Just finished off and handed off a build to a friend. He wanted a pedal that sounded like Dinosaur Jr, specifically the tone from the song Kracked. Kinda a tough order but sounded like a fun challenge. So I did some research and yeah as expected J Mascis is a muff guy. From what I read he had some V1 Triangle Muff that he loved (later it was stolen) during the recording of that album. No additional info. Also read he has a custom muff that he added a switch to bypass the volume for solos. I kind of felt that would way too loud, so instead I opted to add a boost at the end. But I thought it would be kind of fun to add a modified Electra Distortion instead of a clean boost.
I spent a lot of time bread boarding the pedal and then comparing it to the recording to trying to dial it in. I felt like the recording had a bit more note clarity than your standard muff, so I started with a V1 schematic I grabbed off Kit Rae's site. Then tweaked some of the caps to let a bit more highs through, I also used the Pharaoh tone stack. Honestly I think now that I could have used a fixed resistor, but what's one more knob. I am pretty proud to say I think I nailed it.
The Electra distortion at the end adds a whole bunch of versatility. Gives you a nice overdrive and then you could crank on the fuzz to really smash it. Or vise versa. Watching the dude play it for the first time was the most fun. I was even more surprised at the note clarity we got out of it. Pretty happy with the results. I hope he is too.
He asked to call it JC Mascis cause his initials are JC... I would have rather called it Dino Jr, but hey, its not my pedal. I'll have to make another for myself.
My girlfriend did the dinosaurs for the etch. I think they rock, I guess not really dark like the Dinosaur Jr art, but hey...
This was also the first layout I designed in Eagle Cad and thanks to Jacob's JMK Eagle tutorial it was easy. Thank you for that! Yeah it could probably be more compact. I totally had trouble with the Electra, it just wasn't working, but worked on my vero prototype. Turned out instead of 2.2M I used 2.2K, and of course it was the last component I checked... sheese. But got it working with minimal damage. Never assume a part is correct if its not working. Never!
Love this site and all the resources on it. Here are some picture on my dirty project table.