New work in progress

A nice opamp big muff PCB 
Mad bean Shark Fin. Based on the maestro filter sample and hold. I’m obsessed with this circuit, I’ve built several versions of it and own some boutique iterations.
Ooh look an ugly face, this is another effect that had become a minor obsession. I’ve built more than a few of these. 
Mad bean zero point mini.  

Okay so, here we take a look behind the scenes at the pile of unfinished work. This picture was taken inches the left of the previous images. 

Fuzz Factory – OSH Park

Just soldered the first of three Fuzz Factory PCBs from OSH Park. Fired up on the first try. The board didn’t come with documentation, I had reverse engineer the board against the schematic to verify part numbers. Here is the schematic I used:


I used some AC128 transistors for Q2 and 3. The random choices from the lot sounded alright. I built this first board with sockets for the transistors for testing. I can test transistors on this board, if they sound good I can solder them into the other boards.

I like this board, the layout has pads for 16mm or 9mm pots. The width fits the narrow dimension of a 1590B box, which gives you the option to arrange the box in landscape like the original, or in portrait, like most standard stomp boxes. The Stab and Volume pots are mounted off board. While this adds some wiring, it saves cost by making the board smaller, OSH Park charges by the square inch, it also provides flexibility in how the box can be arranged. Hats off to the designer. Hats off to mr vex also.
IMG_1169.JPG IMG_1170.JPG IMG_1168.JPG

Osh Park PCBs

IMG_1158.JPGI just received this order from OSH Park. I order four boards. You are required to buy three copies of each board you order. The cost is $5 per square inch for 2 layer boards (with 3 copies of your board included in that price). Which is not bad, if the boards are small it’s a deal. For example, the SHO was $3.20 for three boards! The Fuzz Factory boards, were $7.75 for three, still a good deal. The Haunting Mids boards were just under $5 each, and the Zeke Bass Distortion was about $8.50 each.

Of course getting boards for designs that people upload with little info can be chancey. There should be more options on the site to comment, and mark boards as verified. Looks like not all projects are shared. User decide to share a project. Hopefully people make an order and test it before sharing.

The quality of the boards is great. A couple things I noticed. There is no solder mask. The pads are gold plated, which is nice. I find the solder mask easier to solder with. Look at the first image. You can see the backside of each of the four boards. Notice the board in the upper right. The pads are fairly small. I think, this is the default pad size in Eagle PCB. It’s not easy to solder, It’s not super difficult either. The two on the left have a more generous pad size. This size makes for a better soldering experience.

I’ll post again when build these boards…

For reference here are some links to the boards I ordered here:








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…

Stompbox PCB

This is a PCB that mounts a stomp switch, jacks, and is wired for an LED. I had this idea ten years ago and had a few of these made. It worked pretty well.

IMG_3161 IMG_3244_25 IMG_3166

1776 PCBs

Just got some new PCBs from 1776. The quality looks great. The pots and rotary switch are attached to the PCB. This is the only way to go. I really don’t like lots of of board wiring. There are so many advantages board mounted controls.

The layout is clean and organized. The board is fairly compact and fits a 1590BB sized box. Which is pretty good considering it has two whole delays.

The build process was pretty straight forward. Most of the parts are standard. The one odd part, is included, kudos to 1776 Effects. It’s tough to justify $4 shipping for $0.50 in parts.


Shocktave PCB

I have been thinking about making Joe Davidson’s Shocktave for many years now. I have yet to build it, the PCB in this post is unverified so far. I’m finally getting around to it.

I had built a BSIAB II while back that had all of the transistors in a row. This made for a fun layout. It also made it convenient to use a single 15 peg milmax header as a socket for all the transistors. This worked out well, so I thought I’d try the same idea here. It works out especially nice since all the transistors are the same and face the same way. Hard to put the wrong one in the wrong place or backwards. Not that I would ever do that.

I’m sorry the values are hard to read to in the layout. I’m a beginner with Eagle. If anyone knows how to arrange the values are part names individually please post a comment and let me know.

Swollen Pickle

This is Way Huge Swollen pickle clone I made. This is basically a Big Muff with using a 14 pin DIP that contains 4 transistors. The tone control also has a pronounced mid scoop compared to the original Big Muff.

Swollen Pickle guts

I etched this design on the box. The design is based on flames in Tibetan art. I named the box the Shiva Sonic. I figure as the god of destruction and rebirth, Shiva was an appropriate deity for the sound of the Big Muff.

Shiva Sonic Box

This is a layout for the Big Muff that would fit in a B sized box. It is set up to use a 14 pin DIP since I used a quad transistor array. The pins on this chip are arranged such that you you could use this layout with regular transistors inserted into a 14 pin DIP socket. If you look carefully you can see that I’ve marked the pins E, B and C

Swollen Pickle Layout

1590 B Perfboard Template

This PCB board includes all of the wiring for DC jacks, Input and Output and 3PDT Stomp switch, and a perfboard area of 18 by 21. ThePCB board fits in 1590 B sized box with room for a 9V battery. 1590 B PCB Traces Here’s a picture of the PCB with Switch and jacks. img_3161.JPG Here’s a picture of the PCB fit into 1590 B box from the bottom. Leaves just enough room for a battery. 1590 B PCB Bottom View