There are some easy ways to find out when your vintage Fender was manufactured.
First, to get a general idea,there’s the appearance/style of the amp.
A00100 to A02000 – 1964 A01200 to A08100 – 1965 A08100 to A17000 – 1966 A16000 to A21000 – 1967 A20000 to A26000 – 1968 A25000 to A28000 – 1969 A28000 to A29000 – 1970 A29000 to A32000 – 1971 A32000 to A35000 – 1972 A33000 to A39000 – 1973 A39000 to A42000 – 1974 A42000 to A51000 – 1975 A51000 to A53000 – 1976 Export models had serial numbers that started with a “B” rather than with an “A”.
Transformer / Speaker / Pot Codes American-made electronic components of that era usually have codes to indicate manufacturer and date of production.
We combined all of our information into a computerized database for this project and for the past 18 months have been slowly (sadly, very slowly) gathering information that we collect ourselves as well as from other people. What we need is the following: 1) Model name 2) Model number on the tube chart 3) Date code letters on the tube chart 4) Speaker codes (if speaker is original) 5) Transformer codes (if the amp doesn't have date codes on the tube chart) 6) Cosmetic features (flat/raised logo, tweed/tolex, blackface/silverface, rough/ smooth blond tolex, white/skirted knobs, TV-front/wide-panel, etc.) One very interesting and very important factoid has surfaced regarding the date code letters on the tube chart.
In the fall of 1965, Fender switched from stamping these numbers in black ink, to dark green ink.
In order to date a Fender amp or provide the value, you need to know one of the below: * The 2 letter date code rubber stamped on the Tube Chart, or * The 2 letter date code on the QA Sticker, or * The Transformer Number that starts with “606-XX-XX”, with the 3 or 4 Xs being the unknown numbers that need to be provided by the owner of the amplifier asking the question.
: The transformer number tells you when the transformer was made and not necessarily the date the amplifier left the Fender Factory, the “2 Letter” date code on the Tube Chart or QA Sticker actually tells you that and that makes it the most accurate option for dating the month and year it was made....
There are other ways but the above is a more accurate method.If the transformer was read from a silverface Vibro Champ we can deduce it was made in 1974 – almost…Remember that this is when the transformer was manufactured.However it’s unlikely that the transformer found its way immediately into production, so it’s a pretty sure bet that the a 1975.It could be that another transformer reads 606602 which would make that component a 1976 make, thus the earliest the amp could be is a 1976.If your tweed champ is stamped HH, it was made in 1958/August.