breadboarding (1) – getting started

What is breadboarding?

Breadboarding involves using one of these (a breadboard) to mock up a circuit to tinker with before committing to Vero/ perf/ PCB.


Why the flip are they called ‘breadboards’?

because the original breadboards were wooden boards with screws in them. You’d wrap the component legs around the screws to make the connections.

How do breadboards work?

breadboards have internal connections like this:



What do you need to get started breadboarding?

Well, you’ll need a breadboard, whatever components are in the effect you’re building, some jumpers and some sort of breakout box.

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What is a breakout box?

A breakout box is an interface for your circuit. For messing about with effects on a breadboard you don’t need anything more fancy than this.


You plug your guitar into it, and the out goes to a practice amp. You also plug your 9V adapter into it so it provides power to the breadboard. There are four connections between my wee breakout box and the breadboard: in, out, 9V and ground. I built it on a 3PDT foot switch daughterboard. I just wanted a minimal interface for testing circuits. There are plenty of different options out there. The one issue with mine is that when you plug the leads in the jacks make it side-heavy and it leans back. If I were to make it again, I’d just put the jacks length-wise. I’d probably hand paint the bugger too, but I’ve made this fella well before I started painting my pedals.


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