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thestormunfolds
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Join date: Feb 2013
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#1
Hey,

Bought a cheap Telecaster copy and have pretty much changed everything on it, fitted some Bareknuckle Piledrivers, 4 way switching with phase switching on a push pull switch. The problem is the guitar (although all connections and wiring have been checked) hasn't grounded properly. There's hum/noise unless I touch the strings of the guitar, anyone know why and how to sort this?

Everything is grounded at the back of the push pull volume pot.

Thanks
Robbgnarly
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#3
are the pots grounded to the bridge?
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jthm_guitarist
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#5
Quote by thestormunfolds
There's hum/noise unless I touch the strings of the guitar

That's normal, you're always touching something metal (strings, knobs, bridge, tuners) when playing so it shouldn't be that big of an issue.

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thestormunfolds
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#6
No, there was a bridge wire in this body when I bought it that led to the tone pot which I was told I didn't need as my pickups are individually grounded. The first body I had did not have the wire and was fine. Guessing that's the problem then?
thestormunfolds
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#7
Quote by jthm_guitarist
That's normal, you're always touching something metal (strings, knobs, bridge, tuners) when playing so it shouldn't be that big of an issue.


It only reduces the noise and it's never happened on any of my other guitars, this one however is needed in studio situations so it needs to be as quiet as possible
Robbgnarly
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#8
Quote by thestormunfolds
No, there was a bridge wire in this body when I bought it that led to the tone pot which I was told I didn't need as my pickups are individually grounded. The first body I had did not have the wire and was fine. Guessing that's the problem then?

Yeah you have to have a ground going to the bridge unless you have active pickups they are the only exception to the rule.
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Robbgnarly
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#9
Quote by jthm_guitarist
That's normal, you're always touching something metal (strings, knobs, bridge, tuners) when playing so it shouldn't be that big of an issue.

WTF don't give advise when you have no clue of what could be the problem
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thestormunfolds
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#10
Quote by Robbgnarly
Yeah you have to have a ground going to the bridge unless you have active pickups they are the only exception to the rule.


Alright I'll put a wire back in tomorrow (it's almost 1am here, don't want noise complaints for my guitar again! haha) and see if that works, weird how the other one was fine though without one.
jthm_guitarist
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#11
As an EE I think I might have some sort of clue as to what the problem could be, and your suggestion of grounding the bridge isn't going to help. He said when he touches the strings the buzz stops, so that means they (and therefore the bridge) are already grounded.

Single coil pickups are just antennas that pick up noise, assuming that the wiring is correct there's not much you can reasonably do except try shielding the cavities (as suggested already above.) It's time consuming and your results may vary.

http://www.guitarnuts.com/wiring/shielding/tele.php

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Last edited by jthm_guitarist at Mar 25, 2013,
Robbgnarly
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#12
Quote by jthm_guitarist
As an EE I think I might have some sort of clue as to what the problem could be, and your suggestion of grounding the bridge isn't going to help. He said when he touches the strings the buzz stops, so that means they (and therefore the bridge) are already grounded.

Single coil pickups are just antennas that pick up noise, assuming that the wiring is correct there's not much you can reasonably do except try shielding the cavities (as suggested already above.) It's time consuming and your results may vary.

http://www.guitarnuts.com/wiring/shielding/tele.php

You are a moron, if you think that a bridge left un grounded with passive pickups is OK.
And If your an EE then I would never hire you for anything, if I obviously know more about this and I am self taught
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thestormunfolds
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#13
Quote by jthm_guitarist
As an EE I think I might have some sort of clue as to what the problem could be, and your suggestion of grounding the bridge isn't going to help. He said when he touches the strings the buzz stops, so that means they (and therefore the bridge) are already grounded.

Single coil pickups are just antennas that pick up noise, assuming that the wiring is correct there's not much you can reasonably do except try shielding the cavities (as suggested already above.) It's time consuming and your results may vary.

http://www.guitarnuts.com/wiring/shielding/tele.php


Not trying to doubt your knowledge or anything but there is no way that this is just normal pickup noise, for a start like I said I'm using Bareknuckle, top quality pickups. They are also phase cancelling when used together, the normal single coil hum disappears when I activate this pickup selection but the other noise remains. If the noise stops when I touch the strings then that would indicate that I am grounding the guitar myself?
kingneptune117
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#14
Quote by Robbgnarly
You are a moron, if you think that a bridge left un grounded with passive pickups is OK.
And If your an EE then I would never hire you for anything, if I obviously know more about this and I am self taught


He never said it was ok to have that. He said he thinks it is already grounded.
Robbgnarly
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#15
Quote by kingneptune117
He never said it was ok to have that. He said he thinks it is already grounded.

No he did not, he said "the sugestion of grounding the bridge is not going to help"

Kinda easy to understand I think
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kingneptune117
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#16
Yeah. Grounding the bridge isn't going to help if it is already grounded.

Kinda easy to understand I think
Robbgnarly
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#17
Quote by kingneptune117
Yeah. Grounding the bridge isn't going to help if it is already grounded.

Kinda easy to understand I think

The bridge was not grounded.

The TS stated that already before the first post of our "EE" chimed in with his extensive knowledge. A bridge must be properly grounded to the circut to remove the hum. That is why it stops when TS touches the strings, he becomes the ground of the circut. Active pickups are the only pickups that do not need to be grounded to the bridge.

Some times the "knowledge" that is share by people on here is remarkable

Yes I will give him the benifit-of-doubt that some guitars do need to have the cavitys shealded, but when the ground is missing, that is the #1 culprit for the noise
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Last edited by Robbgnarly at Mar 24, 2013,
thestormunfolds
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#18
Alright guys an update!

Turns out that wiring this guitar has ran me out of wire but I thought'd I'd open it up and see if I could use a screwdriver to ground the bridge to the tone pot... Well, before I even did that it turns out that when the tone pot is in the fully off position the noise disappears however when the tone pot is turned on the noise comes up with it! If I touch any metal part on the guitar be it the strings, screws etc the noise stops. It is definite that I am grounding the guitar myself. What I don't understand is all points are grounded to the same point, apart from the tone cap, which is grounded on the tone pot itself. Even without the wire grounding the bridge the tone pot is controlling the volume of the noise.

These are not noisy pickups, and it is not an interference type noise, any ideas now?
thestormunfolds
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#19
Quote by thestormunfolds
Alright guys an update!

Turns out that wiring this guitar has ran me out of wire but I thought'd I'd open it up and see if I could use a screwdriver to ground the bridge to the tone pot... Well, before I even did that it turns out that when the tone pot is in the fully off position the noise disappears however when the tone pot is turned on the noise comes up with it! If I touch any metal part on the guitar be it the strings, screws etc the noise stops. It is definite that I am grounding the guitar myself. What I don't understand is all points are grounded to the same point, apart from the tone cap, which is grounded on the tone pot itself. Even without the wire grounding the bridge the tone pot is controlling the volume of the noise.

These are not noisy pickups, and it is not an interference type noise, any ideas now?


Also the guitar is extremely quiet on clean sounds
supersac
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#20
Quote by thestormunfolds
Alright guys an update!

Turns out that wiring this guitar has ran me out of wire but I thought'd I'd open it up and see if I could use a screwdriver to ground the bridge to the tone pot... Well, before I even did that it turns out that when the tone pot is in the fully off position the noise disappears however when the tone pot is turned on the noise comes up with it! If I touch any metal part on the guitar be it the strings, screws etc the noise stops. It is definite that I am grounding the guitar myself. What I don't understand is all points are grounded to the same point, apart from the tone cap, which is grounded on the tone pot itself. Even without the wire grounding the bridge the tone pot is controlling the volume of the noise.

These are not noisy pickups, and it is not an interference type noise, any ideas now?


is the tone knob grounded?

or the noise could be of the higher frequencies and the toned down so to speak

try grounding the bridge and then sheilding the cavity with some sheilding tape or similar product becasue its also possible that is the wiring is actigin as a sort of anteanea

anyway i wish you luck on your hunt for the noise maker


edit:if its quiet on clean sounds it could be something else not your guitar thats making the noise
Last edited by supersac at Mar 24, 2013,
thestormunfolds
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#21
Quote by supersac
is the tone knob grounded?

or the noise could be of the higher frequencies and the toned down so to speak

try grounding the bridge and then sheilding the cavity with some sheilding tape or similar product becasue its also possible that is the wiring is actigin as a sort of anteanea

anyway i wish you luck on your hunt for the noise maker


edit:if its quiet on clean sounds it could be something else not your guitar thats making the noise


Well on experimenting around now (Well I'll explain my setup first).

guitar > pod x3 pro (4 cable method) > amp > cab

I'm using a tubescreamer on the pod, all amp sims are disabled. (it's used for effects only). The signal is ridiculously noisy, buzzing, feeding back etc. Whack on the gate and it's fine. So I plug the guitar into the amp, it's a lot better (still a grounding issue but no buzzing or feedback).

The pod is not faulty, works fine with the rest of my guitars. Any ideas on this one?
Robbgnarly
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#22
It is also possible that your solder joints are not making good contact.

Did you clean and prep the backs of the pots before you soldered?

I always use a little sand paper to scuff the back of the pot. Then I clean it with isoprophil-alcohol a few times. I also find myself using 1 drop of liquid flux alot to get a good joint/contact.

The jacks of your pod may be dirty. Spray some contact cleaner on a jack and work it in and out of each jack a few times.

Do you have any other cables that you can try?
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Last edited by Robbgnarly at Mar 24, 2013,
thestormunfolds
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#23
Quote by Robbgnarly
It is also possible that your solder joints are not making good contact.

Did you clean and prep the backs of the pots before you soldered?

I always use a little sand paper to scuff the back of the pot. Then I clean it with isoprophil-alcohol a few times. I also find myself using 1 drop of liquid flux alot to get a good joint/contact.

The jacks of your pod may be dirty. Spray some contact cleaner on a jack and work it in and out of each jack a few times.

Do you have any other cables that you can try?


If the solder was dodgy then surely it would make the same noise through both the pod and the amp? But it doesn't, only through the POD. Tried different wires, just blew one of my ears out with feedback by activating the tone 2 which had a mic plugged into it though... ouch.

I can't think what it is at all, since it's pretty much none existent through the amp on it's own. Used different guitars through the Pod, fine. Just this one!
Robbgnarly
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#24
There are a few possible reasons most have already been covered here. It could be a case of re-doing all the wiring. I have had to do this on more than 1 guitar.

This site has really good free schematics www.guitarelectronics.com

Also clean the guitars input-jack and see if it helps at all.

Have you added the ground to the bridge yet?
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thestormunfolds
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#25
http://www.guitar-mod.com/wiring/tele4wayRev_Phase_Rev.gif

That is the diagram that was used, copied exact! apart from I was told to ground everything to wear the ground of the jack was connected (back of the volume pot). The wire grounding the bridge has not been used because the last Telecaster I had did not have it and had no problems at all (other than the guitar was battered so I decided to change it).

The problem seems to be the tone switch, the guitar has no noise whatsoever when that is turned down other than the guitar playing of course.

I've ran out of wire to connect the bridge to the pot so I'm going to have to buy some more.

It looks like the remainder of this terms student loan is going to have to go on this: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/190682613755?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649

That way there can be no problems. Like I said I'm relying heavily on this guitar as a studio guitar and also if needs be live/band practices. On a side note actually, how much difference will CTS pots, CRL, Sprague Caps etc make compared to cheap electronics (which unfortunately were used. (I've had to do this on a budget due to being a student, ran into a few problems too, such as the bridge pickup wouldn't fit into the guitar so that's rammed in pretty much, hopefully it won't do any damage to the pickup however.
Robbgnarly
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#26
You need to ground the tone knob to its self by either running a short jumper wire from the ground lug to the back of the tone pot or by bending the lug back and soldering it directly to the back of the pot.

I always link all the grounds from the backs of the pots togeather and I always ground to each pot.

CTS/Bournes pots are nice, but if it is a sub $1000 guitar I typically use Alpha pots (they are just fine). You will want Audio taper for the volume control and linear taper for the tone pots.

I use Srauge Orange drop caps.
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thestormunfolds
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#27
Quote by Robbgnarly
You need to ground the tone knob to its self by either running a short jumper wire from the ground lug to the back of the tone pot or by bending the lug back and soldering it directly to the back of the pot.


The tone is grounded to itself, via one of the lugs from the cap. Rather than running that to ground on the volume pot, I grounded it to itself as this is how it came on the guitar originally.

The guitar is custom, so the value is more personal. I need the best sound possible though.

I have the right pots, but they were cheap ones
Robbgnarly
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#28
are they full sized pots?
what type are they?
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thestormunfolds
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#29
250k a for volume, 250k b for tone

both push pull, no idea of the make, they came from china on ebay, like I said I was on a budget. Got rent, insurance etc to pay first
Robbgnarly
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#30
Quote by thestormunfolds
250k a for volume, 250k b for tone

both push pull, no idea of the make, they came from china on ebay, like I said I was on a budget. Got rent, insurance etc to pay first


I can totally understand, I use www.gutarfetish.com alot for cheaper builds
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thestormunfolds
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#31
Yeah I've looked on there before, just hope that grounding the bridge will sort it. Dunno what I'll do otherwise, can't really spend £60 on the solderless option for nothing haha
Robbgnarly
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#32
Quote by thestormunfolds
Yeah I've looked on there before, just hope that grounding the bridge will sort it. Dunno what I'll do otherwise, can't really spend £60 on the solderless option for nothing haha

I will pretty much garantee that grounding the bridge will solve most of your noise issues, you may still get some noise , but nothing like you are currently experiencing
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HowlerMonkey
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#34
The symptoms point to the bridge already being grounded so grounding it will have zero effect.

This is basic physics and electronics.
Robbgnarly
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#35
Quote by HowlerMonkey
The symptoms point to the bridge already being grounded so grounding it will have zero effect.

This is basic physics and electronics.

His bridge is not grounded. he has stated this.
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HowlerMonkey
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#36
It's likely "grounded" through the paint of the guitar or a pickguard, if equipped with one.

If this is the case, it could very well not be a "full ground" and the body would show some resistence relative to the pot where the "real ground" is.

I've found many super low line copys to have used lead paint........which conducts electricity.

Ask Yngwie......he's local to you and me.

If it weren't grounded at all, there would be no change when he touches the strings.

Basic physics.
Last edited by HowlerMonkey at Mar 24, 2013,
Robbgnarly
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#37
Quote by HowlerMonkey
It's likely "grounded" through the paint of the guitar or a pickguard, if equipped with one.

If it weren't grounded at all, there would be no change when he touches the strings.

Basic physics.

Only if there is conductive paint where the bridge makes contact with the body.

And yes there would be a change if the guitar is not grounded when you touch the strings. I have only worked on 100 or so guitars in my life, so I have a pretty good idea of what the simplest ways to check these things are.

Pickguards are non conductive (plactic ones) so it could never ground anything

If there is no ground running to the bridge (spring claw in a trem) that is the most likely culprit of noise you can have.

I have learned on these forums you can never "assume" anything because many people do not know what is really going on with their instuments.
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HowlerMonkey
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#38
It is you who are assuming and have decided you need to shove your opinion down our throats.

If you've only worked on 100 guitars in your life, then you're arguing outside of your depth.

My post passes the basic physics test.
Last edited by HowlerMonkey at Mar 24, 2013,
Robbgnarly
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#39
Quote by HowlerMonkey
It is you who are assuming and have decided you need to shove your opinion down our throats.



No I am going off of what TS has said. He stated he did not atatch a ground wire to the bridge. Take it or leave it I really don't care.

And a bridge needs to be grounded unless you have active pickups, that is a fact
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thestormunfolds
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#40
Hate to keep springing stuff on you guys BUT after even more experimenting.... it's not the guitar!

Well I'll explain, I thought I should try another guitar and the one screaming to be tested was my girlfriends Ibanez (it's had little use so there should be no problems I thought). Right, plugged mine in, horrible buzzing was there. Plugged hers in (hers has humbucker bridge but 2 single coils in neck and middle) and the buzzing remained. Checked the cables, still remained. Changed her pickup selector to humbucker and it quickly disappeared.

Now this by NO MEANS is purely single coil noise, I've worked with single coil noise before and it's just a hum. This is a loud buzzing. I'm beginning to think that POD's aren't made to be used with single coils.... something in this unit must be reacting with the single coils but not humbucker. I'm going to get on to them and see what they say.
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