The Fettle Circuit
The Wee Fettle Boost was the first circuit we worked on from scratch. It’s pre-Champion Leccy, when this whole thing was just an all-consuming hobby. We originally crammed it into a 1590A enclosure and only made a handful, back in the days when everything was handpainted.
The Fettle Boost
It’s a simple two transistor circuit. The first always on gain stage is a JFET, the second is similar to an LPB-1 style BJT (Bipolar Junction Transistor) gain stage. On the original Fettle Boost you turn that on and off with a toggle switch named clart.
There’s a gain knob marked fettle, it makes crackly sounds when you turn it because it’s biasing the JFET. That’s perftectly normal. The love knob is volume. The hip ass switch is a three way high pass filter to neaten up the bottom end or to push it into treble boost territory.
How is the Fettle Boost used
Most people use the Fettle Boost as an always on preamp pedal to push they’re amp, because it naturally pushes all the frequencies you want your instrument to have. It has a great warmth whilst retaining a nice articulate response and a really tasteful cut and clarity.
The other main uses for the Fettle Boost – cos it’s by no means a one trick pony – are as a treble boost or as a solo boost, or as a distortion with the clart on. It gets super loud and fuzzy when you max it out, but it also keeps a lot of clarity in the body of the sound. if you do put the clart switch on, you can dial the fettle (gain) all the way back and push the love (volume) to get a totally different texture.
As a general rule, we’d recommend using the fettle Boost AFTER other gain stages. It adds more character that way. But always experiment, that’s half the joy of discovering new sound and how pedal combinations can work for you for whatever music you want to make.
OK, so what is the Canny Fettle Boost?
The Canny Fettle Boost is an expanded version of the Fettle Boost circuit. Essentially the JFET section (Fettle) is the same. It has an extra low pass filter switch (lop-ass) and an internal volume control.
The biggest change is to the clart side. Although it still uses the same transistor, it’s evolved far beyond a simple LPB-1 style boost. It now shares DNA with the discontinued Bloody Gett, and specifically the dunsh setting.
The clart side now goes from clean boost through to mega distortion, with a three position dunsh switch, which goes – no dunsh – a bit of dunsh – full dunsh. Just be careful when you add the dunsh, because it is loud.
The clart also has a high pass filter switch so you can tailor the sound to your own needs.
As The Canny Fettle Boost is two stacked gain stages with separate foot switches you have 3 different sounds to play with.
The Canny Fettle Boost will be available from the end of November 2020!
So which one should I buy?
Well, if you’re into the sound, then it depends on what you’re likely to use it for.
We’d recommend the original Fettle Boost if…
you just want an always tone improving pedal
you want a simple, smaller footprint for a tasteful treble boost or solo boost type pedal.
having a bunch of options to switch between isn’t important
We’d recommend the expanded Canny Fettle Boost if…
you want more options and tweakability
you want to access the clart option with your foot
you want a wider range of sounds and tone combinations
you want the dunsh
Always, always, always feel free to contact us if you have any questions about our pedals. We’re more than happy to help. We want you to be excited with your purchase, and we want to help you find the right thing for your needs.
Also, just so you know, the Fettle Boost plays well with other gain stages, but our favourite combination is an Electrofoods Germ Warfare running into a Fettle Boost. It makes everything sound so damn good.
I realise that we’re known more for modulation and weirder stuff, and that is certainly going to be the direct we take in the future. We have also recently discontinued all of our other dirt and fuzz pedals, so why continue with the Fettle Boost?
As a guitarist, the Fettle Boost is the only Champion Leccy pedal that never, ever leaves my pedalboard. Whilst other Champion Leccy pedals make sounds we need and want and have a lot of fun with, the Fettle Boost just makes our guitar sound exactly like it should. I (Woolly) have recently started my whole rig from scratch, new amp, new guitar, new board. The first pedal I turned to was the Fettle Boost and whilst I’m still making a few decisions, it’s the only pedal (apart from a tuner) that will definitely stay. Yes, it’s a super simple circuit, and it doesn’t do daft things, but I really believe in it.
In fact it’s taken me a long time to decide to make it a regular production pedal, in part because the few people who own one contact me to tell me how good it is. It has even made an appearance on Gina Gleason’s board! Nuff sed.