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Digital Subscriptions > Guitar Magazine > Mar 209 > DO IT YOURSELF HOW TO CONVERT A BELL & HOWELL FILMOSOUND AMP FOR GUITAR PART TWO

DO IT YOURSELF HOW TO CONVERT A BELL & HOWELL FILMOSOUND AMP FOR GUITAR PART TWO

Our conversion of the movie-projector amp gets underway, and we show you how to get a vintage ampliier up and running safely

Filmosounds contain a lot of circuitry that isn’t needed for guitar use and this brown capacitor and large inductor can be removed

My interest in valve electronics began with hi-i amps rather than guitar amps and the irst was a Leak Stereo 60 that I bought ‘as seen’ for £25. Barely out of my teens, I was so excited to hear it, I hooked it up to my parent’s hi-i speakers, plonked it on their living room carpet and licked the power switch.

Almost instantaneously, there was a loud bang, followed by a white mushroom cloud forming over the chassis. With my heart in my mouth, I disconnected the amp from the mains and lifted it off the carpet. Fortunately, the carpet and speakers were undamaged, but there were fragments of oily paper from the exploded capacitor all over the place. The lesson I learned was never to power up an untested valve amp in such a gung-ho way.

So, then, what needs to be done before any long-neglected valve amp can be switched on and used? Some of the information that follows is speciic to Filmosounds, but the general principles apply to any untested vintage amp, completed restorations and even newly built ampliiers.

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