Help! Stuck in Quarantine w a Busted Bass!

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by WinnDoe44, Apr 28, 2020.

  1. WinnDoe44


    Apr 28, 2020
    Hello All,
    So my bass (Fender Jazz Bass MIM) pretty randomly quit on me the other day. I've been having some jack problems for a couple weeks with the sound going in and out when getting hooked up to the amp, but just twisting the input 3/4 always fixed it for me. Now, however, I am not getting any sound out of the amp. Plugging all the way into the bass cuts all noise from the cord. Can anyone help me diagnose this? I have a feeling its a jack issue, but taking apart the area did not really show any loose wires or anything like that. All the shops around me are closed and I'm getting real tired of having no amplification to play with! Any help would be much appreciated.
  2. Snaxster


    Nov 29, 2008
    Hello. Maybe a solder joint failed, even though you don't see a loose wire. Can you post two or three clear, detailed photos showing the electronics at different angles?
  3. WinnDoe44


    Apr 28, 2020
    Do these help? IMG_6551.JPG IMG_6552.JPG IMG_6553.JPG IMG_6554.JPG
  4. Snaxster


    Nov 29, 2008
    Yes, those are helpful. Scary, too. :) But this thread isn't a critique of Fender Mexico, it's to try to get your bass working again. So...

    Since you mentioned having to fuss with the cable connection to the bass's jack, this is what comes to mind:

    See my marked up version of your photo here.


    The small circle highlights what I think could be a severed wire; that is, it is obviously crimped, so even though it wasn't cut completely, the strands of wire within the insulator could be severed, which would break the ground connection to the jack.

    The large circle highlights what I must believe is a risky solder point. Sure, when ground wires are soldered to the back of a pot, it doesn't have to be pretty. But that example is ridiculous. :D

    Do you have a short length of hookup wire and the means to fix those two items? If so, start there. But if not, either find a friend who does or wait until the shops open. Good luck!
    abarson, hbarcat and ctmullins like this.
  5. WinnDoe44


    Apr 28, 2020
    Thank you!! The help is incredibly appreciated.
    Snaxster likes this.
  6. Snaxster


    Nov 29, 2008
    You are quite welcome. Let's see if anyone else has further suggestions. But I think that might get you back in business.
  7. hbarcat

    hbarcat Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2006
    Rochelle, Illinois
    I agree with Snaxter and his diagnosis.
  8. Lowend65

    Lowend65 Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2006
    San Jose, CA
    Basic question: have you tried using another cable?
    robert43 likes this.
  9. jbrew73


    Dec 24, 2006
    Check out the white wire connection on the tone pot. Hard to tell on the pictures but there is a blob of solder on the wire that makes it look like that connection has failed. It looks like the wire may have pulled loose.
    WinnDoe44 likes this.
  10. robert43


    Jun 5, 2007
    Yes I would also look into that as well
  11. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    In addition to the above, I noticed that one of the jack washers seemed slightly askew. It is good to fix the wiring, but since you mentioned the jack not being stable, we need to fix the underlying cause, also, so it doesn't happen again. Make sure there is a good lock washer on the underside of the jack that engages both the plate and the flange on the jack, and that the top side nut cleanly tightens everything from the top side down. If not, sometimes adding the thinnest of washers between the nut and the plate on the top side will also help. A twisting or rotating jack causes fatigue in the wiring which will cause the other issues diagnosed above.
    WinnDoe44 likes this.
  12. ex-tension


    Jun 11, 2009
    Another basic question: Does it work when the control plate is out?
  13. WinnDoe44


    Apr 28, 2020
    Oh yeah, first thought as well.
  14. Wow, that joint on the tone pot is scary! Even scarier if it came from the factory like that.

    This also seems like a great opportunity to get a soldering iron, watch a few tutorials, and dip your feet in some basic electronic repair.
  15. robert43


    Jun 5, 2007
    Got to admit that wiring / soldering job looks like Stevie Wonder works there / does the QA . I agree no matter what I would get out ( or buy) a soldering iron and some new cable & do abetter job that whats there which wouldnt be hard to do
    ChrisBowsman likes this.
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