Fender Tremolux Model 5G9 Tube Amplifier (1958)

Fender  Tremolux Model 5G9 Tube Amplifier (1958)
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Item # 10975
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Fender Tremolux Model 5G9 Model Tube Amplifier (1958), made in Fullerton, California, serial # 01301, tweed fabric covering finish.

This is a stunningly clean 1958 example of the narrow-panel tweed Tremolux, one of Fender's enduring classic period amps and one of rarest and now most sought-after bigger-box Tweeds. The Tremolux was introduced in 1955 alongside its smaller cousin, the Vibrolux, the two amps pioneering the company's first built-in tremolo effect.

This initial 5E9 circuit was essentially a 5E3 Deluxe with the on-board effect added in a taller cabinet. The 5E9-A revision added minor changes, but the following 5G9 circuit is a wholly different animal. It holds the distinction of being the last Tweed-era design before the launch of the new 'brown" series at the turn of the decade, which is likely the reason why it was given the 'G' denominator on official schematics, skipping the "F" for this particular model. Fender was still using up the old 5E9-A-marked tube charts and to our knowledge, no one has actually seen a 5G9 Tremolux with a properly marked tube chart! This particular chart has the 5E9-A crossed out and 5F9 added by hand; the handwriting appears the same as the serial number next to it, thus almost certainly done at Fender.

The circuit itself is a fairly big departure from its predecessor. It borrows the power section from its bigger sibling, the revered 5F6-A Bassman, while the fixed bias, long-tailed phase inverter and the higher voltage of the 5U4 rectifier results in significantly more volume, headroom and an overall 'tighter' response than a 5E3 Deluxe. The dual-6V6 power section yields around 15-18 watts of power. Still sporting the modest-sized 12" Jensen P12Q speaker in the oversized tall cabinet of the Pro (designed to fit a 15" speaker), the format has a similar low-end enhancing effect found in the Vibrolux 5F11; sturdy bass with overall more acoustic 'breadth" to the sound.

Like past Tremolux models, the control panel features two channels and corresponding four input jacks (which can be jumpered for more saturation) a volume control for each channel, a master tone control as well as depth and speed knobs for the tremolo. The tremolo is the classic swampy "power tube bias-vary" style and sounds exceptionally smooth and deep.
Height is 20 in. (50.8 cm.), 22 in. (55.9 cm.) width, and 10 1/2 in. (26.7 cm.) in depth at deepest point.
Cosmetically, the amplifier is in close to pristine condition. The Tweed covering is in immaculate shape, sporting a fresh patina as if it just left the factory! Apart from a couple VERY minor scuffs along the lower front corners and some minor staining on the lower right-rear corner area, this is one of the cleanest tweeds we've ever had the pleasure to feature in our showroom. Like the cabinet, the chrome-plated control panel is equally unblemished, with a mirror-clean finish and all the stenciled lettering intact. The grille cloth is equally in phenomenal shape and shows no sign of tearing or fraying.

The original handle is present, however worn enough to no longer be functional so has been replaced with the closest reproduction of this style leather handles we've been able to source. The original is included with the amp. The various chrome hardware is very clean overall, save for some notable corrosion on the right handle mount, which likely contributed to the handles demise. The amp also retains the often missing original tremolo footswitch and even the original cover made by Victoria Luggage Co, which also bears the name tag of (presumably) the original owner and has some general staining.

Electrically, this amp is all original. The tube chart bears the stamp HA, indicating a production date of January 1958. The serial number 01301 matches that of the amp chassis and records indicate that Fender only made around 400 of these amps in 1958! The original 12" alnico Jensen P12Q speaker (marked 220-751) dates to the 51st week of 1957, still retains its original cone and sounds fantastic. The Triad power, choke and output transformers are original as well and are marked 8160, 14684 and 50246, respectively. Pot codes all date between the 50th of 1956 and 38th week of 1957. All other components appear original to the amp and solder joints appear untouched as well, including the grey two-prong power cord. The piece of masking tape inside the chassis bears Lupe's signature.

DISCLAIMER: While we normally service all amplifiers for use, this nearly 63-year-old amp is original and untouched since leaving the Fender factory, so we have elected in the interest of history to leave it that way. As such it is offered in AS-IS condition, not because of any damage or perceived flaw but due to its uniqueness, age and all-original state. The amplifier HAS been tested and sounds remarkably great (and extremely low-noise considering the age of many components), however, if it is to be used regularly or as a reliable gigging/touring instrument without risk of damage or degradation, we would recommend it be professionally serviced to the level desired and we would be happy to do so upon sale. The electrolytic capacitors in the amplifier have aged many decades past their expiration dates to the point where we cannot guarantee their continued functionality and their failure could potentially cause damage to irreplaceable components. However, as it stands, this is an unaltered historic piece, an irreplaceable part of Fender history. Understanding that some would prefer to keep it unaltered, we leave it to the next owner to decide. Excellent + Condition.