1965 Gibson Lancer GA-35 RVT Amp Perfect Working Order

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  • Item Category: Entertainment
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Jul 19, 2009
  • Channel: Auction House
You’re viewing a 1965 to 1967 Gibson Lancer (not sure of the exact year, but these were made from ’65 to ’67). The amp is in excellent working and cosmetic condition. When it came to me it had suffered from years of neglect. As is often the case with these, both the baffle board (originally made of cheap particle board) and the handle (originally made of leather) had rotted and were structurally unstable. You see this all the time with these unless they have been kept in climate-controlled environments. I had a new baffle board cut from high-quality ½ inch Baltic birch plywood (like the baffles on boutique amps) and bought a reissue plastic replacement handle that is an exact replica of the original handle from athe now-defunct Ampwares company (the handle looks exactly like the original leather handles from the size and shape right down to the faux stitching that mimics the original stitching on the original handle). Ampwares is now out of business and I have never seen these handles anyw else, and they are exact replicas of the handles on these 1965 to 1967 amps. The only difference: these plastic handles will never dry rot and disintegrate like the original leather handles always do. And if you have one of these amps and didn’t know about these and grab one while Ampwares was still in business, then you’re out of luck after your original leather handle rots away. Thankfully I picked one up for this baby, thus keeping it faithful to its original specs and appearance, but with the added strength and reliability of a handle that isn't falling apart (as the original handles always do). The upper back panel was also AWOL when the amp came to me and I made a correct replacement and covered it with a basketweave tolex from Ampwares that is the closest match the original tolex on the rest of the amp that I could find. As you can see it’s a pretty close match. Other than that, the rest of the tolex and grill cloth are both original and in good condition, with just the normal minor blemishes that you expect to see on amps of this age.
Electronics-wise, I recently (4 weeks ago) had the best amp tech in Milwaukee go through the amp to bring it into perfect working order. He gave it a caps job with new orange-drop caps, replaced the original non-functioning reverb tank with a brand new Accutronics reverb tank, and replaced the original two-prong power cord with a grounded three prong cord (so you won't have to worry about unexpected shocks or electrocutions... which is always good). The original footswitch was also missing and he added a jack for a Marshall-style, ¼ inch plug, two button footswitch, which is also included and which works perfectly to turn the reverb and tremelo (which are both also in perfect working order) on and off. If you’re familiar with these amps, then you know this is a great mod, as the original five-prong footswitches for these are often missing and expensive when you find them ($100 or more), because they are almost impossible to find. But you never have to worry about that with this amp, as any $20 modern Marshall style footswitch (like the one included) will now work to control the trem and reverb. But I also had him leave the original footswitch jack in place inside the amp too, so that you can use it if you do find an original footswitch, should you care to search for one for whatever reason. Otherwise, the knobs, speaker, and all additional hardware are all original and in great working order.
Size-wise this baby is about as large and as heavy as a Fender Deluxe Reverb, but the kicker is that it is a 35 watt amp… so you get the output of a Fender Vibrolux in a package that is as light and easy to carry as a Deluxe Reverb! Why Fender never came out with a package this perfect is beyond me. Sound-wise, if you’re familiar with these old Epiphone and Gibson amps from the 1960s, you know that they sound a lot like Marshalls, but with a little more Fender-style sparkle in the high end, and great reverb and vintage-style tremelo. When you add all these features t...