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How to repair Wangs Tube Guitar amp Excessive tube current strange issue

This amp was shipped to D-lab with a unique problem. Output tubes running hot, distorted output. A very nicely built amp, super nice eyelet board, excellent solder job, however poor quality tube sockets caused a major issue. I plan to change all sockets with Belden type, plus re-tube completely. At first I was stumped, then lucky for me, with a little poking around, the defect revealed itself. So as you can see, beware of this type ceramic tube socket. They look pretty, shiny, some have gold plated pins, however it appears that longevity is not one of their strong points. Tube amps back in the day are still running with their stock sockets. If you want your hand built amp to enjoy the same or close life span, spend a little extra upfront. I normallyuse clean NOS sockets, but if I need to purchase new, I go with Belden Micalex. The Tubedepot,com sells them at a very good price with quantity discounts.

43 thoughts on “How to repair Wangs Tube Guitar amp Excessive tube current strange issue”

  1. DeWitt Potts says:

    It's interesting that they used sockets mounted to the chassis instead of having a PC board with the sockets mounted to it which is a quality move BUT then they cut a corner and used cheap sockets that were prone to failure.

  2. wangs amps says:

    Wangs Amps here…first, I would like to thank you for the repairs on my customers #1987HW.

    I believe there is a little more to this story than meets the are actually the second tech to look at this amp. It showed up to my customer with a possible microphonic tube. If you look closely at the pin clamps of the loose V2 you’ll see that the clamps have been bent quite badly as if someone was having trouble removing the tube and instead of pulling straight up, it looks as though it was wiggled in a circular motion and the clamps were spread out …I assure you that ceramic valve socket did NOT leave the factory destroyed like you mentioned, the other sockets were very tight.

    When it was taken to the first tech it was only making a slight pop when cranked, when it left the first techs hands the Amp was acting very different…I believe the first tech, when changing tubes, was not as professional as you and actually damaged the sockets by not having the patients to be careful.

    That said, you are correct that the ceramic sockets are not the best you can buy but are a higher level than the non-ceramic sockets found in mot Chinese amps. Our QC is always getting better and we are always trying to give the customer the best deal possible in the price range. We will look into other brands of ceramics but we do not have this loose socket issue in general.

    Any questions pls feel free to ask me anything

  3. Major Twang says:

    Socket caper… D-lab to the rescue…

  4. SIXSTRING63 says:

    Great diagnostics Terry. Love your videos! Those cheap tube sockets and cheap switching jacks on FX loops are the downfall of many a good amp. Seems like once a week I come across a dead amp with a bad switching jack. One of the first things I check lately if nothing crazy is going on voltage wise.

  5. ShepsGuitar says:

    I have worked on a wangs before and that doesn’t look stock. Almost like someone has put a ceriatone kit jtm board or something in there .

  6. Terry, aside from the sockets, did these amps seem well built? Those cheaper sockets are what you will find in most lower priced tube amps anyway. Even though ideally they'd already be better sockets; if the rest is done well, a small extra investment in better sockets to have a solid hand wired tube amp doesn't seem that bad.

  7. So the plate voltage is low?

  8. What do they make as a jcm 900 clone before I have to go buy a peavey windsor

  9. 김용호 says:

    Do not believe resistance value

  10. Jason Young says:

    Outstanding job Terry. The mark of a pro is that they make it look easy. I hope you have a really nice D-Lab plate to rivet to the chassis!!

  11. Finom1 says:

    I love vintage Tube Amps. You keep our history alive!!! Thank you for sharing your wisdom with the world!!!

  12. Thanks In Advance Terry…!!! 😉

  13. That looks like 50 watt Marshall clone. Excellent wiring from the factory. I was surprised when you turned it over and saw a turret board. It also looks like they copied Bruce Egnater’s cosmetics. Another good video with trouble shooting. Thank you Terry.

  14. sski says:

    I was surprised to see the point to point simplicity of that amp when you first opened it. As a Chinese amp I expected some printed circuit modules here and there. I see where they get you is in those tube sockets. Great video, Terry. I've been enjoying your Ham Radio stuff as well as I grew up around it and have kept an eye on it through the years.

  15. Hack says:

    Yes, those sockets do not look good.

  16. Robert Kohut says:

    Nice to see that gentleman's Wangs all fixed up!! Great job and video!…. 🙂

  17. John Simms says:

    Just say NO to Chinese tube sockets! Good job Terry.

  18. D Yamariv says:

    Terry, you should show us a little more of the actual soldering job

  19. Terry, love it, love it love it! Ham radio could be the one way to communicate if all else fails! Very important! I wonder how long those "Ghina" trannies will last? A lot of Chinese components don't last! Great video! Thank you for your return to geetar tubular amplaflyers! Thanxz

  20. Russian Bot says:

    I love Chinese Wangs

  21. A modern take on point-to-point wiring, ruined by poor part selection.


  23. tphoenix69 says:

    Great troubleshooting session on that one Terry.

    Suggestion: What about using a recording of one of your viewers or many friends playing just guitar riffs which you could use as your audio generator during validation testing?

  24. Ron C says:

    Good job Terry. Those sockets look like someone sprayed something in there and it had a reaction to the metal. Either way,. those cheap Chinese sockets are not made well and for sure need to be ripped out of there. Do you have a usual supplier of sockets ? I always struggle finding good ones after being burned on Amazon a few times. Great job as always my friend – Ron

  25. John Strunck says:

    Tube socket rock-it! For sure.

  26. Fitz says:

    The transformers with Chinese writing on them would have me somewhat concerned about longevity

  27. If you remove the second tube you effectively disconnect the first one from the rest of the circuit. The problem is still there in the first tube, it's just not making into the power stage

  28. hmmm, China… it "WANG" the WONG number!

  29. JtSneed2k9 says:

    Awesome job Terry!! You never cease to impress.

  30. ProfTrout says:

    D Lad in da house with a new guitar amp video. Whoop Whoop!

  31. C O says:

    Sockets that suck.

  32. wjb2 Bill says:

    thanks terry great video

  33. john plaid says:

    I notice Amazon purchases from China are unreliable and at times a rip off. Products are received damaged and communication is poor.

  34. Nazar King says:

    Hi. Tuob el34.. Chena.. And phlpis 😵

  35. john estock says:

    The sad part is, China has the capability to make good components; they just choose not to.

  36. Troy Prosser says:

    Terry, your address is open for all the kooks to see. Your a great bloke hate to see weirdos knocking.
    Keep up the vids

  37. yustech says:

    Great repair sir, you make it look easy. This is super channel. Salute!

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