Building a Pedal Board
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fdr1.jpg Most guitar players have a collection of pedals, which when in live use need to setup on stage. This can be time consuming, and have many issues, including extra wear on the cables jacks, sockets, etc...

In this article we are going to look into the setting up of a simple pedal board in the most inexpensive way possible.

For this there are two options; build your own or buy premade.

I initially started exploring the first option, the idea was to use a sheet of MDF and then cut this to size so it would fit in an aluminium toolbox. I actually bought the wood and built a second tier for it, but to be honest my woodworking skills are not that great and between the cost of the edges, paint, rubber feet, case and time involved, would amount to more than a premade one can be purchased for.

At this point I started looking at options and decided to go for the Stagg UPC-688, which is very reasonably priced. To power the pedals I already own a “One Spot” adapter, this can be purchased on its own or as a kit with the 8 way pedal connecting daisy chain.

 You will also need some good quality short interconnecting cables.

velcro.jpg Lastly it is also important to use good quality Velcro to stick the pedals onto the board. For this I decided to use the Velcro felt already on the base plus a pack of Hi-Bond Velcro for the pedal-side. This is high quality Velcro with a superb adhesive that will stick forever but will not mark your pedals if removed. It comes in convenient packs precut for most popular pedals including large wah-wahs.

The first thing you need to do is decide what pedals are going onto the board and in which order, this you will most likely know if you already setup your effects on the floor as it where, or if you don’t you will need to experiment to decide. In my case we have a Korg Pitch Black Tuner, to a Boss FDR1 overdrive, to a, Boss DS1 distortion, then a Digitech Bad Monkey overdrive and finally an MXR Carbon Copy delay. This will give me both, overdrive and solo distortion plus a touch of delay if needed.

Once this was decided I placed the pedals in order right to left on the board and decided on the placement.

Next step is to attach the supplied Velcro to the pedals. For this, be sure that the underside of the pedals is clean of any dust or particles and I would also recommend you remove any batteries.

Then simply cut the Velcro strips to size (if required) and apply them carefully.

Once this is done you can simply place the pedals in order one by one and connect the ¼” inch jacks between them and the daisy chain power supply.

When finished test all the devices and then proceed to tidy up the cabling with either wire stays or tie wraps, preferably in black so they blend in with the felt.

I also decided to fit some Velcro to the One Spot to keep it in place and also added a discarded mints tin to keep my picks and other small items.

pedalgig.jpg Around a week after the build I gigged at an open air function on a a promenade next to the sea, the it all seemed to work very well.

In the future I intent either build another board or add another row of pedals and a line selector so I can have row set for my single-coil guitars, and the other for my humbuckers.

By Ernest H Slade

For more information on the Hi-Bond Velcro packs please visit.