I've just installed a pick-up bridge on my fiddle, after much hair-tearing, false tuning, bridge-bending, and other nasty things. I've finally got the fiddle sounding relatively all right (there's a thick quality to the music, but I think that'll go away). What is causing me consternation is that the pick-up is causing some sort of infernal rattling, and I don't know what to do. Has anyone had this problem and, if they have had, could they share their insights?

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Hi Caolán

it's very hard to say what is causing the rattling without hearing it but start at the bridge and work backwards. Is there anything loose on the bridge or the fiddle itself, like the chinrest for example? Even the slighest rattle will be a big issue when the instrument is amplified.Is there a lead touching the body of the fiddle that could be vibrating against the instrument. Are you using a pre-amp? If so check the lead going to the pre-amp. Give it a shake whilst amplified to see if this replicates the rattling noise. If there is no pre-amp,check the lead from fiddle to amp. There are a host of possibilities. It could be the speaker,Amplifier,faulty leads etc. Hope this is of some help to you Caolán

All the best in the meantime.

Ha Ha! This reminds me of a wasted afternoon, many years ago, when my Fiddle appeared to pick up an annoying buzz.

I checked all the machinery over & over again, took things off & fitted them on again & still the buzz.

I was almost at my wits end & just about ready to start taking it apart, thinking some of the internal binding had come loose when I discovered the problem ... the back of the Fiddle was vibrating against a metal button on my Denim Shirt!



Please check beneath your four fine tuners on the tail of the fiddle, especially G string; even though the tuners appear clear of the fiddle body, during playing of the instrument the fine tuners can cause such vibration as to actually contact the wood very lightly and make an annoying rattle.  The pickup may have added some weight to the area. Check the tailpiece and pickup too. It's not easy to see the vibration happening, as you can only hear it when you are playing. Unfortunately, this situation will also cause the finish of the wood to deteriorate, as I know from experience.  I've also had rattling when wearing necklaces. Hope this helps.

Thanks. I fiddled about - no pun intended - with the lead to the pre-amp this morning and I couldn't hear anything. I'll try again this evening. Thanks, everyone!

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