1. #1

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    I have a Sadowsky Jim Hall with standard humbucking pickup. I've been noticing a kind of "gurgling" noise that sounds like it's coming from the pickup. This happens when I play unplugged, so it seems to be some sort of vibrational mechanical thing as opposed to anything electric.

    Does anyone know what I am talking about? If so, what can I do to fix this?


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  3. #2

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    Humbuckers rattling in their frames is a very common phenomenon....

    Does it go away if you raise the pickup? (Thus tightening the springs)

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  4. #3

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    Like the T-O-M bridge and the “stop tailpiece” (which was a bridge originally), the two-screw humbucker mount is an absurd artifact of history.

    Go to a “Michaels” store and by a sheet of black EVA foam. “Craft foam” in 3mm sheets.

    EDIT: I think it is 3mm, I should go check on my stash.

    Stuff that between the PU and the plastic bezel.

    It is not 100% always the problem, but most often it is.

  5. #4

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    That sort of noise can come from many things that vibrate on a guitar, including nuts, screws, pot shafts, the pickguard, and many other things. I've had loose washers on the tuners be a problem. But IME the pickup is the most common. Lots of things can be stuck between the pickup and the mounting ring - picks, sax/clarinet reeds, foam, whatever you can conceive of. Foam seems to be the best of the choices, provided you have some. If not, others work, at least temporarily. Another fix that sometimes works, but not always, is to use latex or silicone tubing in lieu of, or in combination with, the pickup springs.

    I agree that the standard pickup mounting method is an example of amateur engineering at its worst.

  6. #5

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    Had a similar problem with my Jim Hall, sounded like added distortion. After some frustration, I remembered that shimming the pickup ring on my 175 got rid of a rattle, so I tried the same thing.... clipped a small portion of a heavy gauge pick straight across with wire cutters to create a small, semilunar piece with a straight edge that I then wedged down between the pickup ring and the cover, straight side up. Once it was clear that it got rid of the strange noise, I pushed it flush with the top of the ring so that it doesn’t show.... voila! Quick solution.

    PTC’s solution is more thorough, but this takes all of 2 or 3 minutes and works fine. If you adjust pup height too much, you might lose it inside the guitar, but just shake til it falls out or cut another. The one in my 175 is still there after 18 months. Agree, bad design but simple solution.
    It all works out in the end; if it's not working out, it's not the end.

  7. #6

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    For 35 years there has been the tip of a sax reed wedged between the PU and the ring on my 175. Crude - but it works.

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