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Need help with wiring a project bass.

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by ipitythefoool, Oct 21, 2010.

  1. ipitythefoool


    Oct 21, 2010
    So, I am attempting to reconstruct a friend's Peavey P-bass copy, and my work has come to a standstill because I don't think that I am grounding it properly, but have no idea what I am doing wrong. Everytime I remove my hand from either the bridge of the bass or the strings, a very audible hum is heard that I know isn't normal. I even attempted to shield both the pickguard and the inside of the control cavity with shielding tape with conductive adhesive that I purchased from Stewmac. However, this only complicated the issue as now not only is the hum even worse, but the bass squeals whenever I touch the pickup height screws. I have attached my ground from the volume pot to the bridge. I've attached pics of my shielding, and also a link to the wiring diagram that I am using. I know that I am probably missing something pretty obvious, but being that I am a self-taught amateur, I could use any help, advice, or pointers that you all could give me.



    This link is the diagram for a standard P-bass that I am using from Fender's site:

  2. Have you run the ground from a pot to the shielding foil? If the foil isn't connected then its not really working for you.
  3. ipitythefoool


    Oct 21, 2010
    Do you mean that I should take the ground that I am running from the pot to the bridge currently and run that to the foil? As in just solder it to the foil? Or are you talking about running another ground to the foil?
  4. I just run another wire from the pot the bridge is grounded to and solder it to the foil, but you can also solder it to a screw and put that through the foil.
  5. ipitythefoool


    Oct 21, 2010
    Also, should the entire area that the pickguard will cover be shielded as well?
  6. At least over the control cavity, yes, but I'd do anything that is surrounding wires.
  7. SnakeKappele


    Sep 20, 2010
    You need to bring the copper tape over the edge of the control cavity so the pickguard's copper will touch it. The cases of the control pots should have continuity with the shielding just by being mounted to the copper covered guard.

  8. I have two possible culprets. The first is that the ground wire under the bridge has slid down in its hole and is no longer making contact with the bridge. This seems the most likely problem to me.

    The other possibility is that sometimes loose shielding can make contact with the windings of the pickups. This can create a short that can introduce all kinds of noise.
  9. Bloodhammer

    Bloodhammer Twinkle Twinkle Black Star

    Jul 7, 2009
    Shreveport, Louisiana
    I'm starting to notice there is a thread like this every day. And it's always a Fender or Fender clone. :eyebrow:

    SnakeKappele is right about the tape coming up over the edge so it makes contact with the pickguard.

    Make sure not to make any "cold" solder joints.

    That's all I can think of.
  10. This happens easily, but you can solve it by taping the wire down under the bridge with a bit of that shielding foil.

    See http://i52.tinypic.com/rsa2qx.jpg
  11. ipitythefoool


    Oct 21, 2010
    I'm going to redo all of my wiring to make sure that my joints are solid and not cold. Is there anything that should not be touching the shielding, or otherwise making contact? I'm getting a reaction out of my multimeter so I know that the shielding is conducting. I wired another ground to a lug I screwed into the cavity and wired to the tone pot where I have the bridge ground wired to and that killed all signal.
  12. SnakeKappele


    Sep 20, 2010
    When you say "that killed all signal" do you mean the noise or nothing comes out of the bass?

    The shielding is grounded so nothing hot can touch it.

    Did you solder the bridge ground and the new shield line to the tone pot case or a lug?

    Is there continuity from the volume case to the tone case to the jack negative?

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