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Pole pieces clicky-clacky

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by taphappy, Aug 2, 2012.

  1. taphappy

    taphappy doot de doo

    Sep 28, 2007
    Tempe, Arizona
    Okay, so. My Human BaseX.oc5's turning into my primary for many reasons, and it's running a Glock pre w/dual Delano humbuckers.

    The humbuckers have massive exposed pole pieces. They drive me batpoopie.

    I've heard of guitarists using clear nail polish to cover them - not sure if there are any drawbacks to this. I use enough kooky right hand techniques that require a certain pickup height that changing technique or tightening the pups down is not viable.

    So, is there a secret technique to clear nail polish, or just replace the pickups with rails? If replace, anyone know a good combination with the Glock?
  2. CnB77


    Jan 7, 2011
    just cover em with the polish. It's magnetically transparent, so it won't effect anything except diminish the clack
  3. I have this problem alot aswell. I was thinking of putting a thin wood cover over the poles, but I think the nail polish would be much less work.
  4. taphappy

    taphappy doot de doo

    Sep 28, 2007
    Tempe, Arizona
    Will it "diminish" as in, still clack, just less - or no more clack?
  5. tylerwylie


    Jan 5, 2008
    Dunwoody, GA
    When you say Clack do you mean like strings hitting the pole pieces or what?
  6. Niff


    Mar 18, 2007
    New Zealand
    I thought clear nail polish stopped rust and that was it?
  7. tylerwylie


    Jan 5, 2008
    Dunwoody, GA
    I'm still trying to figure out if it's the sonic quality of the pickup or a setup problem or both. Rails have a smoother attack when compared to pickups with large pole pieces.
  8. taphappy

    taphappy doot de doo

    Sep 28, 2007
    Tempe, Arizona
    A bit of it's the sonic quality, the attack does weird me out a bit.

    Mainly, it's technique. I'm spoiled by EMGs in a PJ setting primarily. When I'm anchoring my thumb midline on the B-string neck pup, I push it down diagonally into one of the two poles. Or, during slap, if I have my palm resting on it for a right hand mute, same diff.

    If I pay more attention, it's mostly manageable, but...at the moment, while I'm practicing it out of my system, it's yet another thing to keep my brain on while running around playing, singing, and trying to be Captain Performypants.
  9. taphappy

    taphappy doot de doo

    Sep 28, 2007
    Tempe, Arizona
    Mind you, the back half of my brain is going, "Shut up and practice, you weenie." :) But still wondering if there are any neat-o tricks at the same time, or rail systems that rock out with the Glock out.

    I went there.
    Yes, I surely did.
    Gonna go wash my fingers now.
    They feel dirty.
  10. GroovinOnFunk

    GroovinOnFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    Endorses Cleartone and SIT Strings
    Honestly, I agree with your last post. I think you might want to just analyze your technique. Delanos have amazing smooth and clear tones and I haven't heard of many people dissatisfied with them.
    Is the reason you can't change the pickup height because u need somewhere to rest your finger? You can also ad a thumbrest to your bass.
    I've never been in a position where changing pup height throws off my technique so I'm having a really hard time comprehending how this can be.
    Also, try slapping over the fingerboard (second to last fret) and not over the pups and pluck through one string to the next instead of plucking down towards the pole pieces.
    You might say "well, that's just the way I play" but I would seriously consider working on your technique. Regardless of what type of pups you use, the technique still sounds like the root of your issues. Practice is cheaper and more beneficial than buying new gear to mask those underlying issues. That's just IMO, of course.

    SGD makes great pups with rails.
  11. kesh


    Jul 9, 2012
    Brighton, England
    black electric tape over pickup
  12. Stealth


    Feb 5, 2008
    Zagreb, Croatia
    I've used both approaches and the difference is purely cosmetic. I used nail polish on my first P/J and I've used clear paper tape on my RBX375 - in both cases the clack was minimized so you could hear it, but couldn't hear the usual grounding "bzzt".
  13. Lo-E


    Dec 19, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    This just made me smile....

    The black electrical tape idea is good for two reasons: One is that it's not permanent. You can try it for a while and see if it help your problem and, if it does, you can look for a more permanent solution that does a similar thing or, if it doesn't, it's nothing to take it back off and you haven't lost anything. The other is that if it does work, you could just leave it there and your solution has cost you about 10 cents.

    I don't know if he still does it, but Billy Sheehan used to cover his pole pieces with a thick coat of epoxy. Not exactly temporary, though....

    I tend to agree with the others here about seeing if you can fix it by either lowering the p'up or adjusting your technique. PITA for now, but better in the long run.
  14. Stealth


    Feb 5, 2008
    Zagreb, Croatia
    Also, there's the option of gluing an appropriate piece of pickguard. That's what Billy Sheehan had on his Attitude II on the neck pickup. The mid pickup had flat covers.
  15. I'm lost. You still never explained what "clicky clack" means...

    If your strings are touching your pickups - your pickups are way too close and you need to lower them.

    If your pickups make a static pop sound when your FINGERS touch them - your magnets simply need to be grounded - its easy to do if you know you way around a soldering iron.

    See solution HERE
  16. I've seen a guy put white duct tape on the humbucker in a Stingray before, seemed to work for him so I figure it oughta work for you. Means you can change the colour of the pickguard too, which isn't a bad thing. I don't like exposed pole pieces for this exact reason, they do look badass, I won't ever deny that, but I wack the strings hard enough as it is, so electrified metal next to where my fingers are doing the wacking isn't really something I look for in a guitar.
  17. I'm actually having this same issue with my FNA Jazzman. I think it might be my technique though. When I pluck the string while slapping, my palm which im resting on the lower strings tends to push down a few mm -- just enough to touch the pole pieces on the humbucker.

    Do you think I should try anything like the varnish? I might just have to alter my technique, which will be weird since I've always played this way.

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