Dating a fender bandmaster the whole point of dating
Mid-1968 Super Reverb export model modified by Hagstrm for the Swedish market.Note the removal of the voltage selector switch and hard-wiring. I just discovered that the silverface Bandmaster speaker cabinet (the big, tall one without tilt-back legs) is ported (see photo). I guess this is what the 1969 catalog refers to as “large, individual specially designed baffles.” And all along I thought the big n’ tall silverface cabs were just a macho thing to compete against the awesome looks of a Marshall half stack or full stack.One has to wonder where all those factory original export back panels are! Another interesting tidbit is that a lot of Fenders were imported into Australia in the late 1950s and early 1960s that were stock 110-volt (domestic US) units.The Australian Fender Distributor then installed 240V - 110V stepdown transformers in the bottom of the cabinets.Although his job was somewhat limited, his recollections provided some really fascinating insights to how the amps were built.For instance, he confirmed our assumption that the amp chassis were put into stock after being stamped with serial numbers and that the chassis were pulled from the stock bins randomly (just as with Fender guitar neck plates).These units look, and apparently sound, just like the Schumacher-made units so it’s easy to overlook that “831” code.Working at FMI – I was able to interview a fellow (who wishes to remain anonymous) who worked at Fender in 1972-73 in the amp department.
Okay, I know you’re all just dying to skip ahead to the serial number tables but try to contain your excitement and read through the article first.The following chart, was originally printed in VG magazine, by Gerald Weber.If you see any data that is not listed here or notice any errors, for 1970’s and earlier Fender amps, please send us an email and we will update the chart.Remember, your amp is newer than the newest component.
For example, if you find pots from late ‘64 and transformers from early ’65, you can be pretty sure your amp is a 1965.I think in the corners of the boxes were older pots remaining from earlier dates... Like I said, there were 5 or 6 of us at the benches every day.