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The Truth About Vintage Amps with Skip Simmons

Apr 30, 2019

Twice a month, guitar amp guru Skip Simmons shares stories and answers your questions on tube amp buying, restoration and repair. Co-hosted by the Fretboard Journal’s Jason Verlinde.

Submit your guitar amp questions to Skip here: or by leaving us a voicemail or text at 509-557-0848. The more questions we get, the more episodes we record. 

Some of the topics discussed on this episode:

:22 Skip and Jason discuss possible Truth About Vintage Amps t-shirt designs (coming soon) 

2:55 Jason and Skip discuss the Fretboard Journal (modified) Fender  Champ

4:26 How to install a quarter-inch output into a Champ with an RCA speaker connector

6:02 Recommended solder

8:00 Our first sponsor - Grez Guitars!

10:26 Our new Instagram page!

10:54 This week's Baffler

12:08 A walk-through of the Fender Champ 5F1 schematic (available online, print it out)

21:10 Wall power fluctuations

26:38 Recommended tube amps for acoustic guitars

33:05 Father's Day and the Tweed Deluxe 

36:05 BB King's Gibson Lab Series (solid state) amp

38:26 A yard-sale find pre-war Rickenbaker amp and a dim bulb current limiter

41:14 Stew-Mac's Snufferstick, Part One

44:00 Leaning a tube amp on its stand - good or bad? 

46:30 A noisy Fender silverface Princeton

49:26 Boutique amps 

51:54 Recommended new components 

55:22 Snufferstick, Part Two

59:40 Capturing that Champ distortion with a louder amp (and a shoutout to Tim Foster)

1:03:26 Manitoba's Johnson Sound System amplifiers

1:06:30 Replacing old can power capacitors cleanly

1:15:15 Recommended bigger speakers / impedance for a Fender Champ

1:18:38 Converting an old Hammond AO-39 organ reverb amp to a guitar amp

1:27:15 A 1957 Fender 5F4 Super amp with an original selenium bias rectifier 

1:35:13 Skip's record picks of the week

1:38:22 Best position for the three-way ground switch on a Fender

1:40:00 Skip has to return a weed eater 

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