FINALLY, a solution!I had the same problem and tried everything on a Strat I built. I finally sandblasted the sheen off the front of the pickguard and it went away. It gave the black guard a matte finish that looks really nice (and I would have done anything to get rid of that nasty crackling).
This is an exciting test for this problem and the possible solution (sincerely)!I'll have to check if my Esquire does it (the static crackling). If so, taking the pickguard off an Esquire doesn't even require loosening the strings, so it would be a fast/easy candidate to try the finish removal approach.
Interesting point. When I got my 5th Avenue Kingpin II, I took the pickguard off right away and have never had a static problem. Maybe that is the answer.I had and still have the same issue with my Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin. I've been using bounce to get rid of it. But that doesn't last very long. Worse case scenario I'll just take out the pick guard.
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Let us know how that works out. I have the same problem with my blackguard tele. I'll sacrifice a pg if it works. Like the Esquire in the post above, I don't even have to take the strings off to remove and modify it.If one doesn't have access to a sandblaster, I imagine a high grit sandpaper would do the same job?