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Clacking Sound When I Touch My Humbucker

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by Doghouse_Riley, Oct 21, 2020.

  1. Doghouse_Riley

    Doghouse_Riley Tele-Afflicted

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    In my partscaster tele I changed the neck pickup from a single coil to a humbucker (SD Antiquity). Now there is a loud clacking sound when I tap with a pick or my finger on the cover of the humbucker or even on the pickguard. I don't recall ever having this issue with a humbucker before.

    I've tested to make sure everything that should be grounded is grounded. I shielded the control cavity and both pickup cavities.

    Any ideas on what the problem might be. Or do I need to learn to live with it?
     
  2. crazydave911

    crazydave911 Doctor of Teleocity

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    Sounds as if the pickup may be fairly microphonic. A plus in my book with the music I normally play but looked down on by most as it's an indication of not being potted completely. Unless you play metal or high distortion often you MAY come to like it :)

    Dave
     
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  3. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Some are worse than others. That pup should be pretty good though. Try touching a wire from the control plate to the pickup and see if it helps, if so, run a ground wire to the pickup.
     
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  4. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    SD Antiquity pickups are not potted and so they exhibit microphony. I do not play pickups that are not potted. Ommv.
     
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  5. Doghouse_Riley

    Doghouse_Riley Tele-Afflicted

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    I was wondering about it possibly being microphonic.

    I play blues, blues rock and classic rock with a modest amount of gain. I like the tone of the Antiquity.

    I will try that.

    Heard. If I don't get rid of the clacking I will most likely be trying another pickup. This time potted.
     
  6. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Yeah, the grounding thing is easy to try, but I'm not hopeful it helps that much. Just a thought.
    It bugs me too, maybe it's the way I pick.
    But potting is fairly easy, I've just used old white candle wax before. Other than that, the SD Seth Lover's are close to the Antiquities but are potted.
     
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  7. Doghouse_Riley

    Doghouse_Riley Tele-Afflicted

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    You're right. I tried grounding to the control plate since it's easy to do. No difference.

    And you answered my next question: What if I do a DIY potting? I might try that before I buy a different pickup. If I do try another pickup the SD Seth Lover is on my short list.

    "maybe it's the way I pick." When I play that guitar now I've been moving my picking hand back further than I normally do.
     
  8. Mr. Lumbergh

    Mr. Lumbergh Poster Extraordinaire

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    EVH used to pot his own with beeswax. You could do that in a double-boiler, but you can't leave the pickup in for long because AlNiCo magnets start to degauss when they get too hot. It's a bit of an artform of its own.
     
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  9. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    fwiw, that SD Antiquity will be grounded well...as long as it was installed correctly. And....the lack of a ground will cause a pop from an electrical action rather than this mechanical clacking thing you are hearing.
    That Antiquity can be potted to eliminate this microphony. Potting is not difficult, but care should be taken. It requires A double boiler, a candy thermometer, and some decent wax. The material used for the bobbins dictates the temperature range that one should use. Fiberboard bobbins can withstand higher temps than can plastic bobbins. 170-180degrees Cent. For fiber...140-150 for plastic.
    The pickups have to be suspended and jiggled in the wax until the air bubbles are not present....or very much reduced.
     
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  10. Doghouse_Riley

    Doghouse_Riley Tele-Afflicted

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    Great info. I have beeswax that I use for making balms and salves. I have a candy thermometer. I can jerry-rig a double boiler. Looks like Ima be meltin' some wax in the near future.:)
     
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  11. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I never tried a double boiler, just a pan with heat very low. I figured "melted is melted" and lowest temp that did that is what I did, but maybe that's wrong. A small sauce pan in a large one with water would get you there.

    For a full potting though, not sure if you need to unsolder the cover or not...? I looked inside one after potting to find the wax wasn't throughout.
     
  12. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Pot the whole pickup...cover and all. If you have ever adjusted the poles on a potted adjustable,pole,pickup, you will see wax come out of the cover when the screw is elevated out of the cover. Hang the pickup from a wire. I am not against quick chilling the wAx/pickup in the freezer after pulling it from the pot so as to prevent runout.
     
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  13. paulblackford

    paulblackford Tele-Meister

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    Is the pickup cover grounded properly to the bottom plate of the pickup? Somebody might have added the cover later, and not properly grounded it.
     
  14. Doghouse_Riley

    Doghouse_Riley Tele-Afflicted

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    I'm not sure. I will check that.
     
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