Matthew C Good : Musician, Software Engineer, Hobbyist.

Posts Tagged Love the Russians

Trotsky -> Shostakovich

My "Shostakovich Overdrive" pedal, built into an electrical junction box.

My newest completed pedal, based on Beavis Audio Research’s Trotsky Drive.  Real simple circuit.  I didn’t even have the special Russian transistor Beavis used, but it still sounds cool.  But I kept with the Soviet theme, and named it after one of my favorite composers, Dmitri Shostakovich.  Though, if good ol’ Shosty were really distilled into pedal form, it would scream one or two whole hecks of a lot more than this one does.

Oh yeah, you’re not seeing things.  That is an electrical junction box you see there.

Trotsky Drive Breadboard

After finally having some success with my “Mastodon Dave” guitar distortion pedal, I’ve been wanting to make a few more.  I’m continually amazed, however, at how many different electronics parts there are out there…  I’ve got coffee tins full, rubbermaid organizers full, and I STILL hardly ever have the parts on hand I need to make one of practically anything.  So I was looking around for a pedal circuit I could build without waiting around for parts to show up, and I found the Trotsky Drive.  After digging around to see what diodes I had, BINGO!  So tonight I threw it all together on the breadboard.

It sounds pretty good too, but it’s a little hummy – which I think is probably the breadboard.  A very simple circuit, but has a couple options for modding.  There’s a low-pass switch you can throw, and you can swap out the capacitor for different amounts of low-pass.  And you can mess with the kinds of diodes you use, and whatnot.  Fun project, with a Russian name, so I’m going to have fun painting this one.

Most of the trouble with this project was hacking through the various electronics components grab bags I bought to find the right parts.  The numbering schemes on the caps in particular are tricky.  I got a few that I think are caps, but I’m still not sure.  And how do I tell what kind a random diode is?  If I ever find out, I’ll let you know.

The Lovely Ladies of the Russian Army