I order some parts on 1/4/21 a big box showed up on 1/20/21 and nothing on the box was anything that I ordered. It was all pedal making parts. Including:
5x 125B enclosures
LEDs and other diodes
big bag of jacks
I’m like seriously someone was going to build a couple delays, Klon clone, and some other things, maybe a fuzz and a tube screamer variants. I recognize all these parts. Tayda was very they got back to me the next day and offered to ship my order.
Sadly these are all useful but not the parts I would use. I’d use 1590B over 12B, I would have ordered open jacks. I would ordered different knobs in different colors. All in all it was sort of a windfall.
This is the classic foot switch found in wah pedals and older effects. In the old days this was the switch, 3PDT switches were not available or were very expensive and hard to get. These days these switches are about $10 each! And they don’t have the extra pole for an easy LED indicator and true bypass.
This switch feels solid and industrial. The data sheet says it has a stiff activation of 6 to 8 lbs. and Electrical Life: 25,000 cycles, and Mechanical Life: 100,000 cycles. I’m guessing that 25,000 cycles is important to pedal builders. How long would this last in a pedal? If you stepped on this once per second for 7 hours that would be 25,200 stomps. Probably not going to happen. What if, somehow, you managed to use it on the chorus of every song in a 10 song set you might step on it 60 times, unlikely but possible. You could play 416 such gigs before reaching 24,960 stomps. If you did this gig once a week it would last 8 years.
I’d say it sounds pretty pretty reliable. But not military grade. The construction is a little loose, the lugs are not epoxied in place and wiggle a little. This means it can probably stand higher heat when soldering but also reaches an intermittent functionality sooner than it’s life expectancy would be my guess.
The threaded shaft is tall with lots of threads. It comes with two knurled nuts. Which look nifty but are hard to tighten and seem a little light weight. There are aren’t a lot of tools for tightening these and it seems easy to scratch your enclosure trying to get them tight with a pair of pliers.
Overall the switch is pretty tall. You could use it on an enclosure with a thick wall like wood. The button can sit up higher than the knobs on the top of a box which might help prevent accidentally hitting the knobs with your foot while stepping on the switch.
Overall rating: 5/10 – not bad if, you have one in your parts bin use it. If you’re buying something new get one of the more modern switches for 1/4 the price and the extra pole. Best used for specialty situations like fixing an old wah, something vintage, or you need an extra long shaft.
I got three boards from Pedal PCB. This is a pretty good project. It cost a bit more than the usual 1590B sized projects. It works well and sounds great. I’m keeping one and selling the other two on Reverb as a way to support my hobby. Check this out on my Reverb shop.
Built and test this second version of the 22/7 by RunOffGroove.com. Sounds good. This is a great alternative for Big Muff fans. The OSHPark project is public and verified. Check it out on my projects page.
22/7 is a Big Muff built around CMOS inverters in place of the transistors used in the traditional BMP circuit. The CMOS inverters have a tube like sound when over driven.
Here’s a purple sparkle op-amp Big Muff Clone. This fine specimen is for sale on my Reverb shop. If you’re in familiar, the Big Muff circuit is built around 4 transistors for all of the different versions except for one version made in 1978. This version has am similar but unique sound and was built around completely different circuit using op-amps and no transistors. Read more about the op-amp Big Muff here: Kit Rae’s history of the Big Muff.
This Haunting Mids clone is on sale on my Reverb shop. If you haven’t heard of Haunting Mids, this is not a clone of the JHS Pedal with the same name, it’s DIY community variant of the Big Muff. It has a great sound and stands on it’s own in the field of BMP clones.
The Haunting Mids Fuzz uses the first three transistor stages of the original circuit but drops the tone stack and output buffer. It also changes up the regular diodes for some more carefully chosen diodes in the clipping stages. What you hear is the raw distortion from the circuit without any filtering.
The original circuit uses a single volume control with an internal trimmer where the Sustain control would go. This was meant to be set and forget. I’ve moved this to outside of the box to give you a little more control and variety of sounds.
Harvesting parts from these old PCBs. I had this need for a A100K pot and Christmas 🎄 has holding up the deliver from Tayda Electronics. So I started digging through my bin of old projects that never made it into a box 📦.
I didn’t my ideal A100K pot, it would have been 16mm with legs, but I did find a couple 12mm pots which might sub. These have a D shaped shaft which makes them harder to fit for knobs.
While not finding what I was looking for was disappointing, I think I may have raided this bin at an earlier date, I did find some surprises. I found at least a half dozen J201 Fets, and a 4049UBE hex inverters. The J201s are great for stomp boxes and hard to get these days.
There was also a few 3PDT switches and a bunch of 1/4” jacks along with a handful of other things. Switches and jacks can always find some use. Personally I prefer the open frame Switchcraft jacks but these plastic ones are a good second choice.
I was trying to up the quality of my builds and thought about shielding and noise. Did a little research on the interwebs and came up with a few tips.
First a little background. High gain circuits often run series of gain stages in series. If you have an input stage of x10 followed by an adjustable stage of x10 to x100 you have a minimal gain of x100 to a max gain of x1000. That’s a lot of gain. Anything that gets into your circuit at the input will also be boosted by x100 to x1000! Think of cable crackles, switch pops, scratchy volume pots on your guitar, and more.
Then there’s the noise in the air from electromagnetic interference. It’s not uncommon for pedals to pick up radio transmissions, remember that scene from Spinal Tap? Or the hum of electronic devices like fluorescent lights.
In many ways the enclosure acts as an antenna picking up electromagnetic noise. But it can also be used as a Faraday cage which can be used to protect the circuit inside from electromagnetic interference from the outside. To do this the enclosure must be connected to ground.
if you have open frame jacks like the Switchcraft jacks the sleeve will make contact with the enclosure. This grounds the enclosure for free. If you’re using those jacks with the plastic body you’ll need to run a wire to the enclosure somewhere.
Is it enough to ground the box? Yeah but in the case of painted boxes or boxes with a powder coat the bottom cover may not make an electrical connection to the main body of the enclosure. I used a drill bit to remove the paint from one of the counter sunk screw recesses. This allows the screw to make contact with back cover and main body of the enclosure.
This is the second version of the UBE Screamer board. This version fixes a mistake with the reverse polarity diode. I’m calling this ready for public consumption and will add it to the OSH Park projects pages soon.
The enclosure is grounded through the jacks. The bottom cover though doesn’t make an electrical connection to the main enclosure body due to the powder coat. I used a drill bit to remove the powder coat inside the count sink recess, this allows the screw to make contact with the back cover for full shielding.
The most fun DIY build you can make! This is my version of the Ugly Face Tim Escobedo. Great box with a unique sound . Not your typical fuzz or distortion box. Build your own from my OSH Park PCB project or buy one of my builds from Reverb.