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In Praise of Hand Wiring

At my band's last rehearsal, my Ceriatone DC30 had a strange volume fading problem. My first response to those kinds of things is to replace the power tubes. In fact, that's a very useful pro tip born of 35 years of playing: If you have a tube amp with some kind of weird problem, the first thing to try is replacing the power tubes. At least half of the time, that's the culprit. But in this case, it didn't resolve the issue. In trying to diagnose the cause, I discovered that if I flipped the standby switch on and off a few times, that would temporarily fix the problem. I speculated that perhaps the switch was going bad. I limped along in practice by flipping the switch whenever the fade issue occurred. But when I got home, I went to Mojotone, ordered a new switch and this weekend I finally got around to installing it.

I think that fixed the problem. At least it didn't reoccur for the hour or so I pummeled the amp afterwards. I'll know better at the next practic…

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