Tubes Asylum

Questions about tubes and gear that glows. FAQ

Return to Tubes Asylum


Message Sort: Post Order or Asylum Reverse Threaded

Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp

69.95.231.9

Posted on February 14, 2014 at 09:37:36
65W200
Audiophile

Posts: 10
Location: Northeast US
Joined: February 13, 2014
I have a WE 142A amp that my dad used back in the '50s. He
opted to build his own Heathkit system and put the 142A in
storage back in the early '60s. I have since had a professional
restore the Heathkit [& Fisher 30-A] units, but am hesitant
[at present] to have the WE 142A evaluated/tested for three
reasons. The first being that I'm reluctant to power it up
[even using a variac] because, due to its configuration, there
is a question as to the need for a preamp. The second being that
I do not know which screw terminals [no RCA plugs...] are used
for inputs/outputs. Lastly, I've been advised that its probably
worth a couple of bucks and therefore I don't want to "light" it
[& possibly myself] up. A friend recommended that I check in with
the folks on this site for some initial information and maybe a
gentleman by the name of Mike will chime in on this post.

Don't worry..... I'm not going to plug it in at this point. I'm also
not going to alter anything on this unit. If it were something I did
pursue restoring [for myself].... refurbishments would be performed
by a recommended professional[s] only. Until I determine a direction
to pursue.... the amp stays in dry storage.

My dad is 82 now..... and he doesn't remember how he had this amp
hooked up or what with [as in preamp?].

Any and all input is appreciated. Thanks.
John

 

Hide full thread outline!
    ...
RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 14, 2014 at 13:05:03
bcguitar
Audiophile

Posts: 1312
Location: Maryland
Joined: March 2, 2005
What is your question? What to do with it? Sounds like you just need to find the right service guy. Mike Samra is good but not sure how much experience he has with western amps. Somebody here will know the best guy to go to. I would not let anyone modify that amp though if you intend to keep its value up. Bobby

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 14, 2014 at 14:20:09
elektron
Audiophile

Posts: 948
Location: midwest
Joined: February 18, 2004
Hi, John. I would try to get in touch with Walt Bender formerly publisher/editor of AudioMart from pre WWW days. Walt knows WECO equipment in depth and should be able to advise you how to proceed.
You don't want to butcher the amp. Aside from its intrinsic value as
an audio amplifier of high quality it also sustains appreciation in
collector value to the nth degree. Then there is the sentimental value
attached to the amp as a member of the family. Take your time. Do your
homework. And, Happy Listening and kudos to your Dad's prescient taste.

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 14, 2014 at 14:26:53
bcguitar
Audiophile

Posts: 1312
Location: Maryland
Joined: March 2, 2005
Walt passed away a few years back, so did Lambadaikas, he was a good one too. His son early should be able to help though... HiFiTown.com or something close to that....

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 14, 2014 at 15:38:48
65W200
Audiophile

Posts: 10
Location: Northeast US
Joined: February 13, 2014
Thanks to you folks thus far. To re-emphasize.... I'm not touching this
unit. It'll remain as is. I'm more than happy listening to music through
the AA131 preamp/AJ31 Tuner/30-A amp that were carefully restored. We'll
see what others can add....
John

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 14, 2014 at 16:34:52
Michael Samra
Dealer

Posts: 35847
Location: saginaw michigan
Joined: January 30, 2005
Contributor
  Since:
June 24, 2005
There is no reason to do anything to Western Electric amps as a rule because most everything they used in their amps were the best you could get..They have the hermetically sealed paper in oil bath tub caps..You have the cloth wire with good insulation.The iron is incredible..You have to change a couple small electrolytics but you can do that without destroying its value..Just solder them in.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong" H. L. Mencken

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 14, 2014 at 17:15:29
65W200
Audiophile

Posts: 10
Location: Northeast US
Joined: February 13, 2014



Michael,
I'm not sure how this unit is set up. As you'll notice in the photo, there
is no volume pot or on/off switch. I'm not sure how my dad used this back
in the day. I would only be guessing that it was connected with a preamp.
In place of the on/off switch is a power indicator light [?], as you'll
see.
John

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 14, 2014 at 17:18:48
65W200
Audiophile

Posts: 10
Location: Northeast US
Joined: February 13, 2014



Another photo....
John

 

Georgeous amp!, posted on February 14, 2014 at 18:13:18
bcguitar
Audiophile

Posts: 1312
Location: Maryland
Joined: March 2, 2005
Can we get a picture of the other side?

 

RE: Georgeous amp!, posted on February 14, 2014 at 18:20:00
65W200
Audiophile

Posts: 10
Location: Northeast US
Joined: February 13, 2014
Definietly.... I'll have to snap one.
John

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 15, 2014 at 01:27:17
Michael Samra
Dealer

Posts: 35847
Location: saginaw michigan
Joined: January 30, 2005
Contributor
  Since:
June 24, 2005

John
THat one has electrolytics that have to be changed out as they are like my Langevin.The thing is,if you had a second amp,I would go ahead and recap them but for just one amp,it would be silly.See if you come across a second amp and then rebuild them..Those are made by Langevin I think as well.I have a 128.Mine is like this only I don't have the small input transformer in the front.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong" H. L. Mencken

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 15, 2014 at 05:11:29
65W200
Audiophile

Posts: 10
Location: Northeast US
Joined: February 13, 2014



Here's a shot of the other side as promised...
John

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on February 15, 2014 at 05:23:04
65W200
Audiophile

Posts: 10
Location: Northeast US
Joined: February 13, 2014
Michael,
I'm not clear on your last post about aquiring a second amp.
Does this one pictured have the paper in oil caps under that
phenolic strip? Which other electrolytics are you suggesting
would need to be replaced?

I'll let the cat out of the bag here..... I really do not know
a whole lot about audio electronics. I appreciate everyone's input
and patience on this forum.
John

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on March 2, 2017 at 12:01:46
65W200
Audiophile

Posts: 10
Location: Northeast US
Joined: February 13, 2014
Just thought I'd revive this thread. An audio friend of mine did give the amp a going over and a general clean bill of health. I've used it a handful of times [mono system] over the past couple years.Recently, I've had conversations with Mike Samra and am considering having him update the electrolytics for me. Mike can update the components in a way that, if need be, could be undone and the amp put back in its original configuration. I've been looking at having a decent mono preamp built for it as well.
John

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on March 3, 2017 at 08:55:05
banpuku
Audiophile

Posts: 951
Joined: January 19, 2006
Contributor
  Since:
March 30, 2017
Mike Samra is very helpful and a good guy, from my experiences. He will treat your amp right. Highly recommended.

Pat

 

RE: Questions On A Western Electric 142A Amp, posted on April 30, 2017 at 16:16:25
65W200
Audiophile

Posts: 10
Location: Northeast US
Joined: February 13, 2014
And so it begins.... The W.E. is now in Mike's hands for a thorough going over. I'll have to come up with a decent mono preamp for it with a good phono section. Mike can experiment with a couple of his. I did try a Heathkit WA-P2 ... but wasn't overly impressed with it. Maybe a newly built one [Aric]?.... maybe something earlier [McIntosh C-8]? I'm definitely open to suggestions.

John

 

Page processed in 0.030 seconds.