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Boost and Overdrive

Jam Pedals Rattler - A Twisted Tale of 4 Rats!

Effects Pedal MakersFuzzJAM PedalsRat Style Fuzz+-
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This Twisted Tale started almost a month and a half ago (in part) when Dan and Mick of That Pedal Show announced that they were working on a limited edition Rattler collaboration with leading Greek pedal builder JAM Pedals. I’m a huge fan of Rat pedals and had 13 already in the collection at that time - with the Rattler having been firmly on my wishlist for quite a while (couple of years or so) - I had long intended to get one - just not got around to it yet. With the TPS announcement it seemed like the perfect occasion for me to finally get a Rattler, and score a fantastic memorabilia / memento from one of my favourite YouTube Channels / Shows at the same time.


I latched onto the narrative very early on, and the July 24th ’Greek Adventure’ YouTube video pretty much sealed the deal for me - I was firmly onboard and looking forward to getting my hands on one of those beautiful metallic orange colourway editions. D&M announced that the pedals would go on sale at 21:00 BST on the TPS Store - with TPS Patreons getting first dibs some unspecified time before that.


I got organised - set up an account etc. on the TPS Store and prepared myself to be quick on the trigger for when 9 o'clock sharp rolled up. So at the appointed hour I had been hovering on the store from 10 minutes before the time the pedals were due to go on sale. Over twenty minutes later there was no sign of any TPS Rattlers on said store - so I scanned social media - Instagram and Facebook etc. to make sure I had not missed some sort of updated announcement - but there was nothing to be seen, and no notice on the store either - I had kind of expected to receive some sort of email alert or similar too - but none was forthcoming. I then returned back to the YouTube video from the 24th to check the fine-print of the details to make 100% sure that I had not misinterpreted some of those facts and got the wrong date or time - only to discover a change to the details - which now informed all and sundry that all 100 Rattlers had already been sold to Patreons.


By this time a mix of unfulfilled expectation and aggravated frustration had set in and I'm sorry to say that I rather vented on TPS YouTube with a couple of choice comments to communicate the degree of my disappointment - not really that all the pedals had gone to Patreons - as there was always a chance of that, but that none of this had been properly communicated in any sufficient manner leading up to my 20+ minutes needless vigil on the TPS Store along with prior prep and along with the usual Spaceman Effects Launch Day anxieties - just all so unnecessary.


In any case, being the problem solver that I am I immediately took to the Internet to try and find myself a unique limited edition Rattler of my own - which is the one pictured top-right above, and which I found on what was then called 'Ilias's Boutique' (Ilias Pantoleon of JAM Pedals fame - whom I had already had some correspondence with previously), but has now strangely changed its name to 'Pedal to the Medal' - all you need to know is that it sells a number of Custom Shop JAM Pedals specials. The 2019 Custom Shop Rattle+ that caught my eye looks like a meandering river / rivulet delta or more specifically a glacial floodplain - reminiscent of my Iceland homeland - and implemented via etching into the pedal surface with some sort of engraving or jeweller's drill. It just somehow spoke to me and evoked my Icelandic heritage - so I had to have it!


In any case and as these things evolve, several months before, I had seen a beautiful internals/interior picture of a 2019 Custom Shop Rattler, and I secretly kind of hoped (but not really) that my Custom Shop 2019 Rattler+ might perchance be harbouring similarly elegant wiring - akin to the beautiful circuit pictured in the middle of the top image and here below. Alas that was not the case, and even though I really love the tones I get out of the Rattler+ which is a significantly smoother variation of the standard JAM Rattler - where the '+' is the toggle-switch that gives you lower and higher gain modes - but you don't get quite the aggression and rawness of the standard Rattler as this '+' circuit is slightly different.


So I pretty much and very quickly again decided that actually now I needed the original standard Rattler as well - which I actually really rather liked in its latest black and white colourway - I really can't fully explain why I got so carried away with the TPS Limited Edition - I guess I just got caught up in that narrative and occasion somewhat. A few days later I had acquired a standard Rattler from Regent Sounds in the default monochrome livery, and I'm happy to possess both varieties of JAM Rattler - they are sort of similar, but actually slightly different pedals really - and inspire somewhat different playing from me - which is all well and good.

PT 6

However, I still seem to be drawn back to the newest Rattler Ltd - in its black leather covering with cheeky rear zip to view the internals (per bottom-right pedal in top image) and per visual above. I feel that JAM Pedals should really include a transparent Zvex-style Lexan back-plate so you can view the beautiful geometry of this circuit - I will probably do a later blog-post on 'Pedals with beautiful internals/interiors', and there are very few that compare to the JAM Rattler Ltd. I'm wondering if I am due some sort of discount if I buy 3 JAM Rattlers all in the same year!


I really can't help loving the beauty of that point-to-point wiring - even though the voicing of the standard Rattler really matches my set preferences closer. As to the TPS Orange Edition that triggered this foray - I am already entirely over that - I generally don't suffer FOMA - and I'm very happy with the two pedals I acquired instead. It's just weird how certain incidents can trigger an unprecedented reaction and response - when in the cold light of day and with a cooler mindset - there's really nothing to get all het up about ...

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Stefan Karlsson
Stefan Karlsson
Guitar Pedal X
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