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    Here’s a useless useful little circuit

    I usually test my CLRs on a breadboard so if you don’t have one here’s a little circuit to get your LED brightness just the way you like it

    All you need is a small piece of scrap vero a double sil socket and 2 single sil sockets a DC jack or battery snap for your +9v and ground

    In the action shot below a standard 5mm red LED using a 4K7 CLR unexpectedly way too bright for me so now I can up the resistor ante till I get what I want (right click and hit view image for a close up)


    Very clever!  I love for members to post useful tips!


    Don’t you need a trace cut between the CLR sockets?


    No that’s why it’s useless Ray!, I’ve forgotten to add it I’ll change it when I get home

    Well spotted mate there would have been a few blown LEDs  without it cheers


    Billy – nifty little tool. I was going to point out the uncut trace, but you & Ray beat me to it.

    I plan to start using a 20K trimpot for the LED CLR in my builds. Lets even a casual user to change the brightness when they need to.

    I’m also migrating away from using a dual LED. Not many shoegazers around here like to see a lit LED on their pedal when it’s not engaged. But most of my work is on commission, so I let them choose.


    Thankfully no LEDs were harmed in mine fortunately with such a complex layout I’d marked my cut with a red pen so I didn’t forget it haha

    I like my LEDs really dim Mark as do most of the people I build for it’s actually amazing the difference between standard LEDs hence why I test using my breadboard and thought if someone doesn’t have one use some scrap vero after reading Jacobs comment in his post:

    Now, I just need to find the right CLR for my big LEDs!

    Anyway rectified now cheers Ray


    Coincidentally Bruce and I have been working out this new type of 3PDT Wiring Board which includes a Trimmer for adjusting the LED level of brightness. You can do this as a set and forget using either a Standing trimmer or Flat Mount.

    If you use a Flat Mount trimmer you may drill a small screwdriver hole in the back cover of your pedal for access without even needing to open it up or if you choose the Standing trimmer you can access the trimmer in the same manner with a small drill hole through the front of the pedal (not top) but where you would kick it with your toe.

    That said you don’t need to drill any holes for simple access by removing the back cover for a set and forget.

    You may use either the top pf the board or the underside giving you four options in total. It is the same size as our other 3PDT Wiring board and features all of the same advanced options but includes a small “wing” for the mounting of a trimmer.

    This is not to replace the Original 3PDT Wiring Board but be offered as an alternative.

    What do you guys think? Oh and if you have a clever name for this based on what it does that we choose I will send you some for FREE! That said it has to fit on this small board.



    Barry – that’s winner! I’ll definitely be wanting some “3PDT Vari-Brite”, “3PDT Vari-Glow”, (or whatever you call them), PCBs from you when they’re ready.


    I am also a big fan of these little “utility builds”!

    Here are two of the CLR testers that I have done.  I put the extra sockets on there so I have a convenient spot to touch the DMM leads once I have adjusted the trimmer to the brightness I want.  Additionally, it is also a handy tool for testing different resistor values in a circuit for biasing, etc. if you have socketed the resistor on the board.  I just unhook the power and LED and then put a breadboard jumper wire in each of the extra sockets to the ones on the board.  I increased the trimmer value of my second LED board to 20k because of this.  So, as long as the resistor range I am testing is between 1-21k then I am good to go.

    The very first LED / CLR utility board I built had a PCB mount pot but I had sockets and jumpers so I could reconfigure it and use it to hook up 9v to an effect to simulate “voltage sag” and see if it produced any interesting results on the circuit.  Could not find it in my mess to take a picture.

    And finally, my all time favorite “utility” is on the left…a guitarpcb 2pdt board with sockets.  I soldered breadboard jumpers to it and they press right into the sockets on the board.  I find it most useful for clipping diodes.  I chose a on-off-on switch so dependent on the board you are testing you can leave one (or more) diodes on the board and just jumper one of the other diodes to the switch and test any number of combinations…but, i am sure everyone already knows / does this.


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