Fender Vintage Noiseless Jazz Pickup Problem
I'm new around here, and I already have a question. I have a set of Fender Vintage Noiseless J-Bass pickups that I installed in a Mexican made Jazz Bass. I am running these pick ups passive and wired them exactly the way the schematic said to. My problem is that they aren't noiseless! These are the stacked noiseless pick ups, and when I let go of the strings, there is a buzz. I even rebuilt the entire wiring harnass (new pots, wire and tone cap), and checked that the bridge ground is correctly placed under the bridge. That didn't solve the problem. Unless I touch something metal on the bass (bridge, strings, etc), this bass buzzes in a big way. It doesn't matter which pick up is turned up, or if they are both turned up all the way. My local music store here in Nashville said that those specific pickups have been known to have this problem. I want to fix it! Any advice????
Your bass needs a shielding job from the sounds of it. I personally have no experience with those pickups but you need to give that bass a proper shielding job to remove the buzz. Here is a post I made yesterday for another fellow, this comes up often. Fender doesn't do anything in regards to shielding, the shielding job they started doing within the last few years is a joke but it is better than the nothing they did pre-2008.
It isn't a grounding issue, you have a shielding issue. If you have a grounding issue it would get louder when you touch metal/strings/bridge, a shielding issue goes quiet when touching metal/strings/bridge.
You need to give the bass a proper shielding job, you can use either copper foil tape or conductive paint. I prefer the former because I can source it locally from stained glass supply shops.
You need to line the control cavity, the pickup cavities, and the pickup covers with foil tape. Do the control plate as well if it isn't already conductive. I bring up the foil tape over the cavity edge so you can pierce the foil with the screws. Then you need to connect a ground to your shielding and ground your pickup cover shielding to the control cavity shielding. Don't forget to add a ground wire to the shielding in all cavities, all the shielding must be grounded to work. When doing pickup surrounds I like to bring the copper foil around to the outer edge so I can solder to it more easily.
It is an easy fix but it will take at least an hour your first time. I hope this info helps, I personally hate hum so I do what I can to remove it even from basses I do not own.
It's interesting, because I have used the Seymour Duncan J-Bass stacks (same general idea) and haven't had this problem (that bass was also not shielded at all). This current bass did not have this problem with the stock pick ups installed. It had the standard Jazz Bass buzz issue when it was on one pick up or the other, but no buzz happened when I let go of the strings. I would think the Fender Noiseless pickups would be better than the stock MIM J-Bass pickups regarding this specific problem. So, I've basically solved one buzz issue and created another with these Noiseless pickups.
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