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Precision pickup barely audible

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by NML1986, Jul 22, 2012.


  1. NML1986

    NML1986

    Feb 25, 2012
    Lincoln UK
    Sorry if this has already been posted, I've had a search couldn't find what I was after.

    So basically I've installed a set of Seymour Duncan Quarter Pounds, this was a few days ago, they worked fine then, the following day I even made a recoding with them.
    I come to play my bass today and they're barely audible.
    I've tried raising the pickup hieght, didn't make a difference.
    I have no idea what's happened, like I've said I haven't touch the bass since it was working a few days ago, so I really don't know what's happened.

    I've tried using a different amp, does the same thing, tried a different bass and that worked fine, so I'm sure it's the P bass, not sure if it's the pickups or the pots.
    I might try and re wire it, see if that helps? :meh:
     
  2. Have you checked to see if all your solder joints are OK? Sounds like a bad connection somewhere.
     
  3. NML1986

    NML1986

    Feb 25, 2012
    Lincoln UK
    I can't see anything that's glaringly wrong. :meh:
     
  4. NML1986

    NML1986

    Feb 25, 2012
    Lincoln UK
    Do you think I could have fried the pot? It did get warm when I soldered the wires on, but then so did the pot on my other bass when I installed pickups into that. :meh:
     
  5. You may want to try re-soldering just to make sure. Sometimes a bad solder joint may not be readily apparent.
     
  6. I don't know. i would think if you had fried the pot, it would be immediately apparent. I could be wrong, but I don't think a fried pot would work for a while and then stop working.
     
  7. NML1986

    NML1986

    Feb 25, 2012
    Lincoln UK
    Re-soldered it a few times, just the same, might get a tech to look at it, cause I'm starting to make the soldering job look messy.
     
  8. PlungerModerno

    PlungerModerno

    Apr 12, 2012
    Ireland
    Aren't quarter pounders hot? as in overwound high output split P's.

    There are a few points of failure. Pickup, between pickup and jack, and jack on.

    You can check the pickup with a multimeter...
    this is the first link I found, you can dig up a few guides: http://www.guitars101.com/forums/f68/how-to-check-a-pickups-dc-resistance-45793.html

    you can check the pots / switches by removing them from the circuit... wire the pickup direct to the jack.
    http://www.talkbass.com/forum/f38/how-tame-high-end-my-p-wired-direct-jack-605117/

    Jack on - try another instrument.

    I'm not a master troubleshooter but you could do worse than the above. No pickup maker, boutique or otherwise, has perfect QC... you should establish if it is the Pup before moving on. Hopefully this helps a bit! ;)
     
  9. PlungerModerno

    PlungerModerno

    Apr 12, 2012
    Ireland
    Messy soldering gives two problems... shorting and burning. If you have fried something... ouch. you might have to replace something (most things you have to reeeeally cook though). A more common issue is a erroneous drop of solder creating a short which you should have a quick root around for... messy is as problematic as inadequate contact sometimes. The trick is good lighting and a fine strand of lead free solder. Lead or not DO NOT BREATHE IN :scowl:. It's nasty. Crack a window too.
     
  10. NML1986

    NML1986

    Feb 25, 2012
    Lincoln UK
    Thanks for the help both of you. :)

    I don't have a multimeter, think I'm just going to take it to the tech, I really don't want to make a mess of it.

    I installed Quarter Pounds in my Jazz just fine, maybe it was a bit of luck that time.
     
  11. NML1986

    NML1986

    Feb 25, 2012
    Lincoln UK
    I might get some de-soldering braid and a de-soldering vacuum to get the excess off, just to clean it up a little.

    Looking at videos, I think I've just made a mess of the soldering and put too much on, like I say I'll get hold of solder remover and try and get the excess off.

    Also not sure if the solder is any good, it seems to produce this oily looking sticky liquid, I don't remember it doing that when I installed pickups on my other bass.
    I need to get some more anyway.
     
  12. bypass the pot and wire it direct, that way you can know if it's the pickup or something else.
     
  13. That sounds like flux-core solder, that oily looking liquid is normal.
     
  14. NML1986

    NML1986

    Feb 25, 2012
    Lincoln UK
    Ah ok.

    I'm getting someone to look at it anyway, a friend of mine said he'll have a look (he's an electrical wizz). :D

    Thanks for the help btw everyone, much appreciated. :D
     
  15. Just make sure your electrical wiz friend understands that the hot leg from each pickup is MEANT to be attached to the wiper lug of each volume pot. This is counter-intuitive to many folks.
    Have a diagram for him handy, such as this one:

    http://www.sonfatherguitars.com/Schematics/Jazz Bass.GIF
     
  16. NML1986

    NML1986

    Feb 25, 2012
    Lincoln UK
    Yes, I have a wiring diagram that came with the pickup. :)
     
  17. NML1986

    NML1986

    Feb 25, 2012
    Lincoln UK
    Right I sorted it out myself today, my friend was too busy (as always).

    I removed the solder with a de-solder pump, which worked really well, then I basically re-soldered the wires.

    The volume pot felt a bit stiff when turning it, then it loosened off after a bit of wiggling.

    Everything seems to work fine now, thanks for the help. :D
     

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