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Topics - madbean

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Open Discussion / Does anyone have one of these dual pots?
« on: February 04, 2018, 11:50:16 AM »
Anyone have one of these dual concentric 9mm pots? I need some measurements from it: spacing between the two rows of pins and length/width of the green casing (area where the pins are, don't need the height of the casing). In mm, if you can.


How Do I? Beginner's Paradise. / How to instantly improve your soldering
« on: February 03, 2018, 07:52:34 PM »
I put off getting one of these for a long time, but I received it as a gift for Christmas and I have to say it has proved to be a tremendous help in soldering. I wear glasses for working at the computer and for soldering and the addition of a magnified light has made a huge difference for me. I'm getting better joints with less solder. And, I can actually see what I'm doing a lot better!

There are probably cheaper ones out there, but this is what I have:

I found that the color temperature on the stock bulb was way too cool for me, so I replaced it with this:

The replacement bulb is much better on my eyes!

(of course, I am not shilling for this equipment)

Global Annoucements / Triumvirate and Blues King released
« on: February 01, 2018, 01:38:04 PM »
The VFE Blues King and Triumvirate are now available for order in the store. Documentation was uploaded a couple of days ago.

Unfortunately, the Dark Horse is cancelled for now. There's just something I don't get about the circuit and I have not been able to properly diagnose the problem. I verified the issue over two separate builds. Frankly, I've spent too much time on it now and I need to move on (I was hoping to release all three projects at once). I'm sorry if this disappoints anyone. I might pick up on it again later but for now I need to get to the next thing.

Open Discussion / Need two volunteers - free PCB!
« on: January 30, 2018, 07:01:57 PM »
I need two international volunteers to check out shipping methods.

- Free PCB of your choice (anything I have in stock under $10 - sorry no VFE)
- One must be in the UK. Second can be anywhere else in the world but Canada or Mexico (I am excluding Mexico because delivery can be very spotty there and Canada because I already have a test case).
- All I need from you is to let me know the date it arrives and send me a pic of the envelope/printed postage when you get it.

If you want to participate, post your location and the PCB you want. Just two people, please. I will verify your shipping address privately.

VFE Projects / VFE site down
« on: January 21, 2018, 06:11:15 PM »
The old VFE site appears to be gone, including the pages with all the discontinued stuff ( is still running). Therefore all the links I have in the VFE project docs to the old site are no longer working. FYI. Not sure if this is a temporary or permanent change. I'll contact Peter to see what I can find out.

Global Annoucements / 2018 Shipping prices start today
« on: January 21, 2018, 12:25:52 PM »
If you've been following this thread you know that USPS has made a major change in international shipping. The cheap "Flats" option which I used to ship orders (under $40) is no longer available for anything other than "documents" - which definitely does not cover PCBs. Consequently, all non-USA shipments will now require 1st Class International postage which is a significant price increase over Flats. Priority International has increased up to 30% from 2017 and will no longer be required for international orders over $100. Domestic Priority has also increased and I will no longer be able to offer free Priority on USA orders of $100 and over. So, the following shipping rates go into effect today:

1st Class Shipping (only option)
USA - $3.00 for orders under $75, and free for $75 and over
Canada - $9.50
Mexico - $11.70
Everywhere else - $13.30


(1) Supposedly, there may be an option to continue to use Flats through some mail services by sending it to a separate "processing center" where they re-label shipments for a fee. This might be a way to lower the new shipping costs eventually but I don't know enough about this yet to use it (and it appears it may not be an option with the Dazzle software I use for international postage ((I have a support ticket submitted))). So, until I know something different or better this is how it is.

(2) I'm really sorry for the impact it will have on all customers and especially the international ones. I'm also worried about how it will impact MBP since nearly half my business is from outside the US. I guess time will tell.

(3) One positive footnote - since all shipments will require 1st Class all the VFE projects are now priced exactly the same whether or not they include custom pots. No more "shipping adjusted prices" to deal with.

Global Annoucements / 20% off everything sale and Moodring 2017
« on: January 13, 2018, 01:58:39 PM »
- I was only planning on putting a few boards on sale but it turns out I have pretty decent stock on a lot of things (maybe too much on a few) so let's do 20% off. Jan 13th - 17th.
- Also, Moodring 2017 is now available and docs are up.
- Donation option is available on the Projects Page for any that are inclined. Haven't really been able to test it but it seems to work, AFAICT.

Global Annoucements / BOTY/New Board/Donate/Sale/VFE
« on: January 11, 2018, 07:08:45 PM »
Coming up this weekend:

-- BOTY voting: The voting thread and final prize list will be posted by Saturday. Tomorrow if I can swing it.
-- New Board: Moodring 2017 is in and will be made available probably Saturday. I guess I should have called it Moodring 2018 but I forgot to change the silkscreen. There is a demo of the 2017 version here:
-- Donate: Since so many people responded positively to the idea of a "donate" option I will make that available this weekend. I still have plans to get some stickers made but I will have to wait just a bit longer for some positive cash flow. I plan to get like 1000 this time.
-- Sale: I've got a bit of overstock on some boards so I am going to put a couple on sale. For sure the Total Recall. Maybe one or two others. I'll update when I know.
-- VFE: If I can get my sh*t together I will get the Dark Horse released with the Moodring. If not, it will come next week for sure.

Honorable mentions: more prototype boards in. Things to stuff happening!

Open Discussion / 2018 expectations
« on: January 01, 2018, 07:08:48 PM »
I have one resolution for 2018: chill the f*ck out. As in, stop letting the perceived ills of the world affect me quite so much. Not to mean I intend to stop caring, but more a realization that the intertwining of outrage/social media/politics can be extremely toxic to the psyche. Funny thing about aging is that you really start to understand how little you know, how little the world makes sense, and how indifferent the world is to one's own moral compass. So, more music, more dog petting, and more positivity is my own prescription for 2018.

How about you?

Global Annoucements / 2017 Year-end Wrap-Up
« on: December 20, 2017, 07:59:55 PM »
Just wanted to take a moment to acknowledge all the members here and say thank you for sticking around the MBP forum for another year. You guys are the reason this place exists and I feel very lucky to have this little corner of DIY on the interwebs. I am continually inspired by the work I see here and the overall enthusiasm and good-will we've created toward one another is a source of incredible satisfaction for me. I hope the same is true for you, too.

2017 was a moderate success in terms of the financial side of MBP. I've held off for a long time in discussing this publicly but the general trend in terms of hard sales has been decline over the last 2 years. I've had lean years, I've had wildly successful years and the "norm" appears to be leveling off into a reasonably, but not overwhelming profitable business. The only reason I mention this is because it's making me took a harder look at how I do things and what I can do better. I've sought and received the advice of several trusted colleagues so I am focusing more attention on what steps I need to take to maintain the level of service I hope to achieve. One key component to this year's success is the inclusion of the VFE projects, for which I am eternally grateful to Peter Rutter for making a reality. While I have not released as much of the VFE in 2017 as planned, I will keep at it and make it even more prevalent for the coming year.

I had hoped to end 2017 with a bang with some of the many projects I am close to releasing. It looks like most of those will get pushed to early 2018. These include the sub-mini tube projects, and many more. Things are coming to a close but not as fast as I wanted. But, I think it's just a matter of buckling down a bit and getting my s**t done. I still plan on releasing the first MBP kit next year, the For Fuzz Sake fuzz. I've been considering a Kicksarter campaign to get this going since it will take a couple of grand to launch. We'll see.

And, of course, any feedback you have to give on how things are going, what you'd like to see in the coming year, etc. is appreciated and welcomed.

I hope everyone has a great holiday! Be sure to get your entries in for the Build of the Year contest. Merry Christmas, or whatever holiday you celebrate you damn heathens.

Global Annoucements / Affiliation disclosure - addendum
« on: December 07, 2017, 07:16:52 PM »
Recently it has come to my attention that a member here was using more than one account. I don't recall if I ever explicitly stated this but that is a no-no and that should be obvious. Furthermore, this member's second account was affiliated with the sale of PCBs. Selling PCBs here is not a violation of the rules. I've made that completely clear over many years. But, not disclosing affiliations as it relates to a personal pedal-related business is against the rules. And, being deceitful about it (which happened in this case) gets you a ban. I don't like doing that but there has to be a reasonable amount of moderation here.

Just so it is clear-
-Do not register for more than one account.
-If you are selling stuff as part of a business that relates to DIY, pedal manufacturing, etc, then you need to disclose that in your signature. And, you are completely welcome here. We like you.
-It is totally okay to sell your own PCBs (or DIY related products) here provided they are your own designs and within the rules already spelled out (not a copy of someone else's PCB, or "original" project, etc).
-Lying to me is one of the few things that can get you please don't. Especially for totally unnecessary and dumb reasons that could have been avoided.

Open Discussion / Shriveling beans (thread title change)
« on: December 06, 2017, 06:49:16 PM »
Just realizing today that:
I graduated college 20 years ago (97).
I graduated HS almost 30 years ago (90).

You guys in your 20's live it up as much as you can. Believe me it goes faster than you can possibly imagine. Before you know it you'll be looking forward to a 10 pm bedtime and glad you get to wake up early and start your day.

- changed thread title because it's funnier

Errata, Corrections, Revisions / Old School correction
« on: December 01, 2017, 07:59:36 AM »
In the Old School build docs I mentioned that the LED on the PCB blinks with the tremolo so you could make it an external indicator if you like. What I failed to notice at the time is that the LED brightness is inverted from the tremolo amplitude. IOW, the LED dims as the tremolo peaks rather than the other way around. So, this might be confusing for some people who are used to seeing the LED get bright when the trem is loudest. Take that into consideration when building.

I don't have the heart to throw away the abandoned Wumpus boards (probe-ish control with on-board effects) I had made so I've decided to give them all away. Starting today all orders get a free Wumpus board. Doesn't matter how much you order or where you are: if you place an order for anything you get a Wumpus board. This will go until the end of the year (or until I run out of them).

The Wumpus does work - you just can't use the controller plate on top of the enclosure like I planned. So, it's not terribly practical since you need the box and the controller plate in two different places. However, it looks like it can be installed in a 125B instead of the planned 1590BB so that will help. Anyway, I will be posting the complete build doc with suggestions on how to build it in the most practical way. I'll have that up Dec.1st. in the Extra Projects section.

I do hope some people will build it. It's cool! Plus it has options to plug it into other effects. I just don't see myself re-doing the project since I have so many others going on right now.


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