I recently began playing bass again in a band with friends, and it's been super fun. It seems so easy, i think partly because we've all been playing our instrument (in my case with a large gap) for 30 years or so, but also because our two singers already have many high-quality songs in the hopper. As our guitarist said, "joining this band is like being born on third base".

As noted in the Fanfare guitar amp and speaker cabinet story a couple of years ago, that wasn't actually the first guitar amp i tried to build. I had bought a small box of parts along with a couple of chassis that had been pulled out of old Hammond organs that would have provided most of the pieces needed to make a working amp.

This is a weird niche project that i've been thinking about for a while. I have a portable record player that works great for multiple speeds, and i've used in in the yard several times to listen to records, but it's kind of a drag to also string out a power cord. 

I also have a wind-up 78 player that works great, but it uses steel needles, which only works with acoustic 78s, those needles are too rough on the later electric recordings. 

I've been looking for one of these portable wind-up players for a while now. I have a couple of electric portables that work great and play a wider range of formats, but I also like the idea of being able to play records where we might not have electric power. 

While trolling local estate sales, I saw this one pop up, and somehow it was still for sale when I arrived:

Lacking another big diversion, I spent a good part of this past winter learning how tube amps work and trying to piece together a small guitar amp. I read all about the Fender Champ and even bought an amp chassis and parts from an old Hammond organ to try to make one.

This is a 1964 RCA VGA11T record changer that i found at our local surplus store: