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Building pedals can be fun but.......

2/17/2005 11:04 AM
Building pedals can be fun but.......
I really love it when I'm putting the finishing touches on a DIY pedal but it really is a lot of work!  
For awhile I considered building some Treble Boosters and various Fuzz pedals to sell. I was trying to come up with a price that wasn't too exorbitant, I figured that $190.00 Canadian (taxes in) would be reasonable but now that I've finished building my latest 4-knob Germanium FuzzFace, I'm thinking man, this is too much work!!!  
I've built some pedals for friends but that wasn't a profit situation. To make this worth the pain and effort I'd have to get at least $200 or $210(Canadian) bare minimum. $300.00 (Canadian) is what it's really worth to me but that'll never happen.  
My hat goes off to the folks that can do this and make a profit. Don't get me wrong, I love building pedals as a hobby but I'd have to make a lot more money for my efforts to make it worth my while building for other people. I'm sure this isn't news to anybody here though.
2/18/2005 3:32 PM
Some guys get started by modding existing pedals, so maybe look into that?  
I know more than one amp builder and a guitar builder that still make more money doing repairs/set-ups/etc. than selling new, custom-built amps/guitars.
2/19/2005 1:53 AM

Yeah, I can definately see that you could make more money doing mods than building stuff from scratch.
2/22/2005 6:30 PM
Hey Humbucker,  
Where are you located? I am also into building pedals and amps for sale in Canada, and I am interested in finding a business partner - doesn't need to be official, just someone close who would like to share ideas and build time.  
I am in Toronto.
2/25/2005 5:23 PM
Mark Hammer
There are a bunch of guys in the Hamilton/Toronto corridor who do exactly what you do. Many of them only seem to post over at Aron Nelson's diystompboxforum. You should get in touch with them and maybe set up some cooperative. Though I find it hard to imagine you could score cheaper parts prices than at Supremetronic (though L-Tronix in Mississauga can come close for semiconductors).
3/8/2005 6:48 PM
Rodrigo Thanks Mark...
Hi Mark,  
I used to be a repair tech at Steve's Music in Toronto. I used to make daily trips to Supremetronic - it is just down the street from Steve's. I built several pedals, amps, and some of my test equipment while working there, mostly with Supremetronic parts. Proximity to Supremetronic was my only regret in leaving that job.  
I am a repair tech for an audio electronics distributor in Mississauga now, and I also privately handle repairs for five local music stores and a few local rock stars.  
I have been pretty much a silent watcher of this forum for a few years, and have benefited from your input on several occasions. I usually assume everyone in the forum is American. Are you in Ontario? It sounds like you know this area.  
Appreciate your contributions.
3/10/2005 4:39 AM
Mark Hammer

I'm in Ottawa, where there are a number of folks into DIY stuff. I used to live in Hamilton 25 years ago, and frequented Queen Street often, back when Arkon Electronics was just a few doors down from Steve's, Active Surplus was only half of its current size, everything was cheap, and all the guys who worked there seemed to be Israeli expatriots perpetually eating lunch. I actually bought my first "real" amp at the original Steve's in downtown Montreal in 1973, when it was jammed between the pawnshops.  
These days, I make a "pilgrimage" to those hallowed few blocks whenever I pass through on the way with my wife to visit her family in Hamilton, or when I'm in Toronto for a conference. A lot of the things I need are becoming more and more available in Ottawa these days. I used to have to rely on Supremetronic for stompswitches, but no more. However, they still have the cheapest prices I've encountered on pots, copper board, and jacks, and a trip there is always like being in a candy store with the company gold card.  
For a number of things these days, I rely on the Ottawa outlet of L-Tronix, which is Mississauga-based.  
Thanks for the flattery.
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