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touching plugged in pedals and getting a shock?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by UnDoNe, May 29, 2007.

  1. UnDoNe


    Dec 6, 2002
    I just set up my effects and turned on the power. The Boss TU-2 is the last thing in my signal and there wasn't a lead going from pedal to amp. When i touched it, i got a soft electric shock...like..a fuzzy feeling. Is this because the lead wasn't plugged in? Thanks
  2. fishtx


    Mar 30, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Endorsing Artist: Genzler Amplification/Spector Basses/Mojo Hand FX
    nope...you got other issues...I run tuners (TU-2, Strobostomp, etc..) on my board all the time with no cable plugged into the output.

    What kind of power source are you using?
  3. Foamy


    Jun 26, 2006
    Sac Area
    Sounds like a serious problem. Can you check it with a volt meter? Was it definitely an electrical shock? Sometimes a light friction rub may feel like a shock, but I guess you'd know if you were being shocked.
    Step one would be to use one of those 3-prong outlet checkers on EVERYTHING in your electrical chain. I NEVER NEVER EVER plug into any outlets without using one of those first.
    To many idiots out there doing wiring for me - I've found bad wiring in more than just a couple places.
  4. UnDoNe


    Dec 6, 2002
    I'm using a Diago Powerstation, which is pretty new and works perfectly everytime. I plugged in the lead from pedal to amp and turned my effects on and it was fine. No shock or anything.

    Maybe it was just a friction thing, but i touched it twice because it felt weird and still 'felt' it, so who knows.

    Thanks for the help so far
  5. Need more information to be sure, but it could be that you're just feeling the difference in ground potentials.

    Your amp is an earthed device (or at least, it SHOULD be earthed!) Your pedals are usually NOT earthed via the power supply - thanks to the transformer(s). When you connect a cable between your amp and your fx, the cable shorts the amp and pedal grounds together and they stay at the same potential (voltage should = 0). No problems...

    But, when there's no cable shorting the two together the pedals can "float" up to a high voltage with respect to ground. When you put yourself between this high voltage and ground, you become the leakage path for that voltage.

    Usually it is very low current, so it's not dangerous, but the high voltage is what you feel.

    Were you touching something else at the same time?
  6. Andy V.

    Andy V.

    Nov 5, 2006
    Once I got a shock from my M-80 phantom powered.
    Never happened again, though.
  7. UnDoNe


    Dec 6, 2002

    This sounds very helpful thanks. To be honest, I can't recall if i was touchign anythign else. I don't THINK i was. As i say, it wasn't like a shock, just a warm fuzzy tingle. That sounds odd :smug:
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