Hacking the Jamman – The ‘HackMan’…

Now that I’ve got the Jamman and the Beat Buddy working together about as nicely as I can for now, the next step is to put it all into a project box so that I can mount it on my pedal board. I’ve used an eBay sourced Hammond 1590bb knock off box to house everything. I’ve used this size box before for Arduino projects and it works well.

Since it’s now got a box to live in, I’ve dubbed it “HackMan” for want of a better name.

Some pictures to relieve the boredom….


I drilled and then filed a square hole in the end of the box to take the Arduino USB connector so that I can easily reprogram it without having to take everything apart. The round hole next to it is for the connector to a 9v wall wart (+ve center, NOT negative like most pedals!!!).

At the other end there’s a regular midi connector for the midi out to the Beat Buddy and a 1/8 inch TRS socket to take the jamsync cable (midi in) from the Jamman.

The astute among you will notice that there are two foot pedal switches and a 1/4 inch TRS jack in there as well. The Beat Buddy can use an external two button foot switch for various functions (programmable within the Beat Buddy). Since they wanted $50 for a box with two switches and a socket and since I am nothing if not cheap (ask my wife!) I decided I’d make my own. But rather than build a separate box just to house two switches and since yet another box (in addition to the HackMan) would take up more space than I have on my existing pedal board, I decided I could incorporate the switches and socket in the HackMan and save myself some room, especially since the HackMan itself is just a black box and would otherwise just take up room on my pedal board.

You might also notice a small hole between the switches, that’s just for an LED that tells me whether the HackMan thinks the Jamman is playing or not. I use that to know when to send a stop signal to the Beat Buddy when I press stop on the Jamman. It’s a bit of a kludge but it’s the best I can do with the signals the Jamman sends out, and it works although it’s easy to confuse it as well!

So I’ve just got to wire it all up which I will do tomorrow night and then see if I can squeeze it onto my pedal board. If not I’ll be building another pedal board! I’ll be glad when this is all done because I have a cafe/bar gig in just over a week and I want all this done before then so that I can at least have a little practice with it.


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