Alright, I recently picked up one of these off craigslist, it has great tone for what I paid, had no idea Crate made anything with this kind of tone. However, the previous seller admitted he hasn't had the amp serviced or re-tubed in the several years he had owned it. This is my first tube amp that isn't a practice sized one (I also own a Vox AC4, but bought that new not too long ago), so I'm pretty new to this.

So a few questions.

1. What would be some good tubes to swap in there? I'm loving the clean tone so far out of this thing, the dirty channel isn't half bad either, but the clean is what I'm mainly after.

2. Anyone know a good guide to how to service amps? I checked around UG and couldn't find anything all encompassing. I'd rather not search through google not knowing if the information I'm reading is entirely accurate. I want to know how to clean my amp, change the tubes, etc, all without getting myself killed.

3. If for whatever reason I shouldn't service my own amp, whats a fair price to get it serviced at a shop? Again, I haven't encountered this until now so I'm a newbie at this point.

In case it matters, my setup is fairly simple. I using a Ibanez SZ7220 into a tubescreamer and Barber Dirty Bomb which is my main source of distortion, hence why I'm mainly after the cleans on the amp. I play a mix of Floyd, Sabbath,Coheed, Opeth, Mastodon,and Radiohead. Thanks in advance for any advice.
Last edited by JimmyTheRipper at Oct 4, 2011,
I've got one too. Mine had a problem with the sound cutting in and out when I got it. I took out the circuit board and reflowed the solder joints on the pots and jacks. Never even messed with the tubes. If it's working fine then I wouldn't mess with it unless you really want to replace the tubes. I love it. It's my main amp now with my Tweaker sitting idle.

Yours looks great man! Mine is pretty dirty, the white tolex has water marks where beer bottles must have sat on it. I'll have to get around to giving it a good cleaning. I have tested everything in the amp several times , and haven't found a single problem yet. Maybe I should just leave it alone for now. Are those wheels on the bottom of yours?
Yeah it had the wheels when I got it. The guy advertised it for $300 and said it had some problem. I offered him $150 just on a whim. I didn't need it but I figured if it had a problem he might let it go. He told me that there was a mistake and it didn't have a problem but agreed to sell it for $150.

Turned out that it did have a problem. The audio would cut out after playing a bit. Fixed it as mentioned above. I've fixed at least 4 amps that all had the same issue with bad solder joints on the pots and jacks.