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Messages - bcalla

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Build Reports / Re: Dead End FX - TerraHawk
« on: September 18, 2021, 02:00:05 PM »
That's a beautiful build (and a great story)!  Now I want to build one!

Looking into buying components for this I see that Mouser no longer has the 27mH inductor.  I can't find it anywhere else either.  The build doc says that suitable replacements are available, but I know zero about inductors.  What other characteristics are important when determining a proper replacement?

For example, the datasheet for the Bourns RLB0812-273KL lists the following:

Inductance: 27 mH
Tolerance: 10%
Current Rating (Amps): 22 mA
DC Resistance (DCR): 102 Ohm Max
Q @ Freq: 60 @ 79.6kHz
Frequency - Self Resonant: 200kHz
Inductance Frequency - Test: 79.6 kHz

Do I need to pay attention to any of these values?

Better yet, does anyone actually know a specific available inductor that can be used for this pedal?

Build Reports / Re: Vibe Station
« on: April 14, 2021, 11:15:12 AM »
Very cool! Is the voicing board worth it? I've got one of the main boards in the pile...
The voicing mod changes the sound quite noticeably.  I will say that the higher the Intensity is set, the less obvious the voicing change.  But when Intensity is moderate to low, the voicing differences can be pretty dramatic.

Build Reports / Re: Vibe Station
« on: April 11, 2021, 10:32:40 PM »
Thanks to all.  It really does sound great, and has a great range of sounds.

The more knobs, the better, I always say. Are those knobs plastic or metal? I like the simple cylindrical shape of them.

Knobs & LEDs are why I build in the first place. :)

The knobs are metal.  I filled the pointers with white nail polish.  They came as just a notch in the top & side - black-on-black.  I couldn't tell where they were set from more than a few inches away. 

Build Reports / Vibe Station
« on: April 11, 2021, 09:32:31 AM »
This is Brejna's Pangea.  I started it last spring & just finished it.  It lived on my "needs troubleshooting" shelf for many months.  I originally etched the board for the Voicing mod, but I couldn't get it to work.  Then I built the mod on a piece of prototyping board and it still didn't work.  So I shelved it for a while.  When I pulled it off the shelf and spent some time studying it, I realized that I wired the mod wrong.  That was probably the problem with my etched board, too.

And your eyes ARE NOT playing tricks on you - the decal is a bit distorted.  I decided to use up some old clear spray paint rather than my usual Envirotex finish, and I guess I was a little heavy-handed.

Anyway, here it is and it sounds great!

Open Discussion / Re: Glass Guitar???
« on: January 02, 2021, 07:34:05 AM »
I also enjoyed reading the comments.  One was:

"Strap locks. For the love of God, put strap locks on this."

Open Discussion / Glass Guitar???
« on: January 01, 2021, 10:55:20 AM »
OK, this is nuts...  But fascinating!

Building an ENTIRE guitar out of GLASS!

Build Reports / Re: Mimir's Well
« on: December 28, 2020, 05:32:49 PM »
Wow, that looks great! Graphics are really cool  8) How did you cut the square?  Makes me wish I still had access to a mill.
I marked the rectangle very carefully with a felt-tip.  1/8" in from each corner I drilled a 1/4" hole that abutted the lines I marked.  Then I used a metal cutting disk on my Dremel to very slowly & carefully cut into the line, making a rut that outlined the perimeter.  I was going to use the cutting disk to finish, but I realized that it would be easier to use a step-drill in my drill press to remove as much of the aluminum as I could.  Then back with the cutting disk to remove a few larger pieces that jutted into the open area.  Finally, a combination of a Dremel grinding attachment and hand filing made the edges pretty even.

My favorite part of the finishing process was covering it with Envirotex.  I taped a piece of smooth clear plastic behind the open rectangle so that when I poured the ET it formed a "window" that will protect the LCD screen.  Unfortunately I used thin flexible plastic (like some produce packaging in a grocery store) and when I tried to remove it from the inside after the ET cured, it de-laminated so there's still a thin layer behind the window.  It makes the window a little hazy, but that's not very noticeable when the screen is lit.  I think if I did it again I would use heavier plastic - maybe cut out a piece of a CD case - so that I could remove it in one piece.

Build Reports / Re: Mimir's Well
« on: December 28, 2020, 02:50:55 PM »
In general, the patches sound good.  I especially like the delays.  The reverse reverb & reverse delay are cool.  Some of the others are pretty wild, the extra chip set I bought were some of the more extreme ones.  Most (but not all) can be tamed by adjusting the parameters.  But at $1 per patch I figured it would be fun to have them.  Also, as of this writing the Slow Gear doesn't work, so skip that.

Build Reports / Mimir's Well
« on: December 28, 2020, 01:14:31 PM »
I finally finished my first pedal in about 2 years.  I didn't go back and check my last build report, so it might actually be a little longer.  I did build a couple electronic projects - a clock & a drum machine.   But the 3 or 4 pedals I worked on since my last build were fairly complex, and unfortunately epic fails.  So they wound up on a shelf that is optimistically labeled "Needs Troubleshooting."  Maybe I'll actually try to get them working some day...

A few months ago someone posted a build report for Mimir's Well by MAS Effects.  It looked amazing, so I decided to ignore my fails and give it a shot.

It's all digital and comes with 7 built in patches in one bank, plus it includes another 16 that you can select yourself (2 additional banks of eight).  Since I play both bass & guitar I got 8 additional guitar effects plus 8 bass effects.  And I ordered an extra bank of 8 strange guitar effects that I can swap in if I want to use them.

Cutting the rectangle for the display screen was a PITA, but it came out pretty neat.  However, I now know that I could do it again if I needed to.

Open Discussion / NSSHBD
« on: November 21, 2020, 08:18:11 AM »
New Short-Scale Headless Bass Day!

I have had surgery on both hands, and I suffer from neck & shoulder pain. I can only play standard basses for a short time before something starts to hurt.  The bass I have been using most is a Hofner Verythin.  I've had it for a few years and it's great - it has great tone, 30.5" scale, looks stunning, and weighs 5.5 lbs. (I have 2 other basses that weigh north of 10 lbs.).  However, it has the standard Hofner bridge, which means tuning / intonation is always a compromise.  So I have been on the lookout for a bass that matched a particular set of requirements:

1. Light
2. Short scale
3. 24 frets
4. Intonatable bridge
5. Relatively inexpensive

A couple weeks ago I picked up a Hondo Alien.  It's a headless bass, very similar to the Kramer Duke.  My best guess is that it was made in the 80s, but I wasn't able to find a way to confirm that.  It has an aluminum neck and comes in at 6.25 lbs., slightly more than my Hofner.  It sounds great and is very easy on my hands with a 31" scale.  And, while weird, I think it looks kinda cool.   8)

Open Discussion / Re: Go******t not Sean Connery!!!!
« on: October 31, 2020, 09:06:15 AM »
My favorite movie of his is The Man Who Would Be King.

Open Discussion / Re: Congrats to Jimi
« on: May 28, 2020, 04:49:26 PM »
I have to agree. I look at etched enclosures in build reports with envy, but I have never worked up the nerve to try it.  Years ago I etched 2 PCBs: one came out perfect and the other was a disaster.  I never tried again.

Open Discussion / Re: I need help solving an electronics problem
« on: May 28, 2020, 07:07:51 AM »
NP, I didn't take it as harsh.  I didn't mention that I scoured the web before making this post.

Open Discussion / Re: I need help solving an electronics problem
« on: May 27, 2020, 07:32:19 AM »
Thanks for all the suggestions, I'll check them out.

Regarding the link, I've searched the web & couldn't find one.  The LED strip has "Acuity Brands" printed on it, and various numbers.  I tried every combination and got nothing.  Electronic Goldmine sells a lot of electronic salvage / overstocks.  As far as I can tell, Acuity Brands sells only finished commercial lighting, not component parts, so this was likely an overstock.

BTW, Electronic Goldmine sells lots of cool things.  They send out emails 2-3 times a week with clearance deals and new inventory.  They're worth checking out & getting on their mailing list.

Open Discussion / I need help solving an electronics problem
« on: May 26, 2020, 11:16:58 AM »
A while ago I bought a couple inexpensive LED strips from Electronic Goldmine that I intended to use to build a light fixture over my workspace.  They are 22" long with 14 SMD LEDs and +/- terminal connectors at one end.  The catch was that the ran on 40v DC, but I figured I'd come up with a way to power them later.  Well, I just got lucky and picked up a 42v wall wart that was intended to power a battery recharger for power tools.

I tested the power supply with one of the LED strips and it worked great.  Too great.  The light is blinding.  I was thinking that I might add a toggle switch to select either or both strips; and either a resistor to set the correct level of brightness, or dimmer (either a trimmer or pot).

So I hooked up a 100k pot to see how much I could dim it.  While turning the pot, I heard it pop & saw it spark.  After tossing the pot in the trash, it occurred to me that the components I buy for building 9 - 18 volt pedals may not be able to handle 42v.

Since my electronics knowledge is pretty much limited to following a build doc, I'm reaching out to see if someone here can guide me.

Should pedal components - specifically pots, trimmers, resistors & toggle switches - be able to handle this?

If not, what do I need to look for?


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