was still actively playing back in late 70's, I noticed that my stock
Cry Baby Wah... worked... but sounded a bit thin, even with a
Les Paul cranked through a Marshall Stack or Super Reverb.
when the effect was turned on... there was a drop in the overall volume as
the pedal swept over the frequency ranges.
wanted to get that Brian May "Midrange Tone" for solos. The
pedal could sort of get it, but, the solo was often over, before you could
dial in just the right sweet spot that you were looking for.
studying the circuit a bit, and doing some experimentation, I finally found just
the right combination of circuit changes to give me the perfect wah sound
that I was searching for.
mod gave the pedal a fuller... fatter sound... that actually jumped out when
the effect. Besides a better tone, it also had a bit of a growl &
lead boost effect. And, the Brian May Sound was there, better than
ever, but... there was still the problem of finding that sound during a
was always the Michael Schenker trick of using two Wahs. One would be
set stock and used as a regular Wah. The second one... he would
disconnect the gear arm and reach in and pre-set the control with his finger
to exactly the spot that he wanted. When the second Wah was activated,
it came on at his pre-set control point.
that required Two Wahs...
So, instead, I added a second control with a built-in switch to the right
side of the wah chassis.
In the switch OFF position I had a standard Wah-Wah
with my new Boost. With the switch in the ON position... the wah sweep
pedal was deactivated... and the boosted sound could be dialed in with the
added new control to exactly the frequency that I wanted.
Boost is really meant for Rock & Roll... it is a bit aggressive.
As you hit the string harder, more growl is produced. I found that for Clean
- Funky... Ohio Players' style... 9th Rhythm Chords, that I had to reduce
the guitar volume a bit to get it to be "clean and funky" enough.
I added an A-B switch to select either Boosted Wah or Normal Wah. I
had the best of all worlds... Rockin' Boosted Wah... or Funky Normal Wah...
and either sound with a Pre-Settable Frequency Control.
late 70's I turned the original Wah Boost into a DIY Packaged Kit, and sold
them in Guitar Player Magazine and through a few dealers in the USA and
Europe. A bit later, I also added Kits For Amps. There were a
dozen different kits for wahs and amps. By the early 1980's the kits
were discontinued... they are no longer available.
people would come to our Hollywood shop, I would demonstrate and let them
test out my original Cry Baby pedal that was done in the 70s's.
"You could hear a huge difference...at the flip of a
& Roses, Zakk, Schenker, Prince and others... all had this mod done.
(Prince originally borrowed Jesse Johnson's modded pedal for the
"1999" Album...and later on, he gave me a ColorSound Wah Pedal to
gut, and install a 70's Vox-Thomas circuit with 30% Boost and LED).
Boost is specifically designed for the Original 60's & 70's Vox Wah,
King Vox Wah
and Thomas-Organ Cry Baby Wah-Wah Pedals.
can also be installed in the reissue Vox Wah and Dunlop
"Original" Cry Baby
Wah-Wah circuits with two transistors.
of the newer Dunlop "Original" Cry Baby Wahs have 3 transistors. Those
models can also be modified, but may require additional labor.
of the newer Boutique Wah Pedals that are copying the original 60's
may also be modified. It will depend on the particular circuit.
I recently modified a
Budda Wah that turned out well.
Wah to be modified should be in good general working order. Bad pots,
jacks, footswitches or other stock operational parts needed... are extra.
by companies like Morley, Mutron, Roland, Boss, Foxx... and, some of the
newer Dunlop "Specialty Wahs" cannot be modified. Contact us
if you have any questions.
Basic Boost has always been titled "30% Boost" ...because that was
what it seemed to sound like when I first played it back in 1977. I
have never really measured the actual amount of signal level increase.
I suspect it to be 10 - 15 db or more. There is a definite tonal
improvement, ..fatter.. with more sweep and growl... louder signal... the
effect output level is boosted, as you would normally want it to be.
30% BOOST WITH A-B SWITCH
This will let
you select the 30% Boost or the original normal sound. A small
mini-toggle switch is mounted under the sweep pedal at the top right part of
the chassis. You can select either mode before activating the effect.
Some people request the A-B Switch to be footswitchable. This is not
possible. A loud pop would be heard when A-B switching... if the
effect were in the active mode.
for installing the 30% Boost with A-B Switch is $125.00
PRE-SET FREQUENCY CONTROL WITH SELECT SWITCH
The "Pre-Set Frequency Control with wah-preset switch" is a separate
modification from the boost mod, and can be added to a stock or
boosted wah of any era. This would include a separate control for the
pre-set sound, and a separate mini-toggle switch mounted under the sweep
pedal at the top right part of the chassis, to select the Wah or Preset
for installing the Pre-Set Frequency Control with switch is $125.00
(This is for the Pre-Set only...and does
not include the 30% Boost)
TRUE BYPASS SIGNAL SWITCH
With a stock Vox, Thomas Organ, or
Dunlop Wah, the instrument signal is always connected to the input of the wah
circuit, even when the effect is turned off. This will slightly reduce
the highs and normal "straight" signal level, and, would be
even more noticeable if long standard cables are used. We can rewire the
circuit and install a heavy duty DPDT to eliminate this problem. With
the effect in the off position, the circuit would be completely bypassed and produce a louder straight signal with better highs.
for installing the True Bypass Switch is $100.00
LED INDICATOR WITH SILENT SWITCHING
Some people request that an LED
indicator be installed to show when the wah effect is on. Unfortunately,
when this is done by installing a simple passive footswitch there is a loud
annoying pop that occurs when the wah circuit and LED are activated. In
order to eliminate this problem, an additional LED switching circuit must be
created and installed in addition to replacing the original footswitch.
This is a time consuming modification, but, can be done to boosted or stock wahs
with a choice of LED colors.
for installing the LED Indicator With Silent Switching is $150.00