The Reuss Big Bender is based on the 1970s jumbo tonebender pedal – which departed completely from the previous tonebender generations in circuit design
The vintage Jumbo (also known as the Bum Fuzz) had a wonderful sound, but it was also a quirky design with some shortcomings. For the Reuss Big Bender, we fixed those. The vintage sound and circuit is all there, but we have added a make-up gain-stage to obtain a strong and satisfying output level (the vintage circuit was weak) and we added an output buffer, making this a modern and less quirky pedal.
Soundwise the Big Bender really is BIG. It’s a huge, crisp, full-frequency wall of noise. Like a sharper and more focused muff fuzz. Not bees-in-a-can like some vintage silicon fuzzes. The tone control operates much like a muff tone control.
The vintage Jumbo tonebender design has a pronounced low-end, which makes it much loved by bass players, but I find it a bit too much for guitars, so we added a switchable ‘tight’ mod to the Big Bender, which makes the low-end much less boomy (switchable via DIP-switch inside). I ship the pedal in ‘tight’ mode, because it sounds amazing.
The iconic fuzz sound of Edwyn Collin's 1990s evergreen 'A Girl Like You' was recorded with a vintage Bum Fuzz / Jumbo tonebender, and the Big Bender delivers this sound.
There’s a lot of sources claiming the jumbo tonebender was a big muff circuit, but that is not true. It’s actually kind of an amputated muff. One clipping stage is omitted compared to a muff, and the recovery stage removed, saving one transistor. Ironically, when we fixed the flaws of the jumbo, working with the aim of preserving the vintage sound, we actually ended up with one more transistor than in a muff (five BC184s goes into a Big Bender).
(There was also an earlier 1970s tonebender version called the ’Supa Tonebender’. Some of these were full big muff clones and some, later ones, had the Jumbo circuit. In other words, the Reuss Big Bender will also sound similar to some Supa Tonebenders)
Demo by The Tone Lounge
Big Bender features and specifications
Vintage 1970s Jumbo tone bender circuit
Inherent design flaws of the vintage circuit fixed. Improved output level, output buffer added and improved filtering of the power supply for reduced sensitivity to differential noise from modern ‘switch mode’ type power supplies
Switchable ‘tight mod’ added for tighter and less boomy low-end. Pedals ships in ‘tight’ mode
BC184 transistors (five pcs. versus three in the vintage original circuit )
New old stock 1S2473 clipping diodes, which has a softer 'knee' than modern silicon diodes
Extremely high build quality. Second to none. Completely handmade in the European Union
Powder coated enclosure in Harley orange with real silk screen printed graphics
Runs on a standard ‘Boss-type’ guitar pedal 9V power supply (‘negative centre’) or a 9V battery (not included). The pedal handles up to 18V from an external power supply. Advanced Reuss developed power supply noise filtering circuit makes the pedal tolerate most power supplies
High quality Neutrik jacks
Rugged upgrade quality footswitch (good for at least 30000 stomps)
24 months warranty against manufacturing faults
Packed in a cardboard box and linen draw-string bag
Worldwide shipping from Denmark. Orders posted before 2:00 PM Central European Time on weekdays ships same day