Author Topic: Looking to build a Klone - A few newbie questions  (Read 2161 times)

melodeath

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Looking to build a Klone - A few newbie questions
« on: April 08, 2016, 10:09:02 PM »
I am considering building a Klon Centaur clone. This would be my first DiY guitar pedal, although not my first DiY project. I've built two microphones before, which I'm guessing is more involved/difficult than a pedal, but I admit I could be wrong. Either way, it appears these DiY pedals are not really kits, so in that sense, I'm more on my own than I have been with past projects. I see the Kingslayer is available as a Klone, but I have a few questions.

After some research, it seems socket-mounting the IC-chips and diodes is a good idea for swapping out parts. I've searched mouser and can't find the sockets I need. Can anyone give me more details on how to search for it? The part name/number isn't mentioned in the BOM. I've never had to order my own BOM before, since I worked with kits, and there's quite a few components I'm not 100% sure I have the right selections.

What is the "standard" guitar pedal switch I need? The BOM only mentions an SPDT, but again, this is not enough info for a total pedal newbie. There is also no mention of what LED is needed.

It looks like the Kingslayer is designed to fit a 1590B enclosure. Is there one that's more Klon Centaur-sized? If so, will the Kingslayer PCB fit just fine? I am a bit unclear how the PCB actually mounts into the enclosure, so I'm not sure if getting a bigger enclosure would make the pedal look strange with knobs too close together.

Thanks so much for your help!

Stomptown

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Re: Looking to build a Klone - A few newbie questions
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2016, 12:01:06 AM »
Welcome to the forum, and hopefully, the addiction!  Similarly, I've never built a microphone but I am guessing that building a guitar pedal from a kit is on a similar level to building a mic. Building one from scratch is honestly no walk in the park the first time out! There is a pretty big learning curve, and in addition to populating the PCB, wiring it up, testing it, and putting it in the enclosure you will need to drill the enclosure, learn what parts to order, etc.  It sounds like your doing your homework and asking the right questions which will go a LONG way!

As far as mouser goes, they are not going to have everything you will need for this build so I would suggest using a pedal specific supplier for your first go around.  Unfortunately, they (mouser) don't carry obsolete parts, such as the germainium diodes, nor do they carry the potentiometers the PCB is designed for (16mm right angle PCB mount Alphas), or the spdt toggle switch. BTW, the spdt mentioned in the build doc is a clipping switch; not a footswitch. The footswitch is not mentioned in the build doc (I think us guys take for granted that everyone doesn't already know what footswitch they will need since it is such a common part.  There are many suppliers and I'm pretty sure you will be able to find all parts for a Klon Klone at one or more of said suppliers, which will save you money and time since you won't have to pay for shipping twice!

Here are a few suppliers I would check out:

http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/
http://www.diyguitarpedals.com.au/shop/index.php
http://www.mammothelectronics.com/default.asp
http://www.pedalpartsplus.com/
http://www.taydaelectronics.com/     (lowest quality of the bunch by far but super cheap)

Using one of these suppliers will also minimize the change you will order a part that does not fit and will give you the opportunity to get your hands on the correct parts so you can effectively use mouser in the future (if you decide to keep building, which you will ;) ).  I'm guessing pedal parts plus will not carry everything you need, so check the others first.

As I mentioned above, the potentiometers are PCB mount which means you can solder the pots directly to the PCB.  This minimized off board wiring and keeps the PCB securely mounted inside the enclosure.  Here is a link to the Alpha potentiometer for illustration:

http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/alpha-single-gang-16mm-right-angle-pc-mount/

Using a klon sized enclosure would definitely make things look funny (IMO). If you really want to use a larger enclosure and achive normal pot spacing you would need to get solder lug pots and wire them to the PCB instead of mounting them.  It's a PITA and you will end up with a less reliable product in the end. If you want a little extra room, which I recommend, I would go with a 125B enclosure.  It is slightly wider/longer than a 1590B, but is much deeper, which will give you less of a headache when you box it up; especially if your hands are more like mitts!

In the words of the great Madbean "dont forget to ROCK IT BEFORE YOU BOX IT!"  (i.e. test the PCB before you put it in the enclosure). To do this you will need to build a testing rig but it is very simple and there are plenty of tutorials to show you how. Testing the PCB before wiring it to the jacks and stomp, and putting it in the enclosure will let you know if you have a problem on the PCB itself. If the PCB works, box it up and test the final product!.  If it doesn't work, you know the issue is not on the PCB and must be off board.  I cannot emphasize how important this step is!  One caveat about PCB mounted pots: troubleshooting is more difficult since they obscure some of the pads on the underside of the PCB. This is the only downside to using them. 

Good Luck and have fun!

Edit:  two more things: 1) I forgot to mention there are also kits available out there if you want to simplify things for your first build.  I build 4 or 5 kits before attempting a DIY build and it was extremely helpful.  I'm guessing there are Klon Klone kits out there on the web. 2) the kingslayer is a based on the Klon and the circuit has been altered.  It sounds awesome and can achive the Klon tones but is not identical. Plenty of unicorn farts and card table madness to be had! Some day that last sentance will make sense!  :P

Cheers,
Jon



« Last Edit: April 09, 2016, 03:42:20 AM by Stomptown »

Jules

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Re: Looking to build a Klone - A few newbie questions
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2016, 02:59:37 AM »
I agree with everything stomptown says, order from a pedal specific supplier, mouser is a tricky place to order from.
You will need a 3p4t switch for all projects you want true bypass with (the stock Klon is not true bypass so you may get away with a 2p4t switch).
The Klon is not rally a beginner type build most people are better off tackling a simple fuzz or tube screamer type project, but if you are game go for it.
All the best.

m-Kresol

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Re: Looking to build a Klone - A few newbie questions
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2016, 03:32:01 AM »
Welcome

I agree with everything stomptown says, order from a pedal specific supplier, mouser is a tricky place to order from.
You will need a 3p4t switch for all projects you want true bypass with (the stock Klon is not true bypass so you may get away with a 2p4t switch).
The Klon is not rally a beginner type build most people are better off tackling a simple fuzz or tube screamer type project, but if you are game go for it.
All the best.

One small, but essential correction: you'd need a 3PDT switch for true bypass or a 2PDT for the klon buffered bypass
I build pedals to hide my lousy playing.

My projects are labeled Quantum Effects. My shared OSH park projects: https://oshpark.com/profiles/m-Kresol
My build docs
My etching tutorial

Stomptown

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Re: Looking to build a Klone - A few newbie questions
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2016, 03:39:54 AM »
Welcome

I agree with everything stomptown says, order from a pedal specific supplier, mouser is a tricky place to order from.
You will need a 3p4t switch for all projects you want true bypass with (the stock Klon is not true bypass so you may get away with a 2p4t switch).
The Klon is not rally a beginner type build most people are better off tackling a simple fuzz or tube screamer type project, but if you are game go for it.
All the best.

One small, but essential correction: you'd need a 3PDT switch for true bypass or a 2PDT for the klon buffered bypass

Yep!  And don't make the mistake of buying a momentary switch.  In both cases you will need a "latching" switch.

Jules

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Re: Looking to build a Klone - A few newbie questions
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2016, 06:26:24 AM »
Whoops my mind was elsewhere when typing that, 3PDT for sure

melodeath

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Re: Looking to build a Klone - A few newbie questions
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2016, 09:01:14 PM »
Welcome to the forum, and hopefully, the addiction!  Similarly, I've never built a microphone but I am guessing that building a guitar pedal from a kit is on a similar level to building a mic. Building one from scratch is honestly no walk in the park the first time out! There is a pretty big learning curve, and in addition to populating the PCB, wiring it up, testing it, and putting it in the enclosure you will need to drill the enclosure, learn what parts to order, etc.  It sounds like your doing your homework and asking the right questions which will go a LONG way!

As far as mouser goes, they are not going to have everything you will need for this build so I would suggest using a pedal specific supplier for your first go around.  Unfortunately, they (mouser) don't carry obsolete parts, such as the germainium diodes, nor do they carry the potentiometers the PCB is designed for (16mm right angle PCB mount Alphas), or the spdt toggle switch. BTW, the spdt mentioned in the build doc is a clipping switch; not a footswitch. The footswitch is not mentioned in the build doc (I think us guys take for granted that everyone doesn't already know what footswitch they will need since it is such a common part.  There are many suppliers and I'm pretty sure you will be able to find all parts for a Klon Klone at one or more of said suppliers, which will save you money and time since you won't have to pay for shipping twice!

Here are a few suppliers I would check out:

http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/
http://www.diyguitarpedals.com.au/shop/index.php
http://www.mammothelectronics.com/default.asp
http://www.pedalpartsplus.com/
http://www.taydaelectronics.com/     (lowest quality of the bunch by far but super cheap)

Using one of these suppliers will also minimize the change you will order a part that does not fit and will give you the opportunity to get your hands on the correct parts so you can effectively use mouser in the future (if you decide to keep building, which you will ;) ).  I'm guessing pedal parts plus will not carry everything you need, so check the others first.

As I mentioned above, the potentiometers are PCB mount which means you can solder the pots directly to the PCB.  This minimized off board wiring and keeps the PCB securely mounted inside the enclosure.  Here is a link to the Alpha potentiometer for illustration:

http://smallbear-electronics.mybigcommerce.com/alpha-single-gang-16mm-right-angle-pc-mount/

Using a klon sized enclosure would definitely make things look funny (IMO). If you really want to use a larger enclosure and achive normal pot spacing you would need to get solder lug pots and wire them to the PCB instead of mounting them.  It's a PITA and you will end up with a less reliable product in the end. If you want a little extra room, which I recommend, I would go with a 125B enclosure.  It is slightly wider/longer than a 1590B, but is much deeper, which will give you less of a headache when you box it up; especially if your hands are more like mitts!

In the words of the great Madbean "dont forget to ROCK IT BEFORE YOU BOX IT!"  (i.e. test the PCB before you put it in the enclosure). To do this you will need to build a testing rig but it is very simple and there are plenty of tutorials to show you how. Testing the PCB before wiring it to the jacks and stomp, and putting it in the enclosure will let you know if you have a problem on the PCB itself. If the PCB works, box it up and test the final product!.  If it doesn't work, you know the issue is not on the PCB and must be off board.  I cannot emphasize how important this step is!  One caveat about PCB mounted pots: troubleshooting is more difficult since they obscure some of the pads on the underside of the PCB. This is the only downside to using them. 

Good Luck and have fun!

Edit:  two more things: 1) I forgot to mention there are also kits available out there if you want to simplify things for your first build.  I build 4 or 5 kits before attempting a DIY build and it was extremely helpful.  I'm guessing there are Klon Klone kits out there on the web. 2) the kingslayer is a based on the Klon and the circuit has been altered.  It sounds awesome and can achive the Klon tones but is not identical. Plenty of unicorn farts and card table madness to be had! Some day that last sentance will make sense!  :P

Cheers,
Jon

Wow, thank you! This helps immensely. I did indeed find where to buy the NOS germanium diodes, but I did not realize I could buy the rest of the parts needed at these pedal-specific online shops, as well. That makes so much more sense than buying from mouser

Stomptown

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Re: Looking to build a Klone - A few newbie questions
« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2016, 09:03:46 PM »
Your welcome and good luck!