Saturday, August 1, 2015

Traynor YGM-3 combo. The Canadian Deluxe Reverb?

These are terrific amps and thankfully quite under rated. They can be had cheap. Similar to a Deluxe Reverb but more of my flavor: EL-84 output tubes for that more "British" sound, better tremolo and more of that wild man reverb than the more refined Fender amps have. So wild that they can run away. A couple simple mods can tame that. In this case I just added a .002 cap from the reverb return to ground and bypassed the 1 meg pot with a 1 meg resistor. This maintains the more crazy and trashy reverb without making it too tame.

Other than that the amp had a crackle and hum problem. Solution was easy: at some point one of the output tube sockets was replaced. The tech put an old socket in but failed to remove the tarnish off the solder points. It had 4 cold joints! So I removed the wires, hit the points with some sandpaper and re-soldered. Problem solved.

Customer loaded this with some fresh "Mullard" EL-84 tubes. They seem to work in this amp just fine. These amps tend to run hot. Most EL-84 amps have about 300 volts max on the output tubes, this one has 398 with each tube running at about 30ma. Nothing is red-plating and it sounds great so I let it be.

Here's a shot of the inside. Built very much like an old Fender amp! Very sturdy, very high quality....

I also changed the electrolytic caps on the circuit board. Someone replaced the ones in the bias circuit but did a sloppy job so I took care of that. The big filter cans can be changed at this point but I left them. Amp runs quite, hum free. Changing the ones on the board cleaned up some crackly stuff.

Notice it's loaded with those lovely Mustard caps. Mmmmm. Yeah, I'm a big fan of the old Traynor amps.....

If this were my amp I would probably change the tone stack myself, maybe set it up like an old Marshall by adding a cathode follower circuit. I recall doing that a long time ago for a client and being really happy with the result. But, I can get used to this. And hearing my client play it, he sounds better than I do naturally. This is his amp and he knows how to work it!