Home Forums General DIY Pedal Discussion Build Notes and Journaling

Viewing 5 posts - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
  • Author
  • #7139

    When starting out a PCB-based build, I like to thoroughly go through the build documentation and study the schematics & BOM to better understand what I’m building, what modifications I may wish to entertain and which direction will ultimately be taken. Barry provides excellent build documentation and responds quickly within the support forums here.

    When I’ve completed the build study and finalize my decisions, I mark up a copy of the schematic with little notes and such to clarify the details. I also like to photograph various stages of a build for personal history and general sharing. The photos of the PCBs also help me when designing the enclosure and deciding how all the different boards and hardware will fit. I pull the pertinent photos into an image editor (I use Photoshop) and do a mock up of the internals as well as the outside of the enclosure. This allows me to ensure everything will fit and still have room for what neat wiring I can muster.

    Here is what I typically do to a schematic with regard to adding notes and such. This is a Super Drive 70’s schematic with my added notes.

    Here is a shot of the Super Drive 70’s PCB in the primary component population stage.

    And here is a copy of the enclosure design I intend for the completed build. Well, almost completed. I still need to add the toggle switch hardware images for the planned options that will be inserted. But I think you’ll get the concept.

    Once I’ve completed the build, I’ll post all the details, images of the processes and final enclosure in the forum’s “Show Off Your Build” section.

    This is one of the reasons my builds take so long. When I decide I want to execute a specific build, I grab a small cardboard box, label it with build name, and start dropping all the various components it will need to complete. I currently have 28 of those little boxes and some of them are in complete kit status. (A couple even have the finished enclosures.) My problem is, I keep buying new PCBs from Barry or elsewhere and start a new box. Still, here I am sharing my progresses (and failures when they happen) and eager to hear responses, feedback and hopefully read about what you’re up to, into and where you’re headed. Thanks for reading!


    Nice it’s always interesting to read about other people’s methods and pick up and learn useful information

    My methodology isn’t as complete but I know what you mean about ending up with a load of pcbs haha



    I think we need to start calling you “The Prince of Perfection!”  I love the way you slice and dice the projects.

    Although I do spend time analyzing the schematic to understand what the circuit is doing,  I am sure I don’t go into the depth that you do.  Now I know when a reader has a technical question,  you will be the expert to answer you question.  Well done!


    Thanks for the kind word Billy and Wilkie.

    As the ‘prince of perfection’, I have since re-worked the final enclosure mock-up to include the two bass-boost toggles and a clipping diode selector. Instead of using the Roto-Tone PCB for diode selection, I’m considering the ‘DPDT Wiring Board’ to switch between Si & Ge diodes. I’m carefully choosing the diode combos for a higher total forward voltage drop to achieve bit less harsh clipping and less of a drastic volume change between the Si & Ge selection. And considering the space is getting tight around the OD pots and main PCB, I may forgo the ‘DPDT Wiring Board’ and just dead-bug the diodes to the DPDT toggle.

    Anyway, here’s the intended final enclosure mockup . . . .

    Feral Feline

    I’m a little bit like Cybercow in that I have boxes and boxes of projects in various states of completion (some GPCBs from as far back as nearly 4 years ago, such as this one); I don’t, however, have his abilities with Photoshop nor his knowledge of how circuits work and thus in turn how to manipulate them.


    I do have tons of ideas on what I want modded, but it’s slow going for me to figure out the logistics. The other problem, which is finally settling down, is option-itis — being able to include everything right down to the kitchen “sync” doesn’t mean you should (not to mention the space constraints). As I’ve completed a few more builds, my tastes are changing from “all mod-cons” to “selectivity”.



    I make copious notes on the details of a build, but all in simple text documents on my computer. I’d like to print out the schematics and transfer those notes from computer to paper, but seldom do (the computer industry still hasn’t addressed “ease of connectivity” between computers and printers, IMHO). So, when building, I’ve got my computer going alongside and refer to it (my notes) frequently.


    What’s a significant problem for me is that all the old links from the old forum that I copied into my notes… well those links don’t work anymore. So the info I want/need is either lost completely forever, or very difficult at the least to track down and recreate (should’ve made PDFs of those pages instead of just copying the link into my notes — lesson learned).


    This thread reminded me of all that, as I recall Wilkie1 had more than a few good ideas for this tri-fecta of circuits; from the old forum:


    Alas, all I copied into my notes was this:

    I used Tonmann’s versatile clipping mod with 2 ON-OFF-ON switches that select 1N914, 1N60 and red LED clipping diodes. The opamp is a Burr Brown OPA2134. Also included is Tonmann’s clever effect order switching. …[in the] schematic. The original version used a 220n instead of the 100n cap. My old ear liked the 100n better. The 1M may not be needed. … I inserted [the EQ] BEFORE the input to Stage 3. You will need to try it in other applications. Impedance matching and gain factors may affect the results.” – Wilkie


    Thanks to Cybercow for renewing my interest in this build, and thanks to Wilkie1 for sparking the interest for it in the first place.

Viewing 5 posts - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.