To shield or not?

Discussion in 'Tech-Talk' started by JohnnyMac, May 21, 2019.

  1. JohnnyMac

    JohnnyMac Squier-Meister

    Age:
    66
    434
    Mar 5, 2018
    Front range Colorado
    That's a good point. I was going to apply the tape today but I think I should install the new pots and switch first to make sure that I don't need to enlarge any part of the cavity to make them fit.
     
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  2. ElRey67

    ElRey67 Squier-holic

    Age:
    52
    Jan 10, 2016
    Chandler, AZ
    Thanks. Great insight.
    This build was by far my best in terms of wiring/soldering.
     
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  3. wonkenstein

    wonkenstein Squier-holic

    Feb 3, 2017
    NH
    That's pretty much the way it was in the original Fenders, Guilds and Gibsons. No shielding anywhere...... and when you stop and think about how quiet the semi hollow bodies are. For the longer runs they used braided shield single conductor cables. So your work had to be tight and right!
     
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  4. dbrian66

    dbrian66 Squier-holic

    Age:
    49
    Jul 14, 2017
    Maryland, USA
    I always use shielding paint on my single coil Strats. The humbuckers, not so much. I like to smooth out the factory finish in the cavity. It’s always so rough on the lower end guitars. Here is my current project ready for shielding paint. Before and after.

    87F62644-4431-4E3D-A239-8EE618078485.jpeg

    EF431206-71DD-408D-B8B3-1A8EC029A92B.jpeg
     
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  5. Papa Joe

    Papa Joe Squier-Axpert

    Age:
    89
    Dec 12, 2009
    Swanton Ohio
    I ran into a lot of noisy invironments when gigging..Good shielding was a must..I even shielded the inputs on my amps..Copper tape worked the best for me..Paint failed..
    But just here in the house I really don't need it..
     
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  6. JohnnyMac

    JohnnyMac Squier-Meister

    Age:
    66
    434
    Mar 5, 2018
    Front range Colorado
    Thinking more about this. What noise are we actually shielding against? In my case it is intermittent pickguard static. I never thought that shielding could reduce single coil hum. Certainly won't reduce 60hz or 120hz amp hum. Correct me if I'm wrong about this.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
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  7. Papa Joe

    Papa Joe Squier-Axpert

    Age:
    89
    Dec 12, 2009
    Swanton Ohio
    My 59 Jazzmaster came with brass cups in the cavities..Don't know about other old Fenders..
     
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  8. mofojar

    mofojar Squier-Meister

    Age:
    36
    136
    May 9, 2019
    Calgary, Alberta
    Interference from other devices. For example modern computers for some reason seem to induce noise in some guitars if you get too close to them. Certain lights, appliances like microwaves, old cellphone specs (I think it was one of the 2G specs that would make every speaker line go zzzt zzt zzt zzt)

    It won't prevent single coil hum or power line amp hum as far as I know. It's more to isolate the circuit from other sources of interference. It does seem to reduce static noise from pickguards as well.
     
  9. JohnnyMac

    JohnnyMac Squier-Meister

    Age:
    66
    434
    Mar 5, 2018
    Front range Colorado
    Thanks. I didn't realize that it shielded against RF interference as well as static.
     
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  10. Shaytan

    Shaytan Squier-Meister

    Age:
    21
    459
    Apr 10, 2018
    Lisbon, Portugal
    I've used aluminium tape I've got for cheap on the hardware store on both mine and a friend's guitar. Mine seems to produce noticeably less 60 cycle hum than my PRS for comparison when coil split, plus his had some grounding issues that seem to have been fixed by doing that.

    You just gotta beware the sticker side isn't conductive so what I've done was to fold the edges when you overlap the pieces to continue the conductivity - I also left some tabs in the side pieces that would get into contact with the shielding of the scratch plate and so ensure everything was hooked together. Keep in mind it proved nearly impossible to use solder to connect the pieces as aluminum needs to be absolutely clean in order for solder to stick to it. To connect the thing to the ground, having the shielding in contact with parts already grounded like the pots, the output jack plate or the selector switch does the job

    Regarding the copper vs. aluminium tape, I guess copper will inevitably be more conductive, but companies use aluminium shielding on the scratch plates, so I don't think that may be a big deal at all... Conductive paint would be a lot cleaner and more convenient as I'm overly perfectionist when aligning and making the tape pieces look all nice and professional, plus you may then paint the guitar over it like Fender does.
     
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  11. Papa Joe

    Papa Joe Squier-Axpert

    Age:
    89
    Dec 12, 2009
    Swanton Ohio
    Actually, I've read somewhere that aluminum is a better shield than copper..Dunno if that's true or not..
     
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  12. JohnnyMac

    JohnnyMac Squier-Meister

    Age:
    66
    434
    Mar 5, 2018
    Front range Colorado
    I know that my aluminum foil hat works well for fending off mind control, especially if I double layer it. Never tried a copper one. I think I'll line my ball cap with the left over copper tape from this project. ;)
     
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  13. Early on with Squier, I noticed black shielding paint in some of their guitars. So, on my builds I opted for the XGP brand shielding paint.
    It's effective, very easy and quick to apply.


    XGP.jpg
    XGP-1.jpg
    XGP-2.jpg

    Cheers, Barrie.
     
  14. so1om

    so1om Dr. Squier

    Age:
    51
    Feb 10, 2010
    Chicago
    You can brush a bit from the cavity to the foil-backed pickguard area as well.
     
  15. JohnnyMac

    JohnnyMac Squier-Meister

    Age:
    66
    434
    Mar 5, 2018
    Front range Colorado
    It looks like the paint may be the way to go for convenience sake but since I have the copper tape I'll use that this time.

    I'll need to apply it to the back of the pickguard as well, correct?
     
  16. fadetoz

    fadetoz Squier-holic

    Age:
    46
    Jun 29, 2011
    IA
    My tech says tape. Idk why but he insists.
     
  17. drewcp

    drewcp Squier-holic

    Age:
    35
    Dec 14, 2018
    Saint Paul, MN
    Does he charge by the hour?
     
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  18. fadetoz

    fadetoz Squier-holic

    Age:
    46
    Jun 29, 2011
    IA
    IMG_20190522_214203.jpg He doesn't charge me. I'm sponsored by Carfrae Guitars.
     
  19. TimTheViking

    TimTheViking Squier-Meister

    Age:
    58
    426
    Feb 13, 2019
    Chesapeake, Virginia
    There's a saying... "If you don't have time to do it right the first time, how are you going to find the time to do it right the next?"
     
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  20. fattboyzz

    fattboyzz Squier-holic

    Age:
    53
    Nov 29, 2017
    Newnan ,Ga.
    I did one Strat but I really didn't see the difference .

    Ive built 3 partscasters since last fall . I didn't shield any of them.

    But ........

    I just play at home and there are no florecent lights in our house either .

    I do however put a firm ground under the bridges of my guitars.
     
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