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  • Writer's pictureRyan

Black Triangle Overdrive | Compare to Vemuram Jan Ray

Updated: Oct 25, 2022


I first built a clone of the Vemuram Jan Ray using a Rullywow Vapor Ray circuit board and I LOVED IT! Very natural overdriven tones. I was not interested in designing my own board until I reverse engineered the Vemuram TSV808 and I knew I could do the same treatment to the Jan Ray-style board and it would be a beast.

Reverse Engineering

Lots of information about the Jan Ray is already available so I didn't need to personally do a trace. One thing I did not find online is a component-for-component identification so I applied what I learned from the TSV808 and applied it to the Black Triangle (Jan Ray) board. A few pics of a real Jan Ray courtesy of this page.

Creating the Black Triangle Overdrive

Riding directly off of my ATS808 design, I dove straight into the Black Triangle Overdrive. I wanted to keep in line with the 4-layer circuit board design and the component types I found from the TSV808. I compared the schematic of the TSV808 and chose components, such as the CM55 resistors, in the same locations as found on the TSV808.

"The Tone Geek Touch"

One of my goals with this circuit board is to make it easy to adjust the saturation and clipping options so I made the adjustable from the top. The only other opportunity for an optional modification is changing the reverse polarity protection diode to a 1N5817 (forward voltage drop of .2v) vs the stock 1N4148 (forward voltage drop of .72v). This optional change will give a slightly better headroom from the opamp especially since there is an additional 100ohm power supply smoothing resistor in the original design. If you plan on building one of these, it's completely optional to change the diode to a 1N5817. When I did a test on my scope, the only difference between the two diodes is I was able to get slightly more output of the pedal. Clipping/gain remained exactly the same.

For the power supply, I prefer solid polymer "electrolytic" capacitors as used in high-end graphics cards and the automotive industry. The service life and performance of these capacitors will far exceed the original type of electrolytic that is rated for 2,000 hours.

The Black Triangle Overdrive name ties in with my personal interest in highly advanced technologies that might be out of this world. 👽

Photo Gallery

Build your own Black Triangle Overdrive!

I'm very proud to be the first to market a 4-layer Jan Ray PCB! Here are some building resources that will expand over time.

Note on the BOM: Component selection can easily be done with Tayda if you're not picky on component selection being exact as the original. I'm sure it will be 99.8% the same tone as the original. Order the Mouser components if you want the exact original component selection. Jacks and knobs are your personal preference and might need to be sourced elsewhere. I tried to keep the vendors narrowed down to a few to ease the cost of shipping.

1:1 PDF outline and faceplate/drill template

Black Triangle Overdrive PCB Outline
Download PDF • 352KB

Download PDF • 185KB

Black Triangle Overdrive Faceplate and Drill Template
Download PDF • 99KB

My Preferred Tools and Supplies

​PCB Holder

​Resistor/Capacitor Lead Forming Tool

​Flush Cut Pliers

Cardas Soldering Wire Quad Eutectic Silver Solder

Solder Tip Cleaner

Hakko FX888D-23BY Digital Soldering Station

Klein Wire Stripper

22 Ga. Stranded, Tin Plated, Aerospace Grade, Tefzel Wire



Jun 13, 2023

Thanks for the great project!

Sounds really good, can't wait to build the pew pew next.


Jun 01, 2022

This one looks amazing! Can't wait to try it out! :D

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