Gretsch Amps

NAD; 1955 Gretsch 6161 project

1

Picked this up for peanuts today. 1955 Gretsch 6161 Electromatic. The cab is toast, but the amp is in pretty good condition. Works but needs a cap job. I may even have a line on a speaker recone for the Rola 6x10’s.

2

Octal preamp and 6V6 outputs.

3

With the termite damage and lack of rust I suspect this was a barn amp and not in a basement.

5

In its former glory.

6

With the termite damage and lack of rust I suspect this was a barn amp and not in a basement.

– Powdog

Wow. Looks like the Romans build the first Gretsch amp and this one was excavated from Pompeii.

On the function side though, as you say, it looks pretty good.

8

I bet this amp will look great and sound great when you're done with it!

9

You're right, the cabinet is beat. It looks like a fun project. I love rebuilding antique electronic sets. I've done a lot of RCA, Atwater Kent, and other radios, plus a few guitar amps. Bringing one of these old sets back to life is very rewarding. I'd love to see the work in progress!

10

Good that chassis cosmetics held on. We're digging it.

11

The circuit has seen no one but termites and spiders.

13

Those wax caps! I had to replace a lot of the ones in my 6161

14

Oh, it definitely works. Just needs some attention.....and speaker recones. The Rolas sound pretty ratty. Lots of edge cracks. They both measure 3.2 (4) ohms. My local speaker reconer says he has some old stock odd size cones for these. Rola made a lot of odd size oval speakers. Hopefully they’re the right ones. We’ll see tomorrow.

15

That's awesome that, of all the people to find it, it made its way to you!

17

I had a later 6163 for my first amp. It had the same chassis, but the more modern cabinet with the wraparound grille. It had a 15" Jensen with a 4" tweeter, and was pretty powerful for only 18 watts or so. Good luck with getting those speakers reconed.

18

Wow, that wiring looks like a nightmare to troubleshoot! It's like they dropped the chassis in a vat of electrical spaghetti!

19

There are so many ways to go with this amp really. If I can’t get the Rolas reconed I might just make a larger cab and go with a big 15” speaker.

20

Funny how it's a write off in some ways, and in other ways its in pretty good condition. Greta to see the knobs, tubes and trannie holding on there. Maybe coat everything with some kinda sealant and keep it that way, zombie amp!

21

The cabinet is so bug eaten and rotted that there’s no joint integrity left. Plus, I wouldn’t want it in my house unless it had been fumigated. But it would make a good zombie amp.

22

Good lord how anyone could work their way around with a soldering iron in that mess. The cabinet rot is spooky and cool at the same time. Can't wait to see what you do with this one.

23

Powdog, I vote for the cowboy treatment and a 15” speaker!

24

Definitely very cool.

25

Powdog, I vote for the cowboy treatment and a 15” speaker!

– Powertronman

Yep gotta be a big honkin 15 in there


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