#1
Hello all.

I have a used Squier telecaster that I've been learning on. I haven't had it for very long, and suddenly the neck pickup stopped working. With the switch towards the back, it sounds just like it's normal telecaster self. With the switch in the middle, it quit sounding more mellow, and now sounds like it's normal telecaster self on bridge pickup alone. It used to be nice and quiet, too, no hum, and now it's buzzing a bit. With the switch forward, it's just plain quiet, no notes, just a faint buzz when I really crank the volume. I used the over-the-ear headphones to be sure I'm listening to the electronics, and not the strings themselves.

I know, I really should just take it back, but confound it, I want to fix it myself. This HAS to be easy.

I know some electronics, just enough to get me into trouble. I dug out the multimeter and a wiring diagram for the guitar, and I believe I have proved that the switch is OK, as well as the wires themselves. I got good signal all the way from the pickup end of the white wire, through the switch, to the volume knob end when the switch is in the forward and middle positions.

Since the bridge pickup works, I assume that both knobs are all right, so I didn't try to test those.


I have a couple questions:

* Did I do it right, and prove that it's the pickup?

* What's a decent no frills pickup for a rookie that needs little or no additional fitting?

OK, one more question. PLEASE don't laugh, this is a really newbish one: When I install the new pickup (if that's really the bad part), I'll have to take the strings off. I've never dealt with a truss rod, do I need to do anything about it while the strings are off? (I said don't laugh)

Thanks in advance.
Last edited by littlegreennut at Aug 27, 2015,
#2
It sounds to me like the neck pickup's ground connection is broken. I'm not an expert, so I'd wait for somebody to confirm that, but the symptoms you describe make it sound to me like the hum isn't going to ground and the pickup doesn't have a potential difference to work with ∴ broken ground. Again, I'm not an expert so it could be that when someone who's more into the wiring side of things comes along they'll tell me I'm talking complete garbage; take what I say with a pinch of salt.

How many wires come off the pickup? There should be one that goes to the switch and one soldered to the back of the volume pot (that should be connected to the ground).
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#3
I'm pretty sure I did trace that one, too. I remember it being soldered in a bunch with a couple other black wires to the back of a pot. I'll try again after work, just dashing off now.
Last edited by littlegreennut at Aug 28, 2015,
#4
So, can you disconnect the pick-up and measure its resistance?
If broken is likely to be open circuit.
(Could be shorted somewhere too)
Should be between 5 and 20 Kohms.

I checked so Tele diagrams there is a switch position where the neck pickup is disconnected one side. So you can use this without the need to un-solder.
See sumgai post on this page
http://guitarnuts2.proboards.com/thread/7362/tele-wiring-volume-controls-switch


I'd put my money on a bad earth.
Last edited by PSimonR at Aug 28, 2015,
#5
I will need to find a soldering coach, but it can be done.

Another really rookie question: Since I need to take off the strings to remove the pickup, can I out the same strings back on later, or just change them out? In this specific case I don't mind changing them, but for future reference.....? Is there anything I need to watch out for while doing that?
#6
Quote by littlegreennut
I will need to find a soldering coach, but it can be done.

Another really rookie question: Since I need to take off the strings to remove the pickup, can I out the same strings back on later, or just change them out? In this specific case I don't mind changing them, but for future reference.....? Is there anything I need to watch out for while doing that?


It's usually better to just replace the strings, but not mandatory. If you have a lot of windings on them, you might not even need to take them all the way off to get them out of the way. If this were a Stratocaster or a Les Paul you wouldn't even have to loosen the strings much to take off the bridge.

You won't have to adjust the truss rod for taking off the strings.

The problem could be a broken wire in the pickup coil, a bad selector switch, a cold solder joint, or a short somewhere in there.

If you do need a new pickup, Stewart MacDonald should have a cheap, perfect fit, or your can check out GFS for even cheaper.

Good luck.
#8
Guitar Fetish. Basically their niche is cheap parts, some of which one hears really good things about.
http://www.guitarfetish.com/
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3d9310rd is far more upset than i 

Quote by Bladez22
I'm a moron tho apparently and everyone should listen to you oh wise pretentious one
#9
Cool, thanks!

I got a bit impatient, and got my new part at the local guitar shop.

After I disconnected the pickup I tried checking resistance and found infinity. I might take it apart later, just for kicks.

The new one is a bit fancier than I planned. I don't know why I didn't check first (it's been a long day), but it seems I ended up with a stack pickup when I asked for something simple. Well, it sounds nice, at least. I'll have to upgrade the bridge PU (much, much) later. It took me a bit to figure out the wiring, I had to read and reread the instructions included inside. Soldering went well, no burnt fingers. I haven't soldered before, it was interesting. A couple of the other solder joints looked terrible, so I redid them while I was in there.

Thanks for the pointers, guys. Now I'll go enjoy my nicer-sounding-than-intended Tele.
Last edited by littlegreennut at Aug 29, 2015,
#10
So did you find out if the pickup was bad? I'd definitely have saved that pickup if it was still good.
#11
I still have it, unharmed. I was not able to get a resistance reading between the terminals. No reasoning, or infinity, means an open, usually.

The top part looks to be poorly glued on, and I might be able to get it off. I'm dying to see the insides, and want to see if I can find what failed.