Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Finished Customer Build (Elephuzz)

Hey Everyone,
    I finally finished the customer build I posted about a few weeks ago. This was a lot of fun for me. I love fuzz pedals so I put quite a bit of effort into it. I think you'll be able to tell by the pictures below. This pedal had a few of "first times" that went along with it. It was my first time; using water slide decals,using boards etched by me, using stranded wire, building for someone I didn't know (friend of a friend). The board is a Madbaens Sabertooth etched by me. I used the 3PDT designed by Cody on the MB forum, it makes everything easier. I had to substitute a couple of resistors for different values but it made no tonal difference on the effect. There is one more first on this pedal and it is the finishing process. So instead of just letting the spray paint dry I baked it in the oven for 30 min at 200 degrees. This hardens the paint and makes it more durable, It also does the same for the clear coat. The pedal is a clone of the Zvex Woolly Mammoth, so naturally I named it the Elephuzz. It has four controls; Phuzz, Pitch, Eq, and Bite. The pedal is quite dynamic and a ton of fun to mess around with. You can get everything from screaming high pitched fuzz tones, to deep muddy muck tones. Great pedal and a boat load of fun to play and build. Here are a few pictures of it.

So there you are...The Elephuzz. Hope you guys like it. I did a quick video and will try and get it up on the tubes later this week. If you have any questions let me know. Thanks again for reading.


PS. HUGE props to Cody for the 3pdt daughter board design and the water slide decals!!!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

How I fill a miss-drilled hole

Hey Guys,
     This is kind of a instructional on how i fill a miss drilled hole in a pedal enclosure. Recentley I ordered a bunch of enclosures that were "Oops" enclosures. They were either miss drilled or scratch and dent. They were a really good deal and I couldn't pass it up. So below should help you out if you have an "oops" drilled enclosure kicking around.

Supplies needed:
-J.B. Weld: I used this stuff. It's industrial strength and works really well. The Quick set should work just as good.

-Sanding Block and wet sand paper: I recommend using a block, it's easier on the hands. I used a few different grit ratings. I found that 150-220 grit worked best. I also just used the Harbor Freight wet/dry sand paper, nothing special.

This is the sanding block I used. The top un-clips and the sandpaper wraps around the bottom part. The the top clips back on and holds the sand paper in place. Once again Harbor Freight (I think), nothing special.

-Something to mix the J.B. Weld on and with. I used cardboard and a broken pick.
-Something to apply the J.B.Weld. Once again I just used cardboard.
-Toaster Oven (optional). I say optional because the J.B. Weld will dry and harden on its own. I use this to speed up the process and have it "cure" at a higher temp.

The Process:
1. Clean the enclosure and tape the backside (inside the enclosure) of the hole or holes you are needing to fill. I used a generic blue painters tape. Make sure it is on there pretty good. I had a piece fall of and it was not fun to try and clean up. So, just make sure the tape is securely on the inside of the enclosure. Like so:

2. Now that you have tapped off the holes It's time to mix the J.B.Weld. Get out the mixing surface, utensil, and applicator (cardboard). Then put equal parts liquid steel and hardener on the surface and begin mixing. Make sure the J.B. Weld is mixed all the way through before applying. What I do is let it sit for 2 min before going onto the next step.This allows the J.B. Weld to start to thicken. It makes filling larger holes easier. 

3. Now It's time to fill. Take the applicator and scoop a good amount of the mixture up. Then start to fill the holes, Try to use as little as possible, this will prevent lots of sanding later. My "technique" is to fill the hole the then level it out with the applicator. I also kind of "mound it in there so there is a convex shape to where the hole is. This helps ensure the hole is filled.

4. Let the J.B. Weld harden. You should let it sit over night at least before you even think of sanding it. This will ensure that it hardens fully and is not still soft in spots. To speed the process up I baked my enclosures at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 min. I read on a couple of automotive forums that some people do this so it will not remelt at lower temps. I'm not sure if remelting is even possible but, I am not very patient and I know this will make the product cure faster and stronger. So in the toaster oven for 20 min at 350. This is also a good idea for primer adhesion, If you bake your enclosures after you paint them you need to cure the J.B. Weld at a higher temp than you bake your paint at. It helps the primer adhere to the filler.

5.Time to sand! After you either let the enclosure sit to dry or bake it (make sure you let this cool down for at least an hour after baking) its time to sand the J.B. Weld flush. I tried a bunch of different sand paper grits. The most successful was a 220 grit wet sand. I sanded until it was flush then I used a 500 grit to "clean up" the surrounding area. I will scuff up the rest of the finish before I paint it but this worked well. As you can see from the pictures, There were a few air bubbles in the J. B. Weld that showed up when sanding. Ho Hum, you will need to fill those by repeating the process of if you don't care then continue forward with the painting process. I still need to fill other holes on these so I will probably fill the air bubble holes and repeat the process.

Before sanding / after baking

After Sanding
Photos showing air bubbles

 These enclosures need a little more work so like I said I will probably try filling the air bubbles and see how it goes.

     I hope this helps guys. I saw a couple of questions on the MB forum about "How do I fix a miss drilled hole??" So feel free to stea...um, adopt this method. If you have any tips for me PLEASE comment or email me. Thanks again for reading!