Anyone else get static crackling on their guitars?

Discussion in 'Les Paul Discussion Page' started by Infant, Jan 24, 2019.

  1. Infant

    Infant Active Member

    I know, I know...winter time, dry air, rub the guitar down with a bounce sheet etc. But why is it that my Gibsons crackle but my Fenders dont? I'm not even talking pickguard static but actually the finish. My LP Melody Maker crackles just moving my hand up and down the neck or touching the body near the controls. Still does it after shielding the control cavity. My ES137 crackles around the controls as well as the pickguard. I took the pickguard off and it crackles when I rub the body where the pickguard is supposed to be.

    I'm standing on a hardwood floor wearing rubber soled slippers. Humidity in the room is at 50%RH and I also have humidifiers in the cases. Still, I get the snap, crackle and pop only on my Gibsons. Drives me nuts!

    Anyone else notice this with only their Gibbys?
    Biddlin likes this.
  2. I'm inclined to say it's yer shirt or socks/carpet...

    I frequently read threads about people having this issure, on all types of guitar, but I can honestly say, hand on heart, in nearly 40 years playing, I have never experienced this.
    I'd had it getting out of cars, but never playing guitars.
  3. Infant

    Infant Active Member

    Not on a I said, I'm on a hardwood floor. I wear cotton t-shirts around the house. Besides, as I said, only happens on my Gibsons.
  4. SAguitar

    SAguitar Well-Known Member

    Very interesting. And like Somebody Else said, in my long career I have never encountered this phenomenon, so I'm not much help in finding a solution. I just did a search and it looks like you are at ideal relative humidity. Does it help to wear an aluminum hat?

    somebodyelseuk and Biddlin like this.
  5. Biddlin

    Biddlin Member

    Try rubbing a dryer sheet on the plastics.
  6. Infant

    Infant Active Member

    Biddlin, as I said in my post, I'm familiar with the dryer sheets (bounce sheets), but it's not just the plastics. Rubbing my hand up and down the back of the neck or rubbing the wood anywhere around the controls or the pickups creates static. I know you have two 2014 Melody Makers like mine but mine is terrible for static between September and May up here while we have the heat turned on. I also keep humidifiers in the cases with the guitars. My ES137 is bad on the pickguard, around the pickups and around the controls. I do keep a few bounce sheets in each case for emergencies but geez, a $3000+ guitar shouldn't be doing this. I'm wondering if its the nitro lacquer as opposed to the poly on the fenders.
  7. Call Mulder & Scully!
    Biddlin likes this.
  8. Biddlin

    Biddlin Member

    Not enough. You need to humidify the air, too. You can also get anti-static carpet spray. A friend who lives in the UP of MI says he moisturizes his skin regularly to avoid this issue. I also use FingerEase on all of mine, that might help with the back of the neck. Good luck.
  9. Infant

    Infant Active Member

    The room is at 50% humidity. Do you get static on your Melody makers?
  10. SAguitar

    SAguitar Well-Known Member

    I find that when I drink more, I don't notice all the static that people give me.

    Wait, that was slightly off topic, sorry 'bout that!
    somebodyelseuk and Infant like this.


    If this only happens in winter, I'd blame the dryer air, regardless of what your humidity reading is.
    The act of creating an interior humidity level that's more than a few percent different than outside ambient, can create a charged atmosphere capable of supporting it's own static charges.
    In most cases this type of static goes unnoticed, but when dealing with sensitive electronics, it can present problems.
    Now, why your Gibsons react differently than other brands, I have no idea.
    Recommended solution: Grab a nice Strat.
  12. Infant

    Infant Active Member

    Like I said, mainly between Sept and May, so yes, winter, once the furnace starts running. But again, like I said, my guitar room is at 50% humidity and I keep the guitars in their cases with Oasis humidifiers.

    Why grab a nice strat??? I've got a Strat and 2 Teles...I'm set!
  13. Biddlin

    Biddlin Member

    Nope, but I do on my SG Classic once in awhile. A wipe down with a damp cloth usually solves it, though. I'm playing in a pickup bar that has about a dozen neon displays going on and our sound guy is trying to tackle that as I type. I don't know what to suggest except a good volume pedal and loud amp.
  14. Infant

    Infant Active Member

    Volume pedal works for 60 cycle hum. I use a EH Humdebugger for that.
    Thanks for the damp cloth suggestion. I'll try that as I don't like the feel that a dryer sheet leaves on the neck.
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2019
  15. jtees4

    jtees4 Member

    The only thing I find odd about your situation is that it is usually much more common for Fenders for some reason. Always happens specifically to Teles for me, I don't think I've ever experienced it with a Gibson, or other guitar for that matter other than a Fender. But your heating system is probably the culprit (not that the heating is doing something it shouldn't). Some heat is dry, some is not....all depends. I had one particular Tele that was real bad, I ended up putting a piece of dryer sheet UNDER the worked for a long time that way! Good luck.
  16. Infant

    Infant Active Member

    On Fenders it's usually the large pickguard that hold a charge. I've gone so far as to remove the pickguard on my ES137 only to find that rubbing the finish in the area around the pickups or the pots still causes the static noise.
  17. spellcaster

    spellcaster Member

    Is there a chance that the type of finish on the guitars has some bearing on whether they crackle from static electricity? If you still have one of the old DiscWasher Zero-Stat guns from your hi-fi days, try shooting it at the guitar, with the volume turned down. Don't know if it would help, but it's the only thing I can think of that hasn't been mentioned.
    Infant and SAguitar like this.

Share This Page