3. Preparing patch cables
Our Custom Boards pedalboards are made almost exclusively using Evidence Audio’s SiS-plugs and their Monorail-cable, which is why this guide will show you how to use these specific materials.
– It’s best to measure your lengths of cable straight from the coil, following the signal path from effect to effect.
– By now you should know where the power supply unit will be placed. Avoid having any audio cables running close to the PSU.
Evidence Monorail cable lengths when connecting pedals:
- Reserve 20 cm of to connect two pedals that are situated next to each other in series.
- To connect two pedals that are placed further apart to each other, you should reserve 50 cm of cable material.
- If your pedalboard uses a looper for effect switching, reserve approximately 50 cm of cable per pedal per direction. This means that half a metre will be enough to connect any pedal in any situation.
- You should add one metre more to be able to route the cable alongside the rails, or even two metres, if you’re building a very large pedalboard.
THOSE EFFECTS that are placed right above the power supply should have their patch cables travelling on top of the frame. A few more centimetres of patch cabling here and there will make far less of a difference to your signal than having a patch cable running over the power supply, and inducing hum and buzz as a result.
Not making your patch cables too short also makes adding strain relief far easier. A “relaxed”, rounded lead dress will prevent the patch cables from pulling the jacks sideways and makes them much easier to disconnect in the case of an emergency.
- Measure a few additional centimetres for the plug. About two to three centimetres of Monorail-cable will go into each SiS-plug during assembly.
- Cut the cables to size in the order of the signal path, and use masking tape and a pen to mark each cable. A well thought-out signal path during the planning phase will make this part much easier.
- Remove some of the insulation at the ends of the cables using our Custom Boards wire stripper cutter.
- Pull the outer copper mesh to one side of the cable, and then twirl it into a braid, with no single strands sticking out. Cut this braid in half its length. Beneath the copper mesh you will find an insulated conductor, which is additionally shielded by a thin graphite-coated foil.
- Gently remove this capacitance-shielding foil, from the tip almost all the way down to where the copper mesh comes out from under the insulation. You can do this with a fingernail, or by very careful use of a knife or wire stripper.
- Remove about half a centimetre of the centre conductor’s white insulation. Make sure the copper conductor is clean and straight. If needed, simply remove a tiny bit of bent conductor tip using a sharp pair of scissors or a wire cutter.
Connection to the Evidence SiS-plug
- Push the cable into the plug.
- Turn the plug clockwise three or four turns, while keeping the cable in place with your other hand.
- Check for sufficient strain relief by pulling the plug outwards, while gripping the cable tightly in your other hand.
- We recommend bending the cable into a 90-degrees angle (especially with short cables) before pulling, otherwise you may risk removing the whole inner conductor.
- Once you’ve double checked the cable’s stress relief, add the back cover to the plug.
- Screw the cover on by turning the plug’s front end clockwise, while holding the back cover in place with your other hand.
- Repeat these procedures for all patch cables.
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