Fender Vibrato Rebuild Kit by Revisit

This kit is designed for all Fender blackface and silverface amps from 1963 through 1981 with Vibrato, with the exception of the Bronco, VibroChamp and the Princeton / Princeton Reverb.

First, remember that in the majority of Fender amps, you must have a footswitch connection to the vibrato footswitch RCA jack on the back panel - or at least a shorting plug such as our FSP-200.    If you are using a footswitch, make sure that the footswitch is working properly.    A bad footswitch, bad footswitch cable, or a dirty connection to the RCA jacks is often the cause of loss of vibrato.   Note:   the Vibro Champ, Princeton and Princeton Reverb amps do not need the footswitch for vibrato operation.    These three models are the exception; all other Fender models from the blackface and silverface era must have a footswitch connection for vibrato to operate.   Also, both the reverb and the vibrato cables must both be connected to the proper jacks on the rear of the amplifier in order for vibrato to function, as the vibrato footswitch receives its ground connection from the reverb connection.

Second, it is important to have a good 12AX7 tube as the vibrato oscillator tube.   If you are sure you have a good footswitch, the next step in repairing a vibrato problem should always be to replace the vibrato oscillator tube.   The vibrato oscillator tube is the 2nd preamp tube away from the power tubes. 

If after completing the above steps you still have missing or unstable vibrato, the next step is to install the components in the Vibrato Rebuild Kit inside the amplifier.   Use all safety precautions in working inside the amplifier chassis.  Tube amplifiers contain high voltage which is stored in the filter capacitors even after the amplifier has been turned off.   Always unplug the amplifier from commercial power, and discharge all filter capacitors before working on the amplifier circuitry.   If you are unsure about this procedure, we strongly recommend that you leave your amplifier in the care of a professional service person.

The vibrato components are located on the main fiber board, toward the end of the board closest to the amps pilot light.   Look for the optoisolator "bug".    See the photo at the right.  You will be replacing the "bug" along with the 3 disc capacitors next to it.

Unsolder the old components and remove.  Important:  The new optoisolator is marked with a silver dot at one end ("lamp marker") - this silver dot goes on the end closest to the row of tubes (or, in other words, not on the edge of the board which is closest to the control pots).  The disc capacitors are installed as shown.  There are two .01uF capacitors, and one .02uF capacitor.   The .02 capacitor goes on the side of the board closest to the row of tubes.   The other two .01uF capacitors are installed as shown in the photo.  The two resistors are installed as shown in the photo.   The 10M resistor is brown-black-blue, and the 100K resistor is brown-black-yellow.

Use a good quality soldering iron, good quality solder, and make sure you have solid connections.  

We recommend at least sliding the chassis back into the cabinet before powering up and testing for vibrato operation, to avoid the possibility of electrical shock.

With a good vibrato oscillator tube, a good footswitch and a solid connection of that footswitch to the rear panel jacks, and the proper installation of the Vibrato Rebuild Kit, about 90-95% of vibrato problems will be solved.

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