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Old February 10th, 2011, 12:51 PM   #26
carcentric
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

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Originally Posted by V8SuperBeetle View Post
Thanks! Although, I'm deviating from the original a little. :) . . .
I'm covering the cabinet with carbon fiber twill 2x2 cloth.
You couldn't get the yellow twill, or just don't like it? I have an electric guitar case with that twill, and everyone who sees it comments on how much they like it . . . .
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Old February 10th, 2011, 01:03 PM   #27
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

Very very nice! What electronics and tubes are you planning on using? Fender stuff?
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Old February 11th, 2011, 07:56 AM   #28
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

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You couldn't get the yellow twill, or just don't like it? I have an electric guitar case with that twill, and everyone who sees it comments on how much they like it . . . .
I actually love the yellow tweed. I was torn between that and my decision to go with carbon fiber. I may build another down the road that's more traditional. I just wanted something a little different. I've never heard of an amp covered with carbon fiber other than John Mayer's amp which is a $8,000 piece.
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Old February 11th, 2011, 08:06 AM   #29
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

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Very very nice! What electronics and tubes are you planning on using? Fender stuff?
Thanks! I'm using a lot of the parts found in the original amp, but with some upgrades. A more powerful power and output transformer so I'll have 18-22W of power instead of 12-15W. I'm using some more modern technology such as a PCB. Orange drop and F&T caps and resistors to get the cleanest / noise free tone. A lot of made in the good old US of A parts, some in Germany.

All the tubes are from JJ Electronics. They're pretty much an industry standard and sound great without having to break the bank like when you buy NOS tubes.
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Old February 11th, 2011, 09:59 AM   #30
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

My parts from Tube Depot came in yesterday evening. My shipment from UPS, which includes my carbon fiber twill, speaker, grill cloth, handle, etc., was delayed due to weather.

I immediately started off mocking up my chassis to be sure all the holes were to spec.








It's a good feeling seeing everything start to come together. I'm loving how it's coming out so far.

Once I got back from band practice later yesterday evening, I started populating the board. I used metal film resistors, a brown ohmite resistor, orange drops, F&T filter caps, and whatnot. I didn't realize how small some of these parts are.

It took me a few resistors to get the hang of soldering. I'm still getting a feel as to how much solder to use. I'm getting there though.








I used a little hot glue under the filter caps to keep them from rattling around do to their size.




Starting to get the hang of soldering, kinda.




I'm pretty happy with my decision to use Tube Depots PCB board for my first build. It has made things extremely painless at this point. Populating the board was a breeze. All the resistors, caps and whatnot, come in their own labeled baggy so there's no guessing.

I'll have more after this weekend. I'll probably be finished with it, but I will take pictures as I go along. Possibly even some video of the sounds once I dial in my sound.
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Old February 11th, 2011, 03:00 PM   #31
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

A little more progress as the day goes on.

Wires measured, striped, tinned, and soldered in.




Pots, lamp, switches, and fuse installed. I used a little hot glue on the fuse to keep the nut from backing out.




Transformers and tube sockets installed and ready to go.






I had to improv a little on the preamp tube socket mounting. The specs from the sheet I got online was wrong for these, or maybe they were for another size. So I basically bolted down the ears and used hot melt to make sure they don't ever go anywhere.






Last, but not least, the board installed into the chassis. I need to tighten down the lock nuts. All that's left is the input and output jacks and it's ready for wiring.

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Old February 14th, 2011, 09:03 AM   #32
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

This weekend I finished my build and it sounds great!!! I'm loving it. I can't play it enough, although I've really only got to play it for about an hour or so.

Sounds quality: This is by far the nicest sounding amp I've owned yet. The cleans are clear, nice tight bass, with just the right amount of mids and highs for my liking. It faithfully reproduces the natural sound of my Lonestar Strat.

The distortion is warm, smooth and very organic sounding. It has just the right amount of gain / distortion for the type of music I play. I have a pair of 12AX7's in the preamp.

As it sits now, I have a Texas Heat speaker in it and I'm convinced I made the right choice. It handles the output with ease and sounds great. I may try other speakers later on, but don't fix what ain't broke.

Headroom. This thing has plenty for my needs. Any more and I don't think my ears will be able to handle it. As it sits now with 6V6's and a GZ34 rectifier, it has 18 - 20w output. I'll put that to an official test soon.

Overall, I'm very pleased and the amp is VERY quite. I'm in love.


Troubleshooting: I did however have to do some minor troubleshooting. After checking the wiring a few times, I plugged the amp in with no tubes and did the smoke test. No smoke, so I plugged the tubes in. No smoke.

To begin with, I did have just a little buzz when it was turned on. I used a wooden dowel to probe around and I quickly found the problem. I found that the buzz went away when I pushed the wire away that went from the middle of the tone pot to one of the preamp tubes. It seemed when it was close to the power tubes it would buzz. So I tucked it further away and is now VERY quite.

I also ran into another problem. As I turned the amp up the bass rattled the first preamp tube making the amp crackle. A simple swap of the preamp tubes cured this.


Onto the finished shots. I tried taking more pictures along the way, but I just got so into the build, I forgot. I really love how it came out.

My version of a Fender HotRod Deluxe.

The carbon fiber material was very difficult to work with. I had to tape the trim edges to keep it from coming about / sheering. It also was very easy to knock the "weave alignment" out of wack.

I used some 3M industrial spray adhesive to glue on the carbon fiber cloth.




As you see, it's gets messy quick. It's kinda like working with fiberglass cloth.




Here it is all wired up. I tried to make it as neat as possible.




I'm very pleased with how it came together. It's not perfect, but still came out very well.






Getting the grill cloth right, wasn't too bad. It's not perfect as well, but it came out really decent. The grill cloth is nice and tight too, as it should be.




My Lonestar Strat and the 5E3+ (Carbon Fiber Twill Deluxe).




Here's a quick video of the appearance. I'll get some videos of the sound soon, but I don't think the pictures do the effect of the carbon fiber justice. Maybe this will help.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I9p3q9CW50Q
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Old February 14th, 2011, 10:50 AM   #33
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

very nice, came out looking great.
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Old February 14th, 2011, 11:04 AM   #34
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

you, you make me very jealous! that amp would suit me old telecaster perfectly. dont have a strat, always prefered the tele tbh. anyway, perfectly made dude, big thumbs up.
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Old February 15th, 2011, 08:14 AM   #35
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

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very nice, came out looking great.

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Originally Posted by dutchbeetle View Post
you, you make me very jealous! that amp would suit me old telecaster perfectly. dont have a strat, always prefered the tele tbh. anyway, perfectly made dude, big thumbs up.

Thanks, guys. I wish you guys could here it. It's by far the best sounding amp I've owned. It faithfully reproduces the sound of your guitar. I'll get some demo videos up, but I'm sure they wont do it's sound justice. Just beautiful.
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Old February 15th, 2011, 11:02 AM   #36
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

where did you get the parts? is it a kit that can be ordered?
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Old February 15th, 2011, 11:42 AM   #37
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Default Re: O/T My 50's Era Fender Tweed Deluxe 5E3 Build

It's a kit that can be ordered. I bought it from TubeDepot.com. Here's their kit with everything supplied.

http://www.tubedepot.com/kit-tweeddeluxe.html


I, however, bought everything separate so I could use my choice of speaker, so I could build a cabinet and chassis, and so I could select better quality capacitors than what came in their kit. Although you could order their kit minus the speaker with upgraded caps and whatnot, but since I made my cab and chassis, there was no point in ordering their kit.

Their kit is great as it, but I would get a better speaker and upgrade the caps from those crappy illinois and xicon crap to either Orange Drops, F&T, Sprague Atoms or Mallory 150's. I went with orange drops, Sprague Atoms and F&Ts. Here's a comparison of their kit as is verses my chosen upgrades / changes.

Stock kit.








My choice of upgrades.





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