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Bridge Pickup Problem on Lawsuit Jazz Bass

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Alex J, Jan 9, 2014.

  1. Alex J

    Alex J

    Jul 5, 2011
    I'll be the first to admit I know nothing about electronics, but I'll try to explain anyway:

    I just got a 70s 'Lawsuit Era' Jazz bass shipped over from the US to the UK. Everything was, I'm told, working fine before it was sent over, but when I got in and plugged it in I got no sound out of the bridge pickup. Even with headphones, there's no discernible note at all.

    Weirdly though, there is a hum if I turn the bridge pickup up, and there is a faint clicking/buzz if I tap the magnets on the pickup. The buzz goes away if I touch any metal part of the bass (bridge, control plate), which makes me think grounding issue?

    The wires are all connected as they should be, but a few of the solder joints (particularly the split white/blue wire going to the top of the volume pot) look like they may have a fracture in them. Before I bust out my rudimentary soldering skills and go over the joints, does anyone have any ideas as to what else it could be?

    Thanks! :)
  2. mech

    mech Supporting Member

    Jun 20, 2008
    Meridian, MS, USA
    In my experience, the most likely problem is a failed solder joint. Solder joints that appear to have a fracture most likely are. Failed pickups or pots are far less common.

    The buzzing when you touch the magnets is caused by the pole pieces not being grounded (normal) and your body is injecting the noise. The other metal parts of the bass are grounded and when you touch them you are grounding your body and shunting the noise your body picks up to ground. This is normal.

  3. MR PC

    MR PC

    Dec 1, 2007
    You can (carefully) cover the tops of the pole pieces with a small drop of clear nail polish to remedy this problem.