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Strange tone problem...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MoeTown1986, Dec 27, 2016.

  1. MoeTown1986

    MoeTown1986 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2010
    SoMD (Mechanicsville)
    So, I pulled my CIJ Fender 51 Re-Issue down off the wall today (don't play it much) and plugged it in. Something wasn't right with it. Maybe one of you can shine a little light one my situation. With volume and tone knobs both rolled all the way up, I get a very bright, thin, tinny sound. The volume knob works like usual if i roll it back. When I roll back the tone knob, I almost lose ALL of my volume as well. It also has a BAD buzz unless I am touching the strings, or one of the knobs/control plate. I pulled the control plate off and visually everything looks okay. I checked the jack just to be sure it was grounding good on the instrument cable, and it was. I then pulled the bridge up to check the ground there, seemed fine. I'm guessing I either have a bad tone pot or the cap between the tone and volume pot is bad.

    Any ideas???? Thanks!
  2. MoeTown1986

    MoeTown1986 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2010
    SoMD (Mechanicsville)
    Bass in question... because who doesn't like pics?! E1DAA0FE-9001-4D17-9A65-9F94B1DE8A6E.
  3. DigitalMan

    DigitalMan Wikipedia often mistakes my opinions for fact Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2011
    I would start with a multimeter looking for a bad solder joint.

    But after that I'm kinda into overkill. I would be rewiring with two new pots, a new cap, and all new wire just to remove any doubt. But that's just me....
    MattZilla and bholder like this.
  4. MoeTown1986

    MoeTown1986 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2010
    SoMD (Mechanicsville)
    I have a multimeter but I really don't know what to even check for! Haha. I did find fully wired harnesses and with pots, caps, and jacks on eBay made by Kelling Sound. Kind of neat looking. Decent prices, too.
  5. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    It's just protesting being hung on the wall like dogs playing poker.
  6. MoeTown1986

    MoeTown1986 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2010
    SoMD (Mechanicsville)
    Hahahha maybe so!!
  7. DigitalMan

    DigitalMan Wikipedia often mistakes my opinions for fact Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2011
    Try the first few paragraphs here

    How To Use A Multimeter - iFixit

    Testing for continuity and resistance between two points on the circuit, both with tone and volume open and closed. I would print out a diagram of the wiring and just check as many spots as you can. When set to audible for continuity you can spot-check the whole apparatus in less than a minute.

    This might be a good time to learn how to wire a bass. The circuit layout for this one is about as easy as it gets. Also, the parts altogether cost less than a beer at a sporting event, so the risk is miniscule. You would get more value from the exercise if you forego the pre wired harness and use individual components.

    This is one of those learning things like adusting a neck and setting intonation that pays for itself many times over compared to the effort it takes to do it the first time.

    Of course, if it's just one bad solder joint then go ahead and resolder it and call it a day instead.
  8. NoiseNinja

    NoiseNinja Experimental-psychedelic-ambient-noise-drone Banned

    Feb 23, 2011
    As we all know by now tone is in the fingers!

    This is a bass forum, not a medical forum with people specializing in human physiology. :rolleyes:

    You clearly came to the wrong forum.

    I'll give you an advice anyway, just becouse I am feeling generous:

    Go see a doctor!
    wmhill and MoeTown1986 like this.
  9. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 5, 2004
    Mount Vernon, Illinois
    Backstage Guitar Lab owner
    SCPB Wiring.

    Assuming your wiring looks like THIS... with the capacitor running between the two pots.... just check all the joints, check to be sure nothing's touching (shorting) anything it isn't supposed to. If all the wiring seems okay, bypass that capacitor and see if everything works, but the tome stays wide open. Then, if you still have something odd happening, you might have a faulty other component. But that's much less likely than just a stray wire problem.
    xrockstrongox and MoeTown1986 like this.
  10. MoeTown1986

    MoeTown1986 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2010
    SoMD (Mechanicsville)
    Thanks for the link. I know how to wire a bass, solder, set necks and intonation. I just wasn't sure what I'm actually looking for as far as multimeter readings.
  11. MoeTown1986

    MoeTown1986 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2010
    SoMD (Mechanicsville)
    So what exactly does the capacitor do?
  12. jchrisk1

    jchrisk1 Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2009
    Northern MI
    Set your meter to ohms, touch the leads together and note the reading. Then probe the leads between all grounds. Your readings should be what they were when touching the leads together. If not, you have a bad ground there.
    MoeTown1986 likes this.
  13. jchrisk1

    jchrisk1 Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2009
    Northern MI
    A capacitor cuts high frequencies.
    MoeTown1986 likes this.
  14. Coolhandjjl

    Coolhandjjl Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    That bass is defective. I'll take it off your hands, send it to me freight collect.
  15. MoeTown1986

    MoeTown1986 Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2010
    SoMD (Mechanicsville)
    Haha! Nice try, my friend!
  16. primusfan1989


    Jan 17, 2005
    new jersey
    +1 to this, Id bet its a cold solder joint
    MoeTown1986 likes this.
  17. While your issue is probably the aforementioned solder joint, I would like to say that i got two harnesses from kellingsound and they are tremendous! If you're looking for something a little out of the ordinary I highly recommend it. However, if it's typically a wall bass, it might not be what you're searching for. Good luck!
    MoeTown1986 likes this.
  18. Ghastly


    Oct 18, 2015
    Mill Valley
    Aren't single coils notorious for buzzing?
  19. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    bad solder joint (gone cold from age or wall hanging) could be detected with the continuity setting. worth a try! good luck. :thumbsup:
    TMARK and MoeTown1986 like this.
  20. DavC

    DavC Supporting Member

    May 17, 2005
    Tallmadge , Ohio
    yes , yes .. continuity ... check / touch from one metal part to another ... your meter should read very close to what it does when you touch the meter tips together ... i set my meter on a very low ohms setting ..

    sounds like something is Not making good contact , or touching something it shouldn't ..

    your cap , with help from the tone knob , bleeds off treble freqs to ground ... at whatever the cap value is .

    or ... your bass could be afraid of heights .. !??!

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