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.

7 comments

  • May 18 12

    hey brother, the threshold control is the key to this thing!! it’s what allows interaction with the oscillator. 😉

    Reply
    • May 18 12

      I found I wasn’t using the Threshold as much, and I had room for four knobs, so something had to go. I don’t use the Threshold that much. The tone control adds an interesting dimension to this effect I would give it a try. The BMP type tone control is easily added and doesn’t take up much more room than adding a pot. I would give it a try.

      Reply
  • May 21 12

    you gotta try the one with the threshold control and the lfo bro…different animal completely…i can see where a tone control may be handy on the straight ugly face, but it’s a must on the lfo version…the frequency control is already a tone control, sorta…it’s a weird ass pedal, for sure…i gotta demo of mine here, with lfo…one sick unit, i love it!!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DeD1jQ3Cu_s

    Reply
    • May 21 12

      I’ve built alot of these. I even sold 8 to Nels Cline. One of my builds made it into the Museum of Making music: http://www.museumofmakingmusic.org/stompbox. Most were the standard variety, with Threshold, and a few adjustments. I have not built the LFO, I should put that on my to do list. Love you demo of the Ugly Face. I liked your demo and thread on DIYStompboxes about the vocal wah (I forget the actual make and model at the moment)

      Reply
      • May 21 12

        Yes, it was the Colorsound Vocalizer. That was a fun thread to follow. I’ll have to check out the “Talkalizer”. I built 8 for Nels, not sure what he did with them all, it was near Christmas maybe he gave a few away? I really should build the LFO version of the UF.

        Reply
  • May 21 12

    thanks, bro…i’m glad i found your blog here, always looking for new stuff…the lfo makes it an INSANE different animal…you can use the threshold like an autowah, or set it where you can trigger the oscillator just by your pick attack…i gotta thread on diystompboxes that has a vero layout…no idea where to find a proper schematic for that version tho. that’s awesome ya built one for nels cline!! mega props bro!!! the vocal wah was probably the coloursound vocalizer…dino (digi2t) did most of the work resurrecting that one.. i just built it…he came up with a “talkalizer”, that combines parts of the vocalizer, diphonizer and eh talking pedal…it’s on my build list…and that sucker just keeps growing!!! 😉
    peace!

    Reply
  • Jun 02 13

    In your experience, do certain 555 chips work better? I can’t seem to keep a TL555CP from getting hot (randomly), though other 555 ICs work fine How’s the 7555?

    Reply

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