2014-11-18 Joes New Amp

Joseph got a "new" (used but new to him) guitar amplifier somewhere locally.  The markings
on the control panel indicate it was made by "Mike Gee Kustoms" and it's a model AL-615T.
Other than that, we knew very little 'til we began digging.

I could tell from the panel it has two inputs, reverb, and tremelo, single knob volume (no gain channel),
single knob tone (no EQ), an On/Off switch (no ground reverse or mute switch), and a power lamp.

The amp is obviously an economy model.  It has a decent carry handle and nice Tolex cover
with a cool, faux aligator leather motif and metal label.  The grill cloth was attractive.

Reverb unit was Chinese, signed "Mike Gee Kustoms" who obviously either assembled the amp
from parts or bought it as-is and labeled it himself.  If he assembled it, he did a nice job on the
case.  His date says it was signed 2 years ago in Nov. 2012 and it's his 10th amp.  Connector
cables seemed to be high quality.

Other markings on the reverb unit were:

TP [logo]TEL: 86-757-22211142
FAX: 86-757-22202772
E-mail: tops-999@163.com

Once we had the amp apart we could get a better view of the no-name 10 inch woofer.
It looked to be a regular 8-ohm speaker but I'm not that good at being able to tell.  The
Power transformer on the left and output transformer on the right are in clear view of the
amp which, once we removed it, was flipped upside down to reveal the transformers and
tube sockets.  Wish we knew what kind of tubes go in those sockets.  Probably standard
12AX7s or equivalent in the preamp but who knows what kind of power tubes - - EL84s ?

Another view of the amp with control panel more visible.  That's my POD in the background.

Under the output transformer we found the circuit board marked:  *No: ZJG-03-T*

The best markings were in this shot that Joe got of the other end of the circuit board:

     Made by YAJIAMUSIC
     Design by ZHAOJIAN
     TEL: +86-022-86351181

A little internet research revealed that Mike GEE is Mike Grindstaff of Phoenix, AZ.  His contact
info is on his eBay store website:  http://stores.ebay.com/Mike-Gee-Kustoms.  I have to admit I'm
already impressed and we haven't even heard the amp.  

I know it's an economy amp but that's what this guy does, obviously.  He tries to give people custom
equipment at a bargain basement price.  Not a bad idea knowing that most musicians aren't especially
loaded with cash.

What impressed me most about him was an apparent argument he had with an eBay buyer.  We've
all met the type, a guy who wouldn't be pleased if you hung him with a new rope.  
He was clearly a horse's rear but I thought Mike did his best to try and please the guy if he would
have cooperated alittle.  Business people working on a budget, trying to please the bottom end of the
market who are ALSO HONEST like Mike, are pretty rare.  

I'm anxious for either Joe or me to give Mike a call to see what kind of tubes this amp uses.  I'm
guessing this amp sounds pretty good for an $80 bargain.  I hope I'm right and hope the tubes
don't cost too much.  Good luck Joe!

P.S. Mike's eBay store says he welcomes phone calls at:
602-769-1131 from Noon to 5:00 AZ time M-Sat.
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