Guitar Is making a buzzing sound by itself!

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by Salvador Contreras, May 9, 2016.

  1. Salvador Contreras

    Salvador Contreras Member

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    Sounds crazy right? Let me explain how i found this situation.
    I saw a video that explained how to convert a tube radio into an amp. One thing lead to another and now i have true vintage tone. Now here comes the spooky part...
    Turning off the radio, with my guitar still plugged, i turn the volume knob to zero on my guitar and i hear a continuous buzzing/zapping noise inside my guitar.
    What i suspect is that my jerry rigged amp is now sending current into my guitars ground.
    P.S. the radio has no ground on the plug.
     
  2. Torren61

    Torren61 Member

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  3. Torren61

    Torren61 Member

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    You have a couple of choices. One: leave it as it is, go get your volt meter (you MUST have a volt meter) and check for voltage across your strings and a ground. Now, unplug the amp and turn the plug over so the prongs are in the opposite position as it was before. Now test across your guitar and a ground. Any change? My guess is yes. Voltage before and no voltage now. So... you either correct the issue with your amp or you go to choice number two: take it to a tech for proper fix.

    As it is, you cannot play through this amp. I respect that you gave it a go and tried to do something cool but the job is unfinished and your life is at risk if you continue to play through the amp before it is fixed properly.
     
  4. Salvador Contreras

    Salvador Contreras Member

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    Thanks! Its not a big enough issue to take it to a tech. Id rather trash it since it was a $5 tube radio i got at the flea market. Im guessing with your troubleshooting knowledge you would know somehow how to ground the radio instead of it being sent to my guitar?
     
  5. Torren61

    Torren61 Member

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    You guessed wrong. I know a bit about troubleshooting but I wouldn't know how to fix your problem. I'm thinking, though, that it would be an easy fix and if you're tickled with the sound you're getting from the radio/amp (aside from the risk of death), why not have it fixed? You don't have much in it as it is and it won't cost more than around $60 to have it finished.
     
  6. Sweetfinger

    Sweetfinger Supporting Member

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    Most of those old tube radios have one side of the heater string connected to chassis, i.e. you have a 50/50 chance that there's full 120V on the chassis- that makes them completely unusable for a small amp unless you change the power transformer and circuit. Hogging a jack into one of those is courting danger and death. If your guitar is buzzing, it may have DC or AC current blasting through the pickups.
     

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