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Discussion Starter #1
Argh!!!!!!!!

Somewhere in the line I have a bad pedal, or a bad cable, and I've got signal loss!

I have a two-tiered board that is kind of a buggar to take apart easily. In the past, my board was pretty simple, I'd take it all apart and test each pedal one by one till I found the weak link. I've also got a cable tester, which I'd do the same. Even with a simple board that would take me a few hours.... now, it could take days.

Unless one of you guys/girls have another method?

Please, please have another method you could share.
 
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Argh!!!!!!!!

Somewhere in the line I have a bad pedal, or a bad cable, and I've got signal loss!

I have a two-tiered board that is kind of a buggar to take apart easily. In the past, my board was pretty simple, I'd take it all apart and test each pedal one by one till I found the weak link. I've also got a cable tester, which I'd do the same. Even with a simple board that would take me a few hours.... now, it could take days.

Unless one of you guys/girls have another method?

Please, please have another method you could share.
Start in the middle. Pull the input from the middle pedal and plug your guitar in there. If your board is OK, then you have just cut the job in half.

Do you have any solderless cables? They are the worst. Get rid of them.
 

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Things are packed too tight to simply plug your guitar into the chain to test without dismantling everything? Starting with your last pedal and working towards the beginning of the chain.

That would pretty quickly narrow it down...
 

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Start in the middle. Pull the input from the middle pedal and plug your guitar in there. If your board is OK, then you have just cut the job in half....
Indeed, this is the best, fastest way to approach troubleshooting whenever possible.
Then when you've narrowed it to the front half or the back half, you split up THAT section into halves. Rise & repeat.
Much faster than approaching it serially.
Also less hair loss.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Start in the middle. Pull the input from the middle pedal and plug your guitar in there. If your board is OK, then you have just cut the job in half.

Do you have any solderless cables? They are the worst. Get rid of them.
Good advice.

Yes solder-less, they're George L's.... which I thought were "the best"

Intermittent signal loss?
It starts out OK, but as things (I guess) warm up, the sound drops. That's why I'm leaning towards it being a pedal and not cable. Probably should have added that to the original post.
 
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Good advice.

Yes solder-less, they're George L's.... which I thought were "the best"



It starts out OK, but as things (I guess) warm up, the sound drops. That's why I'm leaning towards it being a pedal and not cable. Probably should have added that to the original post.
I have hundreds of $$$ worth of GL's that I will never use again. They fail intermittently. I KNOW HOW TO MAKE THEM!!! They fail. I have friends who are pros with the same thing. I bought some jacks in bulk and I use the GL cable. It is very low in capacitance, which is good.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I have hundreds of $$$ worth of GL's that I will never use again. They fail intermittently. I KNOW HOW TO MAKE THEM!!! They fail. I have friends who are pros with the same thing. I bought some jacks in bulk and I use the GL cable. It is very low in capacitance, which is good.
Hundreds!! Ya, me too!

But, that's why I did it. When I built my first "proper" board a few years back, I looked at those cheap little 3 (or 4) inch cables, and thought.... I'm playing a $2000+ guitar, a $1000+ amp, hundreds of $ worth of pedals, why would I allow a $2 cable to carry that load? Someone (a successful, real live gigging and session guitar player) turned me on to George L's. I thought that was the step up.

I can do many things, but solder electronics is not one of them! And, because of the two-tier, I have pedals that are physically side by side, but not necessarily next to each other in the chain. So I need to be able to customize the lengths.

**EDIT*** I sound as if I don't actually want to fix my problem... I do. Like really do, I'm just super frustrated with it right now.

Thanks for all the advice so far.
 

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It starts out OK, but as things (I guess) warm up, the sound drops. That's why I'm leaning towards it being a pedal and not cable. Probably should have added that to the original post.
I had the same issue once. Happened a couple times at band rehearsal, and a couple of times at home. With a pending gig, I was somewhat frantic to fix it. I unplugged all cables one by one, sprayed generously with DeOxit, reconnected, and the problem has not recurred since (that was a year ago). I suspect oxidation was the cause.
 

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I need to deoxit my board something fierce...
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I had the same issue once. Happened a couple times at band rehearsal, and a couple of times at home. With a pending gig, I was somewhat frantic to fix it. I unplugged all cables one by one, sprayed generously with DeOxit, reconnected, and the problem has not recurred since (that was a year ago). I suspect oxidation was the cause.
I've never heard of DeOxit.... just looked on the Google, and a You-Tube how-to on it's applications to all things guitar. WOW!! I did not know this stuff existed. I will pick some of this up. The vid I saw the guy used "D-5". Does it matter??

In the meantime... in for a penny, in for a pound. I dismantled my entire board. I tested all cables. Three times!! Yes, I put them in a pile, tested them, moved it in a new pile, then I waited, and did it in reverse, then did it again. All connections are good. Then I powered all the pedals. That's where I'm at. As I said, it starts to fail when warmed up, so they are all warming as we speak. Each one was already set to not get louder when turned on, so I will know if there is loss. And, since it's all apart, I will use the DeOxit on everything before it goes back into play.

Stay tuned.
 

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Not sure it matters much, but yes I believe D-5 is correct, and is carried by L&M. If you play electric guitar, you should have it. Cleans scratchy pots and switches. Spray some on an instrument cable and plug in/out several times to clean the jack... which is what you'll be doing with your pedals. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I'm stumped!

As I've said, I tested each patch 3 times, and now I've tested each pedal individually. Nothing gave any indication to a problem, so I started "rebuilding" the chain. Not attached to the board yet, but starting with the tuner, and adding cable and pedal one by one in the same order as it's original set-up till something went amiss. Nothing did, it's all working fine. So I left it all set up, and turned on for an hour, came back, still good.

I did buy the contact cleaner, but I didn't use it yet. I wanted to figure out which piece was causing the problem before I addressed every piece. The only thing I can think of, is there was a dirty contact somewhere, and just getting things moving again cleared it up... if that's possible.

I am now terrified to attach it all the the board again in case it fails. I really wanted this sussed out and solved before reassembling.

Thoughts??
 

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I can do many things, but solder electronics is not one of them! And, because of the two-tier, I have pedals that are physically side by side, but not necessarily next to each other in the chain. So I need to be able to customize the lengths.
PM me if you want me to make some custom cables for you.

Thoughts??
Maybe you are correct and the unplugging and plugging back in was enough to solve the problem.
 
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Maybe you are correct and the unplugging and plugging back in was enough to solve the problem.
That's the sign of GL's. Intermittent and hard to find the bad one. Then you get another bad one. I think when the cables is flexed and curved it can shorten the cable slightly at the end, and the non soldered connection starts acting up.
 

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That's the sign of GL's. Intermittent and hard to find the bad one. Then you get another bad one. I think when the cables is flexed and curved it can shorten the cable slightly at the end, and the non soldered connection starts acting up.
Makes total sense.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
It does make total sense....

I don't a have any upcoming electric gigs, so I'm going to leave it off the board for a bit, and see if it acts up again. Basically till my wife tells to to straighten up the downstairs family room. You should see it, cables, tools, guitars, pedals everywhere! Total disaster!
 

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I recently ran into an intermittant issue with my smaller board recently, like 2 days ago, so perfect timing. I checked out the cables connecting each pedal, found the one that was "questionable" fairly quickly. Tested all the cables, including the one I THOUGHT was bad, and it seemed OK. Went over them again, another one (I thought) was off. After thinking about it, I decided to take the questionable one that worked and then didn't, then worked again, and twisted the damn thing a bit. Nothing extreme, just a tug here and a bend there. Checked the continuity of that one yet again and BOOM, getting resistance (lack of continuity/break or tweak in wire somewhere in the middle). I'd suggest maybe testing the connection cables between pedals again but give em a little twist in various points. You'd be surprised how little it takes. My issue wasn't like your loss of power, it was more of a not so obvious crackle in my speakers on my 212 when I pounded my strings harder. Subtle but very noticeable to my ears. I also Isopropylled my ins and outs with a bunch of Q tips. They were pretty grungy indeed. Have to grab my deOxit to finish the job
 
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