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V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Sun May 17, 2020 12:29 pm
by simonm
Hi all

I spent a couple of days on + off tracing this obscure oddity (and severely twisting my melon!) from pics posted by Nick on the freestompboxes forum, based on the suggestion from EW that it's "FZ-1-ish". I don't think it's 100% right, but this is what I've got so far - any comments?
The topology is basically the first two transistors of FZ-1, accommodating the positions of the resistors on the weirdly laid out board.

Image

this one, quite rare:

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Seems it was originally V87, and was renumbered V816, but it's a diff circuit to the chrome-y US-built V816 (which also doesn't have a hyphen in the name, grammar fans).

Re: V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Sun May 17, 2020 2:16 pm
by Electric Warrior
That's way off compared to the one I traced. I guess Nick's pics just don't show enough of what's going on.
Why would you say it was re-numbered? Maybe the UK built version was V87 and the US built one V816?
Also, the hyphen may not be a US/UK thing, as early US made treble boosters may have the hyphen, according to this site: https://www.voxac100.org.uk/jennings_mu ... osters.htm. Not sure if some us made DBs would have them as well?

Re: V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Sun May 17, 2020 3:11 pm
by simonm
Electric Warrior wrote:
Sun May 17, 2020 2:16 pm
That's way off compared to the one I traced. I guess Nick's pics just don't show enough of what's going on.
Why would you say it was re-numbered? Maybe the UK built version was V87 and the US built one V816?
Also, the hyphen may not be a US/UK thing, as early US made treble boosters may have the hyphen, according to this site: https://www.voxac100.org.uk/jennings_mu ... osters.htm. Not sure if some us made DBs would have them as well?
Thanks for answering. Nick sent me a couple more pics, but there was still a lot i couldn't see, and the symmetry of the layout confused me, so it could easily be completely wrong! I only started thinking about it after I posted a pic of my old V816 clone from 2007 or something on instagram and then did some searching and found your more recent discussion on fsb, and I'd been looking for relatively unknown early fuzzes.

re the numbering, i just wasn't clear - I meant the DB was re-numbered in the US, when Thomas started using the FF-alike Si circuit, not that this version was re-numbered.

Re: V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Sun May 17, 2020 7:23 pm
by Nick
I'm not sure whether the change to the Fuzz Faceish design was a Thomas Organ thing, because JMI actually built both versions into red enclosures. There isn't a great sample size to draw conclusions from yet, but it appears that the two versions of the red (British) DB can be differentiated without dismantling, by the silkscreened lettering on the cases. We just can't be sure when the British version of the Fuzz Faceish DB came out, but it looks less likely that the MK1.5 was inspired by it...

Re: V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Thu May 21, 2020 1:25 pm
by Electric Warrior
Nick confirmed my schematic. His unit has a 2.5µF instead of the 1.6µF. Thanks to Nick and Rafmax for helping me out with this one :)

Image

Re: V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Thu May 21, 2020 6:29 pm
by rafmax
Electric Warrior wrote:
Thu May 21, 2020 1:25 pm
Thanks to Nick and Rafmax for helping me out with this one :)
:tu:
forensics...
IMG_5338.JPG
IMG_5338.JPG (780.52 KiB) Viewed 285 times

Re: V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Thu May 21, 2020 6:42 pm
by Lee
I love this place

Re: V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Thu May 21, 2020 10:17 pm
by Laservampire
I’d love to hear one of these!

Re: V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Thu May 21, 2020 11:00 pm
by jreeves47
you need to be a surgeon to change the battery on these plug-ins

Re: V87 Vox Distortion-Booster (1965, Ge, the red one)

Posted: Fri May 22, 2020 4:20 pm
by simonm
thanks guys!
i think i had the input + output confused and got -9V and ground mixed up :bangs head: no wonder i couldn't make any sense of it!