Other Amps

Vox Berkeley II-It’s What’s Happening!

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I've been putting together a 1967 Thomas Vox Berkeley II and it's been a really fun project. It all started with my search to find an original cab/trolley for my brother's '67 Vox Beatle head. I saw the cabinet and trolley cheap on eBay and couldn't resist pulling the trigger. I figured it would be a cool extension cab for my '68 Pacemaker. Pretty soon I found myself watching Berkeley II heads on eBay and Reverb and ended up with a nice V1081 head. Next, I got the cool three button footswitch to complete the set. I need another amp like I need a hole in my head, but buying guitar gear is like eating peanuts...once you start, you can't stop!

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First, the cabinet needed a little work. I found a replacement tilt wheel and washer to replace the missing one. Next, the guy I got the cab from threw in standard Fender type casters which wouldn't fit, so I got original Vox casters. Third, somewhere along the way a former owner soldered a Radio Shack 1/4" plug onto the speaker cable, so I removed it and resoldered the cable to the original Switchcraft XLR jack.

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The head is in nice working condition, but I'm currently replacing the line reverse slide switch whose lever had broken off. I also ordered a replacement "SUPER REVERB TWIN" model plaque for the lower right and replacement black oxide screws for the corners.

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Here's it's control panel. I love that input number three is located on the lower left of the panel. Clunky but cool!

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Finally, the M-4 Sherman-like three button footswitch. This unit controls the reverb, vibrato and MRB (midrange resonant boost). The MRB switch, like the one on my Vox Pacemaker footswitch is a momentary switch which must be held down to use this feature. It connects to the back of the head with a 6-pin DIN plug.

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YEAH that's want we want to see. Hang with all the kool Thomas Vox heads over on Facebook.

I made an announcement over there a short time ago that soon I will be sharing something epic for all Thomas Vox True Believers

Plus gotta put it out there that I am still trolling for World's Cleanest tube Pathfinder. I did get one that isn't all that clean but one more sure can't hurt.

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There is absolutely nothing cooler than an old Vox amp in a trolley.

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Congrats, DuoJet55. I've got a Cambridge Reverb, which is the 1x10" combo version of the Berkeley II. Great amps, insane reverb and nasty garage rock grind when cranked. Enjoy!

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Finally, the M-4 Sherman-like three button footswitch. This unit controls the reverb, vibrato and MRB (midrange resonant boost). The MRB switch, like the one on my Vox Pacemaker footswitch is a momentary switch which must be held down to use this feature. It connects to the back of the head with a 6-pin DIN plug.

– duojet55

It should be easy enough to replace that momentary for a locking type switch. Those Vox foot switches were built like tanks.

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It should be easy enough to replace that momentary for a locking type switch. Those Vox foot switches were built like tanks.

– wabash slim

I replaced the momentary MRB with a locking on/off switch for mine - works nicely.

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The momentary switch feature doesn't bother me. My '68 Pacemaker's switch is like that, too. I actually have two different footswitches for the Pacemaker. I picked up a Reverb/Tremolo version originally which has standard on/off switches, then an actual Pacemaker switch came up and I grabbed it.

(Top-Pacemaker M and T, Bottom-older type Cambridge R and T)

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Almost finished! All I've got to do is to recap the head to make the controls function better. Here's the Berkeley fronted by my '66 Vox Super Lynx Deluxe.

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Almost finished! All I've got to do is to recap the head to make the controls function better. Here's the Berkeley fronted by my '66 Vox Super Lynx Deluxe.

– duojet55

Sweet! I have the exact same one. I’m missing the screw thing that attaches the head to the trolley, do you know what they look like? Or did yours come with one?

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Mine didn't have one either. I made a retaining cleat by cutting one on a jigsaw, then drilling the hole out for a 1/4-20, 2" long spade head bolt. It holds the head on beautifully. I'll post a picture of the retainer cleat as soon as I give it a flat black paint job. North Coast Music makes a beautiful repro of the original trolley retaining clamp, but unfortunately it only fits the wider-spaced trolleys like the Beatle, Buckingham and Royal Guardsman. Fyi, they mistakenly list the retaining wing bolt as a 10/24, which is much too small for the Vox head's T-nut. 1/4-20 is the proper bolt.

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I’ll be looking forward to seeing it thanks!

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Here it is in the white. Even though it won't show under the head, I'm painting it black just as a quality touch. I used a piece of 1 1/4" X 3/4" hard wood to fashion the cleat. All I could find locally for the bolt was a 2" 1/4-20 spade head bolt. A wing bolt would probably be easier to use, but the one I have is adequate.

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Berkeley II. My first real pro amp. Brand new. I remember I would look at that thing in the living room and it was hard to believe it was actually mine. Thanks Dad. Miss it and those days. Funny though I never bought another Vox since then. Many others but not another Vox. Might have to rethink that cause I'm sure it would sound nice with my RHH.

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Joel, I've shared that thrill of realization that a guitar or amp was actually mine! They not only appeal to me for their functions as musical instruments, but as art. Nothing more inspiring than listening to your stereo and having a few neat guitars around to contemplate. It really adds to the intensity of your enjoyment. As Bob Dobbs said, "Don't just eat a hamburger, eat the HELL out of it!"

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Here it is with a flat black finish. Inexpensive and simple to make, but it does the job.

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Here it is with a flat black finish. Inexpensive and simple to make, but it does the job.

– duojet55

I like it! Thanks

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I just had to show off my latest acquisition...an original '60s Technibilt Vox Beatle trolley. I got it for my brother's Beatle head. I still need the cabinet as he used an old beat-up Kustom cab with it originally.

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Here it is in the white. Even though it won't show under the head, I'm painting it black just as a quality touch. I used a piece of 1 1/4" X 3/4" hard wood to fashion the cleat. All I could find locally for the bolt was a 2" 1/4-20 spade head bolt. A wing bolt would probably be easier to use, but the one I have is adequate.

– duojet55

Hint---add a small washer. That'll tighten up better and won't tear up the wood. I like a simple fix! Nicely done.

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have thomas vox tube pacemaker..came with mullards!... had 4 berkeley II cabs...bought nos in 80's

but never liked the shallow 2 -10 closed back cabs...too tight sounding..but they looked cool on stands with covers!...eventually gave, sold and traded them away...

still have the pacemaker tho..but finally replaced cheapo ferrite oxford gold bulldog with a celestion alnico gold (the second they came out)...& never looked back...

cheers

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I'd already pressed and glued a washer over the screw hole on the finished product.


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