Guitar thing

This finely crafted guitar body was made from plywood with a mildly figured masonite top. The construction is much like the Danelectro guitars from the early sixties. The body shape is a Gibson Melody Maker, the neck and bridge are from a Fender Telecaster. The pickup arrangement and wiring will use three pickups and a five position switch like a Fender Stratocaster.

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This is a really cool service that manufactures open source PCB designs. You can order any of the open source designs on the site. Most of the stuff is not stompbox oriented. It takes a little google-fu to search up stompbox projects. You can also upload your own designs.

You have to order 3 PCB minimum for each board you order. The orders seem to get ganged with other orders so it sounds like your order doesn’t get printed immediately. That said the prices seem very reasonable.

I just placed an order for a few PCBs. I’ll post again when the order comes in…

Null-A (dual orange squeezer)

Two Dan Armstrong Orange Squeezers, in series. This was built following the dual orange squeezer build at

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Precision SG jr

Looks good

Everything was packaged well and ship timely.

A few disappointments


I want a soapbar. The dog ear route is not the same size it’s both larger and smaller.

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I’m thinking about modifying the headstock. As is the tuners on the bass side are little closer to the edge than the treble side tuners. Also the proportions are not as aesthetically pleasing as the Gibson headstock. I’m thinking I might make the sides straight like a melody maker headstock. To make this happen I can flatten the sides. Leaving quarter inch of material on the outside, will leave the shape slightly flared, as the holes are drilled on a subtle diagonal. Or, I can cut the sides straight fill the holes and re drill.

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Some Fuzz Faces

Finally getting back to building some Fuzz Face’s I started a while back. Here’s a picture, you can see the sockets for the transistors, two sets of three in a row, in the center. The input socket is two small socket pins on the right center, and the output cap is on the bottom center.

Fuzz Face with sockets

Fuzz Face with sockets

Guitar Progress

Here’s a few pictures of progress on my guitar. I’ve cut and routed the body to shape.

The neck fits pretty good. Radius on the corners on the neck are something smaller than 1/2″, the size of the router bit. I think I’ll round these off so the neck fits snug against the heel of the pocket. For a cheap no name neck from asia the quality seems pretty good, of course we’ll have to see how it plays…


Guitar Build

For some reason I thought it would be fun to build a guitar, from scratch. And, after a lot of self reflection and deep introspection, I’ve come to the conclusion that it is! Of course I have had to rationalize away all of the time and expense, but that’s another conversation.

Here’s a few pictures. There are two guitars and some wood to make a third. The first is a slightly modified outline from a Gibson Melody Maker. Which will either have three single coil pick ups, or two P90 types. The second is an LP Jr outline with a Telecaster style bridge and pick up arrangement. The two blocks of wood are alder for a third guitar. I’m in the process of trying to join these into a body blank.


Rock Box!

I was talking to a friend about distortion boxes and the Box of Rock came up. Which got me thinking, I’d never heard one before, and Z Vex always makes good stuff. I found a schematic in the usual place. It looked like a pretty easy build.

The Box is basically two pedals in series, a distortion followed by a booster. The Box has two foot switches, The first switch engages the distortion and the second engages the booster. The controls for the distortion are Gain, Tone and Volume. The booster adds a fourth knob, Gain/Boost.

The distortion section is made of three BS170 MOSFet stages. The first stage is a SHO followed by a Marshall style high pass filter made of a 470p cap and a 470K resistor in parallel. Then come two more BS170s configured gains of approximately 51 and 15.

Next is a BMP style tone stack followed by an extra low pass filter. The low pass filter is exactly the same as used in the BSIAB II. The BSIAB II also uses the same Marshall style, 470p and 470K, high pass filter between the first two stages.

The B of R includes an SHO booster on the output. I had one of these built already so i decided not to build the stock B of R and instead build just the distortion section. I figure I can place my SHO or any other booster after it for different sounds.

Read on!


The Meatsphere

I hate that name. Then again it’s a play on the name Meatball. The Meatball, if you are not familiar, is an envelope filter based on the Mutron III. The Meatball was made by Lovetone who went out of business in the early to mid 2000s. Lovetone seems to be coming back. Hard to tell from their site. The Mutron III was made by Musitronics.

Read on!

Ugly face with tone control

The Ugly Face has an interesting set of options. The Threshold knob has to be the most interesting though least useful. Last year I thought I’d add a tone control in it’s place. I wanted to build an Ugly Face and keep it in 1590B sized box. This format makes it hard to fit more than 4 Knobs. I decided to drop the Threshold and replace it with a Big Muff style tone control.

This was a pretty easy project, I already had a PCB and all of the parts on hand. The PCB I had did not have any space for the tone control. The Big Muff tone control requires, besides the pot, fours parts, two resistors and two capacitors. I remembered seeing an article on the Big Muff tone control over at Beavis Audio research where they mentioned soldering all of the parts on to the pot. I thought about this but decided against it. I have been using and planned to use these 12MM pots. Which seemed too small. Plus the box was going to be a little crowded and didn’t want to risk the parts shorting against something.

[picture of 12mm pot]

I decided to mount the tone control on a tiny piece of perfboard.Using small multilayer ceramic caps would make the whole thing fit easily.

[image of perf layout.]

Last was to run the output of the Ugly Face into the tone control before going to the volume.

[Picture the interior of the box]

I decided to do this box in a plush purple fur.

Building an Ugly Face

I built an Ugly Face last week and took some pictures. This uses the Ugly face PCB I made and the typical DIY stompbox parts. I used the alpha 12mm pots in a B sized box. The more common 16mm pots would also work.


Ugly Face in neon tufts

Here’s an Ugly Face in a neon tufted fur.

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