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the final word on Oakley panels!
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Oakley Sound Systems  
Author the final word on Oakley panels!
BassPudding
After months and months of research into buying my very first modular, I've finally decided on the pre-assembled Oakley/Krisp1 is the way to go! But now is the choice of panel, which stupidly enough seems to be one of the more difficult decisions!

Krisp1 supplies MOTM modules in the modern looking Krisp1 panel design, or using classic SynthTech style Bridechamber panels. I prefer the more raw and basic look of the Bridechamber ones, but due to import duties and taxes, they make the whole process take a bit longer and at a slightly higher cost.

Tony references Schaeffer AG as panel suppliers, and after downloading the .fpd file for Scheaffer's FrontDesign software, it looks like changing the corner radius to 0.00mm (and possibly the material from aluminium 'anodized' to 'powder coated'??) matches the Bridechamber panels and solves to problem of importing.

So has anyone ordered panels though Schaeffer? What are they like price-wise? I'm wondering whether the best idea would be to order the panels myself and send them in to Krisp1 or something

Cheers!
emdot_ambient
You say you have the .fpd files. Have you loaded Front Panel Express? That's the program used to create .fpd's and you can use it to order the panels...from Schaeffer AG. It's their program.

If not, download the program, open the .fpd files in it, and click on the Pricing icon. A window will pop up telling you the price. Shipping is not included in that stated price, though, I don't think.

And if the price looks a bit steep, go to File/Front Panel Properties and uncheck the In-Fill button. That will cut your cost and honestly, non-painted text and engraving looks ever bit as good as painted ones. At least to me.
Synthbuilder
BassPudding wrote:
changing the corner radius to 0.00mm

Don't go to zero, use something just slightly more. Zero is just a little too pointed and sharp.

BassPudding wrote:
(and possibly the material from aluminium 'anodized' to 'powder coated'??) matches the Bridechamber panels and solves to problem of importing.

I've never tried powder coating. It wasn't around back in the early days.

BassPudding wrote:
What are they like price-wise?

Even with shipping, VAT, import duty and courier admin fees Bridechamber will be cheaper. Bespoke panels are expensive - Scheaffer charge approximately 40GBP per panel.

Tony
BassPudding
thanks for your help

embot_ambient can u post a photo of the panels you have without the in-fill option selected? it seems without that option the price goes to around £25 for a 1U panel and £30 for 2U, but yeh $10 for a 1U blank panel from Bridechamber is a bit cheeper! Does Paul do the hole punching and screen printing himself?

my main worry is that going down the bridechamber panel route makes the lead time a bit longer - i know Krisp1 build modules for stock in their panels and I like to be able to spontaneously buy a module and have my hands on it a week later!
Paradigm X
Hey

Dont forget the beast in the uk too - he does lovely panels, at about 20% or more cheaper than schaeffer, plus cheaper shipping.

http://www.thebeast.co.uk/cnc/
emdot_ambient
BassPudding wrote:
embot_ambient can u post a photo of the panels you have without the in-fill option selected?

Take a look at the ones Fonik did in various panel colors:

https://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=82376&postdays=0&pos torder=asc&highlight=tricks&start=10

Clear as day without the in-fill.
thebot
Paradigm X wrote:
Hey

Dont forget the beast in the uk too - he does lovely panels, at about 20% or more cheaper than schaeffer, plus cheaper shipping.

http://www.thebeast.co.uk/cnc/


Yes! Highly recommended.

Schaeffer are good as well, bit more expensive but they're also really professional - updates on your order, shipping notices, good customer service (they've contacted me before when I've made stupid mistakes on panel design which they could easily have charged me for but didn't - think I had a number over a drill hole or something like that).

Bridechamber is fine but you can have long waits for the panels to be sent out and almost zero communication inbetween - if you're a nervous / anxious buyer or in a hurry to get building I wouldn't recommend it. Which is not to say he's untrustworthy, just that you need patience.
kecked
burn them in wood on laser printer
mumblinstevedubya
OR roll your own. thumbs up
drip.feed
I have seen pictures of those Schaeffer powder coated panels and they are very shit. The problem is that they have to engrave your design before powder coating because engraving after coating risks chipping or shattering the power coated finish. The result is illegible engraving due to colour bleeding into the grooves. Really awful. You really have to print a design onto a glazed finish.

The other potential problem with Schaeffer anodized panels is inconsistent colour. If you don't get your panels made from the same batch of coloured stock you run the risk of your modular looking patchy. Apparently Schaeffer will set aside stock on your behalf to avoid this problem but you have to buy the stock up front. It may be no coincidence that Tony Allgood built his own Oakley modules with non-anodized silver panels.
Synthbuilder
drip.feed wrote:
The other potential problem with Schaeffer anodized panels is inconsistent colour.

This.

I had a conversation with Kai Schaeffer years ago (when they were a little company). He told me that this is a well known 'problem' in the industry and was mildly amused when he used to drive past this building in Berlin which had been partially clad in giant sized aluminium panels. Each one was a slightly different hue which was probably not what the architect had planned.

I made half my pre-built Oakley Modular systems in blue. Mostly because of the colour variation is less of a problem with the lighter colours. My own prototype modular is the natural finish.

drip.feed wrote:
It may be no coincidence that Tony Allgood built his own Oakley modules with non-anodized silver panels.

Indeed. Although they are anodised but they don't have any colour die added. There are still differences though. Some modules are a different shade of silver but it's less apparent than the black ones.

If I had my time again, I'd probably go with the sticky laminate labels for my prototypes. Although you have to very careful with tightening up the nuts on the sockets and pots. If the washer slips you can scrunch up the laminate.

Tony
BassPudding
thanks for the heads up on the Scheaffer panels, it doesn't seem like such a good idea now! I know a metal worker and I think somewhere down the line I might make one single 10U panel out of steel with Dymo labels for that laboratory look.

Would love to see a picture of your prototyle modular Tony..!
drip.feed
BassPudding wrote:
I might make one single 10U panel out of steel with Dymo labels for that laboratory look.


Somethig like this maybe?



thumbs up
BassPudding
yep like that but in a larger scale

i had the opportunity to use the pittsburgh modular and a bunch of other euro stuff at Schneidersladen in Berlin recently. as i was heading out the door i noticed a 6u rack of Synthtech MOTM sitting unplugged and abandoned in the corner. after closer inspection and comparison to the euro gear, i knew 5U was the only way for me!

i think so many euro modules would seem that bit better on a larger panel. the Cjewman stuff would be absolutely delicious with Switchcraft jacks and Vernier dials! grin
ashleym
You can go to the Schneidersladen at Rough Trade east London store. They have a set up there. This might give you a little longer to lust/fiddle/contemplate.

I have been using Scheaffer to make panels. Their quality is great. I use infill as I have look and colour scheme I want to stick to. The engraving will last the lifetime of the modules however much you use them. I think a synth with worn off lettering looks a lot worse that a vintage Stratocaster with worn paint. Patina suits some instruments more than others. However for my next panel I will look at what the Beast offers.

Sizewise I agree with you. Having some room around the controls and being able to use proper sized control knobs is worth the extra expense. The size really helps when you get a lot of patch leads set up too. I use the extra size to fit control knobs that have a pointer shape to them, this shows me a control position easily and you can judge position from feel alone- useful onstage or when you have a lot going on. I use Mentor, they come in a range of sizes and you can fit different colour caps to them to help identify their function. They arent the cheapest (the ones I use are about £1.50) but for the handful you use on each module the feel is well worth it. However I did smart a bit when I ordered the knobs for a sequencer...........
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