When it comes to pedal puzzles and putting together your dream sound rig, there’s no right way—just your way. Check out these boards from your fellow readers, and be inspired!

Matthew Taylor: ’Bama Slamma

“I’m a 46-year old transit authority dispatcher from Fosters, Alabama, who likes to play guitar occasionally,” says Taylor. “My pedalboard chain starts with a JHS A/B Switch used between two wireless systems, leading to a Dunlop GCB80 High Gain Volume Pedal. From the volume, the remaining pedals are numbered 1 through 9. Pedal 1 is a Boss CS-3 Compression Sustainer. Pedal 2 a Dunlop GCB95 “Cry Baby” Wah. Pedal 3 a Boss SD-2 Dual Overdrive connected to a JHS Remote Switch (“Q”). Pedal 4 is a Boss EQ-20 Equalizer, allowing me different settings between my lead, rhythm, and acoustic sounds. Pedal 5 a Boss PH-3 Phase Shifter. Pedal 6 a Boss BF-3 Flanger. Pedal 7 a Boss DD-6 Digital Delay. Pedal 8 a Boss CH-1 Super Chorus. Pedal 9 a Boss RV-5 Digital Reverb, which allows me to get all my sounds in stereo the way I want them. From the reverb, output A is connected to a 100-watt Tube Works RT-2100 Stack, and output B is connected to a 40-watt Crate G-20 amp. My pedals are attached to a Pedaltrain 2 and powered by two 1SPOT 5-output lines. One line powers pedals 1 through 4 and the A/B, and the other line powers pedals 5 through 9. The lines plug into a six-outlet power strip Velcroed to the inside of the board.”

It’s that time of year, when Premier Guitar readers from such disparate places as Florianópolis, Brazil, to Katy, Texas, share with us their prized collection of sonic goodies. All kinds of players write in: Sunflower Bean’s frontman/guitarist Nick Kivlen goes down memory lane, describing how he acquired, through many years and sources, all the pedals he loves. Simon Gotthelf, who has his own YouTube channel dedicated solely to the world of guitar and demoing gear, shows us his fave pedal configuration. A few session guitarists give advice on grab-and-go stomp setups. And then there are dozens of players who call themselves “bedroom” guitarists, many of whom know more about how to wire up a board than some stars featured on Rig Rundowns. Now, let’s dig in!

Guitar store staff have better things to do than clean your instrument, so a well-loved but unsoiled 6-string like this is going to command a higher trade-in value than one that comes in covered in years of residue.

Believe it or not, you can boost the value of your instrument by making everyone's life a little easier … and cleaner!

There's an overwhelming amount of activity in the guitar market these days, and the sheer amount of demand has left some manufacturers struggling to keep up. But rather than wait around for stores to re-stock, more and more customers are shopping for used and vintage guitars. You might wonder, where do all those used guitars come from?

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"'If I fall and somehow my career ends on that particular day, then so be it," Joe Bonamassa says of his new hobby, bicycling. "If it's over, it's over. You've got to enjoy your life."

Photo by Steve Trager

For his stylistically diverse new album, the fiery guitar hero steps back from his gear obsession and focuses on a deep pool of influences and styles.

Twenty years ago, Joe Bonamassa was a struggling musician living in New York City. He survived on a diet of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and ramen noodles that he procured from the corner bodega at Columbus Avenue and 83rd Street. Like many dreamers waiting for their day in the sun, Joe also played "Win for Life" every week. It was, in his words, "literally my ticket out of this hideous business." While the lottery tickets never brought in the millions, Joe's smokin' guitar playing on a quartet of albums from 2002 to 2006—So, It's Like That, Blues Deluxe, Had to Cry Today, and You & Me—did get the win, transforming Joe into a guitar megastar.

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