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HipKitty Products
HipKitty from Antioch a suburb of Nashville, Tennessee is building some excellent tonal sounding effect pedals, know in the industry by some top players, Vince Neil (Motley Crue), Marc Ford (Black Crowes), Pete Loeffler (Chevelle), Slaughter... click on a sound file below to hear what all the buzz is about!
In their workshop everything from board etching, populating, point to point wiring, enclosure drilling and finishing is done in house and by hand. The only thing that is subed out is the cabinets for their amplifiers.
They're now getting ready to beta test a new distortion pedal and are in the R & D process to add two new tube amps to their amp line.
From Neal Logdahl the Main Man!! Spot Spot Spot
I'm "the guy" that started HipKitty, does the R & D work and production work for our pedals and amp lines. My wife Toni, besides being my business partner, is the person behind the finished work designs and customer service.
I have been doing tube amp repair and modifcations since the late 70's. All of my repair work is word of mouth in order to keep the workload from interferring with the pedal and amp production and R & D.
I taught myself electronics by way of books, trial and error and a little outside guidance from my Stepfather, a retired aeronautical engineer. This began because of the want to repair, re-tube and bias my own tube amps and the desire to own pedals that I just couldn't afford as a kid.
The amp tinkering began back in the late 70's. My first "formal" creation was a stereo headphone amp to be used in conjunction with a mixing console. I built this during down time at a rural ambulance station when I worked as a Paramedic. I read a lot of rather dry tech books during the down times and would exercise my reading into true application once at home.
My first pedal, the Java Distortion, was built entirely for my use; I never imagined nor intended to market to anyone else. I needed a distortion pedal that I could take to band rehearsals, use my Fender Champ and have a clean (true by-passed) sound, an adjustable rhythm distortion and a third option of the full distortion with added 12db boost at output so I could hear myself solo over the drummer. By accomplishing this feat, I felt confident that I could R & D other ideas and did so.
Word of mouth pushed me to build and sell the pedals that I built for myself to my friends, their friends and acquaintances. I had, in fact, completed quite a bit of R & D work and was building up a small line of pedals long before offering them to the mass public. Though initially I wanted to build the stuff I couldn't afford as a kid, something inside pushed me not to copy other builder's works.
It wasn't until I was "public" (with a website offering direct sales only), that I had and completed a request to build a copy of a TS-808 with true by-pass in one of my enclosures. I did this as a favor to an artist and it remains the only pedal that I've ever done like that. I have done re-housing of mass produced pedals converting them to true by-pass, but now direct that kind of work elsewhere to allow me to concentrate on my own designs and their production.
I don't think that I made an honest, conscious decision to build effect pedals until I moved to Nashville, Tennessee where I became connected to National and International artists whom gave me very positive feedback and continued recommendations that I make it a full time business.
It was not hard for me to design my first effect pedal, the hard thing was acquiring the proper parts that were of high quality. Now, they are readily available, but back then, they weren't. Each effect has worked as designed but of course, there is the R & D process needed to work out the bugs.
Local bands saw me using the pedals on stage and this is how it "blew up" for me, my promotion initially was by word of mouth.
Click on a pedal below to enlarge the image!
Java Distortion™
A two-channel tube sounding distortion pedal that covers overdrive to fuzz sounds. With itís true bypassing, itís essentially a 3 channel affair. The Rhythm channel offers a "Drive" control. Itís in this channel that you can select everything from an overdrive to fuzz sound. The "Lead" channel takes all the distortion of the Rhythm channel and gives it a volume boost of 10db. In fact, the pedal has a large amount of volume gain available to hit the front end of your amp hard enough to bring out itís best! With the Java, you can roll back your guitar's volume control and your sound cleans up.
The Chameleon™
A extremely flexible booster/distortion pedal. It was originally designed as a clean boost for an artist that wanted to keep the tone of his Marshall* amp, but wanted a boost pedal for his solos. In order to keep his preamp tone intact, it was originally built to go in line with the amp's effect send and return section (Donít let this mislead you, this pedal is very well suited to be plugged inline before your amp). Along with the volume boost, the Chameleon can change into a simple overdrive or a medium gain distortion pedal. The Harmonic Blend Control is unique in the Chameleon. It blends in the 2nd order harmonics giving a warm, tube-like sound and 3rd order harmonics giving the sound more clarity or points in between.
The Oxblood Distortion™
Designed to emulate a small EL84 tube based combo with plenty of gain available. Think small British tube amp with an extra gain stage. In fact, the Oxblood's distortion goes beyond what those Class "A" amplifiers offer, yet retains the "jangle". You would swear there are tubes inside the pedal!
The Boa™
A simple 2-knob compressor that mildly compresses clean tones into a unique funk with warmth and mild sustain. Push the Volume control up, and the substantial output will pound the preamp of a tube amp bringing out a sweet overdrive. Dial the Boa in with some distortion, and you have some massive grind and sustain! Try the Boa in the effect send and return section of an amp and find new flavors available!
The Caffeine Boost™
Designed for a Nashville ace with a penchant for trying all colors of tone possible, the Caffeine Boost came to life. The Caffeine Boost isnít just another boost unit; it can serve as an overdrive unit as well. The added Tone control makes the Caffeine Boost all the more flexible.
The Cream Distortion™
A smooth distortion with enhanced harmonic content. Designed like a tube amplifier, the more ďDriveĒ, the more harmonics. Very unique to the Cream Distortion is the ability to obtain greater guitar clarity by turning the Volume control of the unit down.
Click on a amp below to enlarge the image!
The Kitty Box Amplifer
Pure. Sweet. Tone. All in one amplifier that will stay with you for a lifetime.
• Hand wired and assembled in the U.S.A.
• 50 watt all-tube design
• Switchable Tube or Solid State Rectifier
• Ability to use EL34, 6L6 or 5881 Output Tubes
• User serviceable Bias Adjustment capabilities
• Hi and Lo inputs
• Master Volume
• High Quality Transformers made in the U.S.A.
• Matched EL 34 Output Tubes
• High Grade 12AX7 Preamp Tubes
• Custom Color Wood Stained Cabinet
With a personal touch and personal attention to a detailed hand construction, the Kitty Box™ is as versital as it can get in a single channel tube amplifier. Set it and get lost in your own playing.
Current stain color choices include Green, Blue, Red and Yellow.
Black, Red, White Levant, Cream Levant, Red Sparkle and Blue Sparkle Tolex choices are now available in place of stained wood coloring.
To better fit the customer, we allow several choices of current production (matched) output tubes. The current available choices include T.A.D. EL34, T.A.D. 6L6GC (Tall Bottle), T.A.D. 6L6WGC (Short Bottle) SED (Winged C) EL34, SED (Winged C) 6L6GC, Mullard EL34 and the Tung Sol 5881.
Visit HipKitty Products at:
Premier Guitar
In Premier Guitar
The A/B Box™
A passive unit with proper grounding and shielding, thus eliminating any unwanted interference. This is a typical A/B setup, 1 in, select either of 2 outsÖ. Or, select either of 2 in with 1 out. Total isolated switching at itís best!
Java Distortion™
The Chameleon™
The Oxblood Distortion™
The Boa™
Send us a nice shot of your effects pedal board and we'll help promote you or your band!
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