1968 Dallas Arbiter Fuzz Face

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At A Glance:
Model: Fuzz Face
Year: 1968
Finish: Blue
Modifications: None
Repairs: Transistors, pots and capacitors changed

    Iconic stage adornment that defined the tone of a decade, the 1968 Dallas Arbiter Fuzz Face.

    Though not the first fuzz pedal, that accolade goes to Maestro FZ-1 Fuzz Tone of Satisfaction fame, the Fuzz Face tone has become a benchmark sound for players and builders since its introduction in 1966. A handful of components and a distinctive housing (according to legend chosen by Ivor Arbiter as it was the same shape as a mic stand base) is all it needed to change the sonic landscape, especially when combined with a Marshall, Stratocaster and the fingers of a certain James Marshall Hendrix. 

    The design was altered a little during the 9 initial years of production, transistors changed from Germanium (Are you Experienced era Hendrix) to Silicon (Band of Gypsies) for stability and cost effectiveness, and the housing colours changed, but the the essence of this primitive tool was never lost.

    Cosmetically the pedal is in reasonable but obviously well used shape. Some of the decals have worn and the hammerite finish has chipped in places. The rubber is a little loose but is undamaged. The top hat knobs are not chipped or damaged either.

    Inside we there have been some changes. The pots are  recent replacements as are the capacitors. The battery socket is new too as is the jack sockets probably.  The major change is the transistors. Currently there are a pair of AC128s in there which were preferred by Dennis Cornell when he built reissues of this pedal in the 1980s. They really do the job.

    As those of you who have dabbled with fuzz pedals will know, to get the full fuzz tone experience the amp needs to be valve and cooking (experimentation is encouraged). Single coils are a good place to start with the fuzz knob set up above the 12 o’clock mark with volume to taste. Here the pedal really delivers. Not all are made equal and there are plenty of stories of disappointment out there regarding underwhelming tone. Safe to say this one is not one of those. The pedal interacts well with the guitar controls (the 10k input impedance inherent in the design is the reason for that) and runs the gamut from thick and velcroy to soaring lead sound. There’s sustain for days with enough gain to get you into feedback heaven.

    This is the must have for fuzz fans looking for the origins of the sound. Grab it before it gets away.

    Availability:Out Of Stock
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