What is a good beginner's project?

Ok, you got your soldering iron and nothing is going to hold you back, but you have no clue where to start or what to build. There were others before you with the same questions... read them first.
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lolbou
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Post by lolbou »

Hi, aand welcome...

My first build was the Dod 280 compressor from Tonepad...

But even more simple, still at Tonepad, you can try the MXR microamp...

It's easy and clean and works great with few components, and if you're more interested in distorsion, you can build the distorsion plus on the same board...

A fuzz face can be easily done too. To begin, I would say that the fewer the components, te better it is, because debugging is easier...

Let us know your choice, and feel free to ask for advices here!

Cheers!
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fingerseverling
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Post by fingerseverling »

thanks does tonepad have a site?

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rocklander
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Post by rocklander »

fingerseverling wrote:thanks does tonepad have a site?
http://www.tonepad.com
:D
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Post by fingerseverling »

thank you have you had good luck with them?

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rocklander
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Post by rocklander »

fingerseverling wrote:thank you have you had good luck with them?
yup. built a few pedals from there.. most worked (still troubleshooting the fsh 1 :x )
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lolbou
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Post by lolbou »

Yep, lucky for my modded CE-2, Rebote Delay, Microamp, Big Muff, 280 compressor.

All worked at first kick!! The verified projects from Francisco are really great!
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Post by RnFR »

if you want to build a fuzz, check out General Guitar Gadgets. lots more fuzz designs there, and they have a ton of ready made PCB's as well. i think my first build was on one of their PCBs. try a silicon fuzz with a low parts count to simplify things. a silicon fuzz face would fit the bill.
http://www.generalguitargadgets.com/ind ... &Itemid=26
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Post by sgtdrpepper »

Hello everyone, after several weeks of lurking i have decided that it looks like you all are having way too much fun and i want in on it. I have decided that i want to start with a boost circuit but am not sure which one to go with for a first build. I decided to give breadboarding a try since im a visual learner and i really want to understand what im doing not just paint by numbers. I have looked at the LPB-1 and the micro amp both of which seem to be fairly low on the part counts. Any suggestions are appreciated.


Thanks
Sgt

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Post by Scruffie »

:welcome to the forum.
If you are going for a boost, the LPB is a good place to start there is an indepth article of its working on Beavis Audios Site here... http://www.beavisaudio.com/techpages/HIW/hiw1.gif

It is also very easily moddable by changing a few components you can create it into a screaming tree treble booster by Electro harmonix or a Bass booster and would allow for some nice breadboarding messings (and it is also very easily placed onto veroboard a preferable canvas for begginer builds as there is no etching (I still use it even for more complex builds) Then if your a fuzz factory fanatic like alot of begginers when you go onto more things you could build a fuzz face and stick the LPB on the end, stick some pots in to replace resistors and you'd be looking at how the fuzz factory works, just some ideas and don't want to overload you but the LPB is a good booster to start with.

Scruffie.

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Post by sgtdrpepper »

Success on my first attempt.... Im so happy right now. I was thrown for a loop though, for my LPB i could not find a 2n5088 locally but did find a 2n3906 but this was a PNP not a NPN transistor. After reading i found that i could swap the the battery +/- and that seems to work. Im not sure if that is really the best way to make that kind of change but it works. Breadboarding is the way to go though so quick to get setup and easy to switch parts out. Now i need to figure out if i want to just move to a new project or try to get this in a box and finished out.

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Post by Scruffie »

Wheyy, well done! Welcome to the addiction of pedal building.

Ah yes, it is a PNP a 2N3904 would have been a suitable NPN replacement but nevermind.

Yes you can just swap the power rails on a build that simple, however in future you'd also have to flip electrolytic caps orientation aswell but thankfully that build doesn't have any. It can also lead to strange behaviour, but thats a different story, if it's working thats the main thing (oh and btw you can't use it with a negative ground power supply now if you put a power jack on it, it would need it's own seperate positive ground power supply) but i'm sure you've probably read these things when you looked up the idea in the first place.

Yup breadboard is a great tool for testing a circuit before commiting them to an actual board and allows for all the messing you feel like and designing new circuits etc. Did you try changing the components to get a screaming bird treble booster? Not essential but nice to mess around with things I found and as the circuits are exactly the same apart from values, gives you some insight into mods.

As it's your first build, i'd put it onto a piece of veroboard, you don't have to box it up right away but ya know, your first build and learning to put circuits onto veroboard is also a very good tool for starting out and corrolates quite nicely to how breadboard works (I still use veroboard on my soon to be 7th build which is going to probably be a chorus, just saves the hassle of etching and to me just seems so much easier) there are plenty of LPB vero layouts about, infact heres one if you want https://www.aronnelson.com/gallery/main. ... 1.gif.html

So... Whats the next build gunna be...

Scruffie.

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Post by sgtdrpepper »

Cool thanks Scruffie for that link, i think ill get a few other parts and sub them in to see how it all works then try that layout that you linked. I am thinking about getting a few of the value packs for resistors and caps from this place http://www.futurlec.com/ValuePacks.shtml. Im needing to build up some spares and this seemed like a good deal. I think im going to keep working on booster circuits for awhile i might try the SHO next.

Sgt

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Post by Scruffie »

What country are you located in? If your in the U.K http://www.bitsbox.co.uk is a good site for components and they do some decade series resistor packs that are nice and cheap but that futurelec pack is probably just as good.

Always good to build up a bit of a stock (even still I never seem to have all the components to make something) and buying in bulk does cut the cost down nicely.

Yea boosters offer alot of explanation and the SHO is a nice project and nice booster, you can also learn from Soul Sonics Crackle Not Okay as to why it crackles which helps you learn more theory.

After that the dallas rangemaster is a classic if you want to contine with boosters and sounds amazing with a tube amp in my and many other guitarists opinion and also gets you into the workings of germanium pedals nicely (if you can't afford germanium or just dont want the hassle a BC558B or the 2N3906 you mistakaenly bought can be substituted in to try it as a silicon version, although other silicon version do exist)

If you go here http://www.schematicheaven.com/effects/ ... ter(s).pdf you can see the LPB schematic and Screaming Tree schematic are identical except for lower input and output cap values which increase the treble or high pass of the circuit and the reverse is true but this is all in the beavis article.

Have Fun!

sgtdrpepper
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Post by sgtdrpepper »

Quick question, where is the best place to get veroboard?

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Post by Scruffie »

As I said in the thread above, depends what country your in.

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Post by sgtdrpepper »

im located in the US.

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Post by Scruffie »

It's also known as stripboard, I don't know many U.S Suppliers but you can get here...
http://www.smallbearelec.com and they sell it through...
https://www.diystompboxes.com/zencart/index. ... ex&cPath=5

You can also get it here
https://www.mouser.com/Search/ProductDet ... 7a4w%3d%3d

and here http://www.futurlec.com/ProtoBoards.shtml#STPBRD1

sgtdrpepper
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Post by sgtdrpepper »

Awesome, thank you.

aaronl
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Post by aaronl »

I am very interested in building pedals, I guess its the tinkerer in me.

Is this a good first build?

I have a ts808 and a Barber Direct drive already but more dirt can't be a bad thing!

Thank you for any help,
Aaron

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Post by mrhenry »

aaronl,

As someone who is new to this, I must tell you that starting with opamp circuits with quite a few parts and layout tricks (to get rid of possible oscillation, etc.) might be pretty difficult if you haven't built anything yet. I would start with the SHO circuit, or a Fuzz Face type circuit. I only make this suggestion because it was infuriating to build and re-build a Son of Screamer when I just started building- to catch all my mistakes it took several hours of this type of thing.

a fuzz or a nice clean boost is a useful easy build. I would start there and work toward more complicated stuff.

-mrhenry

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