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olddawg's picture
Southern California & Hawaii usually, but I get around
Dec 2004
2 years ago

Hi Geeks,

I just picked up a Line 6 Spider 212 100 watt chassis for $26. I fixed it and everything works fine. I was acually suprized that it sounds pretty good considering what it is. I would like to build the FB4 foot controler for it rather than buy one. I think it is actually a midi interface rather than just 4 momentary switches and a resistor ladder. Has anyone out there built one, fixed one, or has one that they could take some gut pics of. Or, a schematic of course would be great. Berarduur, have you been into one of these? Any ideas? Line 6 doesn't make their schematics available!

Stage Guitars: '80s Thin line LP Custom, '70 LP Standard, '83 Squier Black Headstock Strat w/ Dan Torres pickups, '59 Black Danelectro DC, sometimes others.

Pedal Board: Nady UHF 10 -> TU2 -> Rocktron Big Crush -> 70s MXR Phase 100 -> Cry Baby -> Bad Monkey -> Early '80s Rat -> Early '80s Ibanez CS 9 -> Ibanez DE 7 -> Behringer Dr 100 Stereo Reverb

Stage amps: '63 Blonde Tremolux w/ two original 2X10 cabinets with a '60 Ampeg Rocket/18 watt VTB Marshall clone/ Epi VJ into a Mashall 1965A

mweetman's picture
Aug 2009
7 years ago

Similar story. Picked up a Spider 2 head for £30. Only problem was a blown capacitor on the PSU.
I have the original POD, & POD floorboard & was always annoyed that having invested £200 in the damn thing, they straight away obsoleted the technology.
So looking at the Spider schematic (that can be found on the web), the interface is essentially a MIDI interface, uart running at 31.25KBaud. I hooked this up to a PC & captured the data.
Unfortunately, they use a proprietary protocol, which consists of keep alive messages of F0, 02, 04, repeated 6 times, then F0, 02, 01 once. Changing patch causes the Spider to send ASCII text of the patch. I captured "GREEN CLEAN" as one patch. The patch name is followed by F0, 02, 0B, then F0, 02, 0C, then back to the keep alive string. I was suprised they didn't dump the patch along with the patch name, but I guess there is no real reason to do this.
The data looks a bit like a MIDI sysex, but it isn't as there is no F7 EOX code.
Without an FB4 to look at, I don't know what is sent in the other direction. Would be dead easy if I had one, & you could use a small micro to emulate the FB4 (or larger Floorboard).