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I Think Its Broken


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I built a strat using different parts and i wired it up correctly in accordance with the seymour duncan wiring page. However now i can feel electricity running through the wires and there is a really loud buzzing noise through the amp.

Does anyone have any idea how i can fix it, have i burned the pots or anything like that?

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I would first suspect the inherent problem usually found with single coil pickups. When you set the pickup selector switch to positions 2 and 4 is the noise reduced or goes away? A single coil pup produces a 60 cycle background "hum". You can reduce this noise by shielding pickup and control cavities with heavy copper tape (must be grounded) or shielding paint.

Most schematics don't specifically show where ground points should be located. They just show the little arrow symbol pointing down from each component. Make sure your bridge (or trem block), pickup switch, pots, pickups etc. are grounded and are all connected at one point (its called a "star" ground). Then a wire is connected from that one point (I usually use the back of the volume pot) to the ground lug on your output jack.

I don't know what you mean when you say you can "feel" electricity running through the wires. But you can double check your connections, wiring, switching, pickups AND pots with a multimeter. I usually set it for resistance (ohms X1K) and check for continuity (infinite reading means there is no signal), before assembling the guitar and trying it out. Its a major pain in the butt to string it all up, and set the intonation, action etc. and then find out that you got a bug in your electronics. So its wise to bridge a few contacts and make sure switches, pots and everything else work first. :D

If you have double and triple checked everything and all connections are solid while getting proper readings from all components then you have to troubleshoot elsewhere. That means checking out your cords, amp grounding etc.

Edited by Southpa
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it is all grounded properly, because i used my other strat to check, i cant find a problem with the multi

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...i can feel electricity running through the wires...

If your guitar is shocking you, you have a potentially fatal equipment malfunction - please see a qualified tech immediately! You cannot miswire a guitar in any way that will allow you to shock yourself unless there's a problem with your amp/outboard gear. Don't play it off -it's very dangerous!

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when i was first getting started playing I used to take the headphone jack output of my marshall practice amp and put it into the input of an old tube amp i got at a garage sale for dirt cheap.

Although the sound was (still sometimes when i get bored is) incredible... that setup shocked me so bad i couldn't get my left hand off the neck of my strat.

So in a panic i reached around the back of the tube amp and pulled out all the wires. Ditto on what everyone else has said. Get that checked out before you get hurt.


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