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Topics - Strategy

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General Questions / Pepper Spray debug
« on: October 02, 2020, 01:00:58 PM »
Sorry if this isn't the right subforum! And, I did some searching before posting.
Built a "stock" Pepper Spray, older single-sided etched board version, with a couple variations
- Electrolytics instead of tantalums
- .56u in place of the .50u capacitor (I think..don't have it all in front of me)

The 2n3565 is the gold legs type, Small Bear, 2n404a is the metal can type, Small Bear.

I get action here but it's super quiet. Harm, Bal, and switch work as they should but noise floor is high and I have to crank my amp to hear it. Sounds cool, like I'm in a Touch n' Go label band from the late 90s. But way too quiet.

- I do not have a way to measure hfe on my transistors; I've built some fuzzes but nothing requiring that level of science.
- I have spares of each transistor, I guess I should try swapping them out.
- I cannot figure out the pinout of the 2n3565. Flat side and pins do not correspond in an obvious way. I've tried putting it in two different ways with no differences in performance.

Percolator experts, what obvious issues should I look at / what noob type mistake have I made / etc.?
While folks answer this I guess I'll go back in my garage at some point today and swap out the transistors and see what happens.

So grateful for your all's help.

A family member has been using the Aquaboy V2 I built (with double delay time add on) and sent it back recently for tune up and a couple of minor repairs.
As I'm wrapping it up I thought I should double check the feedback control. Short slapback delays are only available up to about 8 o'clock and then anywhere beyond that is pretty intense, runaway style delays. It's been a long time since I worked on this.
- Is one of the trimmers a feedback maximum? I don't recall it having a feedback internal trim like T1 in the Aquaboy Deluxe, but maybe I'm overlooking or just can't tell from the docs.
- Do I get a more commonsensical sweep by maybe switching to an Audio taper pot?
- Or is the stock feedback just designed to go from zero to "jam section of Live at Pompeii" wild in a very slight knob turn?

Open Discussion / Volume issue - Doppelganger (AlanP v1.4 pcb)
« on: May 31, 2020, 08:30:51 AM »
I had passed my Doppelganger (AlanP's v1.4 pcb) off to a family member and got it back with a strange issue. It's EXTREMELY quiet. At first I thought it wasn't passing signal but if I plug it into my mixing desk and push the gain up I can hear it is phasing beautifully. Just the whole thing extremely quiet. I have so far:
- replaced op amps
- checked continuity on all wiring
- reflowed some dodgy looking solder joints
Any thoughts on where gain might get sucked away in this circuit/culprit parts? I'm not the world's best troubleshooter so any help is HUGELY appreciated
I'd forgotten how good this sounds and would be excited to get it ironed out.

Build Reports / Gaussmarkov version of Escobedo "TMK" pedal
« on: January 11, 2015, 11:29:41 PM »
I'm fascinated with the Tim Escobedo circuits. I've enjoyed all of them that I've done so far and several have made it into the 'permanent collection.' This is the TMK ("Too Many Knobs") with PCB version by Gaussmarkov of diystompboxes fame. Project files here:

This is the most fun I've had with a dirt/distortion pedal in some time. I've forgotten what all the controls do but feedback is part of it. I used it tonight with drum machine and it sounded interesting as a synth effect like that, as well as guitar. Interestingly, there appears to be some compression or limiting innate in the circuit, so while it can get "out of control" you never get absurd volume spikes that can make some "noise fuzz" projects a little bit difficult to play on.

Highly recommended project.

Tech Help - Projects Page / Current Lover headroom/distortion
« on: November 13, 2014, 04:06:59 PM »
I built the v3207 version of Current Lover and it has pretty low headroom. Gets this kind of crusty fuzz pretty easily. is this the trade-off from using the current chips rather than doing a 15v version with 3007's? Is there any sort of mod I could look at to address this?
Sorry if this has already been covered in another thread (I did try a little searching)


General Questions / Pork Barrel ticking - variables
« on: November 16, 2013, 06:17:31 PM »
I built a Pork Barrel and observed a behavior with the ticking that's new to me. When I use a line level audio source (Farfisa organ, synths, drum machine, etc) there's no ticking and when I use guitar as the input, I get some minor ticking.

I'm sure the science behind this is more simple than I'd expect, but can't figure it out - any insights?


Build Reports / My Aquaboy
« on: July 19, 2013, 10:48:17 PM »
Older version Aquaboy finally done. I got a spare "double delay time" add on board from someone on, so it has the extra delay chip but not the LFO mod. Love this pedal!!!!

Tech Help - Projects Page / Aquaboy mod ideas
« on: August 15, 2012, 03:40:20 PM »
I finally put together and tested my Aquaboy. It's actually going to be part of a desktop multi-effects thing I can use for when I do live shows with my drum machines and synths (will contain ring modulator, aquaboy, MS-20 style filter and a compressor). So it has no switching, for now.

Mod ideas:

- 100% wet mix. Is it possible with this circuit? I know the original Boss DM-2 does not do this. Does Aqua-Puss? Would this be easy or hard? Quickly glancing at the schem on my lunch break I did not get any ideas (yet)

- CV input: I took a spare VTL5C3 and 200R resistor and created a kind of kludge that allows me to send control voltages from synthesizers into the center lug of the Delay pot to see if I could modulate delay time from an external modulation source. This has worked well with many other circuits and pedal projects I've built. I tried various 0-5V signals like LFO's, a sequencer, etc. but I could not get any nuanced modulation of the delay time.

Would it be possible to implement the Modulation daughter board, but to have it accept external voltages as well as the vibrato LFO?

Thanks for any help!

General Questions / Afterlife input levels
« on: March 22, 2012, 12:14:39 PM »
Was just browsing the posted project doc for Afterlife, looks great.

Any considerations for tweeking the circuit for line level? I use an Orange Squeezer with keys and drum machines periodically and there are no issues but I know some pedal compressor designs get really squashy when given line level inputs.

If there are any considerations for line level it would be great to know!


Open Discussion / Pork Barrel 'version 2' project docs?
« on: February 12, 2012, 10:59:56 PM »
I bought a Pork Barrell PCB of a person on forum and unknowingly it was the "version 2" with a 2010 date. So the doc's on the main madbean page don't correspond.

Can someone point me to the PDF for the older version? version 2...

thanks for your help!

Build Reports / my poindexter build
« on: February 08, 2012, 12:21:25 AM »
my first completed madbean and my first pedal box with graphics (thanks local fastsigns shop!)
since this is a mutant of the octavia concept, I used a graphic from a record cover that depicts octavias. the record is by my bandmates' old band from the 1990s.

this poindexter will be used primarily on fender rhodes piano for the moment!


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