Way-Out Sound


Cracker Box Amp

Maker Camp Project Time Icon

1 Hour

TO COMPLETE

Maker Camp Makey Logo

WHAT WILL YOU MAKE?

An amplifier for your musical instruments (like an electric Canjo!). This is a more difficult project for the more experienced makers in your Camp.
PRINT THESE INSTRUCTIONS
Maker Camp Project Materials Icon

WHAT WILL YOU NEED?

STEP 1

Start soldering

Follow along with the schematic to build the board. To help out, Cairn Idris created a much easier to read circuit layout diagram. If you need more detailed instructions, take a look at the original project here at Make:.

STEP 2

Solder the socket

Start by soldering in the socket to the board. Make sure the circular notch in the socket is facing towards the top of the board.

STEP 3

Solder the main board parts

Solder in the resistor followed by the capacitors and then the power lead.

STEP 4

Add the jack

Solder wires to the input jack and then the jack to the board. Give yourself about 6 inches of wire to work with to make it easier to put in the box later.

STEP 5

Add the pot

Solder wires to the potentiometer (pot) and then the pot to the board, leaving extra wire this time, too.

STEP 6

Solder the rheostat

Solder the rheostat to the speaker and add wires to go to the board. Again, leave some extra wire.

STEP 7

Add the chip

The leads on your chip as they are shipped are bent out slightly. We need to bend them in so that they’re perpendicular to the body of the chip. Gently squeeze them evenly to bend them in. Then push the chip into the socket, lining up the circle in the top of the chip with the circle in the socket.

STEP 8

Put holes in your box

Use your soldering iron to poke holes in your cracker box for the input jack, pot, rheostat, and a group for the sound out of the speaker. Use a pair of scissors to expand the holes so they are large enough for the posts and jack.

STEP 9

Put it all together

Remove the hex nuts from the jack, pot, and rheostat. Put all the electronics in the box, and then push the shaft of the pot and rheostat out of the holes for them and the end of the jack out of its hole. Screw the hex nuts back on to secure them in place.

Add a battery, plug in your axe, and get ready to rock!

WHAT'S NEXT?

A cracker box is nice, but why not kick it up a notch by building a better enclosure? Add piezo pickups to buckets and random objects to turn them into instruments. If you really want to rock, you can build your own effects pedal to get some heavy guitar sounds out of your amp.

BROWSE MORE MAKER CAMP PROJECTS FIND EVEN MORE PROJECTS AT Make:

Please Note

Your safety is your own responsibility, including proper use of equipment and safety gear, and determining whether you have adequate skill and experience. Power tools, electricity, and other resources used for these projects are dangerous, unless used properly and with adequate precautions, including safety gear and adult supervision. Some illustrative photos do not depict safety precautions or equipment, in order to show the project steps more clearly. Use of the instructions and suggestions found in Maker Camp is at your own risk. Maker Media, Inc., disclaims all responsibility for any resulting damage, injury, or expense.

Collaborate on making projects here at Maker Camp

COLLABORATE

Make friends with Campers from all around the world and swap ideas!

JOIN THE COMMUNITY
Share your ideas and what you build on social media

ALL DONE? SHARE IT!

Share pictures and videos of your cool build! Be sure to use #makercamp

POST YOUR PROJECTS

Make: Getting Started with Arduino Kit

Start Making!

Spinbot kit

Maker Camp Gear

Getting Started with Arduino Kit

Make: Getting Started with Arduino Kit

Kit contains the components and book you need to make getting started with Arduino easy.

BUY NOW
Start Making!

Start Making!

Six great projects guaranteed to spark your imagination and get you making.

BUY NOW
Spinbot kit

Spinbot kit

Spinbots are easy-to-make drawing robots that kids love to build, tweak, and enjoy.

BUY NOW
Maker Camp Hat

Maker Camp Gear

Keep your campers cool with an official 2016 Maker Camp hat!

BUY NOW