Stand out from the crowd with a unique Custom Panel Edition assembled module. These special modules come with one-of-a-kind front panels painted and printed by hand as part of an R&D project, trying out techniques for possible future products: tape mask painting, marble dipping, and hydrographic printing. I started with a bad batch of regular panels from a screw-up at the regular panel factory, and over the course of months, turned them into something different.
See the panel painting photo gallery and marbled and hydrographic panel gallery for some of the production process.
Other things worth knowing:
See the pages for the corresponding regular-panel modules for more information on each module, user/build manual and source code, audio demos, and so on: MSK 007 Leapfrog VCF; MSK 008 Octave Switch; MSK 009 Coiler VCF; MSK 010 Fixed Sine Bank; and MSK 013 Middle Path VCO.
Select a panel by number using the "Panel and module" drop-down to view availability. I have one of each panel shown; when it's gone, it's gone. The photos are mock-ups made by placing knurled nuts and knobs on the panels to give some idea of how the finished module will look, but what you are buying here is not just a panel but a complete module including the panel shown, with knobs in the colours and styles shown.
Sourcing multi-coloured knobs appropriate for all the custom panels was not easy, I only have just enough of them, and in order to not be left with only clashing knob colours for some other custom panel later, I cannot offer substitutions on knobs, except that on request I can substitute the blue knobs used in standard-panel kits (which are a little darker than the light blue knobs in some of these photos), for the knobs shown here. Specify that in the order notes if desired.
The automatic stock information shown on this Web site reflects whether I have the panel itself in stock (i.e. whether I haven't already sold that particular panel). When you order one of these modules it'll be assembled with your chosen panel and a pre-prepared "naked" module that has no panel yet. If the custom-panel modules are unexpectedly popular it's possible I could go temporarily out of stock of the naked modules to make them, and in that case there could be a delay filling an order. I will contact customers about this if it comes up, and post updates on this page if it seems there may be an extended delay.
In the case of the Fixed Sine Bank, please specify in the "order notes" which frequency variant you want - A, B, or C. (I will follow up by email with customers who don't specify this.)
Pricing is the same as assembled modules with standard panels. Note that that is intended to recover some of the cost of the R&D project, and does not really reflect the labour that went into making the custom panels. I have no current plans to offer any more Eurorack modules made with these painting and printing processes, but if I did do them in regular production, I would have to charge more.
All the custom panels are coated with two-component automotive polyurethane clear coat, which should make them at least as durable as our standard panels. The clear coat has a glossy surface but depending on the underlying painting or printing, it usually is not smooth. The marbled panels, especially, have a fair bit of texture to them because of the way the paint piles up during the dip. Although I expect them to be durable in normal use, they should be treated like any other handmade artwork. Like other North Coast modules, these ship with nylon washers for the mounting screws and I recommend using those to prevent "rack rash."
Labels on the custom panels were added by hand with enamel paint pens, which do not allow for as much fine print as the standard machine printing process; and some of the busier printed designs make it hard to read the labels. So not all jack sockets and controls are labelled in as much detail as would normally be on a standard panel, and you may need to compare the panel carefully to the illustrations in the manual to learn the position and function of each control.
These panels were made during research and development. All of them are to some degree experimental, and none of them are perfect. Some do have visible flaws. Some are better than others. See the photos; the panels are in the condition and quality shown.
Hydrographic print was activated with North Coast's own low toxicity, RoHS compliant, dibutyl phthalate free activator. That was probably the most fun part of the R&D project, even if it wasn't the most useful part.