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Fender Original Pickups Jazz base plate wire question

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by bassman_al, Feb 10, 2014.

  1. I just got a set of Fender Original Jazz pickups. They come equipped with a base plate that is glued to the foam that the pickup sits on. The base plate has a wire soldered to it. This wire is in addition to the 2 wires coming from each pickup. Since other jazz sets don't have this base plate wire, I am wondering if I don't need to solder the bass plate wire. I am guessing the wire is an additional ground wire. The bridge is already grounded on my bass. I am simply swapping pickups.

    The instructions that came with the set do not reference this wire at all, and I can't find anything on this topic. I searched using Google and searched TB for help. Anyone know the answer to my question? Thanks.
  2. I got a response in another thread. The wire is a useless vestige to a bygone era of failed shielding efforts. I'm snipping the wires and saving them in case I need to use them to lengthen any of my lead wires. Nice cloth covered stranded wire! I'm excited! :)
  3. Leaving ground plates ungrounded is a recipe for noise. They will act like antennas to pick up electrical noise. Either ground them or remove them.
  4. petrus61

    petrus61 Supporting Member

    Which wire are you referring to exactly? The 62's should be a complete unit and soldered to the plate. Many contemporary Fenders are shielded beneath the paint and have an additional ground lug wire connected to ground. The reissues are not and utilize the plate as part of the system. As line6man said, leaving it unsoldered will welcome unwanted noise. It should have already been soldered to the plate. Is the wire coming off the pickup or coming of the plate?
  5. elBandito


    Dec 3, 2008
    Rotten Apple
    How effective are the plates? Can I stick one in the bridge pickup instead of shielding, and call it a day?
  6. petrus61

    petrus61 Supporting Member

    Not exactly. They will not remove regular single coil hum or act as a faraday cage alone.
  7. elBandito


    Dec 3, 2008
    Rotten Apple
    I didn't think so. LOL
  8. uOpt


    Jul 21, 2008
    Boston, MA, USA
    They are the same thing as shielding, assuming they are grounded. Either method will cause a sound change that usually isn't very noticeable on bass. A bit of treble is killed in eddy currents.

    As mentioned the shielding will only work against electric fields, but most of the single coil noise is from magnetic fields, and in any case your grounded body is already shielding it from behind.
  9. to answer an earlier question, the wire in question was coming of the plate that was glued to the foam that the pickup sits on. The pickups did not come soldered to the plate. In the old days before modern drills allowed wires to go from control plate to bridge, it was necessary to ground each pickup to the bass body via these plates. Now that we can run ground wires to the bridge, we have wire touching wood. Now I took exactly zero physics or electronics classes on my way to my masters in social work, and my electrical knowledge is based on home improvement projects and talking to my father in law, who knows this stuff. And, of course, my Home Depot "Electricity 1-2-3" book. But even with that limited knowledge base, I think I am correct in saying that this plate really doesn't need to be wired to anything as long as there is a ground that is wired correctly elsewhere.

    I installed the pickups this way. No problem. They sound great. The pickup cavities are partially shielded, but I don't think that matters for this issue.

    Am I right?