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Topics - stringsthings

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Open Discussion / Arrow "overnight" let me down :(
« on: July 06, 2018, 06:05:41 PM »
I ordered a few parts early Wednesday morning (1am) and the parts aren't
going to be here until monday or tuesday.  I don't know if the holiday screwed things up
or what.  By the time I get the parts, it will be close to a week. 

Arrow! How could you?!?  :D

Open Discussion / Enclosure painting tip
« on: June 28, 2018, 11:15:47 AM »
Next time you're at the hardware store, pick up some 6-32 machine screws in your favorite length.
( the ones in the pic are 1" )  They make great supports for painting.  You can also screw your enclosure
to a piece of wood for sanding.

On an unrelated note, the paint above is krylon colormaster.  I happened to be near lowe's and they don't carry
the rustoleum type that I usually use.  This paint was awful.  Took way too many coats to cover and it ran in several places.
I don't like the color anyways, so I'll be stripping it and using rustoleum ( 2x paint+primer ).  A much better paint which builds

... and the obligatory curious cat pic:

Open Discussion / Hilarious Pedal Names
« on: June 18, 2018, 12:56:44 PM »
Has anyone seen these Nine Volt pedals?

That is the best name for a pedal I've ever seen!  And that's not all.  There's a "Fishing is as Fun as Fuzz" complete
with a picture of bears going fishing!  They're from Japan which probably accounts for the entertaining labeling.
I'm really tempted to pick one up or at least clone one of them.

Open Discussion / Getting back to practicing the guitar
« on: May 26, 2018, 11:03:17 AM »
After taking quite a long break from playing/practicing on any kind of a regular basis,
I decided to get back to practicing.  My favorite way to practice is using Guitar Techniques magazine (UK).
Each month has tons of lessons, ranging from easy to advanced in all kinds of styles.
It comes with a CD with all the tracks and backing tracks.  The tracks are superb.  Expert playing and fun to play along with.
The magazine's not cheap, but it's the best practice tool I've found.

When I first started playing, it was very informal.  Copying licks and leads by ear; playing in garage bands;
pretty much learning guitar by playing songs.  Now it's kind of fun using a metronome and learning difficult licks and leads.
Things that take several practice sessions to master.  And there's quick, one or two practice tracks that are really fun to play.
Here's one of those "fun" tracks in the style of the Swinging Blue Jeans from the British Invasion.

Open Discussion / Any NBA fans out there?
« on: May 15, 2018, 12:15:29 AM »
Love the NBA.  Playoffs are exciting.  Golden State looks to be pretty hard to beat.

Build Reports / Black Sheep - Roland Bee Baa circuit
« on: April 05, 2018, 11:36:07 AM »
This one started out as a Black Arts Black Sheep clone from storyboardist's layout.  But I wasn't happy with the sound of mine
compared to some of the demo vids.  So I modded it back to Bee Baa specs and stuck in a switch to go from boost to fuzz/distortion.
That's why the depth pot is really circuit gain.  I really like the Bee Baa sound. It's a thick, pleasant distortion that goes well with
different tone circuits.  Made up from 3 stages of BJT common emitter amplifiers. 

Obligatory messy gut shot.  :)

Open Discussion / I can now officially make things with wood!
« on: March 21, 2018, 04:04:05 AM »
Just ordered myself one of these:

I've had my eye on this for a while now and the waiting has paid off.  With the coupon, the whole thing costs $80.  I don't really need the wall mount,
but the crosscut sled and the extra blades will come in handy.  I'll start off with some boxes to hold simple combo amps with 8"/10" speakers.
I've got a Tiny Giant that I put in a pre-made box with an 8" Jensen Mod and I use it for my bench amp.  Good clean sound and volume to spare. 
I think the first thing I'll build is a Tiny Giant combo with a different preamp circuit, and pair it with a 8"/10" speaker.

I haven't done any real woodwork since high school, so it will be lots of fun cutting up pieces of wood to make smaller pieces of wood!  :D

Build Reports / Ram's Head Big Muff Pie
« on: January 31, 2018, 02:47:22 PM »
Probably the first stompbox I was ever introduced to was the BMP.  A good buddy bought one and recommended it.
So, I splurged and bouoght the BMP Deluxe.  ( which is the op-amp version and a really nasty compressor )
Since my ear and my playing were just getting off the ground, I used it all the time and got very familiar with the tone.

Many years later, now in the days of the net, I discovered that peeps like ourselves were going back, tracking these circuits,
and bringing them to life.  So I did my homework and discovered the many variations of the circuit.

The etch on the enclosure didn't turn out exactly as planned, but I went with it

Here's a recent build:  Ram's Head with 5088's ( that I need to solder into the sockets )

Etcher's Paradise board ( shout-out to the Bean-man )

The enclosure didn't turn out as planned, but I went with it and just sanded off the edges.
I'm pleased with it.  It certainly isn't a clean etch ... but hey, we can't all be dudes like Dminner.

And here's a bonus pic of the happy cat manager photo-bombing the gut shot photoshoot.

Open Discussion / Anyone have any opinions on guitars from guitarfetish?
« on: January 28, 2018, 09:16:00 PM »
While shopping for some pickups, I got a serious case of guitar gas for one of their electrics.
Does anyone own one of their Xaviere brand electrics?

Open Discussion / Funny Arrow packaging
« on: December 29, 2017, 01:30:14 PM »
Just got a package from Arrow today.  I needed a few SMT parts.
Shipping was free so that was pretty cool.
Here's the bag that held 4 SMT transistors:

And here's the 4 transistors next to the scanning matrix:

And the cardboard box ( with 4 other slightly larger parts ) measures 10"x8"x4".


P.S. ignore the date/time on the pic.... it's my silly camera....

Open Discussion / New, inexpensive DMM
« on: December 10, 2017, 12:03:49 AM »
Just got me a new DMM!  ( I'm strangely excited as my other DMM is a cheap futurlec meter that's really old )

brand/model:  ANENG AN8008
I got mine on sale for under $20 from banggood.  You can also find it on Amazon for around $25.  ( search: AN8008 )
If you don't mind the longer shipping time, it's all over ebay. 

One reason I was shopping for a new DMM - I wanted a meter with more resolution and accuracy for matching transistors.
This meter is 9999 counts which essentially means it has very good resolution.  For Vbe matching, it has a resolution of 1 uV.
It even got a good review from EEVblog.  ( the guy really doesn't like cheap equipment, but he liked this meter )
The digits are nice and big.  It's got a backlight.  And it comes with a nice set of leads and some extra stuff.
I wouldn't recommend it for high voltage work, but it's perfect for hobbyist work like pedal building. 
It also has a frequency meter that goes up in to the Mhz range so I can use it to calibrate some of the trickier builds.

Open Discussion / sheet cake FTW
« on: August 18, 2017, 03:08:42 PM »

Tech Help - Etcher's Paradise / Mudbunny - Verified
« on: August 12, 2017, 08:36:43 PM »
I've recently completed two mudbunnies:  one ram's head and one triangle.
Haven't gotten around to posting pics in the build report section.  My etches for the enclosures
didn't turn out as well as I would've liked them to. 

Build Reports / Collosalus Flanger
« on: August 02, 2017, 10:30:05 AM »
Started this build last year (!) and finally got around to finishing it.  I had the circuit board all populated
with a MN3007 that I bought off ebay and it wasn't working.  So I finally got around to getting a good chip
from smallbear and the circuit fired right up.   Lots of flanger goodness!  Many years ago, I had an original
MXR 117.  One of my faves that I've missed ever since. 

Ran into a bit of a prob with the output jack.  When a plug was inserted, it was hitting the feedback trimmer.
Drilled out the hole to a larger diameter and moved the jack far enough to not cause the problem.
Apologies for the blurry pics ... need to pick up a cheap tripod for my extremely cheap camera.

VFE Projects / 125B question
« on: August 02, 2017, 03:18:00 AM »
Is it possible to put a VFE circuit in a 125B, or does the use of mounted in/out jacks make this not doable?
I'm thinking that using open jacks with the same specs as the mounted ones would work, but I could be wrong.

Or perhaps, just keeping the mounted jacks, and drilling holes large enough so that the plugs just go inside the
enclosure sides.  ( pretty poor stability issues, I imagine )

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