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Is the ground wire supposed to be soldered to the bridge?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by GnarwhalNick, Apr 3, 2017.

  1. GnarwhalNick


    Jan 18, 2011
    Hey guys, so I'm taking an old Squier Affinity P that I have collecting dust and completely revamping it (new neck, new pickups/pots, pickguard, the works) and I plan on repainting the body so I started disassembling it last night. I noticed when I removed the bridge that the ground wire was just sitting there, not soldered. The bass did have a pretty bad buzz from the pickups from what I remember... But when I finish the paint job and go to rewire everything, would it be a good idea to solder the ground to the bridge? or is contact enough?
  2. Solder does not stick to bridges. Don't waste your time trying to get the ground wire soldered, because you won't ever get a reliable solder joint.

    Bridges are supposed to be grounded by sitting on top of a ground wire. Either fan out the strands of the ground wire, or solder it to a piece of copper foil, and let the bridge sit on top of the foil.
    MrLenny1, Torrente Cro and JGbassman like this.
  3. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    Contact is contact. If the bridge is bolted to the body it acts as a big clamp for the ground wire. It isn't going anywhere.
  4. NoiseNinja

    NoiseNinja Experimental-psychedelic-ambient-noise-drone Banned

    Feb 23, 2011
    Usually I don't think the ground wire is soldered to the bridge.

    Contact and the pressure of the bridge screwed properly on ought to be enough.

    Just make sure to spread out the threads of the exposed tip of the ground wire under the bridge to secure most possible contact surface.

    Also usually basses that are not shielded properly will almost always have a buzz, regardless of how well the bridge ground wire is connected.

    As long as the buzz disappear when you are touching a metal part on the bass, it works as intended.

    I have to say though, after I installed the EMG Geezer Butler pickups in my Ibanez Mikro, there's no buzz what so ever, even if it is not properly shielded.

    A way to iliminate the buzz without going through the troubles of shielding, like for when recording e.t.c, is to connect a wire to the input plug of your jack cable going into the bass and then attach the other end so that it'll be in contact with your skin.

    Not the most comfortable or practical solution in the long run, but it works as a emergency temporary solution, if you need your bass to stay dead quiet.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2017
  5. JGbassman

    JGbassman Supporting Member

    May 31, 2011
    Yep, everything he said. Nothing else to add.
    danosix likes this.
  6. danosix


    May 30, 2012
    And yet you did....;)
    JGbassman likes this.
  7. GnarwhalNick


    Jan 18, 2011
    Thanks for the replies guys!
  8. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I would suggest scuffing the bottom of the bridge base plate where the ground wire comes in contact prior to re-assembly.

  9. I added a piece of folded metal foil between the wire and bridge to get added contact and assuredness because I didn't think the wire was making all that good a contact.
    MrLenny1 likes this.
  10. tlc1976


    Aug 2, 2016
    One of my basses (don't remember which one at the moment) has the wire terminating beneath the surface to one of the bridge screws. More solid connection IMO, but more possibility of breaking off the end of the wire and having to fix that.

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