My Tim has become a radio receiver!

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Mayfield, Jul 9, 2008.

  1. Mayfield

    Mayfield Silver Supporting Member

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    OK, need some help here. I was all excited as we recently moved and I was able to dedicate a spare bedroom to turn it into a home studio of sorts. Nothing fancy, but great for my needs. My previous home had a partial section of the basement built out which worked pretty well. Fast forward to moving in and setting up the room...

    I plug in for the first time...amps work, sounds are great...etc. I decide...let's get the volume up a bit....so I add a Tim for boost.....I click on the pedal and WHAM....County station coming through loud and clear. I click off the pedal....GONE.

    WTF? How do I get rid of this? I have never had this issue before, mainly because I was in the basement I would assume.

    Can anyone help me with this one?

    THANKS!

    J
     
  2. VintageToneGuy

    VintageToneGuy Member

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    I have this problem from time to time and just did this week. I'm not sure what causes it, but it's aggrivating. This time I had just received a Barber Tone Press and I grabbed an extra patch cable and put it at the head of the pedal board. When I stepped on it I got a Hispanic Station (I couldn't understand a word). I thought that the pedal was tweaked out on the inside or something. No matter what I did, it didn't go away. Finally, I noticed some static when I touched the patch cable. I replaced it with another one and the Radio Station went away. Guess it was a short or something.

    vtg
     
  3. PaulC

    PaulC Member

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    You can always call me about any problems... My home phone number is included with the instructions for this reason.

    PaulC
    tim & timmy pedals
    myspace.com/paulcaudio
     
  4. Passenger84

    Passenger84 Member

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    Yep, call Paul.

    And also, as a proud Tim owner, I would definitely echo VintageToneGuy's sentiments and check the cabling first. Cables seem to be the usual suspects for stuff like this.
     
  5. Mayfield

    Mayfield Silver Supporting Member

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    Thanks everyone. Paul, I will give you a call soon. I am running through all of my pedals to see what is really going on, as well as my cables.

    I appreciate your help very much!
     
  6. Mayfield

    Mayfield Silver Supporting Member

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    The plot thickens....

    Certain pedals seem to be ok, yet others also become a receiver of sorts. Then when I switch between guitars, I have different outputs for the radio signal. My favorite guitar which has dual humbuckers, gets the loudest signal through the Tim and the Timmy. Yet my stock SG that has wiring issues (I can only get full tone from the neck pickup) has no radio signal through either the Tim or Timmy. And my Strat is right in the middle.

    ARGH!
     
  7. amp_surgeon

    amp_surgeon Member

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    Just wondering... are you located geographically close to the transmitting antenna for that country station? If that's the case then the problem is not the pedals or the guitars - it's the fact that your new studio is being bombarded with a high strength RF signal. It would be a bit much to expect all of your gear to be immune to this. Even if you solved it for one pedal and/or guitar, it would likely crop up again when you got new gear.

    I'm not going to suggest you move in order to solve this problem, but there are things you can do to the room in order to make everything inside it more immune to RF interference.

    I assume you plan on doing some sort of acoustic treatment to the room - maybe extra layers of drywall and/or some acoustic tiles or foam - whatever. Before you do this, you might want to build in some RF isolation.

    In electronics labs and factories they build "screen rooms" for testing transmitters. These are rooms which are surrounded by conductive screen mesh which is grounded. They usually use copper screen because it's the best conductor for the money, but that would probably be way too expensive for your purposes. Instead, get some rolls of wire (NOT plastic or fiber) screen from your local home improvement store and staple it to the walls before putting up your acoustic treatment. You'll have to use multiple overlapping sheets of screen - just make sure they have good mechanical contact with each other so that the entire wall will be connected electrically. Then, run a ground wire from the screen to the nearest cold water pipe in your house.

    If you want to determine how effective your screen job is then you'll need a field strength meter that works in the frequency range of the radio station that's giving you problems. Check the field strength both inside and outside the room and compare them. If the meter is directional then you can use it to find leaks in your screen rigging. You should be able to get a usable meter for under $100.

    I know it's a lot of work, and it will add $$$ to the cost of setting up your studio, but it will pay off by making your studio immune to RF interference. The bad news - your cell phone won't work in your studio. Also, if you have a cordless house phone with a base station in another room, then that won't work either.
     
  8. Structo

    Structo Member

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