Hi - Andrew from Hants, UK

Hi All
I joined a couple of months ago and have been lurking - guess it’s time to say hello. I’ve been looking at the open mic videos - wow! So impressed with what you are all doing.
Here’s a quick summary of my story. Having read a few others I am sure it will chime with many of yours. Picked up a guitar as a teenager (in fact made one from a neck I found on a household waste tip!) but quickly decided I didn’t have the talent and gave it away. Spent a lot a of time complaining to friends that I wanted to play guitar and (perhaps to shut me up) got given one for my 40th birthday. Have been playing on and off, mostly learning rhythm parts to songs by rote but have realised I would like to do this properly. Hence finding my way here.
My big challenge is getting distracted by gear. As an engineer I tinker a lot and have also built some pedals and a couple of amps. Gets in the way of daily practice!
Looking forward to hearing more about what you are all up to and comparing notes on the journey…


Hi Andrew, welcome to the community, great to meet you.

The gear addiction is real. I keep telling myself mentally: “Not practicing isn’t going to get you where you want to go on your guitar journey.”. For me it’s all about playing songs, once I could play my first song all the way through, I was addicted. You are ahead of me starting at the young age of 40ish.

Hey Andrew welcome to the forum!

Its ok to get distracted by gear if you ask me, and my reasons are oooh look another Les Paul!

Hi Andrew from a fellow UK lurker who has just introduced himself on the forum.

If you play a new guitar on average 8 hours each its only 1,250 guitars to do your 10,000 hours!

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Wow, That’s cool, only 1237 guitars to go for me


Hello Andrew and welcome. :slight_smile:

I’m resisting looking to much at gear as I know I’ll end up being sucked in.

I’m an engineer too, and I like hands on work (which I don’t often get at my proper work) so I know how you feel.
It’s not bad though. I’d say it’s fantastic.
I admire you for building your own stuff. It’s on my to-do list too but I’ve been putting it off as I didn’t pay much attention in the electronics/electrical engineering stuff at uni and I’ve been avoiding them like hell! :joy:

How do the amps and pedals sound?

Hi Andrew and welcome.

Sounds a familiar tale. If you cut down the tinkering and focus on the practice, no reason why you can’t make your own Open Mic debut in the near future. Open to all regardless if level.



Welcome, Andrew. Now how’s about starting a Learning Log in #community-hub:learning-logs and sharing some pictures of all the gear. And then look forward to hearing it over in #record-yourself-progress-performance:audio-video-of-you-playing

Welcome @thelostchord … I hear ya on that one… I do the same thing, but i have alot of fun building stuff too :grin:

I know just what you mean. I stare at a screen and write things all day now. Never get my hands dirty. So I guess there is a built up need to get a soldering iron out. All my studies (so long ago) were solid state as non-one never thought there would be nay need for valves in the future. So have been having fun playing with valves.

Mostly the amps and pedals sound great as I have started with classic designs like JCM800 tubescreamer etc and then tweaked to taste. Will post a couple of pics in the main thread as others seem interested too.

Hey thanks for all the replies. My gear issue is less about acquisition and more about constantly tinkering with what I have in search of that elusive perfect tone. Beware the amateur with a soldering iron! I will take a couple of pics and post them as suggested @DavidP

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Hi Andrew, sounds interesting, get your mods posted.

If everyone was on the same path, the journey would soon get boring.

Don’t forget about touch as a component of your tone though :bulb:

Yes i used to think it tone was all about the gear but one reason I am here it to play better and not always think that latest gadget or tweak will sort it.

Anyway back to the gear :wink: here is my practice amp. Based on a Fender Champ design with two mods, addition of a tone control and ecc83 preamp valve replaced with 5751 to tame the gain. Started from an ampmaker wf55 kit. After far too many coats of varnish on the tweed cloth I really get why amps ended up covered in Tolex!

Sounds great but I do use an extra eq pedal as find a single tone not quite enough.

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That’s very inspirational for me Andrew. It looks cool and I can just feel the satisfaction you get from making those and playing them!

Too right :grinning: Cheers!