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Copper foil or graphite spray as shielding?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Le Basseur, Nov 25, 2004.

  1. Le Basseur

    Le Basseur

    Mar 26, 2002
    What do you think it's more efficient when you have an (older or cheap) instrument with nothing in the PU cavities?
    From time to time,I get on repair such an instrument and if it's fitted with single coils,the owner claims a certain ammount of hum.Usually,I used some thin copper and made something like a "cave" beneath the PU but it takes alot of time for cutting/folding/assembling it.
    I have now the opportunity to get a spray can of Graphite 33 from a newly-opened local store,but does it really offers a better shielding than copper?....at least,the spray is more comfortable to work with!
  2. chucko58


    Jan 17, 2002
    Silicon Valley, CA, USA
    I paid for all my gear myself. Well, me and MasterCard.
    I've used aluminum tape and brush-on graphite paint.

    The tape is quicker to apply, but I tend to use it only on large flat surfaces like pickguards. The paint takes a day to dry, and the stuff I used requires two coats minimum. But it's easier to make paint conform to surfaces that aren't completely flat.

    I say use them both. Whatever is easiest for the particular situation.
  3. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    Sinny, Oztraya
    I prefer the copper, but it's a lot more work to shape and install it.
  4. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004

    I don't know about spray shielding but often spraying technique takes as much time from preparation and clean up as it would to do it some other way that's equally effective. It goes in places you wouldn't imagine, runs, wastes much of the material, etc. Great for hard to get to/tedious places and it's quick once the preparation is done.

    Foil shielding is a pain for other than flat surfaces and it's very short friendly for any carelessness with hot leads/pot lugs. I've never used sheilding paint but that would be my next go if it comes to it. But I'm not a luthier either.
  5. umberto


    Jun 10, 2004
    What happens if I put graphite spray on the copper foil? Do I get better results in terms of hum/interferences reduction or Just get rid time and money?
  6. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    Sinny, Oztraya
    The last one.
  7. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004

    Sadowsky's a firm believer in foil shielding and is also the first to cuation about shorts that may result. I'm guessing if there were a method he thought was better he'd use it. Don't know about the graphite spray but I'd guess that spray onto foil shielding would readily scrap off. As a rule, spraying when properly done yields an even, smooth, but thin layer. For paint to adhere well, the surface needs to be prepared so the paint will bond.