Building The BYOC Silver Pony, Part 2
Once I was into it, I decided to go ahead and finish building the pedal in a single session. The twenty-nine resistors were followed by five diodes, a dozen or so capacitors, three chip sockets, the battery clip, and several short lengths of purple hookup wire.
Once the circuit board was completely populated, I had to mount the 9V DC jack in the enclosure. Bringing everything together involved setting in place but not yet soldering the three potentiometers for the controls and the yellow LED on the board. The board had to be held in one hand while I guided the LED and the control shafts into their holes with the other. After aligning the board and checking to be sure nothing would short out, I soldered everything and tightened up the mounting hardware.
After that, I installed and wired the input and output jacks and the 9V jack. I then installed the on/off switch and connected it to the board with six more lengths of hookup wire. Finally I plugged in the three chips, checked everything over once more, snapped in the battery, and screwed the box shut.
I’m pleased to say it worked perfectly, right away! This project required a LOT of patience and cost me a little eyestrain, but the Silver Pony sounds amazing. I took it along on my mini pedal board to a jam last night and it was on the whole time. Finding a sweet spot (many are possible!) was easy, and I just rode my guitar volume knob the entire night. I have a bunch of nice pedals, and my bigger pedal board has two Lovepedals I really like, but this thing just seduced my Alessandro amp and gave me great clear, warm sound with nice compression at a pretty reasonable volume. Totally a success, and it fills a role that none of my other pedals can.
And of course, BYOC has discontinued it. I appreciate and applaud their position, which is that the original Klon builder, Bill Finnegan, has a new version of the Centaur available again, and they didn’t feel right in offering a clone kit for sale while the original is still in production. I’m very happy to have gotten my kit, had a lot of fun building it (but I have some weird ideas about fun), and plan to play it a whole lot!
By the way, the available knob colors on the BYOC site were a bit limited when I ordered, so I worked out a color scheme that made sense to me. Red is the gain knob, yellow controls treble, and blue controls the output volume. And the DC jack is green because it’ll remind me to use fewer batteries…or that’s just what they had.