Nov 28, 2016
    My 43 year old Kustom 215 cab still works/sounds like new.
    Matt R, hogman22, Lvjoebass and 5 others like this.
  12. I have two early 70's flatback SVT cabs with original speakers, still sound good.
    Matt R, meatwad and ezra1 like this.
  13. lpbfender

    lpbfender Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2012
    Stamford CT
    My Acoustic 361 rig I bought second hand in 1974 still shakes the house.

    As previously written, temperatures extremes and dampness wreaks havoc.

    Just had to replace two prong AC chord.
  14. pbass74


    Sep 19, 2015
    Sunland, CA
    I just sold my old Peavey 215 cab with the 400 series head. It was 43 years old and had a lifetime warranty on the speakers--however not transferable to the new owner. I expect he will still get a lot of good use out of it. The cabinet itself will probably last another hundred years. Maybe someone will replace the speakers in it by then.
    RoadRanger likes this.
  15. I have 2 Sunn 18 cabinets from 1972 that sound great and still don't rattle.
    Hats off to the Sundholm brothers.
  16. I have a Gibson scout tube amp from 1964 with the original speaker and it's still going strong. So...53 years?
    Ampslut and Rodger Bryan like this.
  17. 4dog


    Aug 18, 2012
    I play every monday night and thursday night and twice on sundays through an old crate 4x10 that is ,,,well i dont have a clue how old it is but it aint new,its at least 14 yrs old and probably older but its still going strong. But i dont push the snot out of it either.
  18. baileyboy


    Aug 12, 2010
    Not bass cabs, but my friend has a pair of ABS stereo speakers from the mid 70s. He uses them constantly at high volumes, has never had any issues.
  19. TL23NC


    May 22, 2015
    Raleigh NC
    I have an Altec Lansing 15 inch driver in a custom cabinet from the early seventies that is still doing fine. It has been often stored in conditions that are less than favorable, such as in the garage.
  20. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Me, too :roflmao:

    Seriously, it's easy to get decades out of the drivers. Now and then you might blow one (I once lost one to a blast of unexpected feedback) and need a recone. Since you mentioned "cabinet" in the title, the cabinet of course can last pretty much forever.

    I'm sure more folks will chime in about their old amps. The oldest one I have is a Sears Silvertone combo amp made by Danelectro in the late 1950s. It still has the original speaker, and only one of the original tubes has been replaced in the 37 years I've owned it. The oldest bass cabinet I still own is a 1980s vintage EAW VB125 loaded with a 15" EVM. I bought it used 30 years ago and about 2 years later I had to recone the EVM, it's been rocking continuously since then.