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Old February 15th, 2013, 11:13 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Tele Ground wiring question

OK, so I am in the home stretch of my first Tele build and could use some help. I am getting ready to wire the pickups and have done all my research and THOUGHT I knew what to do. I am a bit confused on the grounding. My pickups have a ground wire. They are Dimarzio Twang Kings. On most wiring diagrams I see notes on a ground wire going to the underside of the bridge. The Dimarzio wiring diagram says to take the black and gray (gound) wires and solder them to the back of the volume pot but make no mention of a ground wire to the bridge. Do the ground wires from the pickups to the volume pot make this uneccessary? Should I add a ground wire to the bridge? If I do add a ground wire to the bridge, should it also be soldered on to the volume pot or does it go somewhere else?

Here is the link for the wiring diagram if that helps:

http://www.dimarzio.com/sites/defaul...1v1t_3wtel.pdf

Thanks in advance for your help.

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Old February 15th, 2013, 11:18 AM   #2 (permalink)
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The grey wire from the bridge pickup should be soldered to the base plate (the big copper plate in the pic. If that is the case, the bridge plate (the chrome plate on the face of the guitar) is grounded through its mechanical connection to the base plate of the bridge pickup. The mounting screws physically connect the bridge plate and base plate.

If there isn't a base plate on your pickup then I believe you will need to solder your own bridge ground. Just take a length of wire, fan out the strands on one side, solder that to the bridge plate, and solder the other end of that wire to the back of the volume pot.

So just wire the black and grey from each pickup to the back of the volume pot like suggested. When you are finished you should get some hum that gets less in intensity when you touch a metal part on the guitar (bridge, strings, control plate)

Good luck!
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Old February 15th, 2013, 11:19 AM   #3 (permalink)
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OK, call me an idiot. After posting the link above my eyes came to rest on a footnote at the bottom of the wiring diagram that says "Tailpiece must be connected to common ground", so that pretty much answers my question. I have looked at that diagram about twenty times and never saw that.

So let me ask two more questions on this:

1. Do I solder this wire to the bridge or just screw the bridge down so it makes contact?

2. Am I right in assuming that "common ground" in this case means the volume pot?

Thanks, and I apologize for my lack of footnote reading.
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Old February 15th, 2013, 11:22 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Wow! Waparker4, that was a quick response! I didn't see that until I posted my second post. Thanks. And I can see how the bridge makes contact now. Makes sense.
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Old February 15th, 2013, 11:24 AM   #5 (permalink)
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1. Just installing the bridge pickup will be enough to make contact between bridge plate and base plate if the pickup has a base plate. In that case, the bridge plate is connected to ground through its connection to the base plate and then through the grey wire to the back of the vol. pot.

If there is no base plate you will need to make your own ground connection betwen the bridge plate and the back of the volume pot.

2. common ground usually means volume pot. But really the two pots on a normal tele are already mechanically connected and the true ground of the guitar is going to be the sleeve terminal of the jack, which gets connected to the ground of the amplifier through the shield of your guitar cable. In theory any of these locations (voluem pot, tone pot, sleeve terminal of jack) should work equivalently for grounding the various parts of the guitar, but usually you just solder everything to the back of the volume pot, including the wire from the sleeve terminal of the jack
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Old February 15th, 2013, 11:42 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks again, waparker.

By the way, your avatar looks suspiciously like my cat and my Tele. Your not upstairs are you?
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Old February 15th, 2013, 11:57 AM   #7 (permalink)
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The posts are coming from inside the house!

No, I don't live with that cat any more sadly, and the Tele has been shipped down to GA to my sister.
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