Six shooter

I bring you…6 Shooter! Not really a stompbox but one of the biggest and laborious things I’ve built so far!

It’s a 2 unit rack which has 6 different guitar effect circuits inside. This whole rack is meant to be used with a Rocktron Patchmate Loop 8 rack switcher+midi controller so each effect has a separate in/out jack on the back. There’s also an option for 7th effect on the back panel.

Here’s a short explanation of what’s going on inside and a few notes of the mods I made:

1. Ross comp with variable recovery and treble mods.
Thanks to Mark Hammer for his ideas on how to modify this classic compressor. Instead of using an spdt switch to choose different recovery times I replaced the 150k resistor with a 150k pot in series with a 10k resistor. Actually I didn’t have a 150k pot(!) so I used a 250k pot+430k across + 10k in series. This new pot is labeled “attack” because people are used to it instead of “variable recovery time”. To increase treble I lowered the 220pF cap on the input to 100pf and put a 1nF cap in parallel with the 10k output resistor.

2. 5E3 tweed-style preamp with cascaded JFET gain stages.
Playing through this brings a smile on your face :) It sounds very much like my DIY 5E3 tube amp. Loose bass and fuzzy gain, I love it. Stacks well with other circuits too. Toggle switch is for even more gain for those ripping Neil Young tones.

3. Plexi style JFET preamp
I have built a few of these in the past and it just nails those old low/mid gain marshall sounds. Toggle switch is for more bass if you ever happen to play at bedroom levels…

4. Screamer
Probably the most cloned pedal in existence. If you want to try the mods I used, here you go:
4.7k → 1k
51k → 10k
47nF → 220nF
500k log → 1M log
add 1n4148 for asymmetric clipping.
Result: much more gain and more low end, singing solo tones

5. Echo
My trusted PT2399 delay (Original circuit design by Ian Maltby (aka Slacker @ diystompboxes -forum.), it makes everything sound better. Even my playing! Soundclips >here<.

6. Boost
A mosfet booster designed by Jack Orman. It delivers. My favorite all-around booster.

There’s a lot going on inside the box so I used shielded high quality cable (Tasker) for ins/outs to keep noise at minimum. External PSU is a 12V 800mA wall wart (old printer psu) from flea market. For clean power I used a 9V 1A regulator inside the rack with a lot of filtering so no noise should creep in from there either.

Looking back at this project I have to say doing the enclosure was the hardest part. I drilled all those holes with a hand drill you know! (Next tool I’m gonna buy is a drill press). Front and back panels were printed using a UV-flatbed printer.

Building a project like this out of premium parts isn’t cheap…but the beauty of DIY is you can use the best parts available if you choose! Big companies use cheapest parts, manufacture in China and try to save on everything. Save the world and build something that lasts!

This rack has great sounding guitar tools and will last for years and years. Daddy is proud.