Gotta be something that I am doing wrong

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by Jay Jernigan, Sep 28, 2020.

  1. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Some time back I took a foray into stacked single coil sized pickups. They have their own thing going on, and depending on the individual pickup, I generally like them.
    Never had any real noise issues in Strats, but I have tried three different brands of "Noiseless" Tele bridge pickups and always have a hum. It's lower grade (maybe) than a true single coil, but it's there nontheless.
    I'm going from memory here but I think that they all had baseplate ground wires and I am certain that the bridge plates had them. Have I inadvertently created a ground loop by soldering both to the volume pot? That's the only thing that makes sense to me.
    I appreciate any help I can get.
    Silence is golden.
     
  2. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    It has since occurred to me that this thread might be more appropriate for Tele Technical.
    I probably can't move it, but if there are no replies, I might start over on that forum.
    My apologies.
     
  3. mojavedesert

    mojavedesert Tele-Meister

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    Un-solder the base-plate wire from the volume pot and move the the wire around to different ground points while the guitar is plugged into an amp, listen for the place to reattach the wire that has the least noise. Also, if your facing the amp you're going to get hum most likely.

    And make sure the coils are wired in parallel or they will still make noise like a single coil.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2020
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  4. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Thanks, mohavedesert. I'm sure that it's simple. Never had this happen with anything other than the Tele bridge. If the ground is sufficient one place, shouldn't need the other.
     
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  5. garrett

    garrett Tele-Afflicted

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    Stacked designs don't always play nice with magnetic bridges. I don't fully understand it, but the way a steel bridge reacts with the pickup can reduce the effectiveness of noise cancellation.

    It's not a ground loop.
     
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  6. Sparky2

    Sparky2 Friend of Leo's

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    merrin guitar.PNG
     
  7. rangercaster

    rangercaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I sympathize with your issue, but my technical knowledge is limited...

    Probably a simple fix...
     
  8. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Thank you, garrett. THAT had not occurred to me, and it makes perfect sense: a magnetic loop.
    I was beginning to think like Sparky2 and that was a little uncomfortable....
    I like one of the p'ups a lot, and it's quieter than a single, most of the time, so maybe I can suss out a shield of the non-magnetic variety.

    Thanks again, jj.

    Edit: another thought occurred:
    Are solid brass Tele bridges still available?
    I have only seen one and it was quite old. A friend of mine had it on his first partscaster. My Tele in in question is a CV '50s three barrel, if anyone has any info.
    Thanks again.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2020
  9. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    Despite what you may have read in other places on the Web or even here on the TDPRI, a ground loop does not occur in a passive guitar circuit because there is only a single AC voltage source--the pickups--and they are all referened to the same circuit ground.

    Passive pickups generate voltage measured in milivolts and the current is so low that the ground loops in AC circuits you read about on Websites such as Wikipedia are not a factor in a guitar; there is virtually no electromagnetic induction that occurs outside of the pickups' coils, and there's not enough of it to create noise in the signal.

    Ground loops can occur in amps because there are various AC and DC voltage levels present in various parts of the circuit; sometimes differences in ground potential occur and that stray voltage can run through parts of the circuit that carry signal. That can create noise in the signal--but it happens in the amp, not the guitar.

    Somebody years ago took that concept and applied it to guitar pickup circuits, and now it's a common belief that a ground loop is a possible cause of noise in a guitar circuit.
     
  10. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Thanks, Peegoo. I followed most of that. You are right about there being a lot of caveats re. shielding loops etc. posted daily. Valid, or not, I try to avoid them.
    May I ask your opinion on garrett's post and if you might offer a suggestion?
    Magnetic flux seems to be a possible culprit. Brass bridge? Lead tape? Lead stops x-rays and Kryptonite.
     
  11. garrett

    garrett Tele-Afflicted

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    Yes, Gotoh makes a very nice chrome plated, flat plate 6-saddle brass bridge. I've used them on a couple guitars. Only catch is the classic character of the old stamped bridge is lost.

    Hipshot make flat plate bridges out of stainless steel, with either 3 or 6 saddles.

    Glendale make vintage style stamped bridges out of stainless.
     
  12. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Thanks, garrett. I will take that under advisement, as they say.
    I am going to try out one of the problem pickups, uninstalled, and see what happens.

    "Ain't we got fun?"
     
  13. mojavedesert

    mojavedesert Tele-Meister

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    I would still consider a guitar will have quieter and less quieter places to ground a guitar. I can't remember which usa telecaster it is, but it comes stock with grounding points onto the body itself, onto the wood. If you have noise move the ground wire and listen to see if it gets quieter. Some people, never tried it, they put a layer of contact cement between the baseplate and the body.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2020
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  14. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Thanks for the replies, guys. All worthy suggestions, I say. Just have to put on my troubleshooting hat and get to work.
    Thanks again.
     
  15. preactor

    preactor Tele-Holic

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    Maybe.....Try your guitar on a different amp, in a different location (another house) with a different cord.
     
  16. Lost_N_Austin

    Lost_N_Austin Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Here is a couple pics of my Brass Bridge mounted on one of my Tele "Replica Bodies" used for gathering autograph. Thinking back on the history of this Bridge it has to be over 40 years old.

    Brass Bridge.jpg TeleBody.jpg
    Lost_N_Austin
     
  17. Controller

    Controller Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Good luck. Just had a hum adventure with a dual humbucker guitar. Helped it some with reflowing solder connections, star ground, lying awake at night, etc. Turns out the amp was not well grounded, fixed that, quenched the rest of the hum. I mostly looked at it as a learning and soldering practice adventure when i wasn't aimlessly pacing back and forth.

    Also, beware of fluorescent lighting and dimmer switches.
     
  18. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I like that, Lost N Austin. I'm not sold on brass nuts (prefer bone), but otherwise you can not have too much brass. I wouldn't even mind the saddles, because, brass.
    I put a GFS all brass bridge on a Les Paul. It's the best piece of hardware they sell. A brass stop bar is available but I was too cheap to buy it.
    Had a busy day today trying to re-establish gigging contacts in Huntsville, but ASAP, I am going to try and troubleshoot my humming issue. Thanks to all for your help. jj
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2020
  19. hopdybob

    hopdybob Tele-Afflicted

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    somewhere i have read that Bill Lawrence mention t that there are no groundloops in guitar circuits.
    and because i know he knew more about that than i, i believe that :cool:
    but a thought.

    if the 2 coils are not exactly the same in ohms reading/winding, it can be a true working humbucker???
    please read it as question, not a statement;)
     
  20. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I'm with you, hopdybob. Bill is not to be disputed.
    My instincts tell me that garrett is on to something; in my mind's eye I can see the eddy current doing a little dance off of the steel bridge plate, making hum babies.
    "And the third duck said:'my instincts too, but it don't tell me nothing.'"
     
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