It's 12-16-2013 and as I sit here in the studio pondering life and the past year I am full of anticipation. I anticipate the new year with renewed excitement and the new avenues it will present. That's the great thing about life; every day is a new adventure. As I approach my 10th year anniversary of business I am so thankful for the people that have been a part of my success.
First to my wife Susan and to my two blessings, Erin and Jacob. They are the motivation for me to get out of bed each morning. And part of why I do what I do. My other motivation, many would feel is money and they would be partly correct. We all have to feed our families. But for me that is only part of why I do what I do. The fact is, I Love the Guitar! But not just guitar, I love all aspects of the instrument. I love playing music with my Church Choir.
I love sitting and brainstorming just how I can improve my muse and the instrument itself. Yes, it's hard work running a business. Many are not aware but monteallums.com, LLC is not my main job. My main job is being a father but I also work a full-time job as a Systems Administrator for a local printer. So I get up at 4:30am head to the studio check e-mail and fill a few orders and answer a few e-mails.
I then head off to my 40 hour plus day job where I work until 2pm. I come home work out for 30 minutes on my exercise bike, take a shower and head back to the studio where I spend the next few hours answering e-mail and filling orders, ordering parts, doing research, illustrating, digital photography and of late also editing video.
All this from a Apple Mac Pro. When I started out 10 years ago I knew a good bit about guitar, having played since I was 11 years old. I was also pretty good at recording and producing music on a Mac. That was my passion along with playing with the choir at church. At the time Susan and I had no children but we decided we wanted to start a family.
But we did not want to give our children over to the state to educate. We decided Susan would quit her outside-the-home job and raise our children. That meant there would be a big hole in our income. So I decided that I would try and use my knowledge of the guitar to make up for the loss in income. There was a piece of electronic equipment at my day job that would output printing proofs and as a waste byproduct would leave these 30" x 25" metallic sheets of material.
Since the company would throw these away I thought why not repurpose them. I got the idea one day of using them to cut out shielding to place on the back of pickguards. I started placing them on eBay and selling them. They sold so well that I eventually sold enough of them to become an eBay Powerseller. Eventually I created a website and the rest is history. While pickguard shields were eventually what got it all started, pedal mods is when business really took off.
I have no electronic engineering degree so I made a ton of rookie mistakes. But what I lack in knowledge I make up in tenacity. I am a pretty fast learner, okay I'm a slow learner, ;-0 and eventually learned to read schematics. I have recently decided to start designing pickguards and I am currently in the process of having a few initial designs manufactured. I am also in the initial stages of creating instructional videos. The wheels are always turning. I am always looking for new ways to enhance the playing experience for myself and for others. I look toward 2013, and the future, with a sense of renewed anticipation. But most of all I want to say Thank You for all your support over the years. May God richly bless you and yours! Monte Allums
When I'm not working or doing that family thang you'll more than likely find me working on my motorcycle or riding the back roads of northwest Mississippi. Click on the pic for an up close and personal look at my ugly mug. Monte Allums
As a guitarist of some 40 plus years I am a devoted student of the instrument. Always searching for ways to enhance the playing experience. The eNut and my alternative tuning offsets are two of those enhancements. If you haven't tried them please let me encourage you to. For those that have an ear to hear, it is a revolutionary advancement in guitar tuning. And the best part, it's a paultry $20. It will be the best $20 you will ever spend on your guitar.
Tweaking the tone of inexpensive stomp boxes is an obsession of mine. I started modding mainly because I refused to spend $200 to $300 or more to achieve great tone.
Most boutique pedals are clones of other inexpensive pedals anyway with the main difference being higher quality components. By upgrading the signal path and changing a few component values here and there, cheap inexpensive pedals can be drastically improved.
Take for example the Boss DS-1. You can buy them new for $40. I've personally bought used DS-1s off eBay for $25. Add one of my mod kits and for well under $100 and a little soldering time you've got a pedal that will rival pedals costing five times as much.
Add to that the fact that YOU personally took a very bad sounding pedal and made it usable. There's a certain level of self-satisfaction that I get knowing that I added a personal touch to a piece of gear that I use.
Take my new Chip Adapter Mods. You will not find these types of mods available from any other modder. This is a major breakthrough for DIY. The opamp is where the tone takes shape. Upgrading the toneless inline chips with a more Hi-Fi Dual Opamp such as the Burr Brown OPA2134PA will transform the tone of my already popular mods into even better mods. Add to that the ability to swap out different opamps and you've got a very effective tone-shaping tool.
3-17-2015 If you use a Daisy Chain to power your pedals you've had a problem with the barrel tip shorting on metal objects. I now sell Insulator Caps to cover the exposed barrels that keep them insulated from shorts. See them here.
3-5-2015 As many of you are aware in the DIY community, as manufacturers have moved to surface-mount (smd) components for their pedal designs, standard parts I use in my kits are getting increasingly difficult to find. Mouser and DigiKey have both notified me Panasonic capacitors (the ones I use in all my kits) are being discontinued by the manufacturer. If you're lucky you can find them on eBay but prices are very high. I am working with other manufacturers to insure the availability of the parts I use in my kits and pedals designs. But I am having to buy MOQs (minimum order quantities) in the thousands. I will continue to use the highest quality parts available. Monte Allums
2-24-2015 We are now offering Diago 18V Adaptors that allow you to run your 9V pedals at 18V. Read about them here.
12-6-2014 I have some Chrome-Plated Brass Pickguards For Sale extremely Cheap here.
8-9-2014 My email was hacked and some spammer used it to send out spam. If you have gotten email spam that said it came from me it didn't. I am working with my site host to try and prevent this from happening again. I hate spam and I'll never send you an unsilicited email. Monte Allums
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6-24-2014 Les Paul Pickguards Now Shipping! Read about them here. These high quality 1mm thick Pickguards are non-ferous (non magnetic) beautiful brushed-aluminum. Because they are non magnetic they will not interfere with the pickups or electronics of your guitar. Plus they are just Drop Dead Gorgeous and will add a touch of Class to your guitar!
3-14-2014 Now offering a MXR Distortion Plus M-104 Mod. Read about it here. Monte Allums
3-8-2014 Now offering a Vintage Dyna Comp True Bypass Kit that includes an LED, Boss Style DC Jack 3PDT True Bypass Switch and SPDT Bright Switch with 3 modes. Read about it here. Monte Allums
12-9-2013 While they last all T-Shirts and Hats are $4.99.You can buy them here.
9-11-2013 I was surfing a particular guitar forum yesterday when I came across a thread about a BD-2 mod. In the thread I was being ripped apart by a poster. Further in the thread it became aparent that the guy ripping into me was actually offering mods for sale.
I understand that tone is subjective and my mods may not please everyone and I can deal with that. But when another mod creator rips another that should be a red flag. If someone has to toot their own horn then it usually means they are insecure about their own talents or have alterior motives.
In this particular case it was clear to me this guy was trying to sell his wares. One thing I don't do is trash other people mods on a forum. In fact I have the utmost respect for Robert Keeley, etc. It's sad when someone feels they have to put someone else down to make themselves look better. Monte Allums
8-10-2013 I am extremely excited about a new mod I am currently workng on for the Boss BD-2. This will be my fourth mod for the BD-2. This one came about in rather a strange way. I usually model a mod after a particular tube amp or sometimes I just try and play to the strengths of a particular pedal and just improve on it.
But this one came about in a very different way. I use my computer and amp modeling software when rehearsing for choir. This way I can use headphones and practice without desturbing anyone. My favorite guitar modeling software is the Waves GTR3 Tool Rack. Here is a screen shot of the actual preset for those that wave the software.
I discovered the preset a few weeks ago and it quickly became my farvorite amp sim. I noticed a similarity in the gain structure between it and the BD-2. The BD-2 has the ability with a few tweaks to take on a very fuzz type gain. So I decided to try and simulate the preset by creating a mod. I've been working on it for some time and I have gotten very close with this new mod.
I am still in the finalizing stage and making a few tweaks here and there but I am stoked about this new mod. Very few mods have excited me the way this one has. It is just very inspiring to play. When I have finalized it I will make a video and demostrate what it will do. Keep an eye on the site for this very exciting mod. Monte Allums
7-22-2013 Well you asked for it and now you have it! True Bypass Mods are shipping Now! Read about them here. Monte Allums
5-19-2013 I have a new mod. You can read about it here. It simulates a Dying Battery. By adding a pot you can now vary the voltage to the circuit. This can give some really interesting results depending on the circuit. The instructions for the mod explain how to add the mod to my Big Muff Mod but those same instructions can be applied easily to any pedal I now offer a mod for. Monte Allums
3-5-2013 All specials and promotions from now forward will only be available to those that have subscribed to my Newsletter. The Specials and Promos will be sent to those that are on my mailing list. I am going to try and have at least one every month. I currently have a promotion for the entire month of March. If you would like to take advantage of it please subscribe to my Newsletter by signing up above. Monte Allums
3-1-2013 I have been loosing money on shipping Pickguard Shields International for some time. With costs constantly increasing I am going to have to start passing them on to my customers. Monte Allums
2-1-2013 I am now selling T-Shirts and Hats. I've had a ton of requests for them. You can find them here. Monte Allums
1-11-2013 I have created a few decals/stickers and will soon be stocking T-Shirts and Hats. You can find them here. Monte Allums
12-27-2012 I have added a new feature to my CH-1 and CE-2/CE-2B mods. I have added a BiColor LED that will posses 2 functions. One will blink at the Rate the effect is set to by the Rate knob and the other will show when the effect is engaged. You can purchase the BiColor LEDs here. Monte Allums
12-14-2012 I have created a mod for my OD-308. I have had many requests for mods that would allow the OD-308 to be used with a bass. I have also gotten many requests for mods that would bring it closer to the famous Vintage RATs. I have accomplished both with this mod. You can read about it here. Monte Allums
12-12-2012 I now have the OD-308 in stock and shipping. Click here. Monte Allums
12-8-2012 I have added a new feature to my TR-2 mods. I have added a BiColor LED that will posses 2 functions. One will blink at the Rate the Tremolo effect is set to by the Rate knob and the other will show when the effect is engaged. You can purchase the BiColor LEDs here. Monte Allums
12-8-2012 I have updated my Trouble-Shooting page with answers to the most asked questions I get. Before contacting me please refer to this page. You can access it here.
12-7-2012 I am starting to include a smaller Sub-Miniature Switch in a few of my kits where space is limited. I highly recommend them for use when space is an issue. You can find and read about them them here. Monte Allums
12-1-2012 After numerous requests I am now offering Chrome-Plated Brass Pickguards. I will first offer Strat SSS and Les Paul Pickguards. I am now taking pre-orders for these. Initially I will have a limited supply and the prices are intruductory only. These are extremey high quality and I have set the prices lower than comparable chrome-plated guards you will find elsewhere. Based on the amount of requests I have gotten I don't expect these to last long. I will sell the first batch on a first-come-first-serve basis. So place you order now! The Pickguards are 1mm thick Brass that have been Chrome-Plated with non-magnetic Highly Polished Finishes. They have been tested to not be microphonic and will not interfere with the pickups of your guitar (they are non-magnetic). Because they are made of brass they will offer excellent shielding properties also. Plus they are just drop dead Gorgeous and will add a touch of class to any guitar. You can find them here. Monte Allums
11-25-2012 I have just completed a mod for the MXR Distortion III and the MXR Classic Distortion. These two pedals have exactly the same pcb so this mod will work with both pedals. You can read about the mod here. Monte Allums
7-27-2012 At the top of each webpage you'll now find a "Google Select Language" button. You can now view the entire site in your language. Hopefully this will make navigating the site much easier for those from other countries. Monte Allums
7-8-2012 I have just finished completing a mod for the Big Muff Pi NYC Version. If you've been looking for that "Foxy Lady" & "Purple Haze" tone then look no further. I have found it for you. Read about the mod here. Monte Allums
7-3-2012 The site will be closed from 7-3-2012 until 7-8-2012. All orders placed during this time will be shipped when we open back up on 7-9-2012. I will not be answering e-mail or phone calls during this time. Monte Allums
5-26-2012 I have just recorded an mp3 of my new Vintage DS-1 Mod. You can hear it here. Monte Allums
4-7-2012 My new TA7136 Adapter is now shipping. This adapter allows you to replace a TA7136 opamp with your choice of any dual opamp. So if you own any circuit that utilizes the vintage TA7136 opamp you can now change it out for one of the higher quality opamps such as a Burr Brown or RC4558P. Order them here. Monte Allums
3-23-2012 My New Vintage Pre 1994 DS-1 Tri-Gain Mod is now shipping. You can order them here.
2-28-2012 My BF-2 and BF-2B Flanger Mod is now shipping. You can read about it here. Monte Allums
1-28-2012 Well, our illustrious government ran U.S. Postal Service, which BTW is bankrupt, has raised it's rates once again. So I am having to pass the rates on to my buyers. So don't blame me for it, I'm just charging you what thy charge us plus a very small handling fee. We still change one of the cheapest rates you'll find anywhere on the net. A lot of companies, especially the ones on eBay, charge you 2 to 3 times what the actual shipping costs are. Click here to see our new shipping rates.
12-15-2011 I just finished a mod for the Boss DD-6. I've gotten a ton of requests for this one. Read about it here.
12-11-2011 I just finished a mod for the Boss MD-2 Mega Distortion. I've gotten a ton of requests for this one. Read about it here.
12-9-2011 I just finished a mod for the Boss CH-1. I've gotten a ton of requests for this one. Read about it here.
12-2-2011 I am putting the finishing touches on a New Mod for the Vintage Pre-1994 MIJ Boss DS-1. Read about it here. With this mod I will be introducing a TA7136 Adapter that will allow you to replace the TA7136 with a Dual Opamp of your choice. The TA7136 actually sounds good in the MIJ DS-1. But wait till you hear a Burr Brown OPA2134PA in the MIJ circuit! And as a bonus you'll be able to use the TA7136 Adapter in other Vintage Boss pedals such as the CE-1, CS-1, etc. Or any other circuit that uses the TA7136. I expect to be shipping the kit and Adapters very soon! Monte Allums
11-25-2011 It appears that my Dyna Comp Rev. E mod will work with the MXR Super Comp. Just make sure your pedal looks like the pic I have at the mod page here. Monte Allums
11-18-2011 I have completed the first of many Mods that I will be offering for Bass Players. I get a ton of requests from Bass players asking why I haven't designed any mods specifically focused toward them. While I offer many mods that can be used with bass such as my TS9 Tri-Gain, TS9DX Dual Drive, Sparkle Drive and DOD 250 Mods, etc. I haven't before now offered a mod specifically for a pedal designed for bass. I am introducing today my first such mod. The Boss ODB-3 Tri-Gain Plus Mod. Read about it here. This is just a very cool mod! It will work equally well for bass and guitar with no special tweaking. It takes a very fuzzy and harsh stock ODB-3 and transforms it into a thick wall of OD or Distortion. If you play either Bass or Guitar then you'll want to invest in this mod. It will do wonders for a stock Bass ODB-3! Monte Allums
11-15-2011 Over the past months I have gotten literally hundreds of e-mail testimonials. It's taken me several days but I have updated my testimonial page here. I invite you to take a few moments and read them. It's truly inspiring to me personally to read all the comments people are making about my products. A BIG Thank You to all my faithfull buyers! Monte Allums
9-19-11 At least once or twice a day I get an e-mail or call from someone telling me they didn't get their PDF instructions. The PDF instructions are sent as an e-mail attachment (to the e-mail address listed on your Paypal account) when your order ships. Please check your spam filter before e-mailing or calling. Your password is your name exactly as it is listed on your Paypal account. Monte Allums
9-3-2011 A word of warning. Do not run any of my mods that use my Dual Opamp Adapter with more than 9 Volts. Running more than 9 Volts will fry the chips. Also, if your having issues powering your pedal after the upgrade take a multi-meter and make sure the pedal is getting a full 9 Volts. The Dual Adapters will not function properly at less than 9 Volts. Monte Allums
8-18-2011 I have adapted my GE-7 Mods to the Boss GEB-7. You can find them here. Monte Allums
8-17-2011 New Mod for the Boss NS-2 now available here. Monte Allums
8-2-2011 Mods for DOD 250 and YJM308 are now shipping! You can find them here. Also, just finished an mp3 of this awesome mod. Take a listen here.Monte Allums
5-15-2011 I just completed a Mod for the VooDoo Labs Sparkle Drive. Go to it by clicking here. mp3 is also available there. I've had a ton of requests for this one. I have added a Tri-Gain Switch and incorporated my Dual Stack Adapter. I have smoothed out the fizzy gain and added bass along with a few more changes. The mod only affects the gain side. The clean circuit has not been affected. Guys you're gonna love this one. The super FAT tones coming from the pedal after the mod is just unbelievable. Enjoy! Monte Allums
1-27-2011 I just got an e-mail from someone wanting to know if I sell my Newsletter e-mail List. ABSOLUTELY NOT! I HATE SPAM as much as anyone. I would never do that. And you'll rarely get e-mail from me. I will only contact the list members when I have specials or New products to introduce. Monte Allums
12-4-2009 Just read a negative review on HC. Guy gave me a 1 for customer service. Said it took an eternity to get his order. Let me make one thing very clear, I ship ALL orders within 24 hours of the initial Paypal notice. The only exceptions are if it's a Holiday or I have closed the site for sickness and vacation. If you need your order fast then choose Priority Mail. I have no control over how long it takes the postal service to deliver a shipment once it leaves my studio. Monte Allums