Up for sale, a 1959 Fender Bassman featuring the 5F6-A circuit, original quad of P10R speakers, original tweed, and original transformers. A professionally serviced example, this Bassman juxtaposes a particularly rugged exterior with a stunningly well-kept circuit. The original tweed was at one time painted black, and, presumably decades ago, a subsequent attempt was made to strip said paint. In an effort to retain the original tweed, coats of lacquer were recently added to the tweed, bringing back much of the ambered color without hiding its history.
This Bassman boasts 45 all tube watts driven by a pair of Sovtek 5881 (6L6GC) power tubes. And while the 5F6-A circuit was originally engineered for bass as the name would suggest, guitar players quickly gravitated to it for its muscle, headroom, and rich overdriven grit. It's a pure, straightforward circuit, with individual Volume knobs for the two channels and a global Treble/Middle/Bass three band EQ, as well as a Presence knob. Bridging the two channels with a small 1/4" jumper allows for interactivity between the two Volume knobs for even thicker roar and sizzle.
The circuit retains all of the original Triad transformers, and the original CTS pots have visible date codes from the 6th week of '59. The preamp has been restored to original spec with carbon comp resistors and premium Jupiter capacitors which replicate the "red dynamite" appearance and tonal characteristics of original Astrons. The power supply has been recapped with high quality F&Ts, and new smaller Sprague electrolytic caps have been installed in the preamp. The result is a Bassman that runs extremely reliably with a notably low noise floor, delivering all the power, grit, and nuance for which this circuit is known. A modern three-prong power cable has also been installed.
The original tube chart is fully intact inside the cabinet, noting the 5F6-A circuit and complete with an IC stamp that translates to March of 1959. All four original Jensen P10R speakers are intact, and all four retain their original, still viable cones. The blue and silver Jensen foil labels are largely intact on the magnets and magnet bells (the upper two speakers on a Tweed-era Bassman did not have bell covers to accommodate the chassis and transformer size). The speaker frames also have matching model codes and date stamps from the 2nd and 8th weeks of 1959.
The tweed is all original and worn as detailed above, and the oxblood grillcloth with gold stripe is genuine 1950s NOS grillcloth that's just been installed on the original baffle. The chrome-plated chassis is in remarkably good shape, with bright plating and clean silkscreen lettering. All of the original black chicken head knobs are also intact. The original dogbone handle is also intact (and not broken), and a second modern dogbone is also included.