A joint venture with my son

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Project by Tom Pritchard posted 02-15-2013 07:24 PM 3603 views 6 times favorited 27 comments Add to Favorites Watch

When my son Chad graduated from Purdue University he needed to select some type of “Senior Project”. Since his major was Electrical Engineering he thought he would build an amplifier to work with his guitar. I built the case and he built the guts. In his design he wanted to stick with the old tube style amp, which made the project really look great with the front being opened.
The wood I used was walnut and used “General” finish sealer and top coat. We were both very happy with the results. The picture of Chad with his guitar shows the speakers that he borrowed from a friend. This picture was taken at school when all students were having their projects on display. I think he passed the project with flying colors.

-- Tom in Madison, Indiana

27 comments so far

View rdwile's profile


160 posts in 2233 days

#1 posted 02-15-2013 07:32 PM

Looks awesome Tom, great father/son project!!

You know a nice set of 4×10’s would look great in a matching walnut cabinet – just sayin…


-- Richard D. Wile,

View JoeinGa's profile


7739 posts in 2128 days

#2 posted 02-15-2013 07:35 PM

That’s not REALLY a “tube” amp is it? Surely those are just “dummies’ for the looks, and the new modern electronics are in the bottom half (behind the control panel) right? Cause it looks cool as all getout!

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View Tom Pritchard's profile

Tom Pritchard

169 posts in 2813 days

#3 posted 02-15-2013 07:37 PM

Yep those are tubes… believe it or not…Thanks for your comment.

-- Tom in Madison, Indiana

View WoodenFrog's profile


2737 posts in 3034 days

#4 posted 02-15-2013 07:38 PM

Very Cool Tom! Very cool!
I second Rich on the cab-fab project!
Look out Marshall Amplifiers, Here comes Tom and Son Rockin’ Amplifiers!
Great job, how does it sound?

-- Robert B. Sabina, Ohio.....

View Michael Wilson's profile

Michael Wilson

588 posts in 2612 days

#5 posted 02-15-2013 07:42 PM

That’s one hot piece of awesome right there :-)

View Tom Pritchard's profile

Tom Pritchard

169 posts in 2813 days

#6 posted 02-15-2013 07:43 PM

I felt like the sound was great. My son actually was considering applying for a job with Marshalll in the UK, but with 3 kids and being married he had to think about other things I guess??

-- Tom in Madison, Indiana

View Michael Wilson's profile

Michael Wilson

588 posts in 2612 days

#7 posted 02-15-2013 07:50 PM

If he’s making analog tube amps like that, he should make them to order. The market for that kind of thing is astounding.

View Bobsboxes's profile


1369 posts in 2785 days

#8 posted 02-15-2013 07:54 PM

Super project, the best ones are done with my son also, thanks for sharing.

-- Bob in Montana. Kindness is the Language the blind can see and deaf can hear. - Mark Twain

View camps764's profile


867 posts in 2481 days

#9 posted 02-15-2013 08:33 PM

Modern electronics? no way jose! It’s hard to beat the sound of a tube amp :)

-- Steve

View Violaine's profile


68 posts in 2943 days

#10 posted 02-15-2013 09:51 PM

i am curious about the material you used for the handle.

the “caves” for those tubes are astounding woodworking feat..

i wonder how did you make them…pretty thin delicate columns for routering.

great team up (is he on electrical or an electronic engineering..)

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

29800 posts in 2459 days

#11 posted 02-15-2013 10:01 PM

Hard core guitar players will never give up on the real “tube” sound. Nice job.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Time2beupinAZ's profile


453 posts in 3083 days

#12 posted 02-16-2013 12:56 AM

That is way to cool. I love how you made the tubes stand out. great work both of you.

-- Tim - I usally measure twice after I cut......then I know for sure that I cut it short.....

View Tom Pritchard's profile

Tom Pritchard

169 posts in 2813 days

#13 posted 02-16-2013 01:23 AM

Violaine, To answer your question. The narrow rods are walnut. The are about 1/2 inch square and used a 1/8” dia dowel to connect to the arched shape top piece. After I had glued together I carefully used a small round over bit and rounded edges. The rest was hand sanded. if interested I can share the design with those interested. When my son made the platform to place the tubes he placed them at a particular position to get the effect that we ended up with.

-- Tom in Madison, Indiana

View SuburbanDon's profile


487 posts in 3115 days

#14 posted 02-16-2013 01:30 AM

That’s just too cool. Two of my favorite things.

-- --- Measure twice, mis-cut, start over, repeat ---

View lysdexic's profile


5256 posts in 2744 days

#15 posted 02-16-2013 01:59 AM

I wish my son gave a flip about woodworking. He could give a.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - out_of_focus1.618

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