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New Member - Salutations - Looking for some help!


RandyMarsh

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Hi everyone! Been scanning these forums for a few days now just to get a general feel for the knowledge base and the general member attitude. I finally decided to post this topic after a discussion with a friend of mine.

 

After a while of talking my best friend and I eventually came upon the topic of distortion pedals and distortion sounds of the early to mid 90s. This lead to him telling me about "The Most Awesome Distortion Pedal ever" which was thrown away by some one cleaning out a garage who thought it was just junk or something like that. But I digress

 

So after searching the internet a little and looking around on my own I've decided to bring this to the experts because quite frankly I'm stumped, he's stumped and this mystery needs to be solved!

 

There are a couple things that make this pedal Unique according to my boy:

- No brand names, no markings on the case that he could remember.

- Bought at a pawnshop so no help there

- I've included a drawing that he made from memory here and will include that now:

http://i282.photobucket.com/albums/kk264/Superthrakx/bestpedalintheuniverse.jpg

-The actual stomp-pad of the pedal itself is quite unique. He did a poor job of illustrating it here but he claims it was a good sized strip of bent metal with rubber strips on it, in sort of an inverted C form with the button ( C+ ) sort of sitting on top of the actual trigger. I'm not sure what that type of switch is called, and I could be describing it horribly, but Hopefully it makes some sense.

 

 

So basically what I'm looking for is a random generic black distortion pedal from the mid-90s or earlier with four knobs, and a fairly unique stomp trigger. If anyone can help me out or even point me in the right direction that would be awesome! Thanks in advance for your time!

 

Also looking for a recommendation on a smaller foot pedal decimator to decrease the feedback on my Fender 2X12R, if anyone has any info on that?

Stan: Dad, I like being in a boy band, I think it's interesting.

Randy: Well there's plenty of interesting things you can do. Have you ever tried marijuana?

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thank you sir you are a scholar and a gentleman! I really do need an expert pedal-head with this one!

Stan: Dad, I like being in a boy band, I think it's interesting.

Randy: Well there's plenty of interesting things you can do. Have you ever tried marijuana?

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Hey, welcome to the GPF, Stan's Da- I mean, Mr. Marsh! :D:thu::cool:

 

Hi everyone! Been scanning these forums for a few days now just to get a general feel for the knowledge base and the general member attitude.

 

And that didn't put ya off?! ;):thu::D

 

After a while of talking my best friend and I eventually came upon the topic of distortion pedals and distortion sounds of the early to mid 90s. This lead to him telling me about "The Most Awesome Distortion Pedal ever" which was thrown away by some one cleaning out a garage who thought it was just junk or something like that. But I digress

 

So after searching the internet a little and looking around on my own I've decided to bring this to the experts because quite frankly I'm stumped, he's stumped and this mystery needs to be solved!

 

There are a couple things that make this pedal Unique according to my boy:

- No brand names, no markings on the case that he could remember.

- Bought at a pawnshop so no help there

- I've included a drawing that he made from memory here and will include that now:

 

(drawing)

 

-The actual stomp-pad of the pedal itself is quite unique. He did a poor job of illustrating it here but he claims it was a good sized strip of bent metal with rubber strips on it, in sort of an inverted C form with the button ( C+ ) sort of sitting on top of the actual trigger. I'm not sure what that type of switch is called, and I could be describing it horribly, but Hopefully it makes some sense.

 

 

So basically what I'm looking for is a random generic black distortion pedal from the mid-90s or earlier with four knobs, and a fairly unique stomp trigger.

 

Hmmmnn; various '80s, '90s, and even a few odd '70s pedals from Maxon, Ibanez (many Ibanezes WERE Maxons), Roland, DOD, Aria, and others come to mind; it's not a big stretch of the imagination that brand-name and/or model designations might have been removed, painted-over, or gotten tossed or lost along with a battery-cover or the like.

 

Could you give us a little more of a description of the type of sound and distortion this pedal had?

 

Is it possible that the four knobs/controls were arranged in a row, instead of four in four opposing corners of the control-area?

 

Is it also possible that the pedal had been re-painted, and was not originally black?

 

 

Also looking for a recommendation on a smaller foot pedal decimator to decrease the feedback on my Fender 2X12R, if anyone has any info on that?

 

By that, do you mean a noise-gate/noise-suppressor? And by "feedback", do you mean general background-noise/"static"/60-cycle-hum/"hiss"? Or whistling, squealing, ringing electronic noises, as in parasitic-oscillation? (Or do you mean acoustic-feedback where the sound from the speakers vibrates sympathetically, inducing additional sustain and the "blooming" of harmonic-overtones?)

 

If it's a noise-gate type device that you're after, are you looking to get rid of hum and noise in the background, or clamp-down on things for staccato heavy-distortion riffing with lots of palm-muted starts 'n' stops?

 

For the above, and with a small, small footprint, I think that you could do worse than a Guyatone SVm5 "Slow Volume" from their Mighty Micro series; while it's geared towards being a "Slow-Gear" style envelope-controlled auto-volume "swell" pedal (and is superior to the original Boss SG1 Slow Gear pedal), it is essentially a noise-gate and one with a LOT of fine-control. I have and use a Guyatone SV2 which the simpler pedal that the much more feature-laden SVm5 is based on, and it's excellent for both its intended "swell"-effect and noise-gate duties, so I would imagine it to be a very safe bet that the SVm5 is even better yet for either job. And it's tiny! :cool:

 

I also used to have a half-rack sized, rack-mount format Boss NS-50 Noise Suppressor, that tracked FLAWLESSLY; based on that experience, I would have high expectations of the smaller noise-suppressor pedals from Boss, of which I've had some but little experience.

 

Anyways, there's a couple of places to start looking for a noise-gate.

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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I'd go with Caevan's suggestion that it looks a lot like an older Maxon/Ibanez pedal, especially with that slightly offset AC-jack. The -9 series had their jacks centered, like Boss pedals, but the older -808 series had offset jacks like that. Any recollection as to whether the actual switch was metal or plastic? A flat metal plate would suggest Maxon/Ibanez, whereas a chunk of black plastic could be DOD.

"Monsters are real, and Ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win." Stephen King

 

http://www.novparolo.com

 

https://thewinstonpsmithproject.bandcamp.com

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The Big Muff is the only one I can find with any sort of inverted C LOL!! But it is a 3 knob and not black.

 

http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d42/Gypsyfingers/3751446_f260.jpg

 

Maybe someone painted it black and covered/removed the logo.

 

http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d42/Gypsyfingers/bn5.jpghttp://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d42/Gypsyfingers/hughesandkettnerwarpfactor.jpghttp://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d42/Gypsyfingers/images-1-1.jpg

This one has the 4 knobs in that configuration.

http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d42/Gypsyfingers/images-3.jpg

 

http://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d42/Gypsyfingers/watermarkphp.jpghttp://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d42/Gypsyfingers/d6WgjgWMKGrHqQH-CwEs9br3it0BLYMg34q_35.jpghttp://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d42/Gypsyfingers/135U-6123_front.jpghttp://i32.photobucket.com/albums/d42/Gypsyfingers/Unknown-1.jpg

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you guys are awesome! thanks for the input! I will ask my friend the various questions that you guys have put to me.

 

As to the actual switch itself- the foot switch wasn't like any of these brilliant pictures. It was more of almost a metal strip spring with rubber grips along the top. I know I'm not explaining it very well, but try and look at the two top pictures. The foot switch arches over the actual switch.

@fumbly - the muffster isn't the type of inverted C I meant lol, more that the actual "hit-it-with-your-foot" part is a metal arch over the actual switch!

@WP -Like I said I prolly described it terribly but your suggestions are of course welcome. This is gonna be a bit of a quest I suspect.

 

As for the range of the pedal, He told me that its range was its best feature. You could get from a 90s style grunge, to a nice warm bluesy fuzz, to apparently a super hardcore distortion with a lot of chunk to it that you could use for metal solo or rhythm.

 

I'll ask him about the possibility of being painted/having the logo removed/worn off, and Ill ask him to verify the off-set jack, and look over some dod pedals but he seems pretty sure that it's no real recognizable brand.

 

@Caevan- For my 2x12R amp I'm dealing with a minimal buzz/hissing from the amp that can be fixed easy with some new cords. My main problem with it comes from hitting the second button on my foot switch to go into the "more drive" channel. It produces a really nice chunky full body distortion really unlike any of the other sounds I've gotten out of the amp, but I can only turn it up to like 3.4 or so and the second I stop playing it rings and whistles, squeals and oscillates my ears really really painfully. I need to turn up without getting that feedback the second I stop playing. I have a friend with a really nice 8x12 stack that was having the same problem in his jam pad- not being able to turn up to match the other guitarist because he squealed and squeaked too hard the whole time. Anyway he fixed it with a pretty nice rack-mount decimater, so I kinda figured it would be the same principle only smaller. I didn't know if it was actually a gate or a suppressor or anything.

I'm a long time guitar player just starting in on my first electric since I was like 12. I've been playing acoustic because I never had enough money to get any decent gear. Eventually I got myself setup with my fender 2X12R and a Ibanez S series. Now I'm looking to get started on relearning pedals and other ways to influence my sounds than the standard reverb, EQ, chorus, wah, and distortion i hear kids messing around with. Oh and yeah I like that chunky rhythm sound from palm muting and that side of it :)

 

Whew! Sorry to ramble on lol i got a little high and forgot what I was doing hehe

Thanks for all your help guys I'll post again later on!

Stan: Dad, I like being in a boy band, I think it's interesting.

Randy: Well there's plenty of interesting things you can do. Have you ever tried marijuana?

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I notice that you keep referring to your friend's descriptions...I take it you've not seen nor heard the device yourself.

 

Rather than add, ineffectively, to the guessing, I've a couple suggestions.

Look inside the device for any clues.

Maybe get a photo, though if it's truly lacking exterior markings, that may not help much.

d=halfnote
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randy, the squealing you describe sounds like either bad solder, a loose ground connection, or possibly even just filth.

 

pull the knobs off, make sure all the pots, jacks, etc are tight.

 

clean with a PLASTIC SAFE CONTACT CLEANER all the pots, jacks etc.

 

if the amp has an effects loop, jumper it with a cord and see if the prob goes away, if it does, spray some cleaner in the holes and stuff a cord in and out of there about 10 times, then repeat.

 

the behringer i gave my little brother todd acts like that if ya operate any of the switches on the front of the amp without turning the volume down first. the prob is that the gain is so high on some amps that when you do ANYTHING that can trigger an oscillation, it will, and will become a feedback loop as you describe. again, make sure everything is clean and tite, and hollah back, yo.

 

btw...the description of the pedal sounds suspiciously like a modified arion to me. sounds like someone made an actuator for a broken footswitch...could be a homebrew, too, or the guy could be pulling your leg with yet another "holy grail" distortion pedal story...

 

i remember in a stompbox special issue of gp about 20 years ago, someone had re-housed a tube-screamer style circuit in a band aid box and called it some crazy name...forget what tho, i don't smoke enough pot to remember anymore.

 

hell, i don't SMOKE pot anymore, come to think of it. sad. lol.

 

good luck man!

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@D - yeah this is a mythical beast. Much like a unicorn, however I wanted to eliminate everything it might be before I gave up.

I'm operating off of a 15 year old drug addled memory to be honest, and we could come up with nothing at all in the end.

The search is the thrill for me, along with learning some new things I didn't know about older pedals, and in general kickin it with some cool older dudes like me :)

@Astring- I'm working on trying to get him to rack his brain and really give it some thought. We're both pretty busy atm with real life stuff so I'll just have to update the thread as time permits.

@pink- Its just a two and a half channel solid state Fender amp.

The overdrive half channel just pushes the gain so high that it sounds really awesome when you play with it but the second you stop playing it squeals your ears off. I will clean the crap of it the sucker tomorrow though and see if that helps any. Makes sense that it would.

The pedal very well could have been a homebrew or modified one. This is easily a search with no end, but I have to try. This same guy has some really interesting stuff I've never really seen anywhere else. Like a Marlboro multi-effects processor with chorus,reverb,and flanger maybe? Never heard of it, but it's in dire need of rewiring and fixing. This strange piece of gear has really made me start thinking about homebrews or obscure/rare pedals and building things from the ground up, modifying my sound the way I want. For example, and this might require a new thread but I picked up a couple of twelve inch speakers with the intention of building a box for them and trying to find a power amp I can run that amp and my existing fender 2x12R to have a multipositional 4X12 sort of frankenstien cabinet? Is that even an option? Am I even making sense? Is there any answer to my burning questions? Tune in to the next post to find out!

Stan: Dad, I like being in a boy band, I think it's interesting.

Randy: Well there's plenty of interesting things you can do. Have you ever tried marijuana?

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EXCELLENT advice from pjp;

 

I'll add that what you want for control-pots is tuner/control cleaner; it's OK if it says it's for "black and white TV" on the can, you don't need to spend any more for "color" for our pots and switches. But yes, for pretty much everything else, such as jacks, you do want contact-cleaner. (NEVER WD-40, either! Ruins pots, attracts dust and dirt and hair and grime and arc.)

 

 

It also sometimes helps in such squealing feedback cases to simply roll back the treble or reverb (or maybe even the pre-gain, if applicable) just a little, backing-off just until the squealing goes away. I've noticed that lower-cost amps (especially budget solid-state amps) and pedals and such tend to be a little prone to this sort of touchy treble sensitivity when the gain's turned-up.

 

 

On the matter of Arion distortion pedals: Arions had and have four knobs arranged in a row, and not spread-out in an "X"-pattern. Plus the cheap flimsy plastic enclosure-box of an Arion is pretty noticeably cheap flimsy plastic, you'd likely recall that as a detail.

 

Was the entire top of the enclosure flat, as shown in your drawing? Or was it divided up into different levels?

 

 

I'm inclined to think that this black box might have been a Maxon or Ibanez, or a '70s DOD.

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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or a hallucination....from cat pee.

 

 

Hahhahhaahhahhaahh!! :D

 

___. http://www.dvdverdict.com/images/reviewpics/sp1203.jpg

 

 

My one experience with cat pee on effects-pedals and their control-pots

left ME rather p!$$3d-0ff... !! :mad::evil:

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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dude...one day i walk into ron's guitars in groton ct...oh, 9-ish.

the gibson rep is there, and one of the things i notice is a beautiful red gibson double neck. so i go to my salesman kyo, and say "how much is THAT thing?"...he goes "jimi page!! step right this way!!"

 

i tried it. got hooked. it was cool...back then i was a machinist, and had enough disposable income to afford all kindsa crazy stuff, from a mint 52 telecaster to a showcase edition custom shop les paul custom custom.

 

so i say...how much? he goes to check with the rep, and tells me ron's gonna kill him, but he's gotta price i can't refuse.

 

i said how much?

 

he goes 1250 out the door with a hardshell case...that's 16 dollars over invoice.

 

so of course, i jumped on it like a junkie into a barrel full of free heroin.

 

i put cash on it, a couple weeks later, picked it up and brought it home.

 

then i found out why it was so cheap...when i opened the case, there was the unmistakable aroma of cat pee.

 

turns out, the rep had left the case open. his cat peed in it.

no way, no thing, no way, no how, to get the stench out. and the worst part? the smell got thru the nitrocellulose finish of the guitar, so the GUITAR STUNK LIKE CAT PEE, TOO!!!

 

ended up in the end trading it off to a guy for a boss me5 and an ibanez with a floyd that used to belong to hiro from soundgarden (who also scratched the living hell out of the back of my brand new sg...another story for another day.)

 

wiah i still had it, maybe by now the stench would be gone..lol

 

http://ph1landrews.com/jp/983x666pinkporkdblnck.jpg

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Welcome aboard RandyMarsh...if your friend has a camera and still has the pedal, have him send you a pic you can post of the ouside and with the back cover off...these guys will figure out what it is or if it is a home diy job...good luck with your quest...
Take care, Larryz
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Jumping in a little late here, but the description of the switch cover reminded me of another 80's brand -Aria, easily mis-read as Arion. Aria made their pedals a little bigger than the standard Boss/Ibanez pedals, but you could still squeeze one into a Boss pedalboard, with a little effort. Aria also issued this line of pedals under a bunch of names, including Locobox, and Studio Series. They were black, metal boxes, with labels that peeled off pretty easily. Anyhow, here's a look - Locobox

"Monsters are real, and Ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win." Stephen King

 

http://www.novparolo.com

 

https://thewinstonpsmithproject.bandcamp.com

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Yhup, like I said, various '80s, '90s, and even a few odd '70s pedals from Maxon, Ibanez (many Ibanezes WERE Maxons), Roland, DOD, Aria, and others come to mind.

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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Any chance it was a custom build?

 

That's what I was thinkin' due to the "no brand name" on it clue. I'm no pedal-head either, but I HAVE known some clever guys who could build their own stuff. One of the best sounding stereos I ever heard was hand made by a guy I knew. Made it from parts of several different recievers and amps.

Whitefang

I started out with NOTHING...and I still have most of it left!
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To me it is the depiction of the 4 knob placement that made me think home made at first. I think that many of the commonly available boxes DIY guys buy are configured like this. If you look at some of the boutique pedals they have this arrangement.

 

However, the unusual switch does not sound like a commercially available switch.

 

This is really confusing because I have looked and looked online and dredged the sediment in my brain....can't come up with anything.

 

The other idea I had was, could it be a modded pedal? Maybe an Ibanez style switch that someone put rubber strips on or even somehow fit a push button switch into the existing original switch.......like Keeley does on some pedals....

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Hmmm...

No offence intended but basically this is investigating a pedal that impressed someone, about whose auditory judgement we've no idea, with its terrific qualities many, many years ago & which may've looked like sketchy drawing but, in any case, had no markings &, per what evidence does seem to exist, was prolly not a mass produced item...

:whistle:

...Is it too late to revive GP's "Pawn Shop Prize" ?

I think it may've been one the items stolen from Hendrix's NYC apt following his unfortunate demise...

d=halfnote
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