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Old 21st November 2006, 05:37 PM   #1
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Default Building a Fender 5E3 Deluxe from scratch.

This thread is inspired by another thread:
Make: Bell P/A - Model: Carillon '35'

Okay....

Here's a great copy of the schematic, in PDF...
http://www.schematicheaven.com/fende..._5e3_schem.pdf

I think this will be a slow build and therefore I figure I can afford to put quality parts in it....

My first question is which brand of transformer is the favorite of the diy-amp-building-pros?... I seem to remember hearing that Mercury Magnetics is pretty far up the chain.... Any thoughts on this?

Presupposing that I went with Mercury Magnetics, I'm highly confused on which Fender Deluxe power and outputs transformers to use... Look at this page, there are so many to choose from:
http://www.mercurymagnetics.com/page...MM_fender1.htm

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Old 21st November 2006, 07:11 PM   #2
Trout is offline Trout  United States
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OK,

Heres some info.

1st off, I have built (4) 5E3's this past week. There are a lot of options on building this particular amp and a lot depends on if your trying to build it as an exact clone, or as a quality rendition of an age old proven design.

I opted for building the rendition rather than wasteing time trying to build an exact clone which there are tons of kits for.
In my opinion, It sounds better than the original and does not break the bank.

2nd, Are you planning on building it as a tradition fender deluxe combo style cabinet or as a head unit or other type cabinet.


Quote:
My first question is which brand of transformer is the favorite of the diy-amp-building-pros?... I seem to remember hearing that Mercury Magnetics is pretty far up the chain.. Any thoughts on this?
Mercury Magnetics is pretty far up the chain Especially in cost.

There are more cost effective choices. AES for example sells an excellent 25W output trans for the Fender Deluxe. for $27.00 Vs The MM for $90.00?? No sense paying for extra added hype expense. They make a good transformer, But it is NOT $60.00 Better. The power transformer can be a Hammond 272BX ($40.00)which matches the 5E3 Narrow panel circuit near perfectly, Combined with the AES output trans you'll easily get an excellent amp.

If you go with the rendition style amp in a traditional tweed combo cab, You can use the Hammond 13.5 X 5 X2 Chassis.
In my opinion, This group fits the 5E3 like a silk glove. No wasted space, No extra unneeded expenses.
I make my own eyelet boards, Turrets are nice, but once the amps built, you'll rarely if ever see them again, .03ea for eyelets, or .19ea for turrets?

Just takes a bit of patients, a bit of homework and a lot of research.

My first few builds where a nightmare, I had not tinkered with electronics for decades, And it seamed like nothing I built would work correctly ( Unless you needed a high end oscillator) haha

Now they look like this My common 5E3

As far as tone? I would put it up against a Vicky any day of the week!

Trout
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Old 21st November 2006, 07:38 PM   #3
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Nice build!

I'll be after a quality rendition type amp as a head unit....

Yeah... I can see your point on the price points... much more realistic...

Can you post links to the transformers you mentioned?

Thanks
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Old 21st November 2006, 07:50 PM   #4
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For reference:

http://www.hammondmfg.com/pdf/5c0026-27.pdf


Ya know.. I'm thinking I might build it into a rack mount chassis... Hmm
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Old 21st November 2006, 08:22 PM   #5
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Then again.. lol..

I'd really like to mimic the design of the b15-r chassis... Anyone know where I can get a chassis similar?

http://media.zzounds.com/media/brand...4e76e05a26.jpg
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Old 21st November 2006, 09:01 PM   #6
Trout is offline Trout  United States
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Quote:
Originally posted by peritus307

Yeah... I can see your point on the price points... much more realistic...

Can you post links to the transformers you mentioned?

Thanks

The 272BX Hammond is on sale right now, In Fact, The Deluxe Transformer is also on sale.
http://www.tubesandmore.com/


TRANSFORMER, OUTPUT, 25 WATT, 8 OHM, REPLACEMENT FOR FENDER

P-TF41318

Replacement for Deluxe and Deluxe Reverb, 8 ohms. Equivalent to #125A1A & #041318
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Old 22nd November 2006, 02:37 AM   #7
Casey4s is offline Casey4s  United States
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Quote:
Originally posted by Trout
OK,

Heres some info.

Just takes a bit of patients, a bit of homework and a lot of research.

My first few builds where a nightmare, I had not tinkered with electronics for decades, And it seamed like nothing I built would work correctly ( Unless you needed a high end oscillator) haha

Now they look like this My common 5E3

As far as tone? I would put it up against a Vicky any day of the week!

Trout
Mr Trout:

Very nice build. I am curious though, where you got your nice powder coated chassis with the faceplate painted on. That chassis looks bigger than the 13.5 x 5.5 you mentioned in your post

I used a basic Hammond Chassis on my first 5E3 build 10 years ago, but there were not the resources back then that there are now. I had my faceplate engraved in a brass plate.
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Old 22nd November 2006, 03:07 AM   #8
Casey4s is offline Casey4s  United States
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Peritus307

Trout has you on the right track. I have used the Hammond transformers several times and they are a great cost concious alternative to OEM repro trannies.

I get almost all of my small parts from AES (Tubesandmore) that Trout linked above, and they are good people to work with. And their prices are very competative. I bought from them on my first build 10 years ago and still use them.

I think you'll need a slightly longer chassis than the Hammond 13.5" box though. And if you are commited to a head, you can use a much bigger chassis all the way around. Hammond has some other choices that can make a first build much easier.

I have found that I can get excellent quality chassis from Komboking at: http://www.komboking.worldbreak.com/index.html

You can get custom faceplates at: http://amplates.com/ or from these folks: http://www.customampfaceplates.com/index.htm if you use a blank chassis you'll need something.

You need to commit to your chassis and faceplate choices in the beginning of the build.

When it comes to the circuit board, I prefer TURRETS to eyelets. I feel they are easier to work with and easier for repair, trouble shooting and modification. But that's only my opinion because I have just always used them.

Your board is the next thing you need to commit to early in the build. You can get the board supplies from Hoffman amps at: http://hoffmanamps.com/ They have the G10 board material cut to custom length and they also have the turrets and eyelets.

Good luck and keep us posted on your progress and questions.
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Old 22nd November 2006, 04:06 AM   #9
Trout is offline Trout  United States
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Quote:
Originally posted by Casey4s


Mr Trout:

Very nice build. I am curious though, where you got your nice powder coated chassis with the faceplate painted on. That chassis looks bigger than the 13.5 x 5.5 you mentioned in your post

I used a basic Hammond Chassis on my first 5E3 build 10 years ago, but there were not the resources back then that there are now. I had my faceplate engraved in a brass plate.

Quote:
Originally posted by Casey4s
Peritus307

Trout has you on the right track. I have used the Hammond transformers several times and they are a great cost concious alternative to OEM repro trannies.

I get almost all of my small parts from AES (Tubesandmore) that Trout linked above, and they are good people to work with. And their prices are very competative. I bought from them on my first build 10 years ago and still use them.

I think you'll need a slightly longer chassis than the Hammond 13.5" box though. And if you are commited to a head, you can use a much bigger chassis all the way around. Hammond has some other choices that can make a first build much easier.

I have found that I can get excellent quality chassis from Komboking at: http://www.komboking.worldbreak.com/index.html

You can get custom faceplates at: http://amplates.com/ or from these folks: http://www.customampfaceplates.com/index.htm if you use a blank chassis you'll need something.

You need to commit to your chassis and faceplate choices in the beginning of the build.

When it comes to the circuit board, I prefer TURRETS to eyelets. I feel they are easier to work with and easier for repair, trouble shooting and modification. But that's only my opinion because I have just always used them.

Your board is the next thing you need to commit to early in the build. You can get the board supplies from Hoffman amps at: http://hoffmanamps.com/ They have the G10 board material cut to custom length and they also have the turrets and eyelets.

Good luck and keep us posted on your progress and questions.
Thats is indeed a Hammond 13.5 X 5 X 2 Chassis. They sell it in Grey, Black, and also in plain aluminum.

The Cab is 22" X 18.5" X 9.250"

I chose it basically because of the width more than the length. I did not want the tubes hanging to low in the cab.


Here is a closer picture, Its a nice fit, This was an earlier build, I have since refined the layout more.

Older 5E3 Build In Hammond Chassis


You can read about my faceplate vendor in this thread, This gal @ BNP laser Makes great Plexi style faceplates.

Face Plate Printing and Silk Screening



I buy the G10 from McMaster carr, The eyelets from mouser(keystone) I laid out the board to accept CDE PS axial caps rather than those huge Sprague atoms.

http://www.turretboards.com/

Is another board vendor thats pretty good and offers both eyelets or turrets for this amp as well as DIY parts. I have my doubts about going the hammond chassis route with a clone board.

Its such a simple design that I feel eyelets are the most cost effective. Either or, even with turrets, A mistake on the under the board wiring is the only thing to worry about.
I find turrets to be a 2 sided coin, I really love them for some things, But I was able to tighten up the layout better with the eyelets in this particular amp.

Takes me about 7 hours to fully wire the unit, additionally it takes me 1 hour to populate the board, 2 hours to punch and drill the chassis. But then again, I have templates for everything, plus the advantage of having built a lot of these all the same.

Trout
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Old 22nd November 2006, 05:48 AM   #10
Casey4s is offline Casey4s  United States
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Thanks Trout,

I didn't realize that hammond offered the powder coat version of that chassis. It is the same size I used on some 5F1 Champs I built a few years ago.

Since you use the Hammond 272 series transformers on the back of the chassis, do you use a support bracket of any kind like Fender did with the 5F6A? I use 272FX Hammonds on Black Face Fenders where they just hang down.

I have done business with a local engraver from the very beginning. First he did my brass plates, then the past few years I have been getting the reverse engraved faceplates like yours. I completely lay mine out at home and drill pilot holes where all the controls etc need to go, then take it to him with a 1:1 drawing with all the dimensions. When he sets it up he calls me and I watch as he laser cuts it. I do the white filler paint. After I drill the finish sized holes.

This link is to a newer faceplate.

Laser Faceplate (BF Princeton Reverb)

I just saved the BNP link in my vendor folder, I have seen that before but forgot to save the link.

I also get my G10 from McMaster-Carr in big sheets and cut to suit myself. But I thought in the case of a first time builder Hoffman is a good choice to buy a small build size piece, and since he has the eyelets and turrets it saves having too many vendors and the shipping costs.

I got the link to "TurretBoards.Com" a few weeks ago and just forgot to post the link for Pertius307. I haven't delt with them yet but might buy some supplies next time around just to try them out.

I have stopped running wire under the circuit board for several reasons. I run those wires elevated above the board and just make a neat wire bundle. Most of those are just DC power wires from the power supply.

I am also using shielded wire from my jacks to the grid stoppers in the first stage as well as the volume controls. I have also been putting the first stage grid stop metal film resistors directly on the tube socket and to the shielded wire. This eliminates them from being on the board and aids in noise reduction, and more under board wiring.

I still use "Orange Drop 716" caps, they have always performed well for me and I like the tone they produce. I have also considered the Mallory 150's for my next Tweed to see the difference. The Mallorys a said to have more of a tweed character.

Thanks for the info...
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