SOLD Vintage Electro-Harmonix Tall Font Big Muff Pi | Sovtek Green Russian EHX

Discussion in 'For Sale: Effects and Pedals' started by JBoogy, Nov 23, 2016.

  1. JBoogy


    Aug 25, 2015
    Pensacola, FL
    IMG_3649.jpg IMG_3652.jpg IMG_36491.jpg Screen Shot 2016-11-23 at 4.48.15 PM.png

    $250 Paypal only, includes awesome packing and usps shipping to lower 48

    Sovtek Tall Font Big Muff

    There are zero sonic issues - Pedal functions and sounds amazing.

    Pedal has been around the block but has no issues in the tone department. As you can see it is missing the battery door (a common occurrence on these). Includes 9v battery clip so you can run it from your power supply on your board.

    This is the one. THE ONE. This is the magical Green Russian with the screws on the front (as illustrated in the last picture. This is the SAME model that Juan Alderete (Racer X, Mars Volta, Deltron 3030) uses and puts against every other fuzz known to man in his Fuzz wars series on youtube. This is the fuzz pedal that destroys them all. Same era, same body, same amazing sound.

    Get your Black Keys / Dan Auerbach on too...

    Now for some history on Sovtek Big Muffs:

    The Green Russian Big Muffs Pi's are the most common Sovtek BMPs to be found from the 1990s era. Also known as the Tall Font and Bubble Font Green Russians. The tank-like military appearance made these very mean looking pedals, and very desirable. They shipped in the same military style wood crate with Russian lettering as the Mike Matthews Red Army Overdrive, and previous Sovtek BMPs, though the box graphics changed sometime during the third edition run. These were made in St. Petersburg Russia.
    Contrary to popular belief, these Russian BMPs were not made with spare tank parts, ammunition boxes, land mines (!), or any other junk-scrap military weapons. They were made in a former Russian military equipment factory operated by two Russian colonels. Some of the circuit board components may have been stock that was made or purchased during the Cold War era, but that is as close to military parts as it gets. It is interesting to note that there actually was a Russian tank called the BMP. No, not for Big Muff Pi, but for Bronevaya Maschina Piekhota. It was an armoured personnel carrier developed during the Cold War for transporting Infantry on the battlefield. It was heavy, reliable, but it had relatively thin armour (sound familiar?). It was first seen in public in November 1967 at the Soviet Red Square parade.

    GRAPHICS AND COLORS - Produced in the late 1990s, the two-tone Civil War Sovtek Big Muff color scheme had already changed to an all green colored box with black graphics. Now the graphics changed to use simpler Big Muff letters. There were three editions. The first edition, nicknamed the Tall Font Green Russian, had tall, condensed, Big Muff letters. In addition to the English MADE IN RUSSIA markings like the previous Muff, this version also had the the same words in Russian letters silk screened on the front end. The Russian letters were last seen on the Red Army Overdrive but never appeared on another Russian Big Muff until now. They remained on every Russian Big Muff until E-H stopped making them in 2009. The second edition from around 1995, nicknamed the Bubble Font Green Russian, had rounded Big Muff letters. The third edition retained the bubble-font graphics, but the box changed to a six-screw, light weight all folded sheet metal box with a metal battery door cover. The letters CE were added to the box end graphics. The CE marking certified that a product has met EU (European Union of 27 member states with an economic and political standard) consumer safety, health or environmental requirements. The green color varied during the production as you can see by the photos below, though some of the variation in color is due to different lighting and white balance conditions of these photos. Most were an olive-drab military green, though some were a shade lighter or darker, and some were bright grass-green. I assume the St. Petersburg factory must have had problems with consistency from the paint suppliers in Russia. The paint on the first edition Tall Font green Big Muffs was very poor quality and literally flakes off. Most Tall Font Russians are like this, but later Bubble Font Russians have better paint.

    CONTROLS / KNOBS - Some early examples have been seen with the same gray knobs that were used on the version 7B Green Civil War Big Muffs described above, but most have the common black dimple topped knobs with ridged sides. There were at least four different large foot switches used during the production, with varying sizes and shapes.

    CIRCUIT - First and second editions had the same circuit as the transition Green Civil War Big Muffs. Some first edition Tall Fonts had the exact same pcb, parts, and clear/gray plastic jacks as the V7B green Civil War. Later first editions and the second editions used a new pcb trace (#BM-1-01.00.000) and new style jacks with black rings. A new pcb trace (#BM-1-01.00.001) was created for a third edition. Some third editions from 1995 had a different trace pattern on a "T" shaped PCB, with no PCB#.

    The NPN Russian Silicon transistors were usually unmarked, in black plastic T092 cases with white and green dots painted on top and sides. Some third editions had TO92 cased tranys marked 3102, marked EF, or marked EE1. Occasionally metal can TO18 cased transistors were used on the first editions, marked NPN KT3102E 9108.
    Second and third editions changed the dual 1n0K capacitors in each of the first three circuit stages to a single 470pF cap. This cut some of the bass from the tone and made them slightly grittier and less smooth sounding than the Civil War Muffs, but more like the first edition Red Army Overdrive with 430pF caps.
    Film capacitors were used, as well as flat, rectangular green or red ceramic caps, and occasionally round ceramic disk caps. No electrolytics were used, other than the polarized 20-22uF power supply filter cap.
    Resistors were a mix of carbon composition or metal film.
    POWER - Power was from a 9V battery only. A red LED light shows when the circuit is on. To connect to a standard Boss type AC power supply, use a 9V 100mA battery adaptor like the 1 Spot CBAT. If you intend to add a standard 9V power jack that works with standard negative tip power supplies, you can find out where to wire the + and - wires by looking at the wiring diagram for your version, or simply follow the red (+) and black (-) wires from the battery snap.

    As on the previous Civil War version, a hand drawn/painted serial number appears on some of the circuit boards, though this is rare. I believe these are actual sequential numbers of the units as they were made. It is unlikely the number is sequential for the entire production of this version. The numbering was more likely repeated monthly or annually, or possibly repeated with each color or graphics change. Apparently the practice was discontinued for the second edition Green Russian, and all Russian Muffs that followed.

    ENCLOSURE BOX - The first editions had the same four-screw, die cast boxes with ridged-sides and sheet metal tops as the previous Green Civil War version, and the same plastic battery door cover. Some of the first editions had the ridges polished off like the Civil War Muffs, though this was rare. These boxes were finished rough with sloppy clean up of the mold flashing. The second edition had the same box, though the printed graphics changed. There were four rubber feet glued to the bottom of the box, prone to falling off, the same as previous editions. The third edition changed to a less expensive six-screw, light weight, all folded sheet metal box with a metal battery door cover. The rubber feet were screwed to the bottom of this edition.

    Last edited: Nov 28, 2016
  2. drmaxell


    Sep 11, 2012
    Sedona, AZ
    Yes, this is THE ONE! Love my Tall Font! Sounds massive with bass. GLWTS!
    JBoogy likes this.
  3. JBoogy


    Aug 25, 2015
    Pensacola, FL
    Thanks! So true, nothing really compares to this muff.
    drmaxell likes this.
  4. IngloriousOz

    IngloriousOz Supporting Member

    Jun 1, 2006
    SLC, Utah
    Always nice to see a well loved Tall Font on the classifieds, also nice to see my video(s) with Juan in the Ad! CHEERS!

  5. JBoogy


    Aug 25, 2015
    Pensacola, FL
    Thanks! Big Fan. Keep on Rocking
    IngloriousOz likes this.
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