Building the Deep Blue Delay Kit

I want to first say we’ve got some of the best customers anyone could possibly have.  I have really enjoyed working to serve and help each of you so far and I hope this only continues to be true as we look ahead.
One of our customers was having trouble getting their Deep Blue Delay Kit to work, so I decided the best way to help is to build one out and photograph the build to give reference photos for anyone wanting to build our kits themselves and want to know exactly what it should look like.  It was fun to take a break and pull out the soldering iron.  Here’s a few notes regarding my approach to the build.


  • I used a DIP-8 Socket and DIP-16 Socket which are optional and don’t come with the kit.
  • I used CAT5 Cable for the jumper wires.
  • I used a Dremel with a grinding stone to make my cuts on the strips.  I didn’t cut all the way through the board, just enough to sever the copper strips.
  • I outlined the schematic area on the board for easy reference, including where the cuts were made.
  • NOTE: If you’re going to cut the board down to size, do it BEFORE you solder components onto it.  It gets much trickier afterwards.


The Build

Here’s a photo of the board with the jumpers and resistors soldered in place.

Deep Blue Delay Kit Build

After adding the resistors and the jumpers, the next step was to add the capacitors and DIP sockets as well as the voltage regulator.
Take your time and pay close attention.  It took me a couple of hours to build this one, so don’t get in a rush.

Deep Blue Delay Kit Build - 2

Here’s the finished board, minus the potentiometer wires and the IC chips installed.


Notice the two 100nF poly capacitors in the lower left corner.  This is confusing to some, but the WIMA polybox will only fit one place and the 100nF poly film will go right beside the PT2399 Digital Delay IC.

Also, the Yellow Multilayer Monolithic Ceramic Capacitors have 5mm lead spacing, but must go in 2.5mm spaced holes.  I use a pair of needle nose pliers to shape the leads in just a little and they fit just fine.  Make SURE you don’t install them incorrectly!

A Couple Of Photos Of The Finished Build

Deep Blue Delay Kit Build 3Deep Blue Delay Kit Build 4

What if it doesn’t work?

My build didn’t work at first.  I checked the solder joints and everything was fine, so I took a precision flat-head screwdriver and scraped between each track to remove any debris.  The tiniest bit of solder or wire will cause continuity between strips and cause it to malfunction.  My kit was making an oscillating noise at first, but after cleaning between the strips, it worked just fine.  I later installed it into a Hammond 1590B Enclosure with the 3PDT Footswitch, following IvIark’s Suggested Wiring on Tagboardeffects, the first diagram.  The bypass mode worked just fine, but when it was switched on, it was dead.  I figured something was wrong with the switch wiring, so I bypassed the switch all together and it worked great.

Also, you might have a look at Tagboardeffect’s Fault Finding Guide:

Final Thoughts

This is a great sounding delay!  And for under $50, it’s worth every penny.  One note on stuffing this thing in a 1590B enclosure … if you decide to do this, you will need to insulate the backside of the pots to keep the board from shorting out against them.  I came up with a very simple solution: empty plastic jug, such as a milk jug, and a hot glue gun.  I cut small circles out of the milk jug, the diameter of the pots, and then hot-glued them to the back of the pots.  This provided a very thin but strong insulation and kept the board from shorting out on them.

One thought on “Building the Deep Blue Delay Kit

  • July 19, 2014 at 11:58 PM

    Outstanding tip about the use of Cat5 for the jumpers! Never would of thought of using that and what a great way to get rid of a 1/4 box that was left over from jobs I did in the past. Plus, I sort of like the idea that its insulated (not that it would matter much I suppose).


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