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Vintage Kustom stuff?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by blackgrass, Apr 22, 2010.

  1. blackgrass


    Oct 2, 2009
    Came across a couple old Kustom rigs semi-local that I *may* scoop up. Sure, I don't NEED these things nor did I have necessary interest until they appeared locally -- but that's how GAS works I suppose ;)

    First up is a 200b-4. Dude wants $300 and it comes with a 3x15 cab. These are the old "plush" (or vice versa, I suppose) models with the awesome 50's style diner cover. From the images this thing looks mint and what research tells me it's a '69. The guy said it had a ground issue and would occasionally shock you, but I'm pretty certain this is simply because it's got the old 2-prong cord. He also said that the channel light doesn't work, but everything else works solid.

    Second is actually a guitar rig (I assume). A TRT-100 tube that comes with a 4x12. I'm actually not that interested and much less informed about this guy. He wants $250 but the cab is a bit roughed up and it most-likely requires new tubes. Mainly just after any info on this thing because I couldn't find much myself.

    So yeah -- can anyone shed more light on these models or give me a rough idea on price ranges? Year? Sound? Etc? The guy implored multiple times that he was a very motivated seller and "hadn't received many offers."
  2. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    the TRT-100 is a newer model, and probably not as 'collectible', but IMO, the old K200's are cool, and also IMO, with the 3x15 cab, that's better than a good deal for it. the heads usually go for around that or more by themselves.
  3. Interceptor


    Mar 29, 2005
    Madison, WI
    In the circuit I played in the mid '70's, the Kustoms were relatively common. Never owned one, but heard plenty. They (at the time) sounded good. This was before big PA systems, stage rigs were all you got.

    The only thing that spooks me about solid state amps from that era is if the transistors used in them are still obtainable. The last Kustom I worked on was so long ago I just don't remember what they used. Perhaps John K can better address this.

  4. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    iirc they used standard 2N3055's in them.
  5. blackgrass


    Oct 2, 2009
    Well, a "better than good" deal sounds perfect as I was looking less at a gigging rig and more at another expensive toy :)

    I kind of expected the TRT to be a newer unit since I hadn't heard of it, but that's mostly because I had spent most of the day scouring and seeking out old Kustom catalogs from the 60's - 70's.

    As far as the 200 or the adjacent cab, anyone have any idea on the impedance of these? From what I've found the cab is 6 ohms, which I find odd -- but then again a 3x15 cab is a bit odd in itself.
  6. Recently played through an old Kustom, was impressed at the tone. Played a Fender and my Gibson through it. I would buy it for the tone. I would go $300 easily.
  7. Rezdog

    Rezdog Supporting Member

    Feb 17, 2004
    T.Rez, Canada
    Greetings from the North,

    Go on ahead and grab the 200 head with the 315 bottom if they're in good shape. That was my first 'big time' rig back in the day. For $300 it's a good deal.

  8. Oren Hudson

    Oren Hudson

    Dec 25, 2007
    Gastonia, NC

    If you haven't already, go the www.vintagekustom.com site. There's a bunch of info there along with a forum. The 3-15 has been discussed in the past, including the ohms deal. Maybe you can find it by doing a search. I personally rank Kustom in the top 4 for coolness and still great sounds. The other 3 - Ampeg, Acoustic and Sunn. :cool:
  9. experimental bassist

    experimental bassist

    Mar 15, 2009
    The 200 w/ 3 15s for that price sounds very interesting.

    So what color is the tuck and roll?

    I'm not sure about ohms for the 3 X 15, but if I remember right the more common 2 X 15 Kustom cabs were 8 ohms -- not 4 ohms like we might assume with today's cabs.

    The Kustom K200 heads would run about 65 watts RMS into one cab at 8 ohms, and you got the full 100 watts RMS when you ran two cabs (givin you a 4 ohm load).

    As far as the 3 X 15, I'm just guessing here, but it could indeed simply be three 16 ohm drivers wired in parallel. If so that would be aprox 5.3 ohms nominal load.

    Good luck, and if you do get the rig I'd love to see pics. :bassist:
  10. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    The 3x15 Kustom was pretty good by 1969 standards, but the amp was a noisy as all get out first gen SS and, unless loaded with Altecs or JBLs, the speaker was no better than today's average 2x12 or 4x10.
  11. Rezdog

    Rezdog Supporting Member

    Feb 17, 2004
    T.Rez, Canada

    Yup by todays standards they could be a bit noisy but back then that hiss was the sound of unlimited power at the ready! ;)

  12. jnewmark

    jnewmark Just wanna play the groove. Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Stax 1966
    Third St. Cigar Records staff musician.
    +1 on the JBL's. I had 3 different tuck n roll Kustoms back in the day, and always put JBL's in them, although, now that I think about it, I believe that JBL's were an option at one point with the Kustoms. Anyways, one of my favorite old school rigs.
  13. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    A 200 watt Kustom head paired with a 2x15 bottom (loaded with Jensens, IIRC?) went with my band on the road from Providence, Rhode Island to Alaska in 1970. Loud, punchy, tons of low mids.
  14. I Just recently sold a Kustom 200 - 4 head for twice what he's asking for the stack. I'd get it to make a FAT profit. I thought of buying his stuff just to add to my own collection (The seller is around 20 minutes away from me) If you like vintage tones that is the rig for you...
  15. MY Kustom200 and a 2x15(Ampeg b25-b) went with me from coast to coast and canada to mexico in 2003-4.

    STILL an awesome sound, STILL an awesome head.

    I bought my Kustom as a quick/cheap replacement for my Sunn Colliseum that was stolen on tour, and i ended up liking the tone more. I paid $120 for it.

    They are starting to become PRETTY popular and i regularly see them going for $300+ (for the head alone) at the local used gear place.

    As for that 3x15... let me just say, that cab alone was on a local CL last month for $800 and it was sold in less than a day.

    So yeah... pick them up :D
  16. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    i agree with you on them sounding great (and, IMO, better than a coliseum). and none of mine have ever been noisey either. IME, with two (or three) JBL 15's (D140F's) they have alot more output than one would think.
  17. The 200 sounds good to me, but I would ABSOLUTELY NOT use it until I had installed a grounded AC cable on it.
  18. blackgrass


    Oct 2, 2009
    Well, you guys definitely sold it. Going to round up the rest of the cash and swindle our drummer into loaning his truck -- although not today since it's raining.

    Hopefully an update soon :)

    ...and yes, will definitely update the outlet before it's put to any use.
  19. GaryLC


    Apr 6, 2006
    Scotia, NY
    Yes, I'd grab that 200 in a heartbeat! I played through Kustom 200's throughout the 70's, fantastic amps. Warm punchy...especially for a relatively low wattage solid state amp. I especially loved the "boof" sound when you turned the amp on! :) Air moving through the ports as the speakers moved....
    Great amp, and no amp has the coolness factor that a Kustom has!
  20. Rezdog

    Rezdog Supporting Member

    Feb 17, 2004
    T.Rez, Canada

    +1 on the 'boof' lol, I'd forgot about that.


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