#1
My guitar hums when plugged in with any gain but the hum is greatly reduced when I'm touching the strings. I've got a Gibson-Baldwin SG with dual humbuckers; if I turn the tone all the way off on one of the humbuckers and leave the toggle switch in the middle position the hum goes away. If I flick the switch towards a humbucker with it's tone knob turned past 0 the hum returns. Anyone know what the problem is?
#2
Probably a crappy amp or patchcord....I'm too tired to troubleshoot, but you might want to start looking there first before blaming the axe.
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#3
...

That's what guitars with humbuckers do.

You get feedback unless you touch the strings.

If it's too much turn down your gain, but otherwise just don't let it ring out - turn your volum knob down whilst not touching it.
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#4
Quote by RockerPseudonym
Probably a crappy amp or patchcord....I'm too tired to troubleshoot, but you might want to start looking there first before blaming the axe.


I thought it was probably the amp at first but I recently bought a new Peavey Valve King Royal 8 and switched cords and the hum remains.
#5
Quote by Rankles
...

That's what guitars with humbuckers do.

You get feedback unless you touch the strings.

If it's too much turn down your gain, but otherwise just don't let it ring out - turn your volum knob down whilst not touching it.


The hum goes away if I touch anything metal on the guitar (bridge, tuning pegs, ect.) so I assumed there was something wrong with the wiring. I re-soldered the ground wire connecting to the input jack but it didn't help. I noticed that each humbucker only has one wire coming out of it; in some of the schematics I was checking out I saw two wires coming out of each humbucker.
#6
The wires could just mean that they're both single conductor pickups. I know that the Seymour Duncan '59 humbucker model is a single-conductor, and I know many people like to use the '59 both as their rhythm and treble pickup because of its versatility.

*EDIT* point is...I'm pretty sure the number of wires from the humbuckers has nothing to do with your humming.
Last edited by novafx at Mar 4, 2008,
#7
I get this with crap pickups. All of my guitars are grounded perfectly, and have no grounding loops, but the one with a **** Duncan Designed HB102 in the neck hums like a bitch (even when the neck volume is turned right down, although the hum does reduce in volume).

Humbuckers come in three varieties:

Active - 3 wires: Hot output, ground, live to battery.

Passive 2-conductor - 3 wires: Hot output, negative 'output', ground.

Passive 4-conductor - 5 wires: Hot output, negative 'output', ground, coil 1 end, coil 2 start.
.. the last two wires are usually soldered together and tied out of the way, but can be used with a switch for coil splitting.

Pickups will usually only appear to have one wire leaving them, because it's insulted multi-core.


Edit: Point - get new pickups.
#8
^His pickups are NOT the problem.

Quote by Rankles
...

That's what guitars with humbuckers do.

You get feedback unless you touch the strings.

If it's too much turn down your gain, but otherwise just don't let it ring out - turn your volum knob down whilst not touching it.

I think he's talking about hum, not feedback.


Your guitar's bridge needs to be grounded, threadstarter. Are you handy with a soldering iron? Or do you at least own a 15W-40W one?

I wouldn't take it into a shop, those "Gibson"-Badlwin's aren't really worth that..
#9
sounds like a loose ground wire, but then i'm not exactly an expert, try that and see what happens
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#11
Quote by forsaknazrael
^His pickups are NOT the problem.


I think he's talking about hum, not feedback.


Your guitar's bridge needs to be grounded, threadstarter. Are you handy with a soldering iron? Or do you at least own a 15W-40W one?

I wouldn't take it into a shop, those "Gibson"-Badlwin's aren't really worth that..


I've got a 30W soldering iron and I have a good idea how to use it. Should there already be a wire coming from the bridge or do I need to put in one?
#12
Quote by forsaknazrael
^His pickups are NOT the problem.


I think he's talking about hum, not feedback.


Your guitar's bridge needs to be grounded, threadstarter. Are you handy with a soldering iron? Or do you at least own a 15W-40W one?

I wouldn't take it into a shop, those "Gibson"-Badlwin's aren't really worth that..


You can get that hum even when the bridge is grounded correctly.

His problem is quite obviously his pickups.
#13
From the sound of it, his bridge is properly grounded. He mentioned that when he touches the bridge/strings/tuners, the hum goes away.

It's just that they're either crappy pickups, or there's lots of electrical interference where he's playing. Maybe try sheilding the pups/cavities?
#14
I don't know what you guys mean, my guitar's silent, and there's no hum before I touch anything metal. It's NOT a pickup problem.

I know what you guys are saying...but I don't think new pickups are the answer. Especially because upgrading this guitar would NOT be worth it.

There needs to be a wire going from your bridge to the back of one of the pots that's going to the ground connection. Is there any indication there's one that goes to one of the TOM posts? Find out which wires go to your pickup, and report back.

Shielding is also a very good solution, and should fix it quite a bit.
Guitarnuts.com has a shielding guide.
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#15
Quote by forsaknazrael
I don't know what you guys mean, my guitar's silent, and there's no hum before I touch anything metal. It's NOT a pickup problem.

I know what you guys are saying...but I don't think new pickups are the answer. Especially because upgrading this guitar would NOT be worth it.

There needs to be a wire going from your bridge to the back of one of the pots that's going to the ground connection. Is there any indication there's one that goes to one of the TOM posts? Find out which wires go to your pickup, and report back.

Shielding is also a very good solution, and should fix it quite a bit.
Guitarnuts.com has a shielding guide.
I get my copper foil tape from stewmac.com


I hear what you're saying, but seriously bad pickups can cause that kind of hum.

Also, the guitar 'should' have come with a bridge ground out of the factory (obviously there's no accounting for shoddy workmanship). The ground wire should come from underneath the TOM bridge, because it's soldered to the bushing for the bridge post, then it'll just 'appear' either in the cavity, or from the bridge pickup cavity.

Anyway, pickups or not, all guitars could do with some shielding work. Yeah, check the guitarnuts.com guide, and make sure that you have no grounding loops.
#16
This is definitely what's supposed to happen. If the guitar's grounded correctly, there's no hum when you touch the strings. If you're not grounding the guitar, what would it be grounded? Hence it hums.

In other words there is nothing wrong with your guitar. Get a noise gate or something if it bothers you that much.
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#17
Quote by james4
From the sound of it, his bridge is properly grounded. He mentioned that when he touches the bridge/strings/tuners, the hum goes away.

It's just that they're either crappy pickups, or there's lots of electrical interference where he's playing. Maybe try sheilding the pups/cavities?



This guys is totally right. I had the very same issue with my **** Yamaha. I shielded the electrics cavities and the hum went away. Another way you can tell if thats the problem is when you turn of the lights, TV, PC etc. and the hum goes away, then its definitely interferance.
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#18
Quote by forsaknazrael


Shielding is also a very good solution, and should fix it quite a bit.
Guitarnuts.com has a shielding guide.
I get my copper foil tape from stewmac.com

Sounds like that's your job, whatever the problem is...
#20
A friend of mine had the same gibson baldwin for a day and the thing hummed like crazy. The wires themselves are actually crap. If u can, return it and get an epiphone sg. if not get the epiphone anyway and use the gibson-baldwin to experement with (test **** for new builds)
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#21
had this problem not too long ago. I re-soldered my input jack with the wires in reversed position on the actual jack. Try reversing the wires on the jack.
I've bought, sold, and traded more gear than I care to admit.
#22
Quote by RabidWookie
My guitar hums when plugged in with any gain but the hum is greatly reduced when I'm touching the strings. I've got a Gibson-Baldwin SG with dual humbuckers; if I turn the tone all the way off on one of the humbuckers and leave the toggle switch in the middle position the hum goes away. If I flick the switch towards a humbucker with it's tone knob turned past 0 the hum returns. Anyone know what the problem is?
That's EXACTLY how it should work. Any hum that your body is coupling into the pickups and wiring, from the surrounding environment is now directed to ground by touching the properly grounded strings.

Possibilities for improvement:

Practice in a location that has less electromagnetic fields.

Use shielded cable for the wiring in the guitar.

Shield the cavities in the guitar.

Don't use more gain than necessary.

Move your pickups closer to the strings, so you don't need to turn the gain so high.
You'll get more signal from the strings, with the pickups closer.
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#23
Quote by RabidWookie
My guitar hums when plugged in with any gain but the hum is greatly reduced when I'm touching the strings. I've got a Gibson-Baldwin SG with dual humbuckers; if I turn the tone all the way off on one of the humbuckers and leave the toggle switch in the middle position the hum goes away. If I flick the switch towards a humbucker with it's tone knob turned past 0 the hum returns. Anyone know what the problem is?


Don't hurt the guitar. I bought my first guitar in my old house, and i bring it home and pop it into the amp I bought. and it HUMMED. ALOT. I almost stopped playing then and there is was so annoying. I had Flouresence lights and some other radiatation in the house. I also was told that I have ****ty power in my house. So if you need to fix it, try to play it outside of your house. you should invest in a power rectifier or fixer (100-200)/get your power fix/ get other light power.
#24
good.
don't fix it.
mess around with it and make amazing post-rock.

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#25
I put speed knobs on the guitar yesterday and one of my tone shafts snapped right off; perhaps it's a sign from God that I need to replace the pots and wiring to address the hum?
#26
All the ground wires should lead along a single path. If the inside of your guitar looks like a jungle gym that's not good.

Check to see if you have multiple connections to ground from a single source. For instance, if you had a ground going to the casing of a pot, and then to another pot, but also straight to the jack and then the bridge, that's bad technique and will cause hum.

Edit: Brendan's idea is also a smart one. This crap about it being ok for you to lose the hum by touching the guitar is stupid. A properly wired guitar simply doesn't do that, and if the pickups sucked and were the problem the problem wouldn't go away when you touched the strings.

There are some good sites you can find if you google "guitar wiring diagrams", and one of the first ones has a whole section on debugging hum.
Last edited by bullets34 at Mar 6, 2008,
#27
Quote by bullets34
This crap about it being ok for you to lose the hum by touching the guitar is stupid. A properly wired guitar simply doesn't do that, ...
Crap?

I don't think so, Junior. Try reading this: http://www.guitarnuts.com/technical/noisebucket.php

I don't agree with everything this guy writes, but he does put things in terms that feeble minds who debate by calling others arguments "crap" (without any technical explanation) will probably be able to understand.

Good luck,
SYK
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