Fender Blonde Showman
Model/Circuit Number: 6G14, 6G14-A
Years of Production: 1960 – 1963
Controls: Brown forward facing w/ white labels, controls numbered 1 – 10
Knobs: White round, unnumbered
- Front: Normal: In, In, Vol, Treb, Bass – Vibrato: In, In, Vol, Treb, Bass, Speed, Intensity – Presence – Pilot Lamp
- Rear: Ground Sw, Fuse (3A), Power Sw, Standby Sw, Speaker, Ex Speaker, Vibrato Jack
- Dimensions: Head: 8 x 26 x 9, Showman 12: (ported tone ring) 21 x 30 x 11½, Showman 15: (ported tone ring) 24½ x 36 x 11½, Double Showman: 24½ x 36 x 11½
- Hardware: Cabinet Hooks, Chassis Straps
- Handle: Brown Plastic
- Corners: Corner Protectors
- Tolex/Tweed: White Tolex
- Grill Cloth: Maroon (60-62) or Wheat (late 62-63) grille cloth
Logo: Grill mounted, flat, chrome & black, script
Weight: 100 lbs.
- Size: 1 x 12
- Impedance: 8 ohms
- Model: Showman 12: JBL D-120F ; Showman 15, Double Showman: JBL D-130F or JBL D-140F(For more info, check out the Jensen Replacement Speakers)
~Watts: 100 watts
- Pre amp: 6G14: 6 x 7025; 6G14-A: 2 x 12AX7, 4 x 7025
- Power: 6G14: 4 x 6L6GC; 6G14-A: 4 x 5881
Bias: Fixed Bias
Rectifier: Solid State
Comments: The Showman 12, Showman 15, and Double Showman all used the same head with the only difference being the size and speakers of the the speaker cabinet. Maroon grilled Double Showmans exist, but are very rare. The harmonic vibrato tremolo circuit left half a dual triode (7025 or 12AX7) unused.
8 thoughts on “Fender Blonde Showman”
The schematic of the 6G14 shows (6) 7025’s and (4) 6L6GC’s. The 6G14A shows 2 12AX7’s, 4 7025’s and (4) 6L6GC’s. The power output of these amps was 85 watts.
Well, no. The 6G14 used four 6L6GCs while the 6G14-A used four 5881s. The output of either was reported by Fender to be 85 W.
The 6G14 and 6G14A circuits are entirely different preamp topologies. The 6G14 Showman and 6G8 Twin employed the “James” preamp circuit. The latter circuit with the (A) signifier was the original precursor to the famous AB763 Blackface circuit.
I’ve seen some with tapped tone controls. Which variation were these?
Between the Tweed Twin with front facing controls, and the Blond Showman amplifiers, there were no less than 6 different output transformers used, with some obviously offering different impedance ratings, and others — who knows. Transformers for the twin were not used on the Showman and visa versa. Both the front control twin and debut Showman were introduced using 6L6GC tubes, with the A versions then going back to 5881 tubes (industrial 6L6GB). The different transformers were:
1. Twin: 45268 and 45548. Now both of these obviously had 4Ω secondaries — and while the 45268 was used with tube rectifiers, BOTH were used with SS power supplies as well. So why two different transformers? Particularly because they started out with the 45268, went to the 45548, and then back to the 45268! And all while the output stage and speaker load was basically unchanged.
2. Showman: Started with the 45550 (sister transformer to the Twin’s 45548, and invariably having an 8Ω secondary). Then the “A” version denotes using possibly a 45945, 45946, and (I believe) ended up with a 125A4A. I have seen reported that the 45946 was a 16Ω transformer, and the 125A4A an 8Ω transformer. But the 45945? Also, and I don’t mean anything by this, but there is sooooo much mis-information on the web about these amplifiers, that anything that is “reported” but I haven’t personally verified, I consider as unverified.
I have personally seen all of these transformers but the 45548 and 45550. Of the whole bunch, all the others are physically quite large — nearly twice the size of the classic 125A29A and 125A30A transformers used in all the BF Showmans. There was even another set of transformers for the very rare Showmans built to use 7355 tubes — but those I have little interest in.
So does anybody have any credible input as to:
1. Why two transformers for the Twin that by all measures are otherwise the same? and
2. Why four transformers for the Showman, when there’s only three possible output impedance levels that might be needed?
The 45548 and 45550 transformers were the only transformers of the bunch specifying 6L6GC tubes. The rest specify 5881 tubes — but this is hardly any significant difference. The 6L6GC is simply a higher rated 5881, but with otherwise identical characteristics. And, ALL of these amplifiers were powered by the same 67233/123P7A power transformer, which ultimately determines how much power an amplifier can produce. Any input on the specifics of these Showman transformers, or why the twin had two different, but apparently identical transformers, would be appreciated!
Often enough, for each component in the Fender product line, it’s just what was happenstantially available in appropriate quantities for any given production order period. This is borne out in the choice of the 4-terminal treble pots used during the Brownface era as well as the size of the choke used in the late professional-series Tweed amps. So the answer as to why certain transformers, chokes or even a 350k potentiometer with a 70k tap was used is because it was available, it was applicable, and it was cheap! So, even though that Tweed-era choke was huge and has a 400mA rating. It was just an “off the shelf” unit (according to Patrick Selvedge at Mercury Magnetics) that fit the application at a price that satisfied the economics of Fender production at the time.
Thanks for your input. The Showman I have demonstrates that your information is still not complete. I have a serial #378 so a pretty early Showman that was eventually converted in Fender to an “A” probably, and it’s marked as an “ex Dick Dale” (who knows the truth). Anyway, my output transformer is actually a 45268 at 4-ohms coupled with a 67233 power transformer, so as you can see the Showman also installed the 45268, not only the Twin, and I was told also that these transformers were common in the Concert too and other amps. Fender was always using the parts he already had in stock before starting using new ones.
You are absolutely right though, there are many variations of the same amp and, having personally compared quite a few of them, they all sound different. Some definitely sound louder and more “middy”, more blackface; some others break up a bit earlier, have more character, more bass, but less presence.
Hi, I have just got a 1961 blonde Showman head, chassis n. 00047. The OT is a 45550 and the tube chart (the part that is still there) calls for 4 5881 tubes, 4 7025 and 2 12AX7.
The OT 45550 is the same kind I have in a 1960 Vibrasonic.
I don’t know if this can help in any way.