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Colorsound Wah+Fuzz Inductor - 4

Posted by Jim Black on 11/13/2015 to Bust Em Out

The inductor or coil in our Colorsound Wah+Fuzz is often referred to as a stack of dimes inductor in the United States. The diameter is just about the size of a dime. According to the schematic, the nominal inductance is 500mH. I can't measure this value on our inductor because the leads are too short.

To learn more about inductors and magic, read RG Keen's excellent article on the wah-wah.

Inductor Inductor

A typical way to repair a coil with leads like this is to open it up and unwind a few wraps. This is not an option on this unit because the top and bottom halves are bonded together and I don't want to run the risk of breaking the brittle ferrite material.

Notice the white residue around the cavity. This is the adhesive someone applied that broke the wire. This was an attempt at a strain relief. And, clearly good intentions gone bad. The best material to use is a clear silicon. The idea is that the wire vibrates and eventually breaks off where the wire is soldered to a post. It is just like taking a metal clothes hanger and bending it until it breaks. Only, the wire isn't fixed at the inductor body. The wire is floating at the inductor. The wire is fixed at the post on the PCB. I was able to carefully scrape the adhesive off and salvavged a tiny bit of wire. I hope I can solder an extension on the stub coming out of the body of the inductor.

My first inclination was to find a replacement. This search led me to Castledine Electronics in the United Kingdom. This guy makes reproductions for Macaris Musical Instruments---Home of Sola Sound.

I sent Stuart Castledine an email asking about a replacement inductor and found he wouldn't sell to me because of his contract with Macaris. I needed a backup plan in case the solder job doesn't work so I went on a shopping spree looking for possible replacements and trying to learn more about the nature of inductors as used in wah pedals.

Can you tell I'm not thrilled about trying to repair this inductor? And, I find I'm having a good time exploring the mad world of wah.

Next time I'll show you the many options for wah inductors and a surprise find I rewarded myself with...

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