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gottajam

...so when you guys buy used tube gear

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do you have a routine that you go through, such as clean the tube pins, clean the tune sockets anything like that? I just bought another tube item (ARC Ref 3) and before I install it into the system, it seems like now would be the time to clean tube pins, possibly sockets... is there anything else I should do, preventative maintenance - wise?   

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Sure, pop the cover and check it out.  Personally, I'd test the tubes, clean the pins and clean the sockets.  Look for any loose pin socket contacts.  Might want to clean the external connectors, and Deoxit the switches and controls if accessible.  Other than that, don't know what else you'd want to do.  Assuming that you auditioned the piece already, so you should be good to go.  Enjoy.

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In addition to what has previously been suggested.....

 

If you are dealing with vintage gear that has been sitting idle, you should either make yourself a "dim bulb tester" to test for excessive current draw or buy a decent Variac that will show excessive current draw while slowly powering things up and reforming the power supply caps.

 

Also, don't connect any amp it to your main (expensive) speakers that you are not 100% sure is functioning correctly. Get a cheap pair of test speakers "just in case".

 

Just my opinions from my own experiences.

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I'm of the opinion that if a cap needs to be reformed, it should be replaced. Capacitors are cheap, especially when compared to replacing a power transformer. Your ears will tell you if your new equipment has a hum in it. 

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18 minutes ago, Davecv41 said:

I'm of the opinion that if a cap needs to be reformed, it should be replaced. Capacitors are cheap, especially when compared to replacing a power transformer. Your ears will tell you if your new equipment has a hum in it. 

 

Just my opinion but I'd rather take my time powering up old gear that has been sitting without use for years than take a chance on a power supply cap failing and messing up the insides of the amp. 

 

YMMV.....

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I'm not disagreeing with powering up the voltage slowly on an older piece of tube equipment. Someone asking how to bring up a used piece of equipment likely isn't going to have a variac, ammeter, and schematic at their disposal. The Reference 3 is 10-11yr old preamp with tubes, microprocessor driven display and volume controls, and draws 125 watts . Current draw should be an amp after the tubes warm up, slightly more with a lower line voltage.

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2 hours ago, Davecv41 said:

(Snip) Someone asking how to bring up a used piece of equipment likely isn't going to have a variac, ammeter, and schematic at their disposal. (Snip)

That is very true.

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