Build idea for fuzz...

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SadFuzz
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Build idea for fuzz...

Post by SadFuzz » Fri Nov 30, 2018 3:47 pm

Recently thought a good way to beat the big muff mid scoop would be to build one without the tone circuit and just volume/fuzz.
Thoughts? Anybody tried this?
If everything is possible, why do anything? -J Mascis

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oid
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Re: Build idea for fuzz...

Post by oid » Fri Nov 30, 2018 4:38 pm

Sure, tone bypass is a fairly common mod for the muffs, and personally I find them better without that tone control.
Logic gates based on billiard-ball computer designs have also been made to operate using live soldier crabs of the species Mictyris guinotae in place of the billiard balls.

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Re: Build idea for fuzz...

Post by Shadoweclipse13 » Sat Dec 01, 2018 12:02 am

Is that what the Tone Wicker version is? What would be neat is to make an ultimate Big Muff, with two different tone stack types, and a bypass with no tone stack.
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http://www.offsetguitars.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=104282&p=1438384#p1438384

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oid
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Re: Build idea for fuzz...

Post by oid » Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:58 am

No idea about the Tone Wicker version, but I have seen a few boutique muffs over the years with either no tone control or a tone bypass.

Evolution of the Muff has a fair amount of tone control tweaks from various historic mods and early clones, parts 3 and 4 mostly, but there are a few clones in parts 1 and 2 as well. There is even an version that removes the mid scoop from the tone control that might be right up SadFuzz's alley.

Years ago I replaced the tone control with one that has a better sweep with more variation and could give mid boost or scoop. Perhaps I should dig that out, it is great in an amp as well, but like the BigMuff tone control, eats a fair amount of gain. Greatly increased the range of the Muff and does not have that sound which I have grown to kinda hate. It is the most versatile single knob tone control I have managed to come up with.
Logic gates based on billiard-ball computer designs have also been made to operate using live soldier crabs of the species Mictyris guinotae in place of the billiard balls.

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Re: Build idea for fuzz...

Post by Harmoncj » Sat Dec 01, 2018 9:58 am

oid wrote:
Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:58 am
No idea about the Tone Wicker version, but I have seen a few boutique muffs over the years with either no tone control or a tone bypass.

Evolution of the Muff has a fair amount of tone control tweaks from various historic mods and early clones, parts 3 and 4 mostly, but there are a few clones in parts 1 and 2 as well. There is even an version that removes the mid scoop from the tone control that might be right up SadFuzz's alley.

Years ago I replaced the tone control with one that has a better sweep with more variation and could give mid boost or scoop. Perhaps I should dig that out, it is great in an amp as well, but like the BigMuff tone control, eats a fair amount of gain. Greatly increased the range of the Muff and does not have that sound which I have grown to kinda hate. It is the most versatile single knob tone control I have managed to come up with.
I love that website.

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Telemnemonics
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Re: Build idea for fuzz...

Post by Telemnemonics » Sat Dec 01, 2018 10:31 am

oid wrote:
Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:58 am
......
Years ago I replaced the tone control with one that has a better sweep with more variation and could give mid boost or scoop. Perhaps I should dig that out, it is great in an amp as well, but like the BigMuff tone control, eats a fair amount of gain. Greatly increased the range of the Muff and does not have that sound which I have grown to kinda hate. It is the most versatile single knob tone control I have managed to come up with.
That sounds cool, is it only found in Muffs you built?
Is it easy to mod a stock or clone Muff?

I don't mind losing some gain, and I'm kinda baffled as to why boutique and aftermarket muffs seem to have more gain than vintage examples.
Maybe not more gain but different pot sweep that needs to be set low and still gives a huge boost.

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oid
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Re: Build idea for fuzz...

Post by oid » Sat Dec 01, 2018 4:45 pm

Telemnemonics wrote:
Sat Dec 01, 2018 10:31 am
That sounds cool, is it only found in Muffs you built?
Is it easy to mod a stock or clone Muff?
As far as I know it is only found in one Big Muff ever, but it is unlikely that I am the only one to have ever come up with this circuit and someone else may have put one in a Muff. I may have needed to increase the post tone control gain to retain the ability to drive an amp, but I do not recall, probably not. Modding is not hard, just remove the two resistors and two capacitors of the tone control from the PCB and mount the new parts on the new pot. Building a muff from scratch is not hard either, and not a bad project for a beginning, easy to build on perf board. If you look at the schematics on the page I liked above, those schematics are also the perf board layout, just drop everything onto the board just as drawn in the schematic, only gotcha is the transistor pinouts which is hardly an issue and it is an easy enough circuit that one can test after each stage of the distortion is built so problems are found early and are simple to isolate. There are also a few PCBs out there for those who do not want to venture down the perf board path.
I don't mind losing some gain, and I'm kinda baffled as to why boutique and aftermarket muffs seem to have more gain than vintage examples.
Maybe not more gain but different pot sweep that needs to be set low and still gives a huge boost.
A few of the vintage models of Muff used audio taper pots which will make them seem to have lower gain and smoother taper, but most have linear taper which give greater control over the distorted tones at the expense of the clean to low gain tones, it is a distortion after all. Your experience with vintage may just always end up on those ones with audio taper pots. Also resistors age and drift in value, pot tracks wear, and component tolerances are much better, especially in transistors whose gain use to vary over a wide range but are now quite close to data sheet specs. Switching the sustain and output pots to audio taper would probably be all you would need to do to get the control you desire but the transistors could be swapped for lower gain varieties as well.

The Big Muff is a fairly simple circuit and very tolerant of ignorant component swaps, perfect platform for just seeing what happens and experimenting.

muff guts breaks it down into its basic building blocks and goes into more depth on function than an experimenter will need. The first section is all that is really needed to get started and finding out what happens.
Logic gates based on billiard-ball computer designs have also been made to operate using live soldier crabs of the species Mictyris guinotae in place of the billiard balls.

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rumfoord
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Re: Build idea for fuzz...

Post by rumfoord » Sun Dec 02, 2018 4:52 am

TH Audio used to sell a pedal / kit that (I think) had sockets all over the place and maybe came with all kinds of alternative components. It was based on a Russian Big Muff (small font? again, I think) and called something like the "3.14159"—as in, an approximation of pi.

Anyway, I wonder if it'd be worth emailing him? I think his current pedal, The Grump, is an evolution of the socketed and non-socketed version of a muff variant. And his Swamp Gass Fuzz has socketed transistors and trim pots inside (and is a fuzz face variant, I believe).

http://thaudio.com/the-grump-bass-fuzz/
http://thaudio.com/swamp-gas-fuzz/

[Oh, also, yes, I think the tone wicker pedal is an NYC muff with a tone lift switch and a tone wicker switch.]

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Re: Build idea for fuzz...

Post by fuzzjunkie » Tue Dec 04, 2018 10:34 am

I will recommend checking out a Buzzaround or Dizzytone clone if you want a Big Muff without a tone control.

These pedals basically sit between a Tone Bender and a Big Muff on the gain range and they have a bias control that, while not a tone control, will still allow for some tone shaping. The Dizzytone is the slightly more aggressive of the two.

They can go from fuzzy Overdrive to crunch to singing sustain. They aren’t as creamy as a Big Muff, because they aren’t as compressed from the extra diode distortion stage and mid scooping tone sections. (There is only one diode section instead of two) But they also cut through better and chords have better definition because of that same thing.

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Telemnemonics
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Re: Build idea for fuzz...

Post by Telemnemonics » Sat Dec 08, 2018 9:35 am

oid wrote:
Sat Dec 01, 2018 4:45 pm
Telemnemonics wrote:
Sat Dec 01, 2018 10:31 am
That sounds cool, is it only found in Muffs you built?
Is it easy to mod a stock or clone Muff?
As far as I know it is only found in one Big Muff ever, but it is unlikely that I am the only one to have ever come up with this circuit and someone else may have put one in a Muff. I may have needed to increase the post tone control gain to retain the ability to drive an amp, but I do not recall, probably not. Modding is not hard, just remove the two resistors and two capacitors of the tone control from the PCB and mount the new parts on the new pot. Building a muff from scratch is not hard either, and not a bad project for a beginning, easy to build on perf board. If you look at the schematics on the page I liked above, those schematics are also the perf board layout, just drop everything onto the board just as drawn in the schematic, only gotcha is the transistor pinouts which is hardly an issue and it is an easy enough circuit that one can test after each stage of the distortion is built so problems are found early and are simple to isolate. There are also a few PCBs out there for those who do not want to venture down the perf board path.
I don't mind losing some gain, and I'm kinda baffled as to why boutique and aftermarket muffs seem to have more gain than vintage examples.
Maybe not more gain but different pot sweep that needs to be set low and still gives a huge boost.
A few of the vintage models of Muff used audio taper pots which will make them seem to have lower gain and smoother taper, but most have linear taper which give greater control over the distorted tones at the expense of the clean to low gain tones, it is a distortion after all. Your experience with vintage may just always end up on those ones with audio taper pots. Also resistors age and drift in value, pot tracks wear, and component tolerances are much better, especially in transistors whose gain use to vary over a wide range but are now quite close to data sheet specs. Switching the sustain and output pots to audio taper would probably be all you would need to do to get the control you desire but the transistors could be swapped for lower gain varieties as well.

The Big Muff is a fairly simple circuit and very tolerant of ignorant component swaps, perfect platform for just seeing what happens and experimenting.

muff guts breaks it down into its basic building blocks and goes into more depth on function than an experimenter will need. The first section is all that is really needed to get started and finding out what happens.
Oh hey thanks for the info!
Still learning to navigate here and I'd missed your response, just now discovered the notifications drop down...

I'd guess one of my low value huge board black Russians would be good for modding, if i ever get to the pedal modding stage.
I also bought a bunch of components and perf board when radio Shack was selling out of business, but the stuff sits as I have so many unfinished projects and diminishing time and energy to complete them.
I have a Chicago Stomp Works Moose Pie (violet ram) that need the sustain and vol down around 9ocklock to get a sizable boost.
That has a more cramped board though, maybe I'll look into it since the value is pretty darn low and it fits a board well.

One thing I'm unable to understand is how widely the open vs narrow pinched sound of a muff seems to vary.
I have some Blackout Blunderbuss and Musket that maintain a nice open sound, where the Large Beaver has this narrow closed in feel and tone on all eq settings.
The Musket seems to do pretty much anything I want for now, yet the circuit has so much range withing its simplicity.

Right now I'm heading down the Bender rabbit hole and already broke, so...

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