what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenting?

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what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenting?

Postby tabbycat » 28 Apr 2014, 21:54

which is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenting?

hey freestompers,

had a good plough through the Stompbox Building / Stompbox Builder's FAQs & How To's / Electronics Tools threads and couldn't find anything on breadboards. maybe it seems like a too simple thing to ask about, but to the newbie eye there are a few different types and sizes and layouts out there and when you have't used one before it's impossible to make a reasoned decision for or against any. as i only want it to experiment with the layouts and ideas here i thought that i would as you what you use. and it can go into the index so generations of newbies-to-come don't have to embarrass themselves by asking the same question. it's charity work, am just doing my bit.

basically i'm beginners to intermediate level, only ever built a superfuzz clone (which was a damn insane vertical learning curve for a beginners project, but i'm stupidly ambitious like that. and now i am psychocandy, which was the dream). and wouldn't have even dared without the help of some of the good members of this forum. but i want to go beyond slavishly building from plans (lego for grown-ups) to basic experimenting. but have never even touched or seen a breadboard in real life.

so which kind of layout is best? how many holes? is bigger better (more room to improvise) or more complicated (literally more room for error)?

many thanks in advance for all your wise suggestions, links, and support.

tabby.
"be a good animal, true to your instincts" (d.h. lawrence).
"there is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion" (francis bacon).
"ni dieu ni maître" (anarchist slogan).
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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby DrNomis » 29 Apr 2014, 00:03

Here's a pic of one of my two breadboards, this one is the one I tend to use most as it has the rows of 5 component holes arranged horizontally, I can't seem to remember how much it cost me, probably about $20.00 at the most, I tend to use this one as it makes it easy to build circuits with 8-Pin ICs, the circuit built on it is a basic Fuzz Face circuit and I was using it to test a couple of NKT275 Germanium Transistors I'd bought off eBay.... :thumbsup


It seems to do the job well enough.... :thumbsup
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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby John Coloccia » 29 Apr 2014, 17:30

I have a bunch here, but the one I use most is RH74 here:
http://www.philmore-datak.com/mc/Page%20245.pdf

I drilled holes on the vertical mountain plate to accept standard pots, in addition to the mounting locations that are already there. I have a separate project box with 1/4" jacks that performs the true bypass, LED and allows me to select between "off", battery, boss adapter or banana plugs for power. The banana plugs are particularly convenient for measuring the total current draw.

I like having big board. I can prototype in sections, connect various sections for quick A/B comparisons. At some point, I'm going to make a couple of development stations with proper power supplies, dedicated meters, quick connects for pots, etc etc. I never seem to get around to it.

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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby John Coloccia » 29 Apr 2014, 20:17

BTW, I should mention that I also made jumpers with mini alligator clips on them for super-fast pot changes. Little things like that make everything move a lot quicker and more reliably.
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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby gjcamann » 29 Apr 2014, 21:47

^^^ Brilliant.

You can get breadboards from tayda, don't the the super tiny ones, they're too small. you want something about 6" long to start with.

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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby Dr Tony Balls » 30 Apr 2014, 14:42

This is a question ive had for some time, as well. Is there like a Cadillac of breadboards? Like one manufacturer that just makes the best ones? Ive had several generic ones and some are good and some are bad. I'd like to have one thats awesome and will last me a while.
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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby Nocentelli » 30 Apr 2014, 17:27

You can make a fairly robust breadboard system from discarded stuff for very cheap while you try it out for a while. I use a smallish breadboard, like the smallest one from the pdf above. It's plenty big enough for anything up to maybe four 16 pin DILs and a sprinkle of transistors. There are four continuous power rails in two pairs, each split in the middle (which i think is quite common) so you can run a ground or two AND bipolar supply along the whole circuit.

Mine is blu-tacked down to an old wine box, alnongside an in/out/power box made from an old mis-drilled 1590B enclosure.

IMG_20140430_171219.jpg


I've also made a few "modules" :blackeye over the years, small tuppperware boxes with holes drilled to hold switches, send return or expression jack inputs, or pots. I just blu-tack these onto the wine box near where they need to connect: The pots and jacks all have solid core wire on the lugs, and i seem to have amassed about two or three of every common pot value and taper over the years (usually pulled from old builds, or using crappy pots i bought by mistake, e.g. long shaft or splined) so i can just root through the box and try out any value i fancy. I also have loads of old switches of most varieties.

IMG_20140430_175025.jpg


My next plan is to buy another two boards when this one wears out (they're like four quid each and they do wear out with use and need replacing when the connections go flaky) and place them side by side for double the capacity. I'm also making a couple of tupperware modules with rotary switches for capacitor selector and resistor selector switch boxes so i can hook them up at crucial spots in a circuit and flip through twelve different values and hear the result immediately without the delay of unplugging and plugging in the new value part.
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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby Nocentelli » 30 Apr 2014, 18:11

Oh, and here's mkI, made about five years ago when i breadboarded my first circuit. Even more Heath Robinson than the one above, but still going strong.

IMG_20140430_180812.jpg
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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby gjcamann » 30 Apr 2014, 19:39

Dr Tony Balls wrote:This is a question ive had for some time, as well. Is there like a Cadillac of breadboards? Like one manufacturer that just makes the best ones? Ive had several generic ones and some are good and some are bad. I'd like to have one thats awesome and will last me a while.


I believe the 3M ones are the cadillac. At work we use Global Specialties and they are a big step up from the no-name ebay rubbish that I use for pedals :o . I believe you get what you pay for with these (unlike botique fuzz pedals).
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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby Dr Tony Balls » 30 Apr 2014, 21:14

gjcamann wrote:
Dr Tony Balls wrote:This is a question ive had for some time, as well. Is there like a Cadillac of breadboards? Like one manufacturer that just makes the best ones? Ive had several generic ones and some are good and some are bad. I'd like to have one thats awesome and will last me a while.


I believe the 3M ones are the cadillac. At work we use Global Specialties and they are a big step up from the no-name ebay rubbish that I use for pedals :o . I believe you get what you pay for with these (unlike botique fuzz pedals).



THANKS! Ill upgrade my shit soon.
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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby tabbycat » 30 Apr 2014, 22:00

Many thanks to all for your contributions. Have dedicated a not-inconsiderable amount of time to making up my mind as it seems to be a fundamental tool of the trade.

Have factored all thoughts and suggestions in and decided on this little beauty from the land of the rising sun. Not a mail-order Thai bride (link safe to click) but an 830 point breadboard with power supply and 65 jumpers, all posted to my fall-out bunker for less than five guineas old money (that’s about 6 million euros).
MB102 MB-102 830 Solderless PCB Breadboard+ Power Supply Module+ 65 Jumper Wires: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/MB102-MB-102-830-Solderless-PCB-Breadboard-Power-Supply-Module-65-Jumper-Wires-/390798841768?pt=UK_BOI_Electrical_Components_Supplies_ET&hash=item5afd6d17a8
I chose it for its goldilocks properties. Not too big/small, complicated/retarded-looking, expensive/rubbish. And because I saw it in Nocentelli’s picture. Judging by the standard of craftsmanship on display there I get the feeling that he must have been involved in the spaceshuttle project at some point. Therefore his approach is exactly the route I intend to follow myself. ‘if I have seen so far it is because I stood on the shoulders of giants’ - Isaac Newton.

When I saw Dr Nomis’ fuzz face on the mini breadboard I realised how much room even the simplest pedal can take up. So I knew I needed a bigger one just to grow projects into as I add on boosters and things to see how they work. And I get confused easily so am intending to put apollo13 ‘not this one!’ warning stickers on the board so I don’t rip out important bits in a Dr Frankenstein-esque fit of creative excitement.
Means and lack of room meant a huge and lavish one wasn’t an option. But I think these little ones clip together somehow anyway, so I can expand out if I need to.
And finally, if the dark art of breadboarding gives me brain-ache and I decide it’s all too much, I won’t go shoeless next winter for the expense if I fold my hand.
So that is that is the decision of the board…

Did have a mini fit of conscience about not supporting local businesses/industry; are these made by kids who should be in school? is the country of origin’s human rights record sound? etc. But basically my financial situation is not so sunny of late, so I hear and accept the argument, but for a while my conscience has to take a back seat to keeping myself fed and housed. And if I did buy this locally it wouldn’t it say made in China on the back anyway? What is a conscience without a cause? A noise?

Anyway, am looking forward to making some useful posts of things I’m working on in the near future, for the edification of no one and amusement of the many (he’s wired his pots upside-down and back-to-front again!). Am setting my controls for the evil planet fuzzrite as soon as I get my bits.

Big thanks again to anyone who posted. It helped me decide, and maybe someone else too sometime.

Tabby.
"be a good animal, true to your instincts" (d.h. lawrence).
"there is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion" (francis bacon).
"ni dieu ni maître" (anarchist slogan).
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Re: what is the best breadboard for effect pedal experimenti

Postby DrNomis » 30 Apr 2014, 22:42

tabbycat wrote:Many thanks to all for your contributions. Have dedicated a not-inconsiderable amount of time to making up my mind as it seems to be a fundamental tool of the trade.

Have factored all thoughts and suggestions in and decided on this little beauty from the land of the rising sun. Not a mail-order Thai bride (link safe to click) but an 830 point breadboard with power supply and 65 jumpers, all posted to my fall-out bunker for less than five guineas old money (that’s about 6 million euros).
MB102 MB-102 830 Solderless PCB Breadboard+ Power Supply Module+ 65 Jumper Wires: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/MB102-MB-102-830-Solderless-PCB-Breadboard-Power-Supply-Module-65-Jumper-Wires-/390798841768?pt=UK_BOI_Electrical_Components_Supplies_ET&hash=item5afd6d17a8
I chose it for its goldilocks properties. Not too big/small, complicated/retarded-looking, expensive/rubbish. And because I saw it in Nocentelli’s picture. Judging by the standard of craftsmanship on display there I get the feeling that he must have been involved in the spaceshuttle project at some point. Therefore his approach is exactly the route I intend to follow myself. ‘if I have seen so far it is because I stood on the shoulders of giants’ - Isaac Newton.

When I saw Dr Nomis’ fuzz face on the mini breadboard I realised how much room even the simplest pedal can take up. So I knew I needed a bigger one just to grow projects into as I add on boosters and things to see how they work. And I get confused easily so am intending to put apollo13 ‘not this one!’ warning stickers on the board so I don’t rip out important bits in a Dr Frankenstein-esque fit of creative excitement.
Means and lack of room meant a huge and lavish one wasn’t an option. But I think these little ones clip together somehow anyway, so I can expand out if I need to.
And finally, if the dark art of breadboarding gives me brain-ache and I decide it’s all too much, I won’t go shoeless next winter for the expense if I fold my hand.
So that is that is the decision of the board…

Did have a mini fit of conscience about not supporting local businesses/industry; are these made by kids who should be in school? is the country of origin’s human rights record sound? etc. But basically my financial situation is not so sunny of late, so I hear and accept the argument, but for a while my conscience has to take a back seat to keeping myself fed and housed. And if I did buy this locally it wouldn’t it say made in China on the back anyway? What is a conscience without a cause? A noise?

Anyway, am looking forward to making some useful posts of things I’m working on in the near future, for the edification of no one and amusement of the many (he’s wired his pots upside-down and back-to-front again!). Am setting my controls for the evil planet fuzzrite as soon as I get my bits.

Big thanks again to anyone who posted. It helped me decide, and maybe someone else too sometime.

Tabby.




One of those breadboards should work fine for you, the next few things I could recommend you investing in is a good Digital Multimeter, a Sine/Square Wave Generator, and an Oscilloscope, you could probably buy a working used Generator and Scope off eBay for a reasonable price, try and buy a scope with at least a 10Mhz bandwidth, the Multimeter, Generator, and Scope will come in handy when you're troubleshooting your builds..... :thumbsup
Genius is not all about 99% perspiration, and 1% inspiration - sometimes the solution is staring you right in the face.-Frequencycentral.
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