Les Paul Hum- Hands off strings- Grounding?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by KSKONDOR, May 30, 2011.

  1. KSKONDOR

    KSKONDOR Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Messages:
    340
    Location:
    KS
    Am I correct a properly wired les paul should be hum free, and that if I get him with hands off my strings, it's a grounging issue, if there is no hum when the strings are touched?
    Thanks. Matt
     
  2. Felix Leclerc

    Felix Leclerc Member

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    Messages:
    435
    Location:
    LaP
    You sir are correct.
     
  3. Pantone 333

    Pantone 333 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    Messages:
    653
    Location:
    Montreal, Canada
    Is it hum or buzz? I get buzz when my hands are of the strings.
     
  4. Tone Disciple

    Tone Disciple Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Messages:
    2,288
    Location:
    Deep in the Heart of Texas
    Hum can occur from a lot of sources, but what you are describing does sound like a basic grounding issue. I have this issue when I am not plugged into grounded outlets.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2011
  5. Joe Naylor

    Joe Naylor Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2005
    Messages:
    955
    Location:
    The D
    If it is properly grounded, hum should increase when you remove your hands from the strings.
     
  6. Tone Disciple

    Tone Disciple Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Messages:
    2,288
    Location:
    Deep in the Heart of Texas
    Really!? I did not know that. Please elaborate.
     
  7. Findthetone

    Findthetone Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2008
    Messages:
    302
    Location:
    Oh hi ho
    If you have swapped pickups make sure your ground is good i.e.: no cold solder joints. If it's still a problem, do you live in an old house? My house is over 100 yrs old and I have an open ground issue I'm currently fixing. If your house is old, invest in an outlet tester.
     
  8. theruley

    theruley Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2010
    Messages:
    1,617
    Location:
    The Great White North
    best $6 you will spend.
     
  9. Trebor Renkluaf

    Trebor Renkluaf Silver Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    7,619
    Location:
    InSaneDiego
    Why does this keep coming up? Joe Naylor is correct. Take a look at all these Les Paul wiring diagram:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Notice they all have a "ground to bridge" or "ground to tailpiece". What touches the bridge and the tailpiece? The strings. What touches the strings? Your hand. What are you? Ground.
     
  10. Jef Bardsley

    Jef Bardsley Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2007
    Messages:
    2,970
    Location:
    Middle Massachusetts
    You're not a ground, you're being grounded. Usually, touching the amp chassis produces the same results as touching the strings.

    http://www.guitarnuts.com/technical/noisebucket.php

    Humbucking pickups buck the AC 60-cycle hum, and are somewhat less effective at reducing static and RFI, those being random and high frequency, respectively. Also the shielding of the Gibson style wiring is less than 100%. The sort of cavity paint/foil measures Fender players use will have a slight effect, albeit in the "not worth the trouble" range for most of us.

    If you're using "high gain", then you just realised why powered pickups are a metal masher's best friend. If not, and you don't play around, then sometimes it's easier to remove the source of noise from your room. Dimmer switches, TV/computer CRTs, fluorescent light ballasts or antique Bally tables are often the problem.

    Mostly, though, LP players just live with it, and turn one of the volume knobs down when they're not able to keep a hand on the strings.
     
  11. TD_Madden

    TD_Madden Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2006
    Messages:
    1,725
    Location:
    Manassas, VA
    I'm glad to read this post as I've been pursuing how to end that bothersome buzz for a long time; all the outlets are wired properly, guitar wiring checked and double checked, etc. Hands on the strings removes the buzz. I think a lot of us believe that since the amp is grounded (and by extension so is the guitar), there shouldn't be any untoward noises.

    Of course, my music room DOES have an overhead flourescent light and the a/c unit is just outside.....I'm guessing that it's as good as it's going to be, and just turn down the volume when not touching the strings.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2011
  12. doveman

    doveman Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2006
    Messages:
    926
    Location:
    South Carolina
  13. KSKONDOR

    KSKONDOR Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Messages:
    340
    Location:
    KS
    Obviously based on the number of responses not everyone gets it. By trade, I sell widgets internationally, and am intelligent, and good at what I do, but I am not an electronics wiz which is why I come to a guitar forum. Thanks for your input. Matt
     
  14. doveman

    doveman Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2006
    Messages:
    926
    Location:
    South Carolina
    Only problem is that the answer given there is incorrect. The whole "you are the ground thing" is not true. If you read the link above that is from the guitarnuts site (jef's post) ... it's pretty accurate. Sounds like you just need some shielding ... I linked in an old post where I fixed my Les Paul that had the same problem you might find interesting.
     
  15. bigdaddy

    bigdaddy Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2009
    Messages:
    6,375
    Location:
    Smiths Station, AL
    I'd bet the OP is sitting in front of his computer whilst he experiences this.
     
  16. doveman

    doveman Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2006
    Messages:
    926
    Location:
    South Carolina
    The best piece of home recording gear that I ever bought was a flat screen monitor. But a bit of shielding made my LP noiseless ... as it should be.

    :)
     
  17. KSKONDOR

    KSKONDOR Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Messages:
    340
    Location:
    KS
    Actually I was sitting on my houses fusebox and using a plugged in neon lamp as a glass slide. The amp was plugged into my 1974 diesel generator. My wife had on her mxing bowl and the dryer was running. And it was in the middle of a thunderstorm.

    No...well grounded new house. In the basement, no electrical nearby except for anything running through the walls in that corner which shouldn't be much. I think it's just a grounding issue on the LP.
     
  18. Blue4Now

    Blue4Now Member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2006
    Messages:
    4,081
    Location:
    NJ

    yes!!!!!!! this is correct it is amazing how many people do not realize this
     
  19. guitarzan58

    guitarzan58 Member

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    Messages:
    155
    :horse
     
  20. Aran

    Aran Member

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2009
    Messages:
    2,789
    Location:
    Washington State
    Folks expect complete silence. Of course reality is something completely different. My R9 makes noise too unless I grasp it to play. It doesn't bother me in the least because I expect it if I have a OD pedal on and not holding it. That's just how guitars are at times.

    You'll be chasing the dog's tail if you're trying to get a completely silent rig.

    If you don't like even that slight buzz you could always get a Decimator pedal or similar noise reduction of some type.

    http://www.isptechnologies.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=46&Itemid=63
     

Share This Page