#1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yejb60TNKfg

I recently started this guitar project on my first electric (Yamaha pac 012) replacing the bridge and neck pickup to Seymour Duncan JB and Dimarzio "the cruiser bridge" in the neck, just like Andy Timmons. However when I put it together realized that there was quite a bit of hum when playing with some gain, even when I disconnected the middle stock pickup It is still the same.

I am suspecting it is the ground from the jack input, but I have tried to ground it to the tremolo block, the volume pot (in the video) and even tried to push the bare wire to the bare volume pot (ruling out problems with the solder), but nothing makes a difference. I even tried to connect the bridge pickup directly to the volume pot (ruling out the pickup selector) without any better results.

I also made sure that I re-soldered every ground connection from the 4 conductor wires of the pickups with no luck. I am also aware that Seymour Duncan and Dimarzio uses different color codes on their wires, but I also tried as the diagram suggested, and switched between the green and black wire on the humbucker, still experiencing the same issue. What am I doing wrong here?

Every kind of comment regarding what I might try to fix this is greatly appreciated

Thx
Last edited by Johnniz at Nov 3, 2013,
#2
I wish people would turn their phone sideways when making videos...

It doesn't sound like you wired the output jack wrong. Does the noise get worse when you touch metal parts that should be grounded? Keep in mind that there will be extra noise when the pickguard is removed from the guitar since there is no longer any sort of shielding.

You could also try this:
http://www.guitarnuts.com/wiring/shielding/shield3.php

Another possibility is that you live in a noisy environment. If you are reasonably close to strong radio and TV broadcast stations and/or have any fluorescent lights in the room (including CFLs) then you will have big problems with noise. It could also be the house wiring, but this is less likely.
#3
Quote by Invader Jim
I wish people would turn their phone sideways when making videos...

It doesn't sound like you wired the output jack wrong. Does the noise get worse when you touch metal parts that should be grounded? Keep in mind that there will be extra noise when the pickguard is removed from the guitar since there is no longer any sort of shielding.

You could also try this:
http://www.guitarnuts.com/wiring/shielding/shield3.php

Another possibility is that you live in a noisy environment. If you are reasonably close to strong radio and TV broadcast stations and/or have any fluorescent lights in the room (including CFLs) then you will have big problems with noise. It could also be the house wiring, but this is less likely.

When I touch the poles on the pickup the hum gets more quiet, but not all gone. I own 5 guitars and this is the only one I have encountered this problem with, so I guess noisy environment is less likely. The hum is exactly the same with the pick guard on, as when it is detached. I have also tried several different amps, and the hum still remains
#4
Try shielding and star-grounding the guitar to see if that helps. Does the middle pickup hum that loud when used alone or when used in conjuntion with another pickup, or both?

Also note that higher-gain circuits will cause more hum simply because that's their nature. With an amp set to clean you may not hear any hum at all but increasing the gain (switching to the drive channel) will always increase hum and noise. Some pickups just hum more than others. Even humbuckers will still hum.

The fact that the middle pickup hums the worst, since it's a single, leads me to believe you are picking up the noise from a nearby interference source, not that the noise is coming from within the guitar circuit. Touching the strings should quiet the hum quite a bit.

I've had guitars that hum, and there was nothing wrong with them. They just hummed. Touching the strings (playing) would quiet the guitar to "normal" so it wasn't a big deal.
#5
The funny thing is that in the video I made, the middle pickup was not even connected since I suspected it of being the cause of the hum. I have also tried to touch the strings (muting) etc, however this does not quiet the hum, and even playing, it is still coming through somewhat, especially on the humbucker. This happens both when the middle pickup is connected and when it is disconnected.
#6
If it wasn't connected then that massive hum was just from having a floating hot wire. If it sounds exactly the same with the pup connected (and only that pup active) then the pup could be open or just the hot or ground isn't soldered well. That floating hot wire can also cause noise to permeate the rest of the circuit. If it is open, you're basically facked. It can be fixed, but will involve a partial or near-complete re-wind depending on where the break is. IMHO a re-wound pup is not the same pup as it was before. It's like replacing a badly damaged guitar body but keeping the neck and still calling it the same guitar.

Pickups don't usually become open though, unless there is corrosion in the coil (poorly stored) or has experienced a catastrophic condition (like being plugged into an amp with seriously faulty wiring). I've only had two pickups become open; one was on my '63 Hofner that spent it's life in a shed, the other was just sitting in a box for 10 years and inexplicably failed during that time.

Have you made sure that the phase relationships between pickups are correct? Out-of-phase pickups may not sound like it at first, and not being in-phase will add some treble and bite to the sound, but will also accentuate noise and not cancel hum.

Whew, this is really starting to push my troubleshooting arsenal.
Last edited by Invader Jim at Nov 4, 2013,
#7
Thx for taking the time

I also tried to remove the middle pickup completely from the pickguard, no wires connected to the volume pot or the selector switch, and it is still making the same humming sound, even in the middle position.

In regards to out of phase, I have tried to switch up the wiring and color codes on the humbucker according to the diagram, still the same humming sound.

Seems like this little guitar project of mine are driving me crazy...
#8
Well I have one more suggestion. You could rip out all the wiring, clean out the solder lugs, and start fresh, making sure you follow the proper lead dress. If that and shielding/star-grounding doesn't work, I'm out of ideas...