My son’s new electric guitar amplifier, the amazing little Line 6 Spider IV digital modeling amp, really got me feeling nostalgic for the days when my life was jam-packed with the gear of a rock musician. It made me want something appropriate to plug my ash Ibanez acoustic-electric into. Something that would flatteringly reproduce the natural sounds of this kind of instrument. Something that I could play a small room with, but still carry comfortably. And above all, something cheap.
I jumped on a Craig’s List ad for a used Fender Acoustasonic Junior. (Not the “DSP” one at the link; the old school one that isn’t available anymore.) After some negotiations and a quick test drive, I took it home for $160.
After more thorough inspection, however, things were not right. The chorus worked beautifully and produced the audio equivalent of throwing a handful of glitter in the air, but the reverb unit was dead as a doornail. Didn’t do a thing. That alone would have been livable, but I also discovered a terrible distorted sound coming from one of the two speakers. (The volume must be turned up to a certain level to produce this, which is why I missed it at first.)
Unwilling to try to shake down the honest-seeming seller for a refund, and having too much conscience to flip it to someone else now that I know what’s wrong with it, I’m left with only one option: Fix it.
The good news is, even if I were to spend $100 on repairs I’d still end up ahead. I’ve seen this amp go for $300, used and in good repair. So that’s $160 purchase price plus $100 repair… carry the 2…brings me to $260. So I’d still be getting my money’s worth, I guess.
Plus I don’t even know if the repair will cost that much. A new reverb tank for it costs $35, but it probably needs more work than just replacing that part. I suspect the repair will come in under $100, but maybe just under.
Now the trick is finding someone who’s qualified to do the work. Web searches yielded surprisingly little. But I finally got hooked up with a couple of techs who say can help. I’ll probably get one of them to look at it this weekend or early next week.
Wish me luck.