Blackstrap Electrik Co.


Regular price $275.00 $0.00

The LONELY HUNTER is my shop-tuned take on the Dallas-Arbiter Range Master. Standard units come equipped with volume and tone controls. Each unit is carefully biased to my favorite parameters with a trim pot that reveals the fixed resistor values I need, and is then removed. The operational parameters of this common-emitter amplifier determine attack, sustain, clipping, and mids voicing. In a circuit this simple, bias matters a lot, and each transistor needs individual tuning.

*I can instead build your unit on the John Hornby Skewes Treble Boost, or Selectatone platforms*


The RM was built circa 1965 as a solution for British guitarists using the only amps readily available—Vox, Marshall, and Selmer amplifiers. The offerings from all three companies were dark-voiced KT66, EL34 and EL84 powered products. In the U.S., Black-panel Fender amplifiers chimed and sparkled, with gobs of treble available, while, in the UK, amps just couldn't get there on their own. Enter the Range Master.

The clever and spartan circuit cut low frequencies quite drastically, and added heaps of treble; viz., the solution to dark British amps. So confident was Dallas-Arbiter, they dropped the circuit in an amp-top box, dashing the hopes of any who fancied an instant and hands-free way of bypassing the effect.

In its stock format, the RM doesn't sound good with bright, scooped amps. In the last couple decades, circuit-benders discovered mids and/or low end could be added into the circuit by adjusting the value of the in (and/or out) series capacitors. Like Arbiter's Fuzz Face, the RM produces a very low input impedance. This means the RM wants to talk to your passive guitar pickups directly, without any circuits or buffers between. Annoying to some modern users, sure, but the satisfying way the RM works with your guitar's volume control requires this inconvenience.

Please allow up to ~6-8 weeks to shipment. Thanks!

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