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Topics - bcalla

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Open Discussion / Question for the Envirotex Experts
« on: February 07, 2016, 06:18:49 PM »
I just put decals on an enclosure that I will finish with ET.  In the process of manhandling the decal as I applied it, some of the black laser toner chipped off in a few spots.  No big deal, but I'd like to fill in the spots before I pour the ET.  I tried once to use a felt tip which was a disaster.  The ET lifted the ink off the decal and smudged and swirled it all over the place.

Is there something I can use to fill spots that is compatible with ET?  Thanks.

Build Reports / Bcalla 2015 Year in Review
« on: January 23, 2016, 05:03:42 PM »
Funny, when I retired in April I figured I'd be cranking out pedals like a Boss factory.  Turns out that my total 2015 output was 8 pedals - 2 pre retirement and 6 post.  Oh, well, there's always 2016...

Pre Retirement:

AlanP's Double Ganger

Guyatone Fuzz Monster Clone, board by Digi2T

Post Retirement:

Madbean's Kingslayer II

TH Custom TS Mini SOS

Tremshifter by 'deadastronaut'

Bass Station Multi (my most challenging build ever, just look at the rat's nest inside...)

Grind Customs Fluffball

And finally, Jetsetter Flanger - built from Madbean's Collosalus

Open Discussion / NBRD!
« on: April 30, 2015, 06:06:47 PM »
New Bass Rig Day!  Okay, maybe it's spread out over a week...

I have been looking to downsize (read: decrease the weight of) my bass rig for a while, and I finally pulled the trigger.  I had been using a Gallien Kruger BA115 combo (see my before photo).  It sounds great but I hate moving it.  The manual says it weighs 55 lbs. but I got 62 lbs. when I put it on a scale.

I picked up the Fender Rumble Neo 112 cab on craigslist last week - it was NOS from a closed music store, I got a sweet deal on it.  I ordered the Fender Rumble 500 head from Amazon because I had $200 in gift certificates so I basically got it for half price.  The cab weighs 24 lbs. and the head 5 lbs.

I got about 15 minutes to play around with them and so far I am happy.



Open Discussion / Boss SL-20 Slicer
« on: April 25, 2015, 03:40:32 PM »
Has anyone ever used one of these?  I have a chance to get one new-in-box for ~ $90 (I think there is some wiggle room) but it's not obvious to me how I would put it to use.

The same guy also had one of these Fender Classics Series Phasers for about the same price, also new-in-box.

Open Discussion / Robben Ford
« on: April 23, 2015, 06:57:22 AM »
I saw him last night in New Hampshire.  Terrific show.  He makes the impossible (or at least highly improbable) look so easy.

Build Reports / Kingslayer II
« on: April 17, 2015, 05:15:13 PM »
This is my first finished build since January.  Lots of stuff going on in my personal life, but I think it's under control so hopefully I can pick up the pace.

I had some difficulty troubleshooting this one.  I was getting nothing - bypassed or engaged (this is the buffered version).  Let me pass on what I learned to all you interested boys and girls.  Before you spend hours looking up all the component values - writing them on the layout on the build doc, then verifying that all resistors, capacitors and diodes on the board match the layout - make sure you soldered the socket for the TC1044SCPA to the PCB.  Oddly, it won't work without it.

Well, it works now, so here it is:

Build Reports / Fuzz Monster
« on: January 31, 2015, 02:32:24 PM »
I finally finished (sort of) my Fuzz Monster using Digi2Tís PCB (from DIYSB).  I say Ďsort ofí because it turns out that the only 12v AC adapter I have has a 2.5mm plug and my jack is 2.1mm.  I can fire it up, but any vibration causes the connection to go intermittent.  So I may be ordering some 2.5mm jacks and swapping this one out.

This build was a challenge to lay out in the enclosure.  It is designed with 9mm board mounted pots and board-mounted jacks (in/out & power).  I immediately decided against board mounting the power jack because I didnít want to deal with cutting a square hole in the side.  I already had to cut a square opening in the top and I figured that was enough stress.  Also, if anyone is capable of installing this board in the enclosure with board mounted in/out jacks, I bow down before you in reverence and awe.  That was a 3D puzzle I just was not able to solve.  I mounted them on the board but eventually gave up and popped them off.

That said, Iím happy with how it came out.  It sounded good on a bench test, but Iím not going to try it through my rig until I get the power situation squared away.

I made the tube port by using a step drill bit to drill a 3/4ď hole at either end then cutting the sides with my Dremel using metal cutting wheels.  I clamped the enclosure to my bench with a metal straight edge lined up as a guide.  That turned out to be a little less difficult than I expected. 

I highly recommend using the optional tube LED.  Otherwise itís not obvious why thereís a gaping hole in the top of the enclosure.  ???

Also, the decal is actually straight across the top - that white bent line is the reflection of a fluorescent light in the Envirotex.

Open Discussion / This could be the answer to my guitar playing problems
« on: January 30, 2015, 09:51:23 AM »
This eBay item should do the trick.

Open Discussion / Anyone ever heard of Raven West Guitars?
« on: January 15, 2015, 12:36:26 PM »
I saw one of their basses for sale on eBay and looked up their web site.  Lots of very nice looking guitars & basses for sale at fairly low prices.  There's no "about us" link on their site, so they are a bit of a mystery.  I assume they must be sourcing them in Asia.

I'm wondering if anyone here has any 1st hand experience.

Build Reports / AlanP's Doubleganger
« on: January 11, 2015, 12:39:38 PM »
I finished my first build of 2015.  It fired up the first time (if I don't count the attempt with no LEDs/LDRs).  Sounds great , no ticking.  What I really struggled with was the enclosure.  It looks pretty good - to some extent because I was careful which photo I chose - but it was a PITA to get there.

I know the name Alter Ego belongs to a production pedal, but it was the closest English translation for doppelgšnger.

Open Discussion / NYDPD
« on: December 08, 2014, 07:34:31 AM »
New Yamaha Digital Piano Day!

Well, new to me anyway - the Yamaha PF-500 was discontinued in 2006.  I picked it up yesterday via local Craig's List.  Just what I wanted, 88 weighted action keys, nice piano sounds, and looks good enough that my wife is OK with keeping it in our living room.  Now all I need to do is learn how to play it!   ;D

Also, I had interesting experience with the seller.  I had to drive about 50 miles to pick it up.  Chatting with the seller (who is a sax player), it turns out he is from the same town as me and lived about a half mile away, is 3 years younger than me, and knows a lot of the same people.  He was in a band with an old friend of mine.

Build Reports / Wobbletrip (Tremopanation)
« on: November 17, 2014, 04:28:34 PM »
It's done, it sounds great, and there's no ticking!  I'm really happy with this.  Thanks to several forum members for helping me when I got stuck a couple times.  I'm not able to test the Pedal or Trigger inputs, but AlanP says they work and they are wired to spec.  I hoped to enter this in the fall contest, but it turns out that my stereo recorder only records in mono.  >:(  And the whole point of this pedal is the stereo effect.  I might get a chance to bring this to a friend's home studio & record it there, so I may squeak in an entry under the wire.

Tech Help - Projects Page / Tremopanation Help
« on: November 03, 2014, 06:00:05 PM »
I am at the troubleshooting phase, and I may be here a while.

I'm a little confused by LaceSensor's wiring diagram (below), specifically for the right jack.  I don't understand what the right black wire connects to.  I get "right output jack sleeve," but I'm confused by "and sleeve switch lug."  Is that the same as the "Right Output jack Tip Switch" which is referred to regarding the blue left output?

Build Reports / Polpetta (Meatsphere)
« on: August 16, 2014, 08:21:15 PM »
I finally finished my Meatshphere which I started months ago.  I had hooked it up to my test rig and it wasn't giving me much effect - and a bunch of static.  I had read that it was finicky about the IC so I thought maybe I had a bad LM1458 - maybe from Tayda.  So I ordered a couple on my next Mouser order (glad I ordered 2 because I immediately dropped on and stepped on it).  Anyhow, that didn't fix it.  Then I saw a post from LaceSensor over @ DIYSB, where he said "Nsl32 sound like ass".  As they say, truer words were never spoken.  I replaced the NSL32s with LDRs and green LEDs, and now I am a happy man.

The only thing I haven't tested yet is the effects loop, I hope to get to that tomorrow.

Build Reports / Tri-Vibe
« on: August 10, 2014, 03:57:25 PM »
Now for the build from hell.

First mistake was deciding that I wanted it oriented vertically.  It wasn't until after drilling that I noticed that the board was too close to the left edge (by a really small amount) and that the jacks wouldn't fit at the top where the holes were drilled.  Crap.

So I widened the holes for the pots & switch to shift the board a little to the right, and used JB Weld to fill the holes at the top.  Because I was finishing the exterior with vinyl labels, I decided to just slap one over the patched holes and not worry about repainting.

Then I tested and boxed it, only to have the toggle switch work intermittently.  Two of the positions would sometimes not work.  I thought I had a short, so I pulled it out of the enclosure and it still misbehaved.  All the solder joints looked good under a magnifier, so I figured the toggle was NG.  Unfortunately I didn't have any more center offs, so I had to wait for my next parts order.  I painfully de-soldered and pulled the toggle, put in the new one and...  same problem.  Then I swapped out the ICs.  Same problem.  So I put it in my 'later' pile and tried to not let it bother me.

Then I read one of Jimi's posts where he couldn't get a pedal working (maybe his Sharkfin?) so he reflowed the solder joints and it worked.  I pulled this one from the 'later' pile, reflowed every solder joint, and FINALLY it worked.  There's a lesson in here about doing the most obvious things first, but I'm not sure I learned it.  We'll see when I run into this kind of build issue again.   :o

BTW this is a cool pedal.  The board came from Chi-boy.

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