An Electrical Nightmare? Or Masterpiece? – Pedalboard build

I ran out of space! I’m Sick of the buzz!  I have been using the same trusty pedalboard for over a decade. It served its purpose but it was time to do it right. No more Onespots and daisychains.

The most important part of a board is the signal chain. There are no rules… but there are pretty tried and true guidelines I adhere to:

  1. Tuner first (pur signal from guitar)
  2. Wha / pitchshifters / Volume (can go here, after dirt pedals or at the end)
  3. Distortion / Overdrive
  4. Modulation – Phaser, flanger, chorus
  5. Delay followed by reverb
  6. I put my Volume pedal after all of it for a killswitch and end with a noise suppressor.
Once that is sorted out, you need to figure out how to connect them all in the proper order with the space and length of patch cables. I like to use Audioblast. They have metal-head construction and are made to flex/bend. They also have many sizes.
Here is my major upgrade, an individual power source for every pedal. It cuts down on noise and buzz. I was previously lazy and had multiple adapters and a daisy chain. Donner and Joyo are two companies that have an entry-level perceived value but their products are actually amazing and affordable. Both companies offer power supplies for around 40 bucks shipped. The individual power cables were long enough to reach every pedal on the board.
Once your signal route is solid and you have powered everything, check it.  Now you have to hide all the wires and make it look pretty. I went with a Pedaltrain board 32 x 16” x 4.5 clearance underneath so you can hide all of your wires. The underside is a masterpiece of velcro, zip ties and of course black duct tape.
A few other notable things… I used pedal toppers where appropriate. It makes it easier to locate a pedal in low level lighting and you have more surface room for your foot. And it’s comfy when you’re jamming at home with no shoes.
I would recommend Pedaltrain. They offer a soft shell version but I got the hardshell road case. It’s super stout and it has wheels. I would feel comfortable throwing it under an airplane.
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