Analog Man Sun Lion Fuzz Booster 1960s USA RCA, British Black Bullet w Top Jacks
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A little history
The Dallas Rangemaster Treble Booster pedal was made in the UK in the 1960s. Analog Man’s Beano Boost pedal is an awesome, improved recreation of that pedal. The Dallas Arbiter Fuzzface was one of the first Fuzz pedals, made in the mid/late 1960s. They became extremely popular due to Jimi Hendrix and other great players of the 60s and 70s. We have been modifying fuzzfaces to these early GERMANIUM specs for a long time, and started selling our own SUN FACE to keep the cost down and quality high for people seeking the ultimate early fuzzface sound.
In early 2005 we combined these two pedals, the BEANO BOOST and SUNFACE into a new pedal – the SUNLION! The result of this combination turned out to be much more than the sum of it's parts- an amazing sounding Tri-Germanium fuzz! We have made several three-transistor Tonebender MK-II pedals but they are not possible to make as consistently perfect sounding as our Sunface or Beano Boost so we stopped making them. We find the Sunlion an excellent alternative as it can get the same sounds with both sides on, plus MANY MORE sounds and so much more flexible.
Red Dot NKT brand transistors. These are definitely made at the Newmarket factory. They look and sound identical to the old red dot NKT275 we used to have, but have a different part number on them after the "NKT", probably a house number for a specific customer.
- True Bypass on both sides
- Two 3PDT stomp switches, one for each side. Either or both can be used.
- Boss Style Power Jack
- Status LED on each side.
- Germanium NKT 275 red dot transistors
- NOS Germanium transistor, selected for best tone and low noise on Beano side.
- High quality RE’AN British input and output jacks, top mounted for pedalboards.
- Battery disconnected when INPUT cord removed (input is on the right).
- Sun Dial bias control is standard.
- Optional ON/OFF battery switch integrated into BEANO VOL knob, so you don't have to unplug pedal if it’s in a pedalboard.
- No standard Power jack as these are detrimental to the ultimate tones, and dangerous due to positive ground. See our Sunface page for more info on powering positive ground pedals.
- Battery should be a cheap non-alkaline general purpose battery, as found in the dollar stores. These will sound better than an alkaline.
- Size is 4.75" wide, 3.75" long, and 1.5" tall not including switch etc (about 2 1/8" tall to the switch).
- This effect should not have any non-true bypass effects in front of it. Otherwise, the fuzz’s cleanup function will not work well.
Left side is the BEANO BOOST:
BOOST KNOB, Volume of the Beano Boost, controls the amount of CRUNCH by driving your amp harder.
ON/OFF power switch is optional on the BEANO VOLUME KNOB.
Toggle TONE SWITCH with 3 positions. Up = Midrange, Center=Treble, Down=Low range boost.
Circuit is hand wired just like the original version. Most other Rangemaster clones use circuit boards.
Has about the same output level ON and OFF with the BOOST knob set at 9:00. At 11:00 there is about a 10dB boost, which sounds twice as loud. At 12:00 there is a 13dB boost, and up all the way is about an 18dB boost which is nearly twice as loud as it was at 11:00.
Right side is the SUN FACE:
VOL Knob needs no explanation. Audio taper volume pot.
FUZZ knob : Best to keep it up or almost up all the way, and use the VOLUME knob on your guitar or the TRIMMER knob to control the amount of fuzz.
TRIMMER : The white knob on the circuit board (TRIM103). You can turn this one with your fingers. Normal setting is full CCW, for full full fuzz availability. This knob works the same as the VOLUME control on your guitar, which interactively cleans up the fuzz sound. So if you never use the FULL fuzz sound, use this knob as a preset for the maximum amount of fuzz that you need, instead of having to turn down your guitar every time you step on the fuzz. When this knob is turned all the way up (CCW) it is completely out of the circuit, as if it were not even there. Then the circuit is identical to an original 1968 germanium Fuzz Face.
SUN knob: This is the knob in the center of the pedal’s SUN FACE, also called the Sun Dial. It is set by us to the “sweet spot” for the fuzz, just under 5 volts on the High transistor at about 70 degrees temperature. It is set with the mark at 12:00 on the SUN knob. You may try other settings, you can turn it down to get a stuttering, weak fuzz sound which can sometimes be useful. Or turn it up for a harder, less fuzzy sound. If you have a voltmeter, you can test the voltage so you can keep it set where you want it. Put the (+) lead to ground, one of the screw holes on the case will work. Put the (-) lead to the HIGH transitor leg closest to R23 (says VOLT-> on the picture, pointing to the correct leg). About 5 volts is best for cleaner sounds. I would not set it too high, much over 6 or 7 volts. When it is set at 4.5 to 5 volts, it is the same circuit as the original 1968 germanium fuzzface. You may find you need to turn it down (CCW) at higher temperatures, and up (CW) at lower temperatures. This BIAS adjustment allows it to work well at any temperature.