My very good pal, the ultimate scroungehound, David Feinberg, retrieved this fabulous specimen from a pawnshop in some forgotten town on the edge of Arkansas near the Oklahoma border. David manufactures and then delivers factory built sewer pump stations to all sorts of out of the way places from his home base of El Dorado, Arkansas. Our engineer fathers did business together, and I've done a little business with him, but mostly we just scrounge old music gear up for each other and then settle up when he comes to Nashville on occasion. This time he hit a home run. Here's the Valco 51 with a National badge on front. Its basically Valco's version of an early Tweed Deluxe. This one is in almost totally unmolested and all original condition. Behold: Any of you boys good with date codes? I carefully took the back panels off so I could see whats inside. I don't think the back panels have ever been removed. I sense that no one ever really used the amp much. Clearly it's been stored in a reasonable environment. The speaker cone feels like it should, sort of crisp without being brittle, and sounds right when you rub it. Turns out its a Jensen Field Coil, which could be great if it's still intact. Tubes are all RCA, possibly original. The 5Y3 looks a little newer than the others, but its still real old so I can't tell for sure. Tubes are (metal) 6SQ7, (metal) 6SC7, (2) 6V6GT, 5Y3. The earliest Fender Tweed Deluxe used a 6SC7 for both preamp tubes, so this is probably real close to that circuit. The power cord has been messed with so that's got to go - it's brittle and has a funky plug on it. That's the only sign of monkeyfication on the amp. Over the next several days, the course of action will be to carefully remove the chassis and the speaker from the cabinet, clean out all cobwebs and dust without removing too much of the patina, give things a visual lookover for obvious scorched and burned parts, reassemble, then power up SLOWLY with my Variac combined with a current limiter. If there's no sparks, smoke, smells, or yells, somewhere around 70 volts the amp should start "working" well enough to plug in a guitar and see what happens. Its gonna be great!