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#2458993 - 12/29/12 11:53 AM Kustom amps
whitefang Offline
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Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 5677
Loc: Lincoln Park, MI, UNITED STATE...
Yeah, you know...those cool looking "tuck"n"roll" padded amplifiers that started showing up in the late '60's.

A couple of buddies and me went to see CANNED HEAT that year, and the opening acts were SPIRIT and BUBBLE PUPPY. BP were first to come on, and they all were playing through those Kustom jobs. Along with how cool they looked, we also noticed how clean, crisp and super clear they sounded. MUCH better than the Marshalls did at the time.

I just saw a TV commercial for something, I forget what, and there were those gorgeous padded amps in the background, except THESE were an orangish/sparkle kind of color, but clearly the padded Kustoms. Thing of it is, when I go to the Kustom website, those padded models don't seem to be available.

What gives, if anybody knows. PLEASE if possible, don't get too heavy into technical specifications, as I don't understand them that well.
Whitefang
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#2458994 - 12/29/12 12:09 PM Re: Kustom amps [Re: whitefang]
Larryz Online   content
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Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 5223
Loc: Hwy 49, California
Fogerty was fond of them and a some of his original CCR recordings were done on his Kustom. You can bid on his original amp on Ebay starting at $3,500.

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#2459002 - 12/29/12 01:31 PM Re: Kustom amps [Re: Larryz]
p90jr Offline
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Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 1917
I have a Kustom tuck and roll 200 head that I left at a friend's practice room in the mid-90s (need to get it back). I bought a speaker cab and it came with it. I played some CCR through it every once in a while, used it as a bass head a couple of times, and as a practice PA head a lot... it had two channels. Solid State... clean as the day is long, loud and bright...



I think they re-issued them in the 90s at some point. But maybe concentrated on the tube models. During the grunge years they became big for "video shoot/pose" factor, but few people seemed to actually use them live. People are attracted to the vintage tuck and roll look, but they seem to mentally criss cross it with a heavy distorted rock sound a la Orange or something. Like I said, I got mine for free with a $150 4 x 12 cab I bought. They were very plentiful around here for nothing in the late 70s and 80s... every kid who wanted to lug around those beasts could get one for dirt cheap, but they weren't "in." WHen the vintage thing picked up in the 90s everybody drug them out of the garage and attic, but nobody would pay big money for them. A friend who had a music shop had a wall of them in every color on consignment. Don't know what happened to them. Few had any use for a solid state sound these days.

Now, I know a few people with old Plush amps, which look similar but were tube amps... those rock. Not sure if Plush was connected to Kustom or not.


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#2459004 - 12/29/12 01:40 PM Re: Kustom amps [Re: p90jr]
p90jr Offline
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Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 1917

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#2459006 - 12/29/12 01:45 PM Re: Kustom amps [Re: p90jr]
p90jr Offline
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Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 1917
to answer your basic question: Kustom seems to have gone out of business in the 70s at some point (I remember later amps that weren't tuck and roll, and a different logo).

Then, along with every other brand from the 60s/70s, were resurrected by whoever owned the name in the '90s when people started using them in video shoots. I think I remember some tuck and roll combo reissues, but I might be wrong... the company seems to concentrate on small practice amps and then larger tube amps these days. The tuck and roll amps you saw on TV were probably vintage, as there seems to be demand to rent them as props.

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#2459007 - 12/29/12 01:55 PM Re: Kustom amps [Re: p90jr]
p90jr Offline
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Registered: 11/21/07
Posts: 1917

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#2459108 - 12/30/12 07:22 AM Re: Kustom amps [Re: p90jr]
Winston Psmith Offline
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Registered: 02/15/10
Posts: 1840
Loc: Inside the Beltway
I had a Kasino amp in the mid-70's, and loved it, and I knew some Country players who were very fond of Kustom amps, back then.

Kustom amps started showing up in stores again in the mid-90's, IIRC, but the majority of them were inexpensive, Chinese-made practice amps. I worked in a store that had stacks of them. I don't know if there are any padded models available anymore, or if any of them are made in the U.S..
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#2459117 - 12/30/12 08:31 AM Re: Kustom amps [Re: Winston Psmith]
whitefang Offline
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Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 5677
Loc: Lincoln Park, MI, UNITED STATE...
That's too bad. In the early '70's, I would on occaision jam with a guy from work and some of his friends. One of them had a smaller Kustom and let me plug in. His had a "wired in" floor switch board that provided five different effects. Great sound.
Whitefang
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#2459393 - 12/31/12 10:05 AM Re: Kustom amps [Re: whitefang]
jimmac Offline
Member

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 20
Loc: Jackson, Michigan
Couple of things. I still have a Kustom 250 with the build in effects and still play it when I take time to play. With 4 (I think) 10 inch speakers it still sounds good. Bought it in late 1973 or early 1974 at wonderland music near Detroit. I played in a couple bands that did weddings, bars and small clubs five or six years before making the decision that I was not good enough to make a living at it and concentrated on my engineering job. A couple years ago I dusted things off bought a few new toys and got back into practicing but did not join a band yet. I think the padded look is still the coolest design. YOu can actuallly plug in 4 players if you wanted. I do not like the modern one input jack design on new amps as it makes it hard to have a friend or beginner stop by to play a little.

Second Item WhiteFang - I like your posts and really relate to them. I hope we can meet sometime as we are the same age started guitar the same age and live about 50 miles apart and seem to have similar interests. I am near Jackson Michigan. I signed on a few months ago but have been reading posts a couple years. A couple times my stepson and I came down to a GC north of the airport but rarely get down your way. Jim

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#2459490 - 12/31/12 04:43 PM Re: Kustom amps [Re: jimmac]
pinkjimiphoton Offline
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Registered: 06/28/10
Posts: 2403
Loc: new england, usa
i love kustoms, i still buy 'em when i find 'em.
plush amps also were tucknroll...copys pretty much of kustoms.

you can find tucknroll tube amps, they were reissued close to 20 years ago...rare, but nice.

my favs were the 2 or 4x10 combos...

my absolute fav of all time was kustom 150 2x10, gold sparkle that was so old it had faded silver.
not only was the reverb the best in the businss (warm and clear like an ampeg) the true vibrato was outstanding...it was nice how you could balance the vib/trem on them.

pair one of them with a big muff pi and a wah, and run your echoplex into channel 2 (jumpered off the unused input on the reverb/trem channel) was the epitome of sonic nirvana when i was young. i could do ANYTHING with that rig.

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#2460408 - 01/04/13 06:11 PM Re: Kustom amps [Re: pinkjimiphoton]
Timbokeys Offline
Member

Registered: 08/17/12
Posts: 13
Loc: MD USA
At one point in the early 70s my entire band was Kustom powered.
The drummer even used a Camco kick pedal.
200 watt 4 channel PA head on metal stand - 2 4-10 speaker cabinets
200 watt bass amp w/dual 15 inch speakers
250 watt lead guitar amp
50 watt rhythm guitar amp
50 watt amp for organ player with Farfisa fast 5 organ.
All I remember is the amps sounded really clean but had a lot of running hiss.
Those were the days!

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#2460412 - 01/04/13 07:11 PM Re: Kustom amps [Re: Timbokeys]
picker Offline
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Registered: 06/13/04
Posts: 13106
Loc: Near 12th Street and Vine...
I had a Kustom 2x12 for a while back about 94. It had two really cool features; i, it had an actual pitch modulating vibrato as well as tremolo, and 2, it came with Altec Lansing speakers instead of CTS. I wish I still had that sucker. It made a Strat sound like a million bucks.
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#2460475 - 01/05/13 08:13 AM Re: Kustom amps [Re: pinkjimiphoton]
whitefang Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 5677
Loc: Lincoln Park, MI, UNITED STATE...
Last I looked jimmac, Wonderland music was still there, but it's really changed a lot.
Whitefang
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#2460702 - 01/06/13 05:31 PM Re: Kustom amps [Re: whitefang]
Mark Schmieder Offline
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Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 6518
Loc: San Francisco Bay Area
I'm actually kind of curious about their acoustic amps, which get great reviews, are affordable, seem well built, and look to be very "inspired" by AER amps (I used to own their Custom 600, but sold it when I stopped doing coffeehouse gigs).


Edited by Mark Schmieder (01/06/13 05:31 PM)
Edit Reason: typo
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