Just wired up my guitar.... and I've got buzz. I am having trouble diagnosing it... and it's starting to irritate me.

Typical guitar wiring setup, one magnetic pickup, one volume and one tone control. This is the exact same setup I've used on my other mag pup'd guitar, with no problem.

When I turn the tone pot up, I get a buzz. If I turn the tone control down, the buzz goes away.

The strange part is, the buzz increases BIG TIME when I touch something connected to ground, and the stranger part is, the buzz DEcreases when I touch something connected to... well, whatever the opposite of ground is. I'll touch the hot wire on the output jack, and the buzz stops. Touch the lug on the pot the pickup goes into, the buzz stops.

I've got the bridge connected to ground, so I know that's not the issue. I busted out my multi meter to test for continuity, and everything checks out ok. All the ground wires are connected with each other, and all the signal wires are connected to each other.

I don't have any pics of this just yet... but I'll attach a diagram which is what I've got going in my guitar.

I'm stumped. I'm using a 250K pot for the volume, and a 500K pot for the tone, cuz that's all I've got at my house... but I don't think that should make a difference.

Any ideas? Suggestions? Recommendations for beer to drink to calm my frustrated nerves? :-)

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The mystery deepens:

With the tone pot at 0, the buzz is gone. Now, turning the volume from 0 to 10 and vice versa, the buzz is gone at 0 and 10 but present everywhere in between.

Is it possible the pots are bogus? Another example of "friends should not let friends use bad pot(s)?" :-)
Well, I believe the problem has been solved.

As a tip for future folks with this particular issue, try this: If you've got a multimeter, set it to test for continuity. Test to see if your ground circuit is complete by testing the lug on the input jack you wire to ground. If that works, plug a cable into the jack and then test the ground on the sleeve of the guitar cable that's not plugged into the guitar.

This was what I discovered: I had a ground circuit good at the lug on the input jack, but did not when I tested the sleeve on my cable. Thinking the input jack was faulty, I replaced the it, and the problem was GONE! Sweet! I guess the input jack was no good. Three cheers for cheap radio shack parts, huh?
Hey Nathan, glad you sorted it!

Iv just had exactly the same problem with a git... no buzz at all when the treble is rolled off, but a bit of a hum when it is rolled on again.

I systematically swapped the cap, the pots, the jack, the earth, the pup... made no difference at all!

Out of interest, how loud was your buzz? On a scale of 0 - 10, where 0 is silent, and 10 is like the volume of buzz you get when you forget to plug in, Id say mine was a 2.... everything in the room needed to be switched off, and the amp cranked up high to hear it... in fact, its no worse than any of my other guitars, both home built and shop bought!
I've seen this before on a cheap import jack . Continuity tests good to the jack's ground contact ,
but the crimpover is intermittent/bad from the contact to the "sleeve" , which is the only
ground contact to the cord's plug . The only thing cheap about Ratshack parts is the quality .
85¢ at Mouser .........

Nathan King said:
Well, I believe the problem has been solved.

This was what I discovered: I had a ground circuit good at the lug on the input jack, but did not when I tested the sleeve on my cable. Thinking the input jack was faulty, I replaced the it, and the problem was GONE! Sweet! I guess the input jack was no good. Three cheers for cheap radio shack parts, huh?
Roosterman, I had a buzz pretty decent, maybe a 2 or 3 (based on how loud the amp would have been), but touching it boosted it to like a 6. It was pretty bad, but fixing the ground issue solved the majority of it. I did notice the lamp above my soldering station contributed some nice hum to the equation, so I sheilded the box (and turned off the lamp!), and now this baby is pretty silent. Now I just gotta string it up...... expect pics, vids, all that good stuff to follow soon! :-)

RL Mott, damn right... radio shack ain't cuttin' it. They don't even offer pots in 250K or 500K values, and their nearest store to me is at least a 30 minute drive. Thank you for that link! I have a feeling I'll be utilizing it soon in the near future...
Even Switchcrafts are less than 2 bucks , (502 series) ,
and considering that's about all that gets any actual wear, a small price to pay .
12B's are cool for dual-purpose , you get an actual sleeve contact , and can also use em
to disconnect the battery ground on little amps . Circuit ground goes to the sleeve ,
battery ground to the sleeve contact , input to the tip .....
The sleeve on the plug puts the battery - in the circuit when you plug in the cord , unplug it and the battery is off .

Recycled is one thing ..... junk is another story . ;^D

I have this exact same problem. I'm going to try replacing the jack too.

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