Here's FXDB's interview with Tim Green of Toyroom Guitar Effects:
How did Toyroom Guitar Effects start?
I started building pedals for no real reason. I had a fairly reasonable collection pedals and was curious as to how they worked and made such amazing sounds. I also had a few good friends that would have conversations about building pedals and amps and I felt left out. So I thought if they can do it, so can I.
I got so much help when I was starting out and I still get plenty of help now. From circuits and troubleshooting to parts sourcing and cheap pedal purchases, I have people all over the globe helping me out. I don't really have much inspiration from other pedal builders, since what I do is fairly unique in terms of parts selection. I guess the guys at D*A*M use some great parts in their builds so they are up there in my books. I get a lot of inspiration from amp builders though, there is nothing more beautiful than a really neat, well build tube amplifier.
The Toyroom names comes from the origin of the workshop. I started out playing, and then building in a spare bedroom. Since I was a kid my parents had always called that room the "Toy Room", so the name stuck when I moved onto bigger and better toys!
The Toyroom logo was designed by a friend/artistic genius Ben Warrington. I asked him for the most playful logo he could come up with and we were both stoked with the result. The building blocks look great on just about every pedal.
What sets Toyroom Guitar Effects apart from other builders?
I offer a mix of rare, vintage and high end components, exotic build styles and wiring, along with the some of the cheapest prices around. I regularly sell pedals on eBay for 99c auctions with no reserve (recently sold a PTP Rangemaster with a 1970's Ge Transistor for $35). I build all the pedals myself (no Joyo here...), meaning I have complete control of the quality of the pedals.
How do you start on a new pedal?
Toyroom pedals come from how I feel at any given time. I'll dig through my collection of schematics and build something to sound like what I feel like building that day. Once I find a schematic I'll either draw a layout up or just build it PTP and make it up as I go along!
How do you name your pedals?
I usually name my pedals relating to the finish of the pedal. The names also come from my mood when building/painting.
Can you tell us something about the production process?
I build EVERY pedal and modify EVERY pedal myself. This is sometimes daunting, but rewarding in the end.
I specialize in exotic building and mojo components. I wire pedals by hand mostly using Point to Point (PTP) wiring, however will use a Perf or Vero board for larger builds. Some vintage and rare components I use are just too big for PCB's.
I paint and drill all my enclosures myself. I use a high quality aerosol paint and have a huge range at my disposal including matte, gloss and hammerite finishes.
How important is the look of your pedals?
Image is VERY important, both inside and out. I believe that the neater I can build a pedal on the inside, the more effort and pride I show in my work. I hope the users of my pedals enjoy the extra work I put in to making the inside of my pedals just as good as the outside finish.
Is parts selection important?
This is the biggest aspect that makes Toyroom Effects what it is. I use nothing but vintage, rare and high-end components in all my pedals. None of those little blue resistors and big green capacitors. I use either Dale, Daven or Wirewound resistors and either WIMA box caps or, if I have room, selections from my range of Soviet Military capacitors, Tropical Fish capacitors and even the famous Phillips electrolytics. I source my parts from all over the world and pride myself on offering the best build quality to people. I also keep an eye out for vintage organs, radios and other old electronics to salvage whatever I can from them.
Which of your pedals makes you most proud?
I'm always most proud of the most recent pedal I build, meaning every time I build something I have a new favourite!
Which of your pedals is the most popular?
Since every single pedal I build is different, no one pedal is more popular than any other.
Who uses your pedals and for which genres?
If someone comes to me with a sound in their head, I do my best to meet their needs. Otherwise, I come up with an idea and make pedals accordingly then sell them to the public.Are you working on any new products?
I just bought myself a bass, so expect a bunch of bass pedals in the near future!