Strat Grounding Question

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by dumb donnie, Apr 30, 2005.

  1. dumb donnie

    dumb donnie Member

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    Good day, I have a quick question about grounding a Strat. First off, it's a hardtail and I have been told that it is essential to send a ground to the bridge. This is posing a serious problem as my little soldering iron just can't seem to keep any solder on the bridge, the solder just pops off if you push it. So I was wondering what my other grounding options are. Can I ground it to the aluminum pickguard plate? Can I put a little screw in the control cavity and solder a cable to the top of it? Could I leave the threads of the screw above the wood and wrap a wire around the threads and solder it there? Where else can I solder this ground wire?
     
  2. GuitslingerTim

    GuitslingerTim Member

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    Most builders place the ground wire under the bridge and screw the bridge down on top of it.
     
  3. dumb donnie

    dumb donnie Member

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    Really? So the wire goes from the back of the pot to being pinned under the bridge? It isn't attached in any way?
     
  4. John Phillips

    John Phillips Member

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    Not usually. It is possible to solder to the bridge, but you'll need a LOT more heat, and to clean the metal very well first. Most makers don't bother - trapping the wire underneath is plenty good enough. They do occasionally corrode and make poor contact, but only after years and/or many sweaty gigs.
     
  5. dumb donnie

    dumb donnie Member

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    Thanks for the reply and the confirmation. John Phillips, you are proving to be an extremely helpful guy.
     
  6. spaceboy

    spaceboy Member

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    " John Phillips, you are proving to be an extremely helpful guy."

    heh heh, i'll drink to that!

    i've never heard of this before though, I'm baffled! so in a none-hardtail, you don't need to solder the ground wire to the Claw then? you just... what, raise the back of the bridge, as if it was lowering the pitch, then screw it back down nice n tight? i keep the trem blocked off, so should that work yeh?

    cool idea...
     
  7. teakwoodbetz

    teakwoodbetz Guest

    Keep in mind that the reason that you want the ground to end up at the bridge is so that your fingers touching the strings (which are touching the bridge, which is touching the springs, which is touching the claw) will ground the circuit. If you have a trem and it's blocked off, a ground going to the claw will do nothing (if you do not have springs attached, of course). You could even just tape the ground wire to the back/underside of the bridge within the bridge cavity on the back of the guitar.

    This all sound about right?
     
  8. spaceboy

    spaceboy Member

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    well, by Blocked, i meant just screwed right down, sorry :¬), so that should be fine. I read my post again, and it's pretty vague and waffly... sorry again!

    but your first sentence both makes sense and confuses me... all the metal bits linking up to make the ground, yeh, but I thought that a Ground Buzz that disappeared when you touched the metal was a common grounding PROBLEM, that shouldn't happen if things are grounded properly...?

    but basically, the point is, all i have to do to ground (cos i melted my cheapo soldering gun trying to solder it to th claw...) is tape it to the bridge or somewhere similar, or clamp it underneath the bridge... yeh?

    cheers chappios
     

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