Hello all...here's my first topic creation, and I'm doing so because I have not found much info (if any) online regarding some of my experiments with the Rat.
More specifically I bought a Deucetone about a year ago, and have been toying with it in terms of replacing the clippers to try and spice up the flavor a little bit more. That, and I really didn't want two "vintage" and two "turbo" modes...even for cascading it's not what I want, and I don't play stereo (never have, and probably never will).
That said, I noticed people try different colors of LEDs, and different sizes. I noticed years ago in farting around, making pedals from schematics I found, that different colors indeed changed the sound, but I was wanting something a little hotter than red. Interestingly enough I found that IR (infrared) LEDs have a lower operating voltage. I managed to snag a couple from an old Playstation wireless controller that didn't work well, and replaced one set of the red LEDs in the Deucetone. No extra noise came from the change, and the sound is somewhere in between GE diodes and a red LED, with a harder, more distinct clipping of the LED, and more background harmonics like the GE, and gain is in between the two.
Next up I'd read about using FETs to replace diodes. I had some 2N2907, 2N3906, and IRF530N parts sitting around, and decided to replace one of the "vintage" choices in the Deucetone. I tried the 3906 pair first...gave tons of chunky, almost "metal" sounding harmonics and sustain that was starting to act something like a compressor pedal. It almost seemed to load up as I played more, and bass definitely got muddy, but doing solos was pretty insane. Pinched harmonics were happening without trying...it sort of did it on its own. But the loading up (almost like going from a distortion to a fuzz) was a touch weird, so I swapped in the 530N pair. It was a bit chunkier than the LEDs, with a touch more sustain, but I didn't like it as much. I finally tried the 2907 pair, and they're a little smoother, with predictable load up (beyond 1 o'clock gain setting will cause it to muddy up considerably), with very good sustain, and pinched harmonics being almost as easy as with the 3906.
As far as brightness goes, the 530 was least bright, and 3906 was brightest sounding. I'm surprised they affected the sound so much in that regard. I have no idea how long the 2907s will last, or if I'm better off swapping in a MOSFET instead of just a simple transistor for clippers. I have some IRFZ44N here as well...I wonder how that built in Zener would act.
Anyway, if anyone's tried this stuff, I wouldn't know as I haven't found info on it yet. I know MOSFETs are used, and just general FETs, but I'm pretty ignorant about most things transistor, but love to tinker nonetheless. If anyone cars to add some info to this, or has questions, I'd love to do my best to answer.