I started my present pedalboard back in the '80s with five pedals, all Boss: CE-2, BF-2, a pair of DD-3s, and a GE-7 for a lead boost. When I started playing again in the 2000's, the Intarwebz' bad influence got me interested in more pedals. I added a second level and more pedals. I got up to seven and ran out of room. Then I swapped in a couple of mini-pedals to make room to squish one more in there. (Although I must admit I bought the Phase 95 NOT because it's a mini-pedal, but because it's awesome.) So now I'm up to eight pedals, not counting the tuner: DIY Stratoblaster clone, BB Preamp, Phase 95, CE-3 chorus, BF-2 flanger, Grand Canyon delay, TR-2 tremolo, and... THE 8TH PEDAL. For a long time, it's been my DIY paisley Rat clone. I really love the Rat, but any time I needed dirt, I found I preferred the BB Preamp, so the Rat was going unused. Recently, I was digging the sounds Warren Cuccurullo got in Missing Persons with his Foxx Tone Machine, so I swapped out the Rat for an MXR La Machine. If I'm not using the Rat, might as well replace it with something really outrageous that's nowhere near BB territory, right? Wrong. La Machine, while a great pedal, just doesn't fit in with the rest of the board. Then I was testing out my island of misfit toys board, where I recently stuck a bunch of things that didn't make the cut on the main board. I played a couple songs through the MXR Custom Comp and LOVED it. Maybe the Custom Comp should be on the main board!?! Maybe I have all the boost/dirt I need and a compressor is the flavor that's missing. So, I stuck the Comp on the floor next to my board and played a bunch of songs for our upcoming reunion gig, playing along with the recordings. Compressor on, compressor off... I can hear a difference, but really - in the band mix - it's subtle. So that got me thinking I should just go back to the Rat. Which loops right around to, "Love it, but I always end up using the BB instead". Arrrrrgh!!! I'm starting to wonder why I have 8 pedals. Maybe I should just take the 8th off and spread the 7 out a bit.