Category: DIY

Madbean Total Recall

I got this populated PCB from a Madbean forum member and buddy of mine Jason. Hes not a delay fan and he just did not meld with pedal. I really wanted to build one and the PCBs were out of stock at the time so I swooped up on it. Jason did a great job populating the PCB and used all high quality parts. He had 4 MN3008 BBDs mounted with the supplied daughter board. I decided to ditch them and go with the Xive MN3005 BBDs I got in the Cabintech group buy.


I was introduced to the band The Whores and fell in love with the crunch & deep bass sound the guitarist gets. After a bit of searching I found that he used a ZVex Mastotron early on and layered it with other fuzz/dirt. I never built a Mastotron and thought I would give it a go. I used effectlayout’s layout of it.

Tested good, now I just need to get some artwork together and box it.

Smashing Sounds

Half Distortion 2 and half IC Big Muff. I took the idea from MadebyMike’s Dreambox and kept it simple. I used the 77′ OpAmp BMP layout from effectslayouts and the DST2 from Madbean forum member Zombie Sonore.

Whether or not you like Smashing Pumpkins, this combination is a great distortion pedal. Looking forward to smacking this on my pedal board.

Drive Dirty – SS/BS Mini

Small Sound / Big Sound makes so awesome, gritty pedals and I love his designs. I never got a chance to play any of his pedals but always lusted over the demo videos. The Mini was posted on FSB and Brian (Owner of SS/BS) added some advice on the schematic to say the least. My buddy David over at Effectslayouts made the etchable layout I used in this build.

SS/BS describes the mini as a fuzzy JFET overdrive and I think that’s a very accurate description of this pedal. It can go from sounds of a nice tube like OD to a failing tube OD to straight up fuzz. The Bias knob can help get it to tight sounding to a velcro/spuddering sound.

I did a reverse etch and made it look a bit “dirty” to match its sound. I am not 100% sold on these knobs and might swap them out.

I used the Grind Customs FX optical bypass  Lumen

Twin Peaks Tap Tremolo

I finished this up a couple months ago and realized I never posted it to my blog. This is a circuit layout from David Rolo who hangs out over at Madbean Forums. This tremolo can go from a standard harmonic tremolo to a syncopated chopped up rhythm machine.

Here is so more info taken from David’s site:

4 Tremolo modes:

  • Black Face (regular volume modulation)
  • Brown Face (modulation between bass and treble, like the Harmonic Vibrato in old Fender Brown Face amps)
  • Bass modulation only, with fix treble
  • Treble modulation only, with fix bass

8 different wave shapes provided by the powerful TAPLFO chip:
Sawtooth, Reversed Sawtooth, Square, Triangle, Sine, Lump, Reverse Lump, Random

Rate, Division, Tone, Depth, Shape, Shape distortion & Tap Tempo

I programmed my own TAPLFO pic for this project.

(For some reason I could not get my iPhone to take a photo with the right white balance with this red paint. Hence the ugly green color in the first photo)

Looks like for the last picture I need to align that switch so it doesn’t ground out on the enclosure. lol

GCFX SuperNature

The Grind Customs FX SuperNature PCB is a clone of a 1976 Coloursound Jumbo Tonebender at its finest.

It has the girth of a Muff (shares quite a bit of the same topology), but with the fizz of the older fuzzes like the MkII.


This PCB was actually populated by Juansolo and sent to me to play with. I could not put it down! It sounds awesome with my Gibson SG ran into my Bassman 135 2X15 cab… earth shattering.

Gut shot: Used the Grind Customs Lumen optical bypass.

First Transmission

It’s been awhile since I built anything as the heat here in Fresno is killing me in the garage. I figured boxing up an effect that I had populated already would be a good way to get back up and going again. This is a Gristleizer on a MusicPCB board. I populated it about 4 months ago and unfortunately just never did anything with it. I really liked the effect but did not have a real “need” to get it boxed. I recently ran across a few YouTube videos on it and got excited about it once again…to the bench to box it up. I am so glad I boxed this up as much fun was had with my Juno-60 and this thing!

Since this circuit was made popular by the band Throbbing Gristle ( Genesis P-Orridge), but I decided to go with artwork from Psychic TV era. I did a reverse etch of the artwork pulled from Google Images and meshed them together in Photoshop. I’m a little bummed that I burned the paint a bit when wet sanding on the bottom left hand corner… oh well.

I used a Grind Customs FX Lumen optical switch for bypass and tried to keep it as clean as possible.