This is a vintage 1960 Fender Bassman 5F6-A electric bass guitar amplifier. This particular example, serial number BM02100, is in average 100% all original condition! Though the cosmetic condition of this Bassman would suggest it has been used, and toured with, endlessly, it has remarkably remained internally 100% all original. As the name “Bassman” indicates, it was originally designed for bass, however, it was quickly re-appropriated for better use with electric guitar and was the literal archetype for Jim Marshall’s famous 50 watt amplifiers. This is a perfect example for the collector whom prefers original and intact examples while not placing utmost importance on condition. This enables one to comfortably enjoy this amp, stress-free, and void of potential condition hazard headaches.
Serial Number: BM02100
Tube Chart Stamp: IE (May 1959)
Speaker Codes: 220037
Transformer Codes: 8087, 45249
What this amp lacks in condition and cleanliness, it makes up for in raw tone. Famous for simple and stunning sound, with loud musical compression, Freddy Tavares created an undeniable masterpiece when he innovated upon the 5F6 to give birth to the ultimate 5F6-A. With approximately 4,000 produced over a 3-year period between ’58-’60, it would be a generous assumption to estimate that approximately half of the originals still remain in some semblance of intact original condition.
While the amp displays a mid-’59 tube chart date stamp, it has an original matching set of Jensen P10Qs with mid-’60 production stamps. It is possible that they are original, but the 1-year gap is somewhat significant and anomalous, even for Fender the sometimes inconsistent amp production.
The amp sounds incredible, and really produces that magical overdrive with harmonic headroom for which Bassmans have become so coveted. The speakers all retain original cones, however, one of which is slightly fatigued and will produce an audible artifact when loud.
Aside from some added casters, which have long been removed, there were no modifications nor changes of any kind made to this amp! Check it out, it’s most certainly a survivor!