Dating a fender amp by serial
Greg and Devin's experience meshed well with mine since I'm essentially the blackface/silverface amp guy (amps made between 19) in the group.Additionally, Greg and Devin also had data that they had been collecting from Fender amps for years. Everything is confidential, we don't make record of who owns what amp in the database.Our evidence is that we are finding some serial numbers duplicated between models.For example, serial number A00121 has been found on a Champ dated November 1964 and a Vibrolux Reverb dated February 1965.First I would like to thank everyone who responded to our request for data as outlined in the initial article that was printed in March 1997 issue of TCG.Most notably, I'd like to thank Jeff Lacio for his contributions to our research.The biggest tip off would be the control panels which brings us to interesting factoid #2.After CBS bought Fender in January 1965, there were still plenty of control panels for various models that were in stock.
The Champ has a "C" prefix, the Harvard an "H" prefix, the Princeton a "P" prefix, the Vibrolux a "F" prefix, and the Deluxe a "D" prefix.
His particular area of expertise is in Fender amps made from about 1960 through 1967.
Devin runs Doc's Music in Springfield, Missouri and his interest lies in the woodie and tweed Fender amps made from 1946 through 1960.
Preliminary results show that we're on the right track.
Here's a couple of examples using the tweed Deluxe (model 5E3) and the Super Reverb/Bandmaster Reverb. Model Year D05108 Deluxe 1958 D05160 Deluxe 1958 D06528 Deluxe 1958 D07036 Deluxe 1959 D07115 Deluxe 1959 D07418 Deluxe 1959 D08325 Deluxe 1959 D08913 Deluxe 1959 D09014 Deluxe 1959 D09338 Deluxe 1960 D09399 Deluxe 1960 D09524 Deluxe 1960 A27769 Super Reverb 1967 A27796 Super Reverb 1967 A29591 Super Reverb 1968 A31057 Super Reverb 1968 A31079 Bandmaster Reverb 1968 A32839 Super Reverb 1968 A32841 Super Reverb 1968 A34448 Super Reverb 1968 A37667 Super Reverb 1969 A37949 Bandmaster Reverb 1969 A40130 Bandmaster Reverb 1969 A41569 Super Reverb 1969 So, with the knowledge gained thus far, we feel that Fender tube amps can be dated by serial number.
We combined all of our information into a computerized database for this project and for the past 18 months have been slowly (sadly, very slowly) gathering information that we collect ourselves as well as from other people. What we need is the following: 1) Model name 2) Model number on the tube chart 3) Date code letters on the tube chart 4) Speaker codes (if speaker is original) 5) Transformer codes (if the amp doesn't have date codes on the tube chart) 6) Cosmetic features (flat/raised logo, tweed/tolex, blackface/silverface, rough/ smooth blond tolex, white/skirted knobs, TV-front/wide-panel, etc.) One very interesting and very important factoid has surfaced regarding the date code letters on the tube chart.