Freekish Blues Fraud. Alpha Drive pedals are just repainted + gooped Joyo pedals = hilarious pedal deception
This is really quite amazing. Why you should always look inside the box, and if it’s gooped, be wary!
According to posts and gutshots on Freestompboxes and TDPRI, this company Freekish Blues (m@j@ bullshit pedal maker I hadn’t heard of til today) have been buying $30 Joyo pedals, repainting and gooping them. Then with some TGP hype, a waiting list and some lies about building them in a basement, they sell them on for $168.
Thus the JOYO Ultimate Drive:
Becomes the Freekish Blues Alpha Drive:
Perhaps worse than this obvious deception, The Gear Page (http://www.thegearpage.net) seem intent on stifling any discussion of the matter. Making them somewhat complicit in ripping-off pedal fanciers and tonehounds to the tune of $130.
Freekish Blues Alpha Drive
And here: TDPRI.com
Update 7th July 2011
So much has happened since! First TGP temporarily banned everyone who mentioned Freekish Blues or the whole controversy, accusing them of trolling. So everyone bundled into the Harmony Central thread here. Then, after consulting their lawyers, TGP changed their rules to allow people to post what the hell they liked, providing posters took personal responsibility and inserted a few weasel words like ‘allegedly’ and ‘in my opinion’. So this happened- finally! However it wasn’t to be. By now all the folks on TGP taken-in by Freekish got angry and started baying for the blood of Ken Freekish and for the endorsee of the pedal, Thaddeus Hogarth, to comment on the fiasco. So the TGP moderators locked the threads in the hope they’d drop off the internet.
While this was going on the heroes at Freestompboxes opened a few other Freekish Blues pedals and proved beyond all doubt what most suspected by just by looking at the construction and layout of the Freekish effects: they were all really Joyo or BBE pedals, gooped and painted. And now BBE might sue.
Update 26th July 2011
I got my Joyo Ultimate Drive a few days ago. The board construction is really neat. I like the board-mounted Alpha pots. The external construction wasn’t so hot though: the nut on one pot was at a funny angle and had been jammed-on, and they clearly don’t know to put the lock washer INSIDE the box!
I added a 4PDT switch to swap between the stock and Freekish Blues Fraudsters modded state. The FB mod just neuters the effect - reducing the range of the pots so the pedal stays firmly in m@j@ overdrive territory rather than the brash extremes possible in stock mode.
The pedal isn’t strictly true bypass. It seems to be a version of Millenium Bypass, but implemented wrongly so no signal is passed in bypass with the power off.
Oh yeah, it sounds really good. I’m not really into ‘amp in a box’ pedals, but it does sound good. As good, easily, as a Rock of Rock.
I banged-together a quick diagram in DIY Layout Creator. I stuck the resistors on the switch lugs and insulated with heatshrink. You can use tape or whatever. The only slightly tricky thing about this easy mod is the removal of C9 from your Joyo board. Careful not to overheat the thing or you end-up with ugly scorch marks like you get in a ‘real’ Alpha Drive.