Drill, Baby, Drill…

Posted: 2009/11/24 in DIY Guitar Effect Pedal Projects, SDD-3000 Preamp Clone

So here’s what I’ve been up to lately…drilling all the holes for the enclosures:

The process involves designing a template (I use Adobe Illustrator), printing it out, positioning it correctly on the enclosure, and glueing it in place.  I then mark each hole with an awl and drill it on the drill press with a stepped drill bit. The hole placement needs to to be reasonably accurate, since the PCB has a lot of board-mounted components, and the enclosure will get silkscreened.  It’s somewhat time-consuming (especially when there are a bunch of pedals to do) but I’m about halfway through the batch.  Here’s what they look like after being drilled with the template removed:

Addendum: Drilling the sides of the enclosure is a bit more tricky, since they slope slightly and the enclosures aren’t particularly stable when held by hand (which is a bit of a no-no in the metalworking world but you know…).  I discovered through trial and error that the most secure way to do it was to build a wooden jig and hold the enclosure in place with some clamps:

  1. Sasa says:

    Looking very professional!
    What are the dimensions of the boxes?


    • trabantland says:

      Thanks Saša! They measure approximately 3.5″ x 4.5″ x 1.5″ ( 9 cm x 11.5 cm x 4 cm).

  2. archaos says:

    Such a patience Dave !

    All that work…I guess it requires a lot of tools, am i wrong ?

    Anyway, very cool to follow the steps on this site 😉

    Bon courage,



    • trabantland says:

      Merci P.F. – Well it’s not too bad in terms of tools, but at a minimum you need a drill for the enclosures, and a soldering iron for the circuit boards. A drill press makes it easier to position the holes, that’s for sure.

  3. mattias says:

    Hi there!

    You got some very nice looking pedals there and I’m interested in your fa-1 clone, so if you have one for sale please contact me!

    Kind regards
    // Mattias

    • trabantland says:

      Thanks a lot! Yeah, I am planning to make some FA-1 clones once I finish with this batch of SDD Preamps. The artwork may be slightly different, though.

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