ampage Tech Humor


3/4/99 4:57 pm 36 0
One time this guy brought in this amp. It would make these loud bang every once in a while. I played it and sure enough, it would make a loud BANG! I took it apart, and found that the chassis was totally filled with mashed potatoes. I asked him if he knew anything about it and he said no.

Scott 2/28/99 6:35 pm 9 0
True story, my uncle works for the electric company back home and an old man comes in one day with a microwave. He told my uncle it was broke. My finally gets the door open and the entire inside is a black, melted mess. He asks the old man what happened.

"Well, I wanted to bake a potato, so I put it in and set it for 30 minutes...."

Magnus 2/25/99 1:54 pm 14 0
Once I were working for a Swedish company representing the Atari arcade game mfc in Sweden.

The story I heard came from the tech chief in USA (Fred):

A customer had a problem with a PCB for an TV-arcade game.

Fred knew this problem and said "Cut out B-6!" (Meaning the TTL-IC situated at coordinates B-6).

A week later he recieved the PCB with a holed sawed in it with a letter stating:

"I cut out B-6, but still doesn't work!!"

Dave Stork 2/13/99 7:04 pm 37 0
This story seems implausible, but I swear it's true...

A few years ago, a guy who plays in a local country band brought in his Blues Deville for warranty repair. He claimed that it was distorting unpleasantly when he played through it. I put that amp through its paces and couldn't reproduce the problem. I called him up, and he said, "Well, it makes this nasty crackling noise whenever I take a solo. Keep trying." So I let it burn in another day and tested it... still no problem.

So as I'm sitting there playing my usual rock n' roll type stuff through the amp, a coworker named Dennis comes over and says, "Maybe the amp only fails when you play country music through it. Let me try." I thought this was ridiculous, but I handed over the guitar. Dennis started peeling off some pedal-steel type double stops and bends and the amp immediately started crackling, popping and cutting out! I just about shit my pants. Further investigation revealed that the amp had cracked solder joints on the main PCB that would open up with vibration, but were more prone to go intermittent when the vibration was in a specific range of frequency with a sharp attack. My strummed chords and single-note leads were not providing the necessary stimulus for failure.

I guess what I learned from this is to always try to keep the customer's application in mind when testing an amp. For instance, if your customer plays in a metal band, test the amp with the gain cranked, the mid scooped, and use humbuckers :)

anon. 2/7/99 10:51 pm 23 0
A rule of thumb:

Everything electronic runs on smoke. If you see the smoke come out of it you know its out of fuel and won't work again!

Shauna Kennedy (Mrs. Skully) 2/3/99 5:15 am 16 0
Regarding the 'Joke' I just posted:

My husband just came home and informs me this situation actually happened to a friend of his -- a (great) Canadian guitarist named Colin Linden. So there you go. I'd often heard 'Skully' (my husband's nickname) relating this incident to guys that come over to have service done on their amps, and assumed it was joke. He doesn't recall what the actual amp was, but knowing Colin, I'm sure it was pretty great!

Better get out to them bake-sales, boys!

Shauna Kennedy (Mrs. Skully) 2/3/99 3:55 am 26 0
I can't take credit for this, but heard something like it somewhere:

Everyone who loves vintage amps has a story of finding the 'Holy Grail" at a garage sale.

This one guy happened to come across such a beaut at an elderly lady's yard sale. Since there was no price marked, he asked how much she was asking. "Oh, I don't know, it was just something my late husband had on the floor near his workbench." His heart pounding, the guy offers the woman $50. "That seems like an awful lot of money," says the woman, but the guy (not wanting to totally bilk the old woman) insists it's a fair price. "Well ....okay, if you insist," she replies, "but it sure doesn't throw a lot of heat!"

Did you hear the one about the aspiring rock vocalist who came into the music store looking for a "wireless powerless"?

My husband is a Canadian amp tech - you can visit his pages at


ampage Tech Humor