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Vintage Gretsch Expandafuzz, pics inside


Rob Dobbs

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I picked this Gretsch Expandafuzz up about 20 years ago now and have never seen another since then. One day while running the rounds around the Hollywood Guitar Center, there it was, of all places, at Guitar Center sitting in their little used gear case in the corner. Think I paid about $180 since it was love at first site.

 

To this day its the best fuzz pedal Ive ever played.

Anyone else ever seen one, have one, had one...???

 

6t59wrc.jpg

 

It has a model number of 7797

and a serial number EF1045

 

868fqd5.jpg

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Hi Everyone, the Gretsch pedal was causing a bit of a stir on DIY stompbox forum. I know its a bit cheeky but does anybody fancy opening one up and taking a few pics for us please we would need top (Component side) and PCB (copper side)

 

Any help in the matter would be gratefully appreciated as we were interested in the 3 switch filter.

 

Also is it much different from the contra fuzz (apart from the obvious!)

 

If you do manage to take some gut shots can someone please email me or post on DIY stompbox.

 

Cheers

 

Austin

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I had it open two days ago resoldering the battery connections. It takes 2 9v's on either side yet the leads are, as with all pedals, notoriously short so the wires separate from the plug from time to time when swapping batteries out.

 

Its one large board inside, NOT two separate ones.

If you can pm me a link to your thread, Ill come check it out.

 

6k7lour.jpg

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I see the corner of a schematic in that last pic. Pan!

 

Wonder if the serials started at EF 1001? The footswitchable EQs are kooky.

 

The Controfuzz is the great-grandfather of all the fuzzes I currently produce (though I've never actually tried one), so if you're interested check out my selector page. As I explain there, you can also make similar sounds through combining effects and a mixer. Since the Contro is only clean minus distortion, a simple, though weak, rig is to combine the two outputs of an Arion Distortion with a simple mixer. I have found using 2 different distortion signals 2 be more powerful, and 2 distorts + clean or 3 distorts to be much more "intriguing" in sound and more musically balanced. Stacking another distortion in front of a Contro results in 2 distorts subtracting, but at a wide gain interval.

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I have no idea what you just said.

 

As far as the signal boots between the low/mid/high, each boost will work regardless of which switch is activated. You can boost either signal simultaneously, or not, as well as the fuzz, or not, at the same time. Nothing cancels anything else out.

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I have no idea what you just said.

 

 

Hey Rob, He's saying that it looks like the schematic diagram for the pedal is on the inside bottom of the pedal. (You can just sort of see it in the last pics you posted)

If you could provide a nice clean image of the schematic then you would satisfy many peoples curiosity.

 

Cheers,

Freqdaddy

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I have no idea what you just said.

 

 

Maybe I should explain back a little farther. In the Controfuzz design, the Distort control doesn't vary gain. It starts with a constant level of clean signal and the Distort control adds in a distortion signal which has fixed gain. Except it doesn't add it, it subtracts it. This can result in a setting where the clean is subtracting from the distortion signal, making it fuzzier (less clean). But if you play louder, the clean will keep getting louder and you'll start hearing that by itself. Turning up Distort more, a louder level of playing will hit the point it gets fuzzier (the anticlean challenges the distortion signal level) and you may never hit the point that clean starts taking over. Turning down Distort, you'll really hear the clean with just a bit of distortion mixing in. Some place in there (low Distort) should be a gated sound, where the clean and distortion signals cancel out when you're not playing because the distortion signal isn't distorting; only when you play loud enough that the distortion starts distorting does it stop cancelling out the clean signal. If you play loud and let a note die out, it will start out almost clean, get fuzzier as it decays, and then fizzle out to nothing, getting very fuzzy at the end.

 

The footswitch EQ might be useful, for example use the Treble switch for a lead boost, but I can't imagine anyone using all 8 possible combinations. It might just be EQ following the Fuzz, but was curious if maybe they did something more interesting, like only EQ the distortion signal within the Controfuzz, which would alter the way it mixes with the clean signal, varying the "expansion" relating to the gating-fuzzing process I just described. (Or you say EQ switches even when Fuzz is not on ... does the EQ affect the distortion signal? .. this would still affect the fuzz sound.)

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Cheers for the input so far chaps. I'm sorry you feel that way no post as I have learned so much on the forum I'm on .

 

Is there any chance anybody could email me the schematic. I do not plan on making this pedal commercially I just want to know more about it .

 

Cheers

 

Aus

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spentron,

 

thats about right. If I read correctly your asking if the low-mid-high has any effect on the distortion alone, yes. The boosts operate independantly of each other allowing them to boost anything in the chain (other pedals). Ive had lots of fun with this pedal over the years and its a great coversation starter as well as being a prized possesion.

 

As I said, Ive had the pedal for near 20 years and have never seen another in person. So far, from what Ive found on google and this thread there are at least 8 out there. Obviously there are more somewhere.

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