Old 06-23-2013, 08:03 PM   #81
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my house is most definitely not adequately grounded.

Me and a few friends are going to sink 2 eight foot poles into the ground, galvanized steel, and there is a method to connecting them too, with a copper wire going back to the box.

There seems to be several grounds going TO the box, so unless some wires are seriously messed up, the internal wiring looks ok.

the current ground is hooked to a water line, and also another ground is hooked to an old water line.

Apparently, there are two grounds here, and one really sucks. So that one we are replacing.

He isn't sure if that will SOLVE The issue, but it NEEDS to be done.

The only issue with driving the stakes are the amount of rocks in the soil, and the fact that there's a sewer line nearby. So, the Area sewer authority is coming by tomorrow, because, interestingly enough, the landlords (they are my neighbors) are having a problem with their sewer grinder not turning on.
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:47 PM   #82
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You said the noise drops when you touch the strings/bridge?

There is a trick that session players used,.......you have a thin wire that you attach to the bridge with an alligator clip,.......the other end of the wire,you make a loop to go around your picking hand's pinky finger.

Leave enough slack in the wire to allow for freedom of movement.

It may not be pretty,....but if it works for eliminating the noise for laying down a track,....what the hell,might as well try it.
It's a trick that might come in handy in so many situations.
I forgot that one! I have done this many times in studio sessions. It works great.
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Old 06-25-2013, 02:34 PM   #83
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Default Noise

Hi I thought I'd chime in here. I spent many years wiring various building and Music,sound ect. has been a part of my life for even longer. Even a small amount of hum,noise ect makes me want to fix it.90+% of the time it is a ground issue. So here goes with some advice, which you can take or leave. Grounding of electrical systems(in USA) general takes place at the point of entry(usually at the utility electrical meter) it(the grounding) is done in a vary specific manner. This method is spelled out in the NEC(national electrical code).Usually if the grounding has been done properly?Additional grounds are not only unessesary.but undesirable.Short answer get local Licensed Electrician to check the service grounding before adding additional grounds. Good Luck! Da Wiz
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Old 06-25-2013, 04:43 PM   #84
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Hi I thought I'd chime in here. I spent many years wiring various building and Music,sound ect. has been a part of my life for even longer. Even a small amount of hum,noise ect makes me want to fix it.90+% of the time it is a ground issue. So here goes with some advice, which you can take or leave. Grounding of electrical systems(in USA) general takes place at the point of entry(usually at the utility electrical meter) it(the grounding) is done in a vary specific manner. This method is spelled out in the NEC(national electrical code).Usually if the grounding has been done properly?Additional grounds are not only unessesary.but undesirable.Short answer get local Licensed Electrician to check the service grounding before adding additional grounds. Good Luck! Da Wiz

1. The meter is almost never grounded and is not considered the service (first disconnecting means). The main service bonding jumper is from the neutral/ground lug in main panel to metal water pipe. It must be clamped on both sides of the meter if present. The conductor must also be copper and continuous or spliced in such a way as to make it irreversible.

2. Additional ground is necessary and law...usually in the form of grounding electrode (ground rod) code requires primary and secondary means of service grounding.
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Old 06-25-2013, 07:21 PM   #85
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I drove the rods today. What a job! they are connected to the wire, and now the wire is hanging near the breaker box, im having that guy come back and connect it soonish.

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Old 06-25-2013, 07:28 PM   #86
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I drove the rods today. What a job! they are connected to the wire, and now the wire is hanging near the breaker box, im having that guy come back and connect it soonish.


Keep in mind Jason that your ground rods are secondary and therefore have the highest resistance generally as compared with a water pipe (primary service bond), make sure your main water pipe bond is tip top.
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Old 06-26-2013, 06:51 PM   #87
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well, some outlets in the house are showing that they are grounded. Unfortunately, however, the readings in my studio are still inconsistent... and I still have hum, of course. Next step is to check the outlets.

It might seem I'm going about this backwards, but the step with the grounding simply needed to be done to keep up with code.

There does seem to be less hum in my girlfriend's office across the hall after this. Her outlets are placed on a metal box, which seems to be wired right down to the breaker box.
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Old 06-26-2013, 08:05 PM   #88
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I hated pounding those things in my old job.

They also really need to be positioned away from other grounds and away from water pipes and other grounded things like that.

I also have to agree with Wizard. You should have a proper ground already for the electrical service. We only really pounded ground rods when that wasn't the case, and otherwise attached directly to that.
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Old 06-26-2013, 08:10 PM   #89
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yeah, the house was inadequately grounded. That was determined by a professional.
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Old 06-26-2013, 11:12 PM   #90
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Default Pickup grounding

I too had guitar hum problems for a long time, until I once sat down with a friend of mine and decided to tackle my problem once and for all.

My guitar would hum more, when moving my hand nearer to the pickups, not touching the strings.
When touching, the noise would go away.

First we tried plugging equipment to different sockets, to the same power strip, different power strip - no difference.
Then guitar through DI box, a different DI box, ground lifted, not - both were actually worse.

Then we tackled the grounding issues of my house's electrical system - this made a small improvement for a change, but not quite good yet.

Then fiddling with the guitar we came to this solution - covering the pickups with aluminum tape (alu foil with adhesive) and connecting it to the ground (the green wire goes to the pots) of the guitar.
It's important that it has a good contact with the poles of the pickup and the wire as well - the adhesive might isolate if not pressed firmly enough.

This was the night and day difference for me.
It might not work for you, but at least it's very easy to try out.
I initially wanted to make a prettier solution, but I haven't bothered since it just works.

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Old 06-27-2013, 09:44 AM   #91
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and.... this is what my studio outlet looks like:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...1&l=6210d95e47
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Old 06-27-2013, 09:55 AM   #92
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Older than old!
Damn, I can relate!
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Old 06-27-2013, 10:03 AM   #93
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yes, it looks like there is some work to be done

gonna replace the outlet in a few hours from now, if that doesnt work, im running a dedicated line to the breaker box.
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Old 06-27-2013, 10:35 AM   #94
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YIKES !!!!
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Old 06-27-2013, 10:53 AM   #95
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I am wondering by law if my landlord should be addressing this...

I dont mind making a special effort for my studio on my own, but perhaps there is a problem with this whole place?
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Old 06-27-2013, 11:53 AM   #96
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and.... this is what my studio outlet looks like:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...1&l=6210d95e47

These need to be replaced ASAP . The oxidation on wires and terminals is not good . New outlets and cleaned and bare fresh copper splices all the way back to the panel.
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Old 06-27-2013, 12:12 PM   #97
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Now if the building you are in was wood you might have a fire, blow your gear up or worse. Wonder why you don't blow a lot of fuses.
Find a new place to rent Jason.
Is that an available choice?


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Old 06-27-2013, 01:38 PM   #98
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it kind of is - but I think my landlord would be open to fixing the issue if it is a safety hazard.

I need to find out how to establish that there is a safety problem, and then hopefully he will act - if not, I need to figure out how to take it further.
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Old 06-27-2013, 01:41 PM   #99
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These need to be replaced ASAP . The oxidation on wires and terminals is not good . New outlets and cleaned and bare fresh copper splices all the way back to the panel.
are we basically talking all new wiring all around, or just at the outlets?

I've replaced one outlet - it didnt make a difference with the hum. Likely, there is a problem elsewhere, or many other places.

However, ive made a bit of a breakthrough -

I ran an extension cord to my gf's office across the hall, and no hum (or far less) ---

so this tells me im going to need my own box for now, wired to the breaker box... but it looks like the place needs some other work besides that!
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Old 06-27-2013, 01:58 PM   #100
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Hey it's a little hard to tell from that pic, but isn't that asbestos insulation??????
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Old 06-27-2013, 02:06 PM   #101
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well, that would be awesome.
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Old 06-27-2013, 02:12 PM   #102
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It could be just celulous that has discoloured. Take a little baggy of it to a local inspector as it could be Amosite, which is the loose blown in type of Asbestos.
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Old 06-29-2013, 09:13 AM   #103
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It's most likely dust that has clumped up in there over what - looks like 100 or so years? Although the box looks vintage 1945-55ish; that have a grounded outlet means it's probably been rewired long ago, circa 70's, if the house is (I'm guessing built in the 20's)? Both wires are vinyl and not cloth, right? Baseboard wiring instead of through the wall probably indicates the whole thing was rewired (maybe - again, based on houses in the south). The ground wire is not likely to have somehow become compromised between there and the outside.

They weren't so into putting it in wall cavities as much as attics, at least in the south (may be different up north). Particularly if that is an inside wall versus an outside.

Not that your landlord likely to have the money for asbestos remediation. The bottom layer of the paint is most likely lead based as well.

The best thing in both cases is probably "do not disturb".
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Old 06-29-2013, 09:27 AM   #104
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I'm leaving it be. Rewiring a new outlet didn't make a difference. I have narrowed down the hum to a circuit with cloth wiring. I am making my own discrete line to the box from my studio.
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Old 06-29-2013, 01:15 PM   #105
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and it worked

i had an extra breaker, and i ran a nice thick cable from it to my studio, into an outlet..

no noise at all
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Old 06-29-2013, 02:03 PM   #106
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well done Jason
Happy vamping...

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Old 06-29-2013, 02:31 PM   #107
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Cavity shielding with conductive paint, and star grounding will bring your noise level even more under control. Swap out your cheap stock components (pots, switches, jack) at the same time. Relatively inexpensive upgrades that can make a sizable difference in quality of tone.
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Old 06-29-2013, 03:50 PM   #108
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Quote:
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Cavity shielding with conductive paint, and star grounding will bring your noise level even more under control. Swap out your cheap stock components (pots, switches, jack) at the same time. Relatively inexpensive upgrades that can make a sizable difference in quality of tone.

I'd always check the screen continuity from cable to backplate shield, bridge, strings, etc, and add more if it was inadequate.

-but no amount of shielding will succeed if it's not connected to ground...



>
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Old 06-29-2013, 03:51 PM   #109
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-but no amount of shielding will succeed if it's not connected to ground...



>
Right. But it appears as if Mr. Merrill has already taken care of that problem?
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Old 06-29-2013, 04:24 PM   #110
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Cavity shielding with conductive paint, and star grounding will bring your noise level even more under control. Swap out your cheap stock components (pots, switches, jack) at the same time. Relatively inexpensive upgrades that can make a sizable difference in quality of tone.
thanks for this! I will indeed look into this.
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Old 06-29-2013, 04:25 PM   #111
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Right. But it appears as if Mr. Merrill has already taken care of that problem?
It would appear so, yes - The big problem was the crappy ground on the line I was using, but also the ground to the house. I am sure I've taken care of that...
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Old 06-29-2013, 04:59 PM   #112
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thanks for this! I will indeed look into this.
I did a star ground on my Strat and lined the inner cavity and the back of the pick guard with tin foil. Worked like a charm. Got rid of a buzz/hum I had. It was a long time ago, and there were a lot of discussions around the internet on foil vs. conductive paint. I went with the foil for whatever reason... don't remember why though.
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Old 06-29-2013, 05:59 PM   #113
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and.... this is what my studio outlet looks like:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...1&l=6210d95e47
maaaaaaan... was it akkadian or sumerian wiring?
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Old 06-30-2013, 02:08 AM   #114
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Right. But it appears as if Mr. Merrill has already taken care of that problem?

And the first thing we suggested to Mr Merrill was he check what you suggested; shielding integrity and continuity, backplate shield, bridge, socket, etc. The supply grounding was the next step.

He's already told us he didn't have a problem with the guitar when it was recorded in a scenario with good grounding.


Edit: sorry Syd, I know what you're saying now and it's good advice. I deal with this stuff for a living and I know how to solve it. While I'm methodically doing this, eliminating the stuff that isn't causing issues, I get fed up of people suggesting things I know it isn't or jumping in at a point further up the check-list, or worse still getting their grubby fingers on stuff while I'm fault-finding, making tests irrelevant.

Hum issues and shielding are methodically found issues, and there might be more than one fault. Everyone's an expert at them, and idiot interference is endemic. I'm just waiting for the next well-meaning Joe to stick his nose in while I'm impedance checking the earth paths. I get fed up of it and a bit jumpy and defensive. Everyone is considered a bumbling, potentially dangerous idiot to be deflected until proved otherwise. That's my background, musicians tend to be worse than average if I'm dismissive it's just ingrained and I'm sorry.

Just over a week ago I had a well-meaning guitarist/rocket scientist removing an earth on a amp's mains lead to remove a hum while I was checking earth continuity on the band's mains extensions. He wasn't even in the band. I had to chop the plug off and then ask the band to remove him while I replaced a couple of earths in their gear and replaced the plug. The hum was eliminated, the guitarist no longer got shocks from mics.

This is what I deal with, so I unfairly treat people like idiots until I can see otherwise, I apologise.

It doesn't matter how good the cage is if the door is left swinging open



>

Last edited by planetnine; 06-30-2013 at 02:36 AM. Reason: being nice to Syd...
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Old 06-30-2013, 03:20 AM   #115
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and.... this is what my studio outlet looks like:

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...1&l=6210d95e47
Quite honestly, if that is representative of the wiring in the house, it ALL needs replacing. Every inch of it. That looks very dangerous, not just from an electrical point of view, but all that crud in there could cause a partial short and start smouldering and cause a fire.

Quote:
Originally Posted by planetnine View Post
This is what I deal with, so I unfairly treat people like idiots until I can see otherwise, I apologise.
>
I too used to do this (partly at least) for a living, when I was organ-repair-man and I still have people disconnecting earths (when they have a dodgy guitar cable) and using power conditioners, to cure defective equipment.

There's a lot of dangerous half-knowledge out there.
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Old 06-30-2013, 08:47 AM   #116
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...There's a lot of dangerous half-knowledge out there.
Like this one:

"There is a holistic approach to solving the grounding problem through manurel dietetics. You would first bone up on iron rich foods like leafy greens, spinach and such for about 3 weeks. Then, before the recording session take a full-on bowel movement and vent your humors to the south. It also helps to chant a B# (yes it does exist... just not where you'd expect). Next, wash your hands and feet in a mixture of 1 Cup of water to two teaspoons of vinegar using a soft #3 cloth rag. Take another full-on bowel movement and wash again but this time with pure diet water. Approach your instrument from a negative direction and above all, DO NOT plug in. Begin your session completely free from unwanted electrical noise. You're welcome. "
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Old 06-30-2013, 08:51 AM   #117
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I quick cleaned up the outlets on the second floor. The wiring itself was sound, actually.
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Old 06-30-2013, 09:41 AM   #118
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I don't know Jason, look what you started...


>
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Old 06-30-2013, 10:01 AM   #119
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And the first thing we suggested to Mr Merrill was he check what you suggested; shielding integrity and continuity, backplate shield, bridge, socket, etc. The supply grounding was the next step.

He's already told us he didn't have a problem with the guitar when it was recorded in a scenario with good grounding.


Edit: sorry Syd, I know what you're saying now and it's good advice. I deal with this stuff for a living and I know how to solve it. While I'm methodically doing this, eliminating the stuff that isn't causing issues, I get fed up of people suggesting things I know it isn't or jumping in at a point further up the check-list, or worse still getting their grubby fingers on stuff while I'm fault-finding, making tests irrelevant.

Hum issues and shielding are methodically found issues, and there might be more than one fault. Everyone's an expert at them, and idiot interference is endemic. I'm just waiting for the next well-meaning Joe to stick his nose in while I'm impedance checking the earth paths. I get fed up of it and a bit jumpy and defensive. Everyone is considered a bumbling, potentially dangerous idiot to be deflected until proved otherwise. That's my background, musicians tend to be worse than average if I'm dismissive it's just ingrained and I'm sorry.

Just over a week ago I had a well-meaning guitarist/rocket scientist removing an earth on a amp's mains lead to remove a hum while I was checking earth continuity on the band's mains extensions. He wasn't even in the band. I had to chop the plug off and then ask the band to remove him while I replaced a couple of earths in their gear and replaced the plug. The hum was eliminated, the guitarist no longer got shocks from mics.

This is what I deal with, so I unfairly treat people like idiots until I can see otherwise, I apologise.

It doesn't matter how good the cage is if the door is left swinging open



>
So.. we're good then?
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Old 06-30-2013, 12:50 PM   #120
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We good...


>
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