The Rat

(22 posts)

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  1. Chris
    Member

    2 Months ago I purchased a 1984 Pro Co Whiteface Rat, and I'm in love with it. I'd been checking ebay periodically for about 8 months and one finally was listed with only a buy it now option of $350 US Dollars.. I talked the guy down to 300 and we used paypal to exclude the third party (ebay).

    My favorite thing about this pedal, is that when set right (tad bit of distortion, some filter, and volume set at 12 o'clock), I'll be playing a longer line and run up high to grab a last final note (with a touch of vibrato) and the pedal reacts in such an amazing way. It's as if the pedal was in my head, knew the line, and sent a beautiful ray of burning/fuzzy distortion that decays like no other pedal I've ever used (I hear the same burning rays in a few solos on the OJM record. Love it.). I have a cheap Rat from the late 2000s and I've also experimented with distortion/fuzz pedals from MXR, EHX, DOD, Boss, Keeley, Empress, and Zvex.. Anything else y'all suggest?

    One fuzz pedal I kept, was from this company called Skin Pimps.. Its called the Halloween Fuzz and it has a real unique sound when used drenched or when used lightly.. I use it in Jazz and Rock gigs, very versatile.. But I'm still in love with my Whiteface Rat more than anything.

    Does anyone know more about the Whiteface model in general? How seldom I see them up for purchase and for good reason.. Thanks!

    Admin
  2. JPMike
    Member

    I got a regular Rat and I really like it.

    I would really love to try an 80s whiteface one.

    Secret
  3. jorgemg1984
    Member

    Ben I don't want to bug you but the schematic for the original RAT is available and all the parts still exist; even the LM308 chip. The cost (in parts) for the RAT is around 40€ and then add some hours labor... I got an exact replica of the original circuit with tons of mods for 90€ with better components and true bypass.

    Pro Co are making a lot of money in those... there's nothing mythical about the pedal, you can go to pedal builders forum to learn more, plenty of people build exact RAT clones. But yeah it does sound good!

  4. Chris
    Member

    Hey Jorge,

    Thanks for the info, I have seen a few replicas and also the Whiteface reissue Rat online, but I'm a bit skeptical. I purchased a Boss SG-1 Clone from BYOC and it was an exact replica, but somehow it sounds a tad bit different than my friends Slow Gear.. Huh?

    Anyway, all the best and thanks again!

    Secret
  5. jorgemg1984
    Member

    I never did any A/B but in theory a RAT clone should sound exactly equal... or 99% equal. Maybe the BYOC clone has some schematic adjustments? I know they do that sometimes as "improvements".

    The important thing is you're happy :)


  6. Chris
    Member

    I totally agree Guitarguy77.. I only know three Jazz guitarists off the top of my head that I've seen using the Rat though.. Kurt has a Whiteface that's in excellent cosmetic shape, and Scofield and Ben Monder both use vintage Rat 2s..

    Who else uses the Rat (other than like Nirvana/Punk Bands)?

    And also like I mentioned previously, there's a huge difference in sound between my 84' Whiteface and my late 2000's Rat 2.. Guitarguy77 you were saying your 90's Rat 2 sounds more modern.. Can you be more specific?


  7. jorgemg1984
    Member

    Frisell also uses the RAT (and a Tube Screamer). It's sort of a common pedal among jazzers (with the TS)... Here's a friend of mine using one of the new (chinese) ones

    [+] Embed the video | Video DownloadGet the Flash Video

  8. JorgeRubiales
    Member

    Sounds good to me. I don't really buy all that hype about vintage pedals, as long as you are able to find similar quality components (and there are those over there, maybe not drop-in replacements, but an engineer friend can help).


  9. JPMike
    Member

    Can you guys share some settings on the Rat and the TS, or how to use them together? And what other would be ideal for that nice KR tone. :D

    P.S Jorge your friends sounds amazing.

  10. jorgemg1984
    Member

    Thanks Mike, he is a great player.

  11. JPMike
    Member

    But but, what about the settings?

  12. jorgemg1984
    Member

    Mike my TS is actually a RC Booster / TS in one pedal. So I use Filter on the RAT on 100% and Tone on the TS on 100% and use the RC Booster for eq. The TS has some mods (mid shift, asymmetrical and symmetrical od, some different clippings) and the RAT has tons of mods (ruetz on / off, lots of different clipping). I have 4 electric guitars, two amps (jazzmaster ultralight and henriksen heads) and two Dr Z cabs with different speakers and configurations. The pedals sound very different with different gear combinations so I don't have fixed settings.. sorry!

  13. Chris
    Member

    Does anyone know what Kurt sets his Rat to as a default? Distortion--Filter--Volume

  14. smoke
    Member

    Frisell also uses the RAT (and a Tube Screamer). It's sort of a common pedal among jazzers (with the TS)... Here's a friend of mine using one of the new (chinese) ones

    Damn the rosenwinkel is strong with that one. Great tune though and damn good tone.

  15. Basile865
    Member

    Sorry to rehash an old thread but I finally got to try a Rat today. Just the basic modern production one. I couldnt find a tone worth the money in it. I had the filter knob probably around 3 o'clock, the volume around 1 and the distortion anywhere from 8 o'clock on up. I was using an ibanez am73 semi hollow and it pretty much sounded like a carlos santana tone. Quite a bit more fuzzy then I was expecting.

    I really hope to be able to try a proper vintage one in hopes that there is actually quite a difference. The gain structure in the modern ones are all wrong in my opinion.

    Now, a modern reissue pedal that I love is the dod 250 reissue (yellow box). Such a smooth gain structure that as long as youre not maxing it out sometimes you forget its on..... On par with the exotic offerings (which i love and have owned) and also quite cheap if you find one.

  16. Basile865
    Member

    Hey Jorge, who is your friend in that clip? I cant get the song out of my head. I love how the motif modifies as it goes

  17. jorgemg1984
    Member

    His name is Virxílio, he is from Galícia (Spain). He studied in Porto (Portugal) and lived in NY for a brief period, he recorded with Walter Smith III and Marcus Gilmore there.

    http://jazztimes.com/sections/albums/articles/26038-odysseia-virxilio-da-silva

    He's in Galicia again, playing some gigs but I am not sure about his plans for the future, I need to catch up with him soon. He's an amazing player! Here's a duo track I played with him

    https://soundcloud.com/jorgegoncalves/all-the-things-you-are

  18. Basile865
    Member

    Thanks man, I really dig his playing. Im suprised he doesnt post on this forum, as he seems to be heavily influenced by kurt, almost to a fault. My wish is that he will continue to blossom into his own powerful thing, which hes very capable of doing. Thanks

  19. jorgemg1984
    Member

    His thing is not really forums I guess... I am sure he'll keep up the good work and end up an amazing player!


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