SH Stompin' Bass: a real wooden stompbox

Tom writes to let me know about the Shadow Electronics SH Stompin' Bass, a miked up bit of wood for those times when tapping your foot isn't loud enough. It has active electronics and needs a 9v battery to work. Tom is sceptical, saying: "Cheap mic and a bit of wood perhaps? total cost...about a tenner", but Shadow reckon "Made out of chosen rosewood which is often used for high class bass guitars the Stompin’Bass works as a fantastic bass or bass drum accompaniment to your acoustic band." Acoustic?

Damn! I had that idea. Sometimes, it's difficult to mic my boot tapping on a wood floor.
I went to an open mic where a guy brough along his guitar, a harmonica and a small wooden crate-looking thing.

He proceeded to shove the vocal mic in the crate, stood on it and then played some bluegrass stuff with foot-stomping.

It was *really* good... no, really...
I've heard of a bunch of people who tour with a square of plywood with a pickup hooked to it, so they can stomp for percussion. I've been thinking about making one.
Stompin' Tom Connors. New sheet of plywood every couple of shows....

They've even copied his name.

Funny looking rosewood too.
The maker says it has a 9v battery and active electronics, yet you say it's probably just a mic and worth less?
Tom... take one apart and for that 10 spot, try designing the same circuit.
Or even making a box with a mic.

Writers write when they can't do.
Boy, Tom is getting a lot of shit lately. Some of that was from me, but I'm starting to feel bad about it.
Does that have a piece of foam on top? Wouldn't that kill some of the sound? Or does that keep it from getting too distorted or something?
"Tom... take one apart and for that 10 spot, try designing the same circuit.
Or even making a box with a mic."

I hope that was for me, and not Tom Whitwell. My point being that this is a completely overdesigned and overpriced piece of kit for what should be one of the most basic ways of making a sound (stamping yer feet.)

Check out Seasick Steve's 'Mississippi Drum Machine' for how it should be done, and I bet that cost less than a tenner.

What next, the Midi Washboard?

Anyway, I'll just get back to practising my electric kazoo shall I? (

Tom, not Tom.
Tom wrote (on twitter, natch):

"Why do I still take blog comments personally? You'd think I'd have got over it by now..."

Do you think that perhaps your once loyal readers might also feel this way when you display a seriously bad attitude by patronising and insulting them a la the Timbaland post?

Just a thought, no vitriol.
"""Tom... take one apart and for that 10 spot, try designing the same circuit.
Or even making a box with a mic."""

Hmm. Think I've got some scrap mahogany kicking around here ('cos that doesn't look like rosewood to me), some old mikes and a wee preamp circuit - why does it need a preamp for the mike anyway? That's just stupid! I bet it uses an el-cheapo electret mike instead of a more robust dynamic mike. Oh, look at that, I've got a handful of old amateur radio mikes kicking around that could yield an element...

You know, I could make the comment that anonymous whiners whine anonymously when they can talk but not do, and don't have the guts to put their name to their words.
I make passive stompboxes using about five dollars worth of Radio Shack parts and any old scrap of wood. They sound good but a preamp would help.
Chris Whitley is the firs person I've seen doing that. When he was touring behind Dirt Floor, just solo performances like the album, I guess he decided that he needed a way for the foot stomps, as on the album, to carry through the room. He had a piece of plywood with some strips to raise and tilt it on the bottom. I'm guessing he had a piezo stick-on pickup (like the Barcus Berry hot dot and lots since) on the bottom. He wired it to what I think was the acoustic model (either that or a bassdriver-type) Sansamp DI and into the PA. Either has eq to tune the thump.

I've seen a similar product marketed, I think called the Floorboard, but that was also after Whitley's homemade rig.
Could I make a request to see this video go live on your blog?

It's still on the 'stomp' theme, but I am much more amazed by this!

It's called "Dance Chimes" by Alfons Van Leggelo. Enjoy!
wow. that's a great instrument.
I agree with the poster who challenged someone on making an active pre-amped box as nice as this for $10.
Try making a product like this for $10.

I'm not anonymous and I, as one said, "can do", but $10 is pretty low.
So I backup that anon post because words are much easier to produce than actually building something.
It may not be whining you hear, but experience talking.
My hugs and kisses to all beautiful and attractive girls of good character in Paris,London,L.A and India.27
U.N 27.6.9
I love the way Americans assume that the default unit of currency is the US dollar. The OP said "... for a tenner", which is to say ten quid, currently worth USD17 (and rising, I would expect). Sounds doable to me.
Played around with this thing last night at CMJ... was more fun than I expected. Pretty much a one trick pony alone, but put in in the chain before the rest of the FX and it gets a lot more usable.
I bet it could be done for $10, even at the consumer level..

These are made by a company who makes many out of these out of bulk materials. I'm sure it costs them LESS than $10 a unit to make.

As a matter of fact, I'll tally up how much it would theoretically cost to make this:

Radio Shack Piezoelectric Buzzer (for us as a mic): $2

Radio Shack 1/4" Skeleton Jack: $1.50 (half a pack of two)

That leaves $6.50 for a cigar box to stomp on. Doable.

If the gentleman was referring to a ten pound note, which as mentioned before is about $17, that leaves $13.50 for materials, very doable.
You see how someone has applied drop shadow to the picture so that the shadow appears a couple of inches beneath the stompbox? It makes it look like some kind of futuristic hovering skateboard.
The hovering capability more than justifies the price!

But seriously folks, something in the blurb from Shadow doesn't quite ring true. They say the box uses a NanoMag pickup and that:

" NanoMAG is available for acoustic guitars with bronze strings and soon a special version for electric guitars and basses."

..meaning it's magnetic rather than piezo. Wouldn't a mic capsule or a piezo pickup be the sort of thing you'd use to capture vibrations in wood?
Bronze is not magnetic.
This idea is absolute cool Funny looking rosewood too.
Tried one of these yesterday. Complete garbage. Myself and the guys are the music store tried everything to get a "good" sound out of it, and it was wasted time. We tried acoustic amps, bass amps, compressors, and eq's.

Finally when we came close, we realized you needed to spend so much on Eq, Compressor, and a good bass amp to even get CLOSE to a good sound.

Totally a waste of time. Garbage in my books. Mic on the floor is better.
This is like an active version of the Logarhythm but at more than twice the price. I know which I'd go for -
This is the one I made :

check it!
I think Jose Gonsalez just has a mic on the floor in front of his foot, depending on the surface, that would do...
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