Home Forums General DIY Pedal Discussion First build question (answered)

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    Hi! I just started on my guitar journey. I am building my guitar (I have a basic guitar to get started) and just learning my cowboy chords. I love heavy music (i film life concerts, help bands building websites) and I want to learn to play my favorite music, manly stoner doom, but all things heavy. I the past I have build some bigger audio amps from kits and I do some laptop repairs so soldering and basic electronics is not the biggest problem

    For my first project I want to build the the Model T pre-amp. To feed it I want to put a Ratt and a Big Muff Pi in front (so a combo build). But this has to go somewhere. After some research I think I will start with a 1×12 with a Celestion Vintage. Still deciding if I will build of buy this, Thomann is making it so cheap might not be worth the effort. But then to my question, the model T is only a pre-amp, not a power amp. I need some tips for this. There are some 10 or 15 watt amp kits on MusikDing (where I will buy the kits). My idea is that most of the sound will come from the distortion of the ratt, muff and crunch channel of the model t, and extra distortion of a amp will do not much extra.

    Your opinions would help a lot


    As for starting your first pedal build I cannot stress enough no matter how skilled a person is that you spend an adequate amount of time studying the Guides (all of them) on our Guides Page. This tip alone will save you a world of trouble!

    The reason is not to suggest your are incapable but pedal builds, amp builds and computers are three completely different animals and more importantly they require not only (more than basic knowledge) but the right tools and technique for each job.

    For example despite having soldering experience watch my solder tutorial (found on the Guides Page) anyway so you know more about our boards and what works using them. What works for our pedal boards will not be the same as what you would do for building amps including the tip shape, heat and absolutely technique. As an example (soldering iron) Heat and Tip size used for amps could destroy a pedal PCB.

    The Guides will also explain pedal size components, orientations, temperatures, using fine conical tips, wiring, how to read codes and so much more that will save you making common errors that could destroy a board and help with a more trouble free build.

    Of course our GUIDES cover so much more than what I just mentioned and there is no need to repeat what is already written but I cannot stress the importance of digesting those materials.

    When I have time later I will try to address the other questions.

    In the meantime read up on all of our Guides.

    Anyone else please feel free to chime in here 🙂


    Thank you, yes I know this and I will read all the documentation before I start. I am not in any hurry, first I need to learn how to play and because of the filming I do I have a good zero latency soundcard so I can always use amp sims om my computer.

    I totally understand you recommend me starting with this, a lot of computer problems can also be solved with rtf, but most just want to dive in.


    Welcome to the forum!

    Barry has covered some very important subject.  I would like to discuss some other issues.

    You are correct about the distortion.  Most of the tonal distortion and tone shaping will occur in your pedals.  Amplifier and speaker distortion occur after the pedals.  For practice and small room venues, you can use a smaller amp in the 10-30 Watt power range.  For use with a full rock band, you would want to have more power unless you are feeding a house PA system.

    Since you are just starting with your first pedal build, I suggest you build each circuit and test it separately from the others.  Once you have working circuits, then you can combine them into a combo enclosure.  Careful planning of the physical layout of boards, pots, jacks and power is needed.  Look at some of the photos posted to get some great ideas.


    Thank you for getting me on my way, I think I rephrase my question:





    be a good amp together with a 1 x 12 cabinet to start with for testing and using the model t with a ratt and muff? I will build them all separate, but I need an amp (and speaker) to test it. I think most users start already with a commercial amp, but I like to do everything in kits to learn more.

    Great amount of information here, I already looked with a lot of envy at a few of the combo builds of others on the forum




    I am not that familiar with those.

    When i think of a small testing amp this is the kind of thing that personally comes to mind or something like it available in a combo. Maybe i am way off base with what you are trying to go for but if you already have a speaker cab i personally might be thinking about this from Das Musikding.

    I would not want to rely on the Sunn-T pedal as the only preamp. I suggest a good tube clean amp to start with and when run through a good clean mix the the Sunn-T pedal will accurately simulate that amp while letting the main amp handle the muscle while adding overall tone control and also give you more options when experimenting with other pedals. Additionally if you get an amp with a return send loop then you can also effectively bypass the amplifiers preamp and use the pedal preamp by inserting it in the loop. This will give you two ways to test the pedals. I hope that helps.


    Thank you for the advice. I do (did) not own a speaker. I found a Fender Chorus 100 close by for a great price, so bought this. Very clean channel and effect loop (or power in) so I hope this will be a good choice. I ordered the Model T and Rat from Musikding and I am going to build those. If they work I think I will add a Muff to it, but lets see.

    For now I only have one small problem, I cannot turn the volume past 2 or the house starts shaking. Luckily the amp is solid state so no need to push to volume up for a good sound.

    Again thanks for the advice and I will post clips and pictures as soon as I have a working setup.

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