1988 Pro Co RAT

Model Description:

It’s black, it’s bullet‑proof and is great at getting down and dirty. Pro Co set the proverbial rat amongst the pigeons when they unveiled their first RAT distortion pedal in Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA in 1978. The first proper production ‘big box’ RATs arrived in 1979 and lasted until 1983. The familiar ‘small box’ RAT followed in 1984 sporting the same circuit as its predecessor. The ‘small box’ pedals are identifiable by the silk‑screen ‘white face’ (black logo on white) followed from 1986 with the ‘black face’ (white logo on black) versions. These vintage original, much sought after ‘small box’ RATs are now pretty rare and are shooting up in price on the used market.

Pedal Description:

This particular vintage pedal is one of the last ‘black face’ RATs before the current RAT 2 version was introduced in 1988. These classic pedals used the legendary Motorola LM308N integrated circuit that reputedly contributes to the RAT’s distinctive edge. And what an edge it has! Solidly constructed, the RAT is heavy and solidly built to last under stage use. Fortunately, this one has only seen light duty, with only a few scuffs during its life. The effect covers a wide range of tones from mild overdrive, through raspy crunchy distortion to wild fuzzy mayhem. It lives up to its enviable reputation by responding dynamically to touch and guitar volume in a way that others simply can’t match. They are also very, very cool.


  • Made in Michigan, U.S.A. in 1988
  • The ‘Distortion’ knob controls the amount of gain
  • The ‘Filter’ knob controls the tone by rolling off treble EQ
  • The ‘Volume’ knob controls the output level
  • 12-gauge u‑shaped enclosure construction
  • Standard footswitch turns the effect on and off (true bypass)
  • Standard ¼” input and output mono jack sockets
  • Powered by external DC power supply or by 9V battery
  • Easy access battery compartment with thumbscrew on base of the pedal
  • ‘Small box’ ‘black face’ white‑on‑black ‘Pro Co RAT’ logo (1986‑1988)
  • No LED indicator
  • ‘The RAT Made in U.S.A.’ sticker with serial number on the base of the pedal
  • ‘Woodcutter’ label over the pots
  • No box or instruction manual


  • Graham Coxon (Blur)

Detail Gallery:

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