Used Mesa Bass issues?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by FireBug, Jan 11, 2006.

  1. FireBug


    Sep 18, 2005
    I came across a deal on a Bass 400+. $850 in the Mesa road rack. I asked the history of the amp and the guy said cosmetically it is in excellent condition, but it has been in and out of the repair shop a couple times.

    The issue with it is that it has been blowing a fuse every time a new one is put in and the amp is powered on. I can remember reading problems like this with old Sunn amps...something about capacitors and filter caps.

    The guy says that the amp works fine now, it was plugged in not too long ago. I guess what I am asking is: is this an easy and reliable fix? The amp would have to be shipped to me and I would have something like 30 days to try is out before returning it so I would just run it pretty hard for a few days and see if it holds up.

    What do you guys think?

    By the way the repairs were made in August of 2004. I can't remember if he said that the amp was used or if they had problems with it out of the box.
  2. tadawson


    Aug 24, 2005
    Lewisville, TX
    Filter caps are fairly cheap and easy to replace, although it seems lately that as soon as the word "tubes" comes up on repairs, screw mode engages . . . The only other possibility is that Mesa put an inrush limiter (Thermistor, or similar) in the amp, and that has failed. Also cheap ($2 part or so . . .), so I don't think you have much risk here. Myself, I would like to find a Bass 400/400+ that IS dead (or has problems) for a much better price than that, since I am equipped to repair this stuff . . . . anyone?

    - Tim
  3. I saw a Bass 400 on, not working. He said someone could use it for parts.
    I thought to my self "Who in the world would buy a used Mesa Bass400, broken, for parts?" Then I said, "Oh yeah! tadawson!" Well, kinda.
  4. winston

    winston Supporting Member

    May 2, 2000
    Berkeley, CA
    I had a Bass 400 (older version with 6L6/5881s) that blew fuses when I had it cranked into inefficient speakers. After I got an SWR Goliath III Jr. 2x10/SOB 1x15 (very efficient cabs) I could run the master much lower (and still be loud as h*ll) and never blew a fuse again. I had paid a bit more than I shoulda for the amp and got it retubed so I never spent money to figure out the problem.

    Great sounding amp but heavy and a bit noisy--the XLR was unusable on mine. I replaced mine with an Eden WT-400 which suits my needs much better. I do miss the two input channels, though.

    At least the seller is being upfront with you. However, $850 is a little steep, and shipping for a 400+ in a Mesa rack won't be cheap.
  5. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    I paid either 8 or 850 for my 400+ along with shock mount case, 2 sets of preamp tubes and 1 extra set of power tubes...
  6. Masher88

    Masher88 Believe in absurdities and you commit atrocities

    May 7, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    My old 400+ was blowing fuses alot and it turned out the one of the tubes was cracked and was leaking the vacuum. Not enough to make the amp just not work, but enough to blow the fuse and make it sound funny sometimes. I replaced the one tube and it worked fine. Check on that.
  7. tadawson


    Aug 24, 2005
    Lewisville, TX
    Thanks for the link! I sent an e-mail. I find tube gear almost mind numbingly simple to work on/repair, so a deal like this can really work out sometimes . . . IE, I'd rather put 10 hours into a head than an extra $500 or so . . . . .

    The only downside on this one, is the guy apparently raped it for tubes, but still, if the price is right . . . .

    - Tim
  8. tadawson


    Aug 24, 2005
    Lewisville, TX
    24 hours and no reply - not the end of the world, but anyone know the guy who listed the dead 400?

    All is shows is:

    Name: Oscar
    Location: Evergreen Park, IL

    If you know him, please let him know that I am majorly interested, and prompt him to check/reply to his mail!


    - Tim
  9. tadawson


    Aug 24, 2005
    Lewisville, TX
    LeBump! Anyone know this guy?

    - Tim