Page 3 of 4 FirstFirst 1 2 3 4 LastLast
Results 21 to 30 of 39

Thread: What about DIY pedals? Any "trusted" resources for kits?

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    2,779
    Thanks
    7
    Thanked 312 Times in 281 Posts
    Rep Power
    5753153
    Sign in to disable this ad
    I'm sure one of the meters you have will get you down the road quite a ways. DC voltage, continuity, and then resistance really will be the bulk of what you'll do with the meter anyway. You can get an idea of its impedance by measuring really large resistors. If a 1M measures significantly less than it should (beyond the part's tolerance rating), then you know you've got a problem. I guess, if it measures way too big you've also got a problem, but that's a whole different deal.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Age
    37
    Posts
    1,474
    Thanks
    133
    Thanked 48 Times in 45 Posts
    Rep Power
    1552530
    I may have to snag a resistor tomorrow at Radio Shack then, if they're not too pricy, just to check and see what happens. At any rate, it's at least encouraging that I shouldn't have to invest in yet another MM for now.

    One last question or two for the night...I'm laying out parts (in polystyrene, like Ecc83 mentioned) and I'm noticing that the pots are smaller... They look very similar to the shitty mini pots I removed from my Epiphone project. They are stamped with Alpha on the back and some minor digging around on the google has brought up very mixed reviews. Should I quit worrying about being a potentiometer snob and not think about it anymore or are Alpha's really crap? I sprung for CTS on my Epi and those, FWIW, got equally mixed reviews. How would one go about testing a pot to determine A)whether it's crap or not - that it works - and B)if it's actually within spec for it's value?
    Intel i5 3.1ghz, Win7 Home Premium 64 bit, 16gb RAM, focusrite saffire pro40, Cubase 7.5, lazy pit bull (gets it from her mother).

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    2,779
    Thanks
    7
    Thanked 312 Times in 281 Posts
    Rep Power
    5753153
    Isn't there a couple 1M resistors in the kit?

    A pot is a pot until it wears out or gets dirty or falls apart. The only way to really test if these are going to last is to use them and find out. I have used those little Alpha pots in most of my builds. Two of those pedals have been on my pedal board for like five or six years, but only started actually turning the pots during performance a couple years ago. I noticed then that they were a little scratchy, but then I twisted them a bunch and they've been pretty cool since. I think they got dirty while they were sitting in "set and forget" mode, and cleaned themselves (the way they're supposed to) when I started actually using them. I have no trouble with them now.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Age
    37
    Posts
    1,474
    Thanks
    133
    Thanked 48 Times in 45 Posts
    Rep Power
    1552530
    Cool deal. And yes, there were 1M resistors but they are now on the PCB. My lack of patience had me soldering up the components on the PCB tonight so I can finish it up tomorrow when the paint dries on the case.

    I went with the MXR dist+ build and that left me with 2 x 20k resistors and a 47k resistor that went to the DOD build option. The 1Ms are right here:
    byoc250pcbtop-jpg
    Intel i5 3.1ghz, Win7 Home Premium 64 bit, 16gb RAM, focusrite saffire pro40, Cubase 7.5, lazy pit bull (gets it from her mother).

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Age
    37
    Posts
    1,474
    Thanks
    133
    Thanked 48 Times in 45 Posts
    Rep Power
    1552530
    Tadpui, if you're still checking this thread, something like this may be a good way to start before you get into a DIY preamp. I'm not an expert at soldering and this was a somewhat pleasant experience. The main thing that I will pass along from my progress so far is that when you put the components through the mounting holes in prep for soldering, the bits and pieces (outside of the electrolytic caps) want to move around a lot. Cross the legs towards each other and it makes life easier and keeps the PCB cleaner. Try and keep the PCB horizontal when soldering, too. I had to redo a few joints because of how I had the board in the vice...PITA and looks like shite in some spots. I've got another easy kit coming for Christmas and I ordered 2 more today to have around for when I have time to mess with it...practice makes perfect, right?
    Intel i5 3.1ghz, Win7 Home Premium 64 bit, 16gb RAM, focusrite saffire pro40, Cubase 7.5, lazy pit bull (gets it from her mother).

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    northampton uk home of Dr Who and Blackstar Amps!
    Posts
    9,975
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 666 Times in 630 Posts
    Rep Power
    9279082
    Pikingrin, as Ashcat says, "pots is pots" there is no audible difference between cheap and expensive types. This goes for all components, despite claims of the Russ Andrews brigade, no one has ever proved any wire, resistor, IC or other component superior to another in any valid scientific test (yes, certain capacitors produce more distortion than others but even the worst are far, far better than one ECC83 stage! No problem for rock n roll)

    Top grade pots "feel" better and can have better resolution making it slightly easier to set a value but generally of no interest to gitists.

    Checking pots: The track values have a wide tolerance, 20% as a rule so don't be surprised if a 100k reads 89k, don't matter a fig. To differentiate/check between log and lin laws, set the pot to mechanical centre. If the wiper to one end reads about 1/2 the track value it is lin. If it reads about 10 or 90% of track resistance it is log.

    I would like to comment on the DOD OD 250 circuit? No RF or input protection. I would at least put a 220puff capacitor across R3 to keep out the Rubber Duck crew!

    Have fun all.

    Dave.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Age
    37
    Posts
    1,474
    Thanks
    133
    Thanked 48 Times in 45 Posts
    Rep Power
    1552530
    Alright, for anyone still following this - especially those who are new to diy pedals - get your first kit from BYOC. The instructions they give are impossible to screw up if you have half an idea of how to solder. Finished the 250+ build from them last week and it made a little solid state freebie amp sound good, my old magnatone tube amp even better.

    BUT - the reason for this post - I would not recommend getting a kit from GGG if you've never messed with schematics or electronics at all. Their instructions are definitely not meant for newbie DIYers. Working on their Brian May treble boost kit at the moment and I just have to say that the instructions leave quite a bit to be desired (from a newbs perspective). They have far more kits and better prices but sheesh...BYOC gives you pictures, GGG gives you a BMP that won't do you any good without a color printer with full ink cartridges. Had to double check cathode/anode legs of electrolytic caps a few times because the PCB isn't the same. Lots and lots of double checking and a few parts that I have no idea about. What are they? Not sure. What do the markings say? Need to get a magnifying glass...

    This isn't a rant; I'm pleased with the fast shipping and lower prices/more selections from GGG, just wanting to let anyone thinking about building their own know that it's a different level required with GGG kits versus BYOC kits.
    Intel i5 3.1ghz, Win7 Home Premium 64 bit, 16gb RAM, focusrite saffire pro40, Cubase 7.5, lazy pit bull (gets it from her mother).

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    northampton uk home of Dr Who and Blackstar Amps!
    Posts
    9,975
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 666 Times in 630 Posts
    Rep Power
    9279082
    I see the IC is pluggable in that PCB picky? Best idea and here are couple of checks you can do to save time after construction in fault tracing or might even save an IC's pretty A!

    Once soldered up, leave out the chip and connect a DMMeter neg probe to the -ve battery supply (no battery at this stage) Now using the Ohms setting and looking at the schematic. probe each pin of the IC and note the resistance reading. Some readings will not make a lot of sense but if for instance the non-inverting pin read dead short to -ve and there should be a resistor in the way...You have blobbed or forgotten to cut a track if using stripboard.

    If the R test looks ok, power up the PCB (still no chip!) and again, meter on -ve, check the voltage at each pin again looking for something silly or weird, e.g. if the output had volts on it, something is probably wrong.

    If all good, power off, fit chip, juice up. In almost all cases the output of an OP AMP is at 1/2 the supply rail, if not close to this and the circuit does not work look at bias and feedback Rs or maybe an electro cap in the wrong way round.

    There is a simple way to test an IC for function. Will go into that if needs be.

    Dave.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Posts
    2,280
    Thanks
    655
    Thanked 295 Times in 280 Posts
    Rep Power
    2288196
    How did your pedals turn out, Pikingrin? Do they sound good or better than store pedals and was it at all cheaper? I'm thinkin' bout building my first distortion pedal

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Age
    37
    Posts
    1,474
    Thanks
    133
    Thanked 48 Times in 45 Posts
    Rep Power
    1552530
    Quote Originally Posted by Nola View Post
    How did your pedals turn out, Pikingrin? Do they sound good or better than store pedals and was it at all cheaper? I'm thinkin' bout building my first distortion pedal
    Sorry for the late response, Nola, I haven't checked this thread in a while. Long story short, I've built 7 pedals (and modded a Boss SD-1) since I started this thread, and they all do what they're supposed to do. I've been sticking with vintage pedal clones so I really don't have any basis of comparison versus the originals other than youtube videos - not really a great A/B source. I have been very pleased with all of them, especially the Rat clone and the Octavia clone I just finished - that Octavia is badass and the Rat, although a slightly different type of effect than the Octavia, is also awesome.

    But I will say that, for my purposes, they have been far less expensive than the actual pedals - I just got a DIY klon centaur kit for $58.50, starting that one later this week, and the original can be found for around 10x that if you're lucky. I generally don't do any that you can go to your local shop and pick up new in the box but I would imagine that the kits may be less expensive depending on the pedal you're doing.

    I would say, if you're half decent with a soldering iron, give it a shot. Start out looking through the kits at BYOC as I feel they have a slightly better set of instructions for their kits, especially if it's your first build, and read through the descriptions. They have a few kits that would be good for a first-time build that sound great; I started with BYOC's 250+ kit, using the parts for the MXR circuit, and it wasn't disappointing. Now I'm an addict.
    Intel i5 3.1ghz, Win7 Home Premium 64 bit, 16gb RAM, focusrite saffire pro40, Cubase 7.5, lazy pit bull (gets it from her mother).

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 04-01-2008, 04:51
  2. Premier "Artist" kits
    By charger in forum Drums and Percussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 06-16-2002, 10:27

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •