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ludwigvondrumcrazy
08-15-2007, 12:38 PM
Since the Acrolite generates respect among those who have played them I thought I would give an overview of its “career” for those who may not be familiar with the venerable 404 (5 x 14) which is still readily available.

I won’t clutter up this thread with all of the descriptions throughout the years since they pretty much remained the same, but will show a number of images of the Snare so you can get a better feel for how they should look from the different eras. The Acrolite used the same Shell material, and was built using the same process & equipment as the Supra Phonic 400 with the only difference between the two being that the 400 was drilled for ten Lugs and was chrome plated with the 404 getting eight Lugs and having an Anodized finish.

I will also be adding some information “along the way” based on things I learned while reconditioning both Acrolites & Supra-Phonics. This information will only pertain to Drums I worked on that I knew to be original since things have a tendency to get swapped out over the years, especially Strainers, which can generate some confusion so please keep this in mind if looking at an eBay listing, or even a Ludwig Catalog, that doesn’t jibe with “the facts.” Ludwig had a tendency to reuse images for their Catalogs even though things had changed and overlap, in their process, the introduction of newer style parts with the older style, as opposed to having a clean “breakpoint.” Because of this please don’t think what I add is “carved in stone,” it’s just what I have come across on the “originals” that I have worked on and I’m learning something new all the time…............

The 404 entered Ludwig’s stable of Snares in 1963 and is shown below in the first Catalog it appeared in, the "New for '63" supplement to Catalog No.62. This first production version is commonly reffered to as a "protoype" but considering it was a Student Snare and offered in a Snare Kit the possibility exists that there are quite a few of these 404's with the "orange peel" anodized finish still kicking around.
Note: Rims also made from the same material as the Shell (aluminum.)

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/307719570.jpg

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/307719518.jpg

EDIT NOTE: The New for '63 supplement info. added 04/03/2008

Below is how it appeared in Catalog No.64 (released late 63.) Note smoother finish and the fact that they dropped the aluminum Rims, which didn't hold up well to the tension a Snare's Rims are subjected to.
For the first six years, 1963–1969 the Acrolite sported the Keystone Badge & P-83 Strainer…………………

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/271801748.jpg

As shown below in Catalog No’67 (released in late ’66)
This image is mis-leading since it's transposed, so it shows a mirror image with everything "backwards."
The Throw-off Arm, Badge & Baseball Bat Tone Control Lever are actually positioned the same as shown in the previous image.

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/178771172.jpg

Throughout the 1960’s & into the mid-70’s the Rims on both the Acrolite & Supra Phonic were much thinner than they are today and in my opinion give the Drums from that era a more open, or resonant, quality. I know a fellow who worked at Ludwig throughout the 60’s and he told me that they were 1.6 mm, which seems about right.

The 404 as shown in the No’71 Catalog (released in late ’70) the year after receiving the Blue & Olive Badge & “Black Face” P-85 Strainer.
It was around this time that the “Baseball Bat” Tone Control was changed to the Round Knob…………….

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/178771560.jpg

Below is the Acrolite in the 1974-75 Catalog.
Note that the P-85 had twelve holes for the Snare Cord, which it did from 1969 until right around 1978 when it went to two holes……………

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/271802582.jpg

The next image is from 1978 and matches, to a T, the Acrolite I am currently working on, still Anodized, with the “new” two hole P-85 and “Pointed Corners” Blue & Olive Badge. Ludwig rounded the corners on the Blue & Olive Badge on all their Drums the following year, 1979. It was right around the time that Ludwig went to the “two hole” P-85 that the Rims got a little heavier, how heavy is a good question. They aren’t as heavy as they are today, which are probably a 2.3 mm., but seem heavier than a 1.9 mm. I have a 1975-76 Supra-Phonic 402 and just finished up a “twelve hole” 400 last week that has the thinner Rims, which is what I base my opinion on for the switch to the heavier Rims……………………

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/271198286.jpg

The next shot is from 1984 and shows it with its “new” Powder Coating, which Ludwig switched to that same year. In my opinion the Powder Coating “chokes” off the sound of the Acrolite when compared to the Anodized Shelled 404. When you factor in the heavier Rims, which also choked it off some, you can see how the Acrolites of today differ from those dating from the 1960’s & into the mid-1970’s with the “older” style having a more open, resonant sound, as well as a broader tuning range. As mentioned, the above opinions are my own and are based on using a Remo Coated Ambassador Batter Head on both the Anondized & Powder Coated 404’s……………………

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/178771677.jpg

The next image is from 1988 and shows how the shade of the Powder Coating can differ some, which is also true of the Anodized Shells, some could be lighter than others. If trying to determine the age of an Acrolite, or Supra Phonic, by its P-85, Ludwig did add a small rubber Grommet to the threaded part of the Tension Knob in the very early 80’s and switched to the “Chrome Face” P-85 around 1984. With that said I have seen “Black Face” P-85’s threaded for Plastic Straps on known original Drums that date after 1984 so this could be a case of Ludwig using both types, Chrome & Black Face, during the same time frame……...........

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/178773098.jpg

In 1993 Ludwig switched over to the “Black Galaxy” Powder Coating which they still use today. In 1994 they also started offering a 6.5 x 14, the 405, as shown in that year’s Catalog (1994) below. There have been reports of a 6.5 x 14 Acrolite being made during the 1960’s or 1970’s but those, if this is true, would be few & far between………………

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/178771785.jpg

1994 Description below: Note 6.5 x 14 (405) has Ten Lugs

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/178775074.jpg

One thing that has been constant with the Acrolite over the years is that even when Ludwig dropped the Tone Controls from the Supra Phonic, as well as their other Snares, around 1998, which are making a come back, they always kept them on the Acrolites………………….
One thing I won’t try to pin down and that is when Ludwig switched to the Black & White Badge on the Acrolites. I have read that this happened in 1984 but can’t confirm this since I haven’t worked on enough Drums from that time frame. With that said, the 1988 Catalog image still showed the Blue & Olive with 1994 the first time that the Black & White Badge shows up in their Catalogs……………

I hope this information sheds a little light on a Snare that a large number of Drummers started out on and many still hold in high esteem……………

LVDC

Sah
08-15-2007, 02:10 PM
great post! I own a Ludwig acrolite 1970s B/O badge and it sounds great, I'm glad I bought an acrolite.

Les Ismore
08-15-2007, 05:21 PM
Nice imformative post 'ludwigvondrumcrazy'.

the only difference between the two being that the 400 was drilled for ten Lugs and was chrome plated with the 404 getting eight lugs

Actually no drum manufacture 'drills' metal they 'punch' the holes out, Ludwig is no exception. Drilling stresses the metal, is costly (bits, clean up etc.) and makes a messy hole that takes another step to clean up. Wood shell's are 'drilled', metal 'punched'. Ludwig made a run of 200 10 lug 404 Acro's, hope you can post a pic.

Ludwig should seriously consider jumping on the 'vintage reproduction' band wagon ala Fender Guitars. With a little bit of creative thought (just use the Fender marketing template as an example Ludwig), Ludwig could regain a big chunk of the market share, as no other drum company can match their storied history. Ludwig could easily knock the rust off their crown and have the other drum manufactures lining up below them.

They're dabbling with the Bonzo reissue, but need to get serious with some cool reissue 60's kits and snares. Bowtie lugs on sets, bring back the original gold sparkle wrap etc. Largley unchanged metal snares could be reissued vintage pretty easily with a few original spec parts. They would definitely create a new/renewed interest in Ludwig and further complicate the the vintage sceene which they're not getting a piece of. Go Ludwig! Its time to shine once again.

boomboomda
08-15-2007, 05:26 PM
Thanks for that, great post now I know exactly when mine was made.1978-79.

ludwigvondrumcrazy
08-15-2007, 08:15 PM
I’m glad that this thread, which I have been considering for some time, is serving a useful purpose. You’re more than welcome………….

To add a little more about the Blue & Olive Badge, some of the first installed on Acrolites & Supra-Phonics, which would have been around 1969-1970, were trimmed down to fit Shells already “drilled” for the older Keystone Badge (hole lower on the Shell.) These “trimmed down” versions will be missing the bottom portion where one would commonly find the Serial Numbers. In 1971-‘72 Ludwig also used B & O Badges without Serial Numbers, but this only lasted for a short period of time and when they started back up with the Serial Numbers they had seven digits as opposed to the six they had before the “Blank Run.”

Also, when Ludwig started rounding off the corners of the B & O Badge (1979) you may find some that appear to have had their corners “snipped off,” which probably indicates, since some are "snipped off" more than others, that they were doing this manually to utilize existing Stock………………

LVDC

ludwigvondrumcrazy
08-15-2007, 08:21 PM
Nice imformative post 'ludwigvondrumcrazy'.

the only difference between the two being that the 400 was drilled for ten Lugs and was chrome plated with the 404 getting eight lugs

Actually no drum manufacture 'drills' metal they 'punch' the holes out, Ludwig is no exception. Drilling stresses the metal, is costly (bits, clean up etc.) and makes a messy hole that takes another step to clean up. Wood shell's are 'drilled', metal 'punched'.

Thanks Les………………

I hear ya on the drilled versus punched and you are absolutely correct, Metal Shells were / are generally punched for holes, it was just a figure of speech that I used since how they got there really had no bearing on the issues at hand. Having spent 15 years as a Quality Person (floor level) at a GM V6 Engine Plant (Buick Motor Div) where I had to “Root Cause,” i.e., what exactly is causing the problem, Quality issues I do have some experience in Manufacturing, more than I wish I had actually…………..

With that said, most of the holes on the 1970’s Ludwig Stainless Kits I’ve done looked as if they had been drilled. While I can easily work the insides of most Metal Shells without worry of cutting myself, or tearing up my paper towel, I had to consciously watch myself around those on the Stainless Shells, which is always a royal pain since there are so many to deal with. I’m sure that this “jagged” condition was of no concern to Ludwig since they were going to be covered up by the Cup Washers anyway……………….

LVDC

Salicete
08-16-2007, 06:11 AM
Nice work, I bow at the feet of the Acro-Master!

Seroiusly, that was well organized and quite informational, thanks!

latzanimal
08-16-2007, 07:02 AM
Bravo LVDC!!! You are the man!

No wait, You are the Ludwig man!

ludwigvondrumcrazy
08-16-2007, 11:25 AM
Thanks Salicete & latzanimal, you are both too kind, seriously……………

When I went by my friend’s Drum Shop today I found something waiting for me, something that came in on trade, another 404 to work! While this is neither here nor there, since it is what it is, I thought I would show what I found while giving it the old once over.

Here’s how it came in, no Heads or Snare Wires with a Tone Control that was defective right from the get go, which is the first I’ve come across that wasn’t right. The Felt was glued off location so this was probably a “Supplier Issue.”

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL770/2917504/16757805/272003245.jpg

While it may be hard to tell from that shot, it has to date after 1984 since it has the Powder Coating, but here is where it gets interesting and goes back to the “not carved in stone” comment in my original post. I'll get a better feel for this during / after tear down by the "witness marks" on the washers, but it appears as if this, at least part of it, is the original Strainer. It does have the 7/8” (distance from Shell) Bracket & P-32 Butt Plate so that dates those parts to after 1977, or thereabouts, and also has the Rubber Grommet that showed up a little after that date. Here’s what I found most interesting, it has twelve holes that should have been, for this time frame (1984 or after,) only two, or possibly even the Chrome Face tapped for Plastic Straps. The possibility exists that the “twelve hole” portion could have been a “swap out” but we’ll never know that for sure.

This next shot just shows the Rounded Corner Badge and a side view of the 7/8” Bracket, which, prior to 1977 had been only ½”
Ludwig did install Aluminum Flat Washers between the Shell & P-85 Brackets on both the Acrolite’s & Supra-Phonic’s for a time prior to the height change. The 404 I’m currently working on (two hole) and the 400 (twelve hole) I finished up last week both had these Aluminum Washers.
I have yet to find them on the 7/8th inch Strainers………….

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL770/2917504/16757805/272003269.jpg

Here is the Strainer that doesn’t fit the Powder Coating.
There is a good possibility that Ludwig, or their Supplier, “found” some boxes of “twelve hole” parts and put them back in their process, but that’s just a guess on my part……. …….

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL770/2917504/16757805/272003257.jpg


This next image just shows the two Nylon Washers under the Tone Control (TC) Knob, the most common version I find on Ludwig’s, however, some only have one. The “Pointed Badge – Two Hole” Anondized 404 I’m currently working was a little different from the norm in that it had only one, thin, metal Flat Washer, that I will replace with Nylon(s) for a couple of reasons. First and foremost is to prevent a “Rattle Point,” with the second reason to stop the chafing that the metal Washer was causing on the Shell in this area. I know that the metal Washer was original because the TC hadn’t been removed prior to my doing so. Ludwig “knicked” the threads on the TC Shaft to keep the “Barrel Nut” from vibrating off and because of this I had to develop a method to get them off without too much hassle. I picked up a deep, approx ½” Nut that I use to chase the threads a few times to condition them before trying to remove the “Barrel Nut,” which works great.

To better explain this I just went and took the second shot using the Powder Coated 404 and if you look carefully you should be able to make out the “Lud-knick” about two threads in from my “Conditioning Nut”………………….

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL770/2917504/16757805/272003297.jpg

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL770/2917504/16757805/272008008.jpg

Since I mentioned both Tone Controls & Rattles I would like to include a little advice based on what I’ve seen pertaining to these two issues. The “newer” style Ludwig TC’s use a Nylon Washer between the Felt Plate & TC Arm, whereas the “older” style utilized a Leather Washer. The Leather type allowed the Plate to pivot some while the Nylon doesn’t so the newer style doesn’t allow the Felt to make flush contact with the head until it has been compressed down at an angle, but that’s not the point I’m trying to make. Where I’m going with this is that if storing Drums with the older Leather Washer TC’s for any length of time I would recommend taking the pressure off. I have found that if the Leather Washer is compressed for long periods of time they have a tendency to dry out in a compressed state and when the pressure is released you can end up with a loose, or sloppy, Plate that not only can, but will rattle. I usually fix these rattles with thin close cell foam, cutting a “key-hole” shape into it that I then work between the Plate & Arm positioning the hole part (of the key-hole) around the Plate Rivet. By leaving the Leather Washer in place it tends to help hold my fix in place. Here is a shot of one the TC Plates off my 1979 Big Beat, as you can see this one has not been stored under pressure over the years and is still nice & tight, just the way I like to see them………………

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL770/2917504/16757805/272012448.jpg

I hope that all this doesn’t come off as aimless ramblings from someone who has breathed in too many “Flitz Fumes,” maybe I have, it’s just kinda nice to actually explain some of the "nuts & bolts" to others who may get something out of it. I know it sure beats the heck out of doing it day after day for months on end. When I’m finished with the two 404’s it’s on to a 400, then a 1971 Metal Shell Rogers Dyna-Sonic before moving on to a Big Beat Outfit (12, 13, 16, 22.) Who knows what will show up at my friend’s shop in the meantime, the Hit’s just keep coming……………….

LVDC

Les Ismore
08-17-2007, 10:02 AM
I hear ya on the drilled versus punched and you are absolutely correct, Metal Shells were / are generally punched for holes, it was just a figure of speech.......

I was all but certain you knew they punch the holes on the alloy shell's ludwigvondrumcrazy, just brought it up for all who didn't, its a nice little fact. Keep the great Ludwig information coming. Any pic's of a 10 lug 404?

ludwigvondrumcrazy
08-17-2007, 10:36 AM
Any pic's of a 10 lug 404?

Not a one Les, I wish I did. Any idea when this would have been?

I do have a photo or two somewhere of a Prototype 404 as well as an Acrolite Outfit Ludwig put together, but finding them, well, I'd rather clean Drums................

I've read somewhere that Ludwig produced two Acrolite Kits, one in the late 1950's & the other sometime in the 60's. Having some experience with their Stainless, a person would most defintely have had to keep the reso heads on (Flashback to the 70's) or run the risk of an out of round condition considering the Shells would have been Aluminum. If they had produced an Acrolite Kit I wonder how many would have survived the 1970's without a bunch of egg shaped Shells being the result of that era's (for the most part) "Hitting a Cardboard Box with Two Dead Trout" sound...................

LVDC

Les Ismore
08-17-2007, 11:25 AM
Not a one Les, I wish I did. Any idea when this would have been?

Believe it or not, one was on ebay. If I remember correctly it was said to be early-mid 60's. I don't remember the $elling price and I should've lifted the pic's. A run of 200 were said to be made and dolled out to thos connected, according to the description.

Mendozart
08-17-2007, 09:36 PM
This is a great post LVDC! Even though I don't own an Acrolite (yet), I take pride in the ownership of my Supra 402 even more. I have been seriously looking at some Acros on ebay and your post has armed me with an immense amount of info. Thanks LVDC.

rockinrider
08-18-2007, 06:07 PM
...
I hope that all this doesn’t come off as aimless ramblings from someone who has breathed in too many “Flitz Fumes,” maybe I have, it’s just kinda nice to actually explain some of the "nuts & bolts" to others who may get something out of it. ....

LVDC

Well, LVDC, I, for one, consider your "ramblings" very interesting and informative. It received my first Ludwig set in 1969. I was a 4 piece white pearl jazz set with a 5" wood snare. I played that set regularly until 1980 when I bought a Roger's 5 piece. As I look back, the Ludwig was a far superior set to the Rogers. As always happens, I regret selling that kit!

I look forward to your informative posts. Keep 'em coming!

Cymbalrider
08-18-2007, 11:48 PM
My first drum was a gift and it was a 1970s Ludwig Acrolite. I still use it along with the maple snare that came with my Mapex Pro-M.

ludwigvondrumcrazy
12-23-2007, 08:13 AM
Since this thread is still generating comments from time to time (on the side) through this and other sites I thought I would give it a bump.
People do indeed use the search function.........

LVDC

Les Ismore
12-23-2007, 11:03 AM
Here, here Harry! And if people really knew what you had to go through to upload these pic's. Not only informational, but archival, this thread deserves to 'come up for air' .

Speaking of pic's, how bout some shots of some real 'down and out' Acro's? You know, the ones that have been left for dead, had a hard life, ready for the parts bin... but underneath it all are tough as nails and ready to cut concrete with a little (or maybe lots of) tender lovin care. Lets see some real basket cases! Forget the bling, can you say oxidation?

The Levee Breaker
12-23-2007, 11:33 PM
I do believe there was a request for a rare acrolite picture, and this little gem appeared on ebay : http://cgi.ebay.com/Ludwig-Acrolite-Prototype-Aluminum-Snare-Drum-14-RARE_W0QQitemZ350006072886QQihZ022QQcategoryZ64434 QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

ludwigvondrumcrazy
12-24-2007, 07:41 AM
Speaking of pic's, how bout some shots of some real 'down and out' Acro's? You know, the ones that have been left for dead, had a hard life, ready for the parts bin... but underneath it all are tough as nails and ready to cut concrete with a little (or maybe lots of) tender lovin care. Lets see some real basket cases! Forget the bling, can you say oxidation?

Some time after the New Year I'll have some real down 'n outers to deal with, three that I know of for sure. Missing Lugs, lot's of tape residue, who knows what all is going on with them, but I'll eventually find out. I've been gathering the parts I'll need but for sure will come up short.........

Even thinking of those is putting the cart before the horse since I still have a 1971 Ludwig Big Beat to put to bed and want to get a mid-80's Hammered 400 out of the way before tackling those old Acro's. The 404's are ones that have been hanging around a friend's Drum Shop for years so have been the "go to" Drums when Rims, a Lug, or Strainer was needed. Robbing Peter to pay Paul..........

LVDC

criz p. critter
12-26-2007, 06:27 AM
Totally interesting and informative thread, LVDC. Thanks for taking the time to do all that typing! I've been thinking a lot lately about getting a Supra, but now I'm considering an Acrolite, too... Sometime later in the new year, once my finances recover from Christmas, that is!

ludwigvondrumcrazy
12-26-2007, 12:24 PM
Totally interesting and informative thread, LVDC. Thanks for taking the time to do all that typing! I've been thinking a lot lately about getting a Supra, but now I'm considering an Acrolite, too...

You're more than welcome Criz. Some people look down their noses at the 404 and would never even consider one feeling that the 400, or 402, is the only choice when it comes to metal shelled Ludwig Snares. They don't know what they are missing, either new or old, depending on the type of sound you are looking for, the Acrolite delivers the goods, at a very modest price ta boot!

Lest someone think that I don't hold the Supra Phonic in high esteem, I do, if I didn't I wouldn't have four of them, it's just that I feel that credit should be given where credit is due..........

LVDC

Mendozart
12-26-2007, 05:57 PM
I've recently helped a few parents who have come to me saying they want to get their kids started in playing drums. The first thing I tell them is to purchase a snare and get them going on rudiments. I've ended up purchasing a couple acrolites on ebay/craigslist and told them if for some reason it doesn't work out for the kid, I will purchase the acrolite back from them. It's really a no-brainer. I wish my first snare would have been an acro.

KarlCrafton
12-26-2007, 08:05 PM
This is a great thread.
Thanks for the Acrolite info LVDC!

I got my Acrolite in 1975 (my first Ludwig!) and it still sounds cool as hell.
I love the way it sounds.

I wish Ludwig would have offered a 6.5 version before the Black Galaxy finish.

The BG looks good, but being "older" (...haha) I like the silvery color better.

I would have gotten one for sure.

5" snares are cool, but I gotta have a 6.5.

Don't know why....just do.

Hey, we all have at least 1 "crazy drum thing" right?

My Acrolite badges have the "pointed" ends like the one in the pic.(...waaaayyy down there haha!)

The only "problem" I have with mine is.......I painted it.....sacrilege, I know.....but probably not the worst you've seen.

Any idea how to get the paint off?

Regulat paint remover?

Soak the whole shell in accetone?

Would accetone ruin it?

I used regular spray enamel a long time ago...I did it in 1987 or early 1988 (not that the date makes any difference...).

I did do a pretty decent job, only a little "orange peel" in the paint.
I kinda like it black, but it would be cool to have it "back to normal".

Any help would be cool!

BTW, I like the longer posts that actually explain stuff, so keep it coming LVDC!

ludwigvondrumcrazy
12-26-2007, 08:45 PM
I've recently helped a few parents who have come to me saying they want to get their kids started in playing drums. The first thing I tell them is to purchase a snare and get them going on rudiments. I've ended up purchasing a couple acrolites on ebay/craigslist and told them if for some reason it doesn't work out for the kid, I will purchase the acrolite back from them.

You're a good man Mendo, I've tried to do my part. I had a Black Galaxy 404 at a friend's shop for sale when a Father and his Son came in looking for a Snare to get him started and to make a long story short, they walked out with my Acro, which was like new, for $50...............

LVDC

ludwigvondrumcrazy
12-26-2007, 09:10 PM
This is a great thread.
Thanks for the Acrolite info LVDC!

The only "problem" I have with mine is.......I painted it.....sacrilege, I know.....but probably not the worst you've seen.

Any idea how to get the paint off?

Regulat paint remover?

Soak the whole shell in accetone?

Would accetone ruin it?

I used regular spray enamel a long time ago...I did it in 1987 or early 1988 (not that the date makes any difference...).

I did do a pretty decent job, only a little "orange peel" in the paint.
I kinda like it black, but it would be cool to have it "back to normal".

Any help would be cool!



You're welcome Karl, I wish I could be as informative when it comes to paint removal. I keep so busy with the "regular cleaning" that I don't take on the messy jobs. If I did try to remove paint from an anodized Shell I would first try to ask someone, or Company, that applies this type of finish their recommendations, failing that I would probably get out my heat gun and plastic scraper and give that a try at low heat to see what that does. I always try to stay away from any harsh chemicals. I do know that some strippers are less caustic than others and that Flitz Metal Polish does wonders when it comes to removing stains from anodized Acro's so that would be another process / option that I would consider. The Flitz would hopefully be my savior if, for some reason, the stripper stained the Shell but my guess is that it wouldn't. Please don't hold me to that last statement, it's only a guess.........

Just remember, if using a scraper to use the plastic type, that is unless you have experience with the metal types. I have some friends who are professional wood canoe restorers, that's their only business, that can easily remove layers of old Varnish from the deck of a canoe and not harm the original decal buried beneath. Me, I'm chicken so I sure as heck wouldn't try it............

If you do decide to try a stripper just remember to leave it on only as long as it takes to get the job done and thoroughly rinse afterwards. I have read a number of your posts and know this is something (common sense) that I probably didn't even have to mention, i.e. you seem like you're "smarter than the average bear."

Tomorrow it's Vacation time, a whole 9 days without polishing a single part, or shell. I still can't wrap my head around that one so I better make a last run to the Drum Shop just to "soak it all in" before leaving. Besides that, I have to deliver some parts........

LVDC

KarlCrafton
12-27-2007, 04:23 PM
Thanks man.
Yeah, this would be a DIY job.

I don't mind it Black, and I don't plan to sell it, so it's not a big deal.

It might be kinda nice to have it back to normal, but, I don't want to take a chance on screwing the underlying finish up (anymore than it is being black haha).

I may try something on the inside to see if it comes off easily.

It was just enamel, not some super duty paint.

Keep your cool posts coming, and enjoy the time off!

ludwigvondrumcrazy
03-06-2008, 08:01 PM
Recently I was contacted by a fellow DW Member about a Powder Coated Acrolite he picked up and was interested to learn of another 404 that, by all rights, should have had a "two-hole" P-85 but had the older twelve hole type with the rubber grommet that didn't come along until Ludwig had switched over to the two hole.....

Here is the other Powder Coated Acro with the twelve hole P-85 that has already been shown in this thread. This is actually an after shot of the Snare in post #9...........

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL770/2917504/16757805/307366595.jpg

If you look closely you will see that this P-85 no longer has the rubber grommet on the threaded portion of the Tension Knob. More often than not, the rubber grommet on a P-85 that has a number of years on it has pretty much dried out which leaves the grommet in such a state that it tends to break apart easily. When they get that way I just toss 'em...........

Here is the before shot.............

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL770/2917504/16757805/272003245.jpg

LVDC

The Ploughman
03-06-2008, 08:56 PM
Great job.

Every drummer should have an acrolite. Theres enough of them out there.

DaveB
03-06-2008, 11:38 PM
Two prototypes from my collection

ludwigvondrumcrazy
03-07-2008, 09:01 AM
Nice Snares Dave, does the 404 still have it's original aluminum Rims, if so, how have they fared over the years? I hear that the aluminum Rims didn't stand up well to the tension that Snare Rims are subjected to............

Anybody have an aluminum Acrolite Drum Kit? I sure would like to see one of those buggers, I'm not talking about a Snare Kit, but an actual Acrolite Drum Set, Toms, Bass, the whole nine yards. I wonder whatever became of the prototype(s) of those.......

LVDC

DaveB
03-07-2008, 12:21 PM
Thanks mate.

The one on the left still has the ally hoops, the other one doesn't.

The hoops themselves are in reasonable shape given that they're nearly 50 years old. They are very light and I think are more prone to damage as they're softer than normal hoops. To be honest, I haven't really played that drum other than to tune it up as I got it with a kit I bought and I don't want to damage it. I think it's the only snare I have I haven't really ever played.

There's a few more photos here -

http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v601/DaveB/Snare%20Drums/Vintage/Ludwig/

and a piece written by the guy who found and cleaned up the other proto -

http://www.geocities.com/slinkz_uk/acroproto.html

and another proto belonging to someone else -

http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v601/DaveB/Snare%20Drums/Vintage/Ludwig/

benadrian
03-11-2008, 01:24 AM
I just purchased an Acrolite, and I can't wait to get it into my hands.

My first snare was a chrome Ludwig from the 80s in the UFO case. I don't even know the model, but it was cheap and sounded very good. I'd get a ton of compliments. It got traded away.

Throughout the years I've played a lot of snares. Now, given a budget of about $300, I chose an Acrolite. Really, they're a simple and elegant solution in the ever complicated world of drums.

Ben Adrian

Mendozart
03-11-2008, 07:18 AM
I just purchased an Acrolite, and I can't wait to get it into my hands.

My first snare was a chrome Ludwig from the 80s in the UFO case. I don't even know the model, but it was cheap and sounded very good. I'd get a ton of compliments. It got traded away.

Throughout the years I've played a lot of snares. Now, given a budget of about $300, I chose an Acrolite. Really, they're a simple and elegant solution in the ever complicated world of drums.

Ben Adrian
Did you get it off ebay? What year is it? I just sold a ' 67 to help fund my Black Beauty purchase. It was a great sounding snare. Eventually I'll pick up another one, probably a B/O badged one.

Michael G
04-03-2008, 09:32 PM
I just thought I would bump this thread to confirm something:

6.5 Keystone Acrolites exist! Even more interesting is they have 10 lugs instead of 8, so it is basically a 6.5 Supra. Apparently there was a line of a 100 or so made for the NYC school district. I wonder what a going price would be for one of those.

http://www.vintagedrumforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=283&d=1142705214

Drummerpaul
04-03-2008, 09:43 PM
I have the chance to purchase a Ludwig Acrolite that is in very good condition. It has the yellow keystone and is stamped on the inside Aug., 1966. No pitting, rust, dents, etc. Sounds great. The woman who is selling it lost her husband a few years ago and is now ready to sell it. She wants $150. Is it worth it? I have read nothing but fantastic reviews about this snare.

volvoguy
04-03-2008, 10:52 PM
I have the chance to purchase a Ludwig Acrolite that is in very good condition. It has the yellow keystone and is stamped on the inside Aug., 1966. No pitting, rust, dents, etc. Sounds great. The woman who is selling it lost her husband a few years ago and is now ready to sell it. She wants $150. Is it worth it? I have read nothing but fantastic reviews about this snare.


For $150, you can't go wrong. Even if you didn't like it, you could flip it on eBay and come out ahead.

-Ryan

benadrian
04-03-2008, 11:18 PM
My recently purchased 80's Acrolite was $90 shipped WITH a case.

it sounds great!

Ben Adrian

ludwigvondrumcrazy
04-04-2008, 07:06 AM
Recently I was finally able to clean my mid-80's Hammered Shell Supra-Phonic (400) that had been in the to do pile for well over a year and while working it's Strainer I was reminded of the fact that I have seen three different variants of the P-85 from this time frame. The Black Face two hole w/no threads for the Strap Bracket, the Black Face 12 hole & the type that's on my 400, the Chrome Face w/threaded holes & Plastic Strap Bracket on the Cover Slide.

More often than not I just make a mental note of such things and move on, considering it one of those "It is what it is" type of things that you can spend time trying to figure out, and even if you do, it doesn't mean a whole heck of a lot. It is what it is...........

Just for the heck of it I looked through my Parts Catalog and found that the 12-hole Cover Slide was listed as an option as late as 1988 (see P1017-2 below)

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL770/2917504/16757805/311769022.jpg

LVDC

P.S. I am not ignoring Drummerpaul's question.
He asked the question elsewhere and I recommended he go for it at that price.............

ludwigvondrumcrazy
04-04-2008, 12:37 PM
To keep posts that this thread has generated in context I have added the following images to my initial post, which also contains further information about this first production version. Please see post #1........

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/307719570.jpg

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/307719518.jpg

LVDC

RogerTheShrubber
04-05-2008, 02:30 AM
Well this is a very interesting thread! I do have a question though. I have two Acrolites (one from the early 70's and a 1966) and the 1966 one has 10 lugs. I have tried to find out info on this one but I only found one website that briefly mentions it and they say that it's rare. Do you know anything about this one ludwigvondrumcrazy? Anyone? Thanks!

Mendozart
04-05-2008, 06:03 PM
Well this is a very interesting thread! I do have a question though. I have two Acrolites (one from the early 70's and a 1966) and the 1966 one has 10 lugs. I have tried to find out info on this one but I only found one website that briefly mentions it and they say that it's rare. Do you know anything about this one ludwigvondrumcrazy? Anyone? Thanks!
Please post some detailed pics? Thanks.

RogerTheShrubber
04-05-2008, 07:33 PM
Ok cool. I will be posting pics this evening. :)

TmTm
04-06-2008, 04:13 AM
I just thought I would bump this thread to confirm something:

6.5 Keystone Acrolites exist! Even more interesting is they have 10 lugs instead of 8, so it is basically a 6.5 Supra. Apparently there was a line of a 100 or so made for the NYC school district. I wonder what a going price would be for one of those.

http://www.vintagedrumforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=283&d=1142705214

I have no knowledge of 100 drums being made for the NYC school district but I have a 10 lug bowtie , P-85- 12 hole throw, 6.5 X 14 supraphonic/ Acrolite? This snare came with a 11pc anniversary set of ludwigs I bought for my son on Sept.21,1984 and it took about 2 months to recieve them. I,am in the process of restoring them now. I CANNOT find any info about this drum. It has the larger keystone badge of the 80s but it has LUDWIG DRUM CO. CHICAGO U.S.A. It does not have any serial number on it (unusual).All the toms and 24" & 22" bass also have the larger keystone 80s badges, but all have serial numbers on them but, with Ludwig Drum Co. on them not Monroe NC. The 11 pc set is listed in the 75th anniversary ludwig catalog but the pictures of them show the blue/olive badges not the keystones. BUT the 6.5 X 14" metal snare with the bowtie lugs(Acrolite? Supra?) and large keystone badge without any numbers remains a mystery that I cannot resolve. I,ve tried the vintage site but the drums are not considered vintage yet and they have no info for me. I feel the 75 anniversary sets have something to do with this unusual snare. Does anyone have more input? TMTM

ludwigvondrumcrazy
04-06-2008, 10:04 AM
I have no knowledge of 100 drums being made for the NYC school district but I have a 10 lug bowtie , P-85- 12 hole throw, 6.5 X 14 supraphonic/ Acrolite? This snare came with a 11pc anniversary set of ludwigs I bought for my son on Sept.21,1984 and it took about 2 months to recieve them. I,am in the process of restoring them now. I CANNOT find any info about this drum. It has the larger keystone badge of the 80s but it has LUDWIG DRUM CO. CHICAGO U.S.A. It does not have any serial number on it (unusual).All the toms and 24" & 22" bass also have the larger keystone 80s badges, but all have serial numbers on them but, with Ludwig Drum Co. on them not Monroe NC. The 11 pc set is listed in the 75th anniversary ludwig catalog but the pictures of them show the blue/olive badges not the keystones. BUT the 6.5 X 14" metal snare with the bowtie lugs(Acrolite? Supra?) and large keystone badge without any numbers remains a mystery that I cannot resolve. I,ve tried the vintage site but the drums are not considered vintage yet and they have no info for me. I feel the 75 anniversary sets have something to do with this unusual snare. Does anyone have more input? TMTM

TMTM, there is a local guy who has a similar Supra from the same time frame who brought his into a friend's Drum Shop and when I saw it my first impression was that someone had swapped out the Lugs. After looking at it closely I wasn't so sure considering he said he bought it new like that. Since then I have seen at least one posted on another forum and have heard of a couple of others that the owners stated were special order's, so, while not common, there are others out there. In fact there is a 400 (5 x 14) currently on eBay but won't be there long since it looks like a one day listing and has a Buy It Now for $300, item #260227638960.

1984 was around the time that Selmer was getting ready to move Ludwig to North Carolina and based on what I've seen you never know what you might find on Drums from this time-frame. I do know that Ludwig used the Badge you described on the last Drums manufactured in Chicago and when it comes to Catalog images you can take those with a grain of salt using them only as a rough reference to what the Company may have been sending out to their Dealers. I also would'nt be surprised to hear of other Badges, Chicago large Keystones or Blue & Olive that should have serial numbers but don't. Ludwig, as well as other large manufacturing Companies, had / have a tendency to do things like this, either intentionally or unintentionally, your guess is as good as mine. Because of this I often find myself using the term "It is what it is" because trying to make sense of it all can consume a lot of time with no definitive answer when all is said & done..............

LVDC

Drummerpaul
04-06-2008, 06:06 PM
Thanks for all the advice guys, I did purchase the 1966 Acrolite and love it so far.

RogerTheShrubber
04-06-2008, 06:57 PM
Ok here are pics of the 10 lug Acrolite I was referring to. I had to replace the heads (of course), the snare wires (they were in bad shape) and the throw off. I included a pic of the original throw off. The only thing I could find on the intarweb about it is here:

http://www.mikedolbear.co.uk/story.asp?StoryID=547&Source=Archive&txtSearch=

There is a picture of it too. Thanks for any info!

TmTm
04-06-2008, 08:13 PM
TMTM, there is a local guy who has a similar Supra from the same time frame who brought his into a friend's Drum Shop and when I saw it my first impression was that someone had swapped out the Lugs. After looking at it closely I wasn't so sure considering he said he bought it new like that. Since then I have seen at least one posted on another forum and have heard of a couple of others that the owners stated were special order's, so, while not common, there are others out there. In fact there is a 400 (5 x 14) currently on eBay but won't be there long since it looks like a one day listing and has a Buy It Now for $300, item #260227638960.

1984 was around the time that Selmer was getting ready to move Ludwig to North Carolina and based on what I've seen you never know what you might find on Drums from this time-frame. I do know that Ludwig used the Badge you described on the last Drums manufactured in Chicago and when it comes to Catalog images you can take those with a grain of salt using them only as a rough reference to what the Company may have been sending out to their Dealers. I also would'nt be surprised to hear of other Badges, Chicago large Keystones or Blue & Olive that should have serial numbers but don't. Ludwig, as well as other large manufacturing Companies, had / have a tendency to do things like this, either intentionally or unintentionally, your guess is as good as mine. Because of this I often find myself using the term "It is what it is" because trying to make sense of it all can consume a lot of time with no definitive answer when all is said & done..............

LVDC
Thanks for all the info on my (I think) unusual snare. As you may properly assume I am not a collector of drums but an old rocker(still playing). I have a 68-69 4 piece set of Oyster Black Pearl ludwigs that I bought new in 1970. The supra with this set is a 1970 blue/olive badge lulalloy and has always had a beautiful sound to it. My son is now playing it (Studio&Stage). The 6.5 X 14 snare that came with the 1984 anniversary set also has a beautiful sound to it and my son has asked if I could restore it so he could use it also. As you probly know this is in contrast to some players & collectors that say the keystone badge interrupts the contact of the head with the rim producing a different sound(mine does not).I have all the paperwork from 1984 when I ordered the set and I have researched the basic set sofar, but this snare has always lead me to dead ends. So I will use your saying "It is what it is" as some anomalys that the Ludwig Co. has had during their various transition periods. SO: I appreciate your very knowledgable input to this ongoing mystery of mine and will most likely have more questions during the restoring of this set. THANKS! TMTM

Trip McNealy
04-06-2008, 08:37 PM
Hey LVDC,

I have a 1978 Acrolite I bought from eBay, it's in fairly good shape cosmetically. Of course, I need to clean up any grime/film/etc from the shell as well as clean and buff/shine the rims and other chrome bits.

What products and/or methods do you recommend for restoring this drum? I know the shell is some kind of anodized finish so I don't know what to use on it. I have other products like Flitz and Never Dull to use for the chrome.

Thanks!

ludwigvondrumcrazy
04-06-2008, 08:52 PM
Trip, Flitz goes thru stains & discoloration on an anodized Acrolite like a hot knife thru butter and is actually more effective on that finish than any other I've used it on. Below is a before (after pre-Flitz washing) & after of a mid-60's anodized Acrolite........

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/238252599.jpg

http://pic4.picturetrail.com/VOL725/3888856/12201929/238252662.jpg

LVDC

9Vahn0
06-14-2008, 08:23 PM
Hi, I'm an italian user, sorry for my english.

I have to show you some photos of my 10-lugs 14x5 acrolite:

http://img301.imageshack.us/img301/8022/1000428zi4.jpg
http://img227.imageshack.us/img227/4053/1000429sq3.jpg
http://img230.imageshack.us/img230/9383/1000430vs4.jpg
http://img231.imageshack.us/img231/6218/1000431fx6.jpg
http://img385.imageshack.us/img385/1576/1000432lh0.jpg

What can you tell me about it? is it a rare model?
what about the serial number? isn't it low?

thanks for your help, I haven't found any information about it on the web

9Vahn0
06-25-2008, 06:49 PM
UP!

Plese help me, I need your help!

Thanks

BigSteve
12-23-2008, 01:07 AM
I just picked this up on Ebay today....1970 Acrolite the whole kit....very nice condition. I tried a newer one at GC. I liked the sound even compared to a 14"x5" Supra Phonic. Can't wait to get it and tune it up. $129.00...Can't beat the price!

Any head suggestions from other Acrolite users?

http://i1.ebayimg.com/01/i/001/25/f6/2347_1.JPG

http://i20.ebayimg.com/02/i/001/25/f6/267a_1.JPG

http://i21.ebayimg.com/03/i/001/25/f6/288a_1.JPG

mind_drummer
12-23-2008, 03:01 AM
Nice ^^ You'll love it. single ply medium weight head like Aquarian Satin finish texture coated, Remo ambassador or Evans G1 should do the job great.


Here's mine with before and after restoration/cleaning process

Before

http://i22.photobucket.com/albums/b324/mind-drummer/DRUM_KIT/New%20snare%20drum%20Ludwig%20Acrolite/Acrolitenearwithrust.jpg

After

http://i22.photobucket.com/albums/b324/mind-drummer/DRUM_KIT/New%20snare%20drum%20Ludwig%20Acrolite/Acrolitefrontclean2.jpg

BigSteve
12-23-2008, 05:04 AM
Hey....that cleaned up nicely! I haven't tried Aquarian heads yet....I mostly use Evans, but I may just give that a try. Thanks for the advice!

LyriCa1z
01-13-2009, 02:30 AM
According to the info. found in this post and coinciding with the Ludwig serial no. utility I have a 1976 Acrolite with the sharp edged B&O badge. I found it on craig's from a guy in my town. He delivered it to me expecting a price of $50 (he obviously didn't know what he had). I discovered there was a major dent on the snare side hoop so I was able to talk him down to $40 since I knew I'd have to replace that hoop. It came with original weatherking heads and original snare wires. I have replaced both top and bottom hoops (held onto the top since it was in fine condition), and decided to keep the original snares since they were in near perfect shape. I went with an Evans Genera Dry batter and an Evans Glass reso. so you could see the magic that is the inside of a vintage Acro. Slight pitting around the shell, but cleaned up nicely with no more than a damp cloth. I lubed the tension rods with vasoline upon replacing the heads and hoops. They screwed back in with ease and she tunes up like a dream. I have definitely bought into all the hype of vintage Acrolites. Their versatility is simply amazing. The throw-off, after all these years, still works like a champ. Easy fluidity to and from snare. I am pretty sure that my current Pearl Exports (refinished of course) and my beautiful badazz Acrolite snare will carry me through my entire career. Thanks for this great post LVDC. Extremely informative, and makes me even more proud to know I own one of the most timeless percussion instruments in history.

mind_drummer
01-13-2009, 02:49 AM
Congrats on the nice pick and welcome on DW ^^

ludwigvondrumcrazy
01-13-2009, 08:41 AM
Thanks for this great post LVDC. Extremely informative, and makes me even more proud to know I own one of the most timeless percussion instruments in history.

You're quite welcome! I'm glad to see that this thread is still serving it's purpose by providing the basics on such a sweet, versatile snare, which, as you mentioned, is indeed proving timeless.............

LVDC

Bigwheel
01-23-2009, 01:21 AM
I have a 1967 Acrolite Snare that I got my hands on in 1979. I've played so many snares since but always went back to the Acro. I've contemplated many times selling and buying something else but after 30 years of playing I just can't find anything I like better. I have a Tama Pancake Snare I play along side but that's as far as I've branched out in recent years. The Acro is so versatile that I've played it in every setting you can imagine. I've one ongoing problem though that I'm hoping you guys can help me with.

I have to re-tie the snare strings almost weekly. I have tried different methods throughout the years but the strings are only good for a couple of nights of playing before I have to re-tie them. Now I know strings stretch to some degree but have you guys found a method or substitute that keeps the authenticity of the drum but makes it more durable?

DrewTheShoe
01-26-2009, 06:31 PM
I'll tell you what, this is a GREAT thread when it comes to Acros. Lots o' history and knowledge.

Just an inquiry, though. For my upcoming birthday, my father has agreed to get me an Acro (step up from the stock Tama!) and I'm just not sure if there are differences between the older and newer models.
I'm just wondering, are there many differences between a Black Galaxy model and a previous Silver model (besides the paint job)?

mind_drummer
01-26-2009, 09:45 PM
I'll tell you what, this is a GREAT thread when it comes to Acros. Lots o' history and knowledge.

Just an inquiry, though. For my upcoming birthday, my father has agreed to get me an Acro (step up from the stock Tama!) and I'm just not sure if there are differences between the older and newer models.
I'm just wondering, are there many differences between a Black Galaxy model and a previous Silver model (besides the paint job)?


Everything you need to know about acrolite is here -> http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/showpost.php?p=348219&postcount=1

Guz2
01-26-2009, 09:50 PM
Dude, nice snare! But what happened to it before you restored it, did you bury it!? :P

mind_drummer
01-26-2009, 10:06 PM
Dude, nice snare! But what happened to it before you restored it, did you bury it!? :P


It survived Katrina ;-)

Skitch
01-27-2009, 05:05 AM
I found my current Acrolite in a pawn shop. It seems just about every drummer has had one of these at one time or another. I have been using this drum quite a bit lately, as it has become the field test for the Trick throw-off and butt retrokits, which make me like it more. It is alos worht noting that the DW Aluminum snare drums sound quite similiar to the acrolite.

Mike

http://www.mikemccraw.com
http://www.dominoretroplate.com

http://www.youtube.com/drummermikemccraw
http://www.myspace.com/drummermikemccraw

ludwigvondrumcrazy
01-28-2009, 08:02 AM
Just an inquiry, though. For my upcoming birthday, my father has agreed to get me an Acro (step up from the stock Tama!) and I'm just not sure if there are differences between the older and newer models.
I'm just wondering, are there many differences between a Black Galaxy model and a previous Silver model (besides the paint job)?

Drew, to me there isn't much, if any, difference between the Black Galaxy or the earlier powder coated Acrolites, on the other hand, I do feel that there is a noticeable difference between any of the powder coated Acro's and the earlier anodized 404's. Which one is best? Well, that's straight up a personal preference kinda thing with my top choice being the older anodized Acrolites............

All things being equal (same heads) I feel that the anodized shell can resonate / vibrate "more freely" than those with the thicker powder coating so, as a result, allow a wider range of tones / sounds. One thing is certain, you can always dampen the resonance on an anodized 404 with the Internal Tone Control, or tuning, but you can only open up a powder coated Acro so far. With that said, since the Acro, normally, has only eight Lugs, as opposed to the Supra-Phonic's ten, even the powder coated Acro's will give plenty of resonance so you won't be dissapointed with a 404 that has either coating.

Bottom line here is, if you like a nice tight snare sound the powder coated version would be the best choice, if you tend to prefer a wide open sound then the anodized 404 would be the better choice. Either way, it's all good!

LVDC

TheArchitect
01-28-2009, 01:34 PM
Drew, to me there isn't much, if any, difference between the Black Galaxy or the earlier powder coated Acrolites, on the other hand, I do feel that there is a noticeable difference between any of the powder coated Acro's and the earlier anodized 404's. Which one is best? Well, that's straight up a personal preference kinda thing with my top choice being the older anodized Acrolites............

All things being equal (same heads) I feel that the anodized shell can resonate / vibrate "more freely" than those with the thicker powder coating so, as a result, allow a wider range of tones / sounds. One thing is certain, you can always dampen the resonance on an anodized 404 with the Internal Tone Control, or tuning, but you can only open up a powder coated Acro so far. With that said, since the Acro, normally, has only eight Lugs, as opposed to the Supra-Phonic's ten, even the powder coated Acro's will give plenty of resonance so you won't be dissapointed with a 404 that has either coating.

Bottom line here is, if you like a nice tight snare sound the powder coated version would be the best choice, if you tend to prefer a wide open sound then the anodized 404 would be the better choice. Either way, it's all good!

LVDC

I agree completely. You really can't go wrong but you can fine tune to taste!

DrewTheShoe
01-29-2009, 02:27 AM
Drew, to me there isn't much, if any, difference between the Black Galaxy or the earlier powder coated Acrolites, on the other hand, I do feel that there is a noticeable difference between any of the powder coated Acro's and the earlier anodized 404's. Which one is best? Well, that's straight up a personal preference kinda thing with my top choice being the older anodized Acrolites............

All things being equal (same heads) I feel that the anodized shell can resonate / vibrate "more freely" than those with the thicker powder coating so, as a result, allow a wider range of tones / sounds. One thing is certain, you can always dampen the resonance on an anodized 404 with the Internal Tone Control, or tuning, but you can only open up a powder coated Acro so far. With that said, since the Acro, normally, has only eight Lugs, as opposed to the Supra-Phonic's ten, even the powder coated Acro's will give plenty of resonance so you won't be dissapointed with a 404 that has either coating.

Bottom line here is, if you like a nice tight snare sound the powder coated version would be the best choice, if you tend to prefer a wide open sound then the anodized 404 would be the better choice. Either way, it's all good!

LVDC

Thanks Ludwig, that was extremely helpful and will definitely help in my potential purchase. :)

oops
01-29-2009, 05:12 AM
I'm looking at getting an Acrolite, but kind of keen to change out the stock snare wires for a 42-strand.

Is there any way to do this with the original snare mountings (with the 12 holes)?

freehandstyle
03-21-2009, 09:30 PM
hey guys, i'm grabbing an Acrolite in a few hours and i was just wondering what year this snare is? I used to own a '76 Supra but later sold and now deeply regret...

Thanks in advance and can't wait to get my hands on this baby!

http://img1.classistatic.com/cps/l/kj/09/3/21/456/r1/4989e33_20.jpeg

http://img1.classistatic.com/cps/l/kj/09/3/21/456/r6/9610kgd_20.jpeg

http://img1.classistatic.com/cps/l/kj/09/3/21/456/r4/528873i_20.jpeg

KaBoom21
03-21-2009, 11:21 PM
Powder coating and rounded badge indicate '79-84. I did a quick search but only came up w/ serial number guides through '79, when the blue/olive badge changed from pointy to rounded and the powder coating was added.

Looks to be in great shape!

freehandstyle
03-21-2009, 11:48 PM
Powder coating and rounded badge indicate '79-84. I did a quick search but only came up w/ serial number guides through '79, when the blue/olive badge changed from pointy to rounded and the powder coating was added.

Looks to be in great shape!

thanks for the heads up!
I just got it and oh my it's in perfect condition.

No rust, no pit with a super sturdy and healthy strainer.

Much better condition than the '76 Supraphonic i had before.
Can't wait to play with it when i go back to my practice place!

drumhammerer
03-23-2009, 01:29 PM
hey guys, i'm grabbing an Acrolite in a few hours and i was just wondering what year this snare is? I used to own a '76 Supra but later sold and now deeply regret...

Thanks in advance and can't wait to get my hands on this baby!

http://img1.classistatic.com/cps/l/kj/09/3/21/456/r1/4989e33_20.jpeg

http://img1.classistatic.com/cps/l/kj/09/3/21/456/r6/9610kgd_20.jpeg

http://img1.classistatic.com/cps/l/kj/09/3/21/456/r4/528873i_20.jpeg

I see that drum has a powerstroke X on it. That's actually a great head for that drum, but I would remove the muffling ring. I've got the one with the dot on top, but with the muffling ring removed, and it sounds great. Super fat tone, yet it still has that single ply head response. I could never use one ply heads on snares before because of durability issues, but these heads are extremely durable. That drum there is also the same year/model that I have, although yours is in better condition.

Chazz
03-23-2009, 04:05 PM
Hey Thank you "LVDC", for posting this informative article
on the Ludwig Acrolite snare drum!
very cool!

nicolai185
04-15-2009, 06:16 PM
Hey, the info on the Acrolites is great! Thanks for doing that. I realize this is a few years after the original post... but I have a question about my acrolite...

It is has the older keystone badge, but it doesn't have a serial number on the badge. From what I've read, this should mean that it's dated between 1961 and 1963. The inside says Sept 1, and it looks like 1970, but it's pretty smudged and hard to read so it could be a variety of things I guess.

What I'd really like to know, is does the fact that it's a 1961-1963 no serial number badge make it any more valuable than the other keystone badge acrolites? Is mine even a regular acrolite? I've noticed in many of the pictures that they have a little lever looking thing off the side of the drum and mine has something that's circular and more like a dial. (and I'm not talking about the snare release). I can take more pictures and measure if necessary. Thanks for your help!

Dom Chandler
05-18-2009, 07:53 PM
Hi guys, I have just been going through some of my old drum stuff and come across an old Acrolite that I presumed was from the late eighties, as it happens after reading this thread (not all of it)it appears my drum is from 63ish!
It doesn't have the original hoops, these we're changed for shiny unbranded chrome triple flange ones (oops) and the strainer has been replaced with a later model (still ludwig, rather than the holes for the twine it just has a clamp for strapping) also oops!
I am thinking about selling it, anyone know how much (£'s) i'd be looking at getting for it, it's in reasonable condition, for it's age it's pretty good actually.
Badge number is 480222.
Cheers
Dom

synergy
11-16-2009, 05:45 PM
Hey guys, great thread!

I love my acro! Though I dont have any pics of her as she is not the nicest dame in the bar!!!

I got the shell only cheap on ebay- I believe she had been used for parts as it has no badges on her and no hardware at all.

She was in pretty much bad shape- needed a good cleaning and still she has a little bit of very very small paint splatter I think? on a small section- You cant see until your nose it right up next to it- I believe it to be from the late 70's? looking at the marks that the badges left behind- deffinately not keystone

So for a few months earlier this year I spent time searching the usual haunts and pieced my girl back together- original rims from the 70's, original bowtie lugs, eventually went with modern replicas of the throw-off and butt plate etc.

I now have my 'no-name' acro all scrubbed up and sounding beautiful and all it took was about $50 - a little time and patience.

I know I could have just bought one all put together- I just wanted the challenge of doing it myself and now I love my 'frankenstein monster' drum even more for all her cosmetic flaws!

She may not be the prettiest belle at the ball- but she has the best voice! And one I wont change or get rid of- she will fall apart before I part with her

Is it even possible for acros to fall apart?

Danmardi
11-16-2009, 05:58 PM
I just got a 1967 acro and I'm looking forward to bring it back to life. I wonder, does any body knows how many wires this drum came out with?? and wich tipe?? I founded all this.
Ludwig 14" Gut Snare 12 Strand LUD-L1108
Ludwig 14" Gut Snare 15 Strand LUD-L1235
Ludwig 14" Heavy Wire Snares 12 Strand LUD-L1929
Ludwig 14" Thin Wire Snares 20 Strand LUD-L1930
Ludwig 14" Wire Snare 12 Strand LUD-L1110
Ludwig 14" Wire Snare 18 Strand Swivel Mounted LUD-L1224
Ludwig 14" Wire Snare 20 Strand Swivel Mounted

A-customs
03-08-2010, 12:51 AM
Wow great thread.........Lots of great info.Today i bought my first Acrolite.Found it on creigslist,rounded B/O Badge.Needs snare wire.The shell and hoops are in great shape.For 50 bucks i couldnt help myself.:\Program Files\CASIO\Photo Loader\Image Library\Yamaha Pics.

Big Foot
03-08-2010, 03:18 PM
Okay small world! That's MY acrolite! Freehandstyle, I'm guessing, bought and resold. Check out the scratches on the badge and to the left of the throw-off.

A-customs
03-08-2010, 05:13 PM
http://i45.tinypic.com/wind4o.jpg not bad for 50 bucks huh.??

rogue_drummer
03-09-2010, 01:12 AM
Oh yeah! The Acrolite! I found mine on eBay and paid $60 for it shipping and all. I finally got around to refurbishing it, cleaning it and WOW! I can't believe the sound. By refurbishing I mean buying new heads and new snares. I washed it in the bathtub, dried it thoroughly and took chrome polish to the hoops and lugs then put it all back together.

I gig with it regularly and love it. Mine was from, I believe, 1976, as indicated by the serial number on the badge. I play a vintage Pearl kit with rounded bearing edges, so this fits right in with the vintage sound of the kit.

It's funny, but I always felt sorta touchy about my vintage Pearl kit when others were playing brand new Tamas, Ludwigs, Pearls, Taye, or Gretsch. I felt "old school" and sort of odd because of my older kit.

Then I had a chance to hear another drummer play a full set on my kit in January while I stood at the back of the venue listening. Damn, they sounded good!! And with the Ludwig Acrolite they made my night. I never heard my kit played from a distance and always wondered how the audience hears them. After hearing my kit played and loving the sound, I sort of felt like a proud father seeing his child for the first time!

The only upgrade I may make to the kit is to put on triple flange hoops on the toms. Otherwise, I'm happy as a hog in slop.

Mendozart
03-09-2010, 04:52 AM
Thought you might find these pics interesting. Someone over on vintagedrumforum posted these. I thought it was a pretty cool use of green sparkle wrap on an Acrolite.

Pocket-full-of-gold
03-09-2010, 05:03 AM
I thought it was a pretty cool use of green sparkle wrap on an Acrolite.

Agreed. Very cool looking drum indeed.

rogue_drummer
03-09-2010, 07:54 PM
Way cool way to wrap an Acrolite!

THC
03-05-2011, 03:54 AM
I'm gonna resurect this thread almost a year to date since the last post.

I feel like I scored a pretty good CL deal today on an Arcolite LM 404 Black Galaxy

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v492/fzr1000/3-4015.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v492/fzr1000/3-4008.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v492/fzr1000/3-4014.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v492/fzr1000/3-4011.jpg

This is a few year old, but brand new, student pack. I got the snare, which doesn't have a mark on it. a stand (not the one in pics), practice pad, 2 song books, a pair of sticks, and a carrying bag, all for a hundred bucks. The original Ludwig coated head didn't have a stick mark on it. At least till I got it home. Now it has a few hundred. :)

I took a crappy sound percussion snare stand back to GC that was $60., so I really only put out another $40.00.

This thing sounds awesome. I see us spending a long and happy life together.

Mendozart
03-05-2011, 06:57 AM
I'm gonna resurect this thread almost a year to date since the last post.

I feel like I scored a pretty good CL deal today on an Arcolite LM 404 Black Galaxy

This is a few year old, but brand new, student pack. I got the snare, which doesn't have a mark on it. a stand (not the one in pics), practice pad, 2 song books, a pair of sticks, and a carrying bag, all for a hundred bucks. The original Ludwig coated head didn't have a stick mark on it. At least till I got it home. Now it has a few hundred. :)

I took a crappy sound percussion snare stand back to GC that was $60., so I really only put out another $40.00.

This thing sounds awesome. I see us spending a long and happy life together.

Nice drum, good score!

ludwigvondrumcrazy
11-25-2011, 05:41 AM
Since I happened to be passing thru let's bump this one up and air it out a bit.....

LVDC

latzanimal
11-25-2011, 10:09 AM
LVDC's alive!?!............

ludwigvondrumcrazy
11-25-2011, 11:11 AM
I'm still kickin' latz, just been doing my drum talkin' face to face at a friend's shop.

For the record, I still love the smell of Flitz in the morning.......

eric_B
11-25-2011, 06:26 PM
I've been thinking about getting a Supraphonic or Acrolite as well.
I haven't seen too many offers over here, but I happened to see to 3 older Acrolites for sale:

http://www.mijnwebwinkel.nl/winkel/arjenvanderlindendrums/?menu=article&categoryID=429832&articleID=20756063
http://www.mijnwebwinkel.nl/winkel/arjenvanderlindendrums/?menu=article&categoryID=429832&articleID=20757922

I know listening would be best and I will, but would you prefer one of these over a new one?
Also, can anyone tell which heads come with a new one?

ludwigvondrumcrazy
11-25-2011, 07:59 PM
I've been thinking about getting a Supraphonic or Acrolite as well.
I haven't seen too many offers over here, but I happened to see to 3 older Acrolites for sale:

http://www.mijnwebwinkel.nl/winkel/arjenvanderlindendrums/?menu=article&categoryID=429832&articleID=20756063
http://www.mijnwebwinkel.nl/winkel/arjenvanderlindendrums/?menu=article&categoryID=429832&articleID=20757922

I know listening would be best and I will, but would you prefer one of these over a new one?
Also, can anyone tell which heads come with a new one?

Eric, your question about new vs old is straight up based on personal preferences so you may get differening opinions, all would be "right answers" since it all depends on what sound a person might prefer, tight, or a more open sound.....

Over the last couple of years I've sold seven of my Acrolites and have kept only one, which is similar to the one in your bottom link, the one with the 1960's Keystone Badge. The Acro in your top link looks to be from the 1970's so essentially the two in your links would sound the same, that is if both had the same heads, strainers, etc....

Here's why I, personally, prefer the older anondized shells over the later (mid 80's & later) powder coated versions. The powder coating tightens up the sound since it doesn't allow the shell to vibrate as freely as those of the earlier 404's, now, I can always tighten up the sound on a anondized shell any number of ways, heads, tuning, rims, moon-gel, etc. but I can only open up the sound of a powder coated Acro so far due to the limitations put on me by the coating.

The above also applies to the difference between a Supra-Phonic & a non-powder coated Acrolite, only in the case of the Supra the sound is tightened up by the fact that the Supra-Phonic has 10 Lugs & the Acrolite only 8. For all intents & purposes the shells on the two are the same, they only differ when it comes to coatings & the number (and style) of Lugs. That, and the fact that all Acrolites have internal tone controls and some Supra-Phonics do not.

One last thing, if the Rims on the two Acros in your links are original to those two drums they will be thinner than the Rims you would find on a new Acrolite. Yet another thing that would help tighten up the sound.

For me, and once again this is only my personal preference, I would buy either of the two in your links before I would buy a new one, or any powder coated Acro for that matter.

As far as I know all new Acrolites would come with "Ludwig" Heads. When I recondition a vintage Ludwig Snare for re-sale in my friends Drum Shop we always put Ludwig Heads on them simply because that's what most people expect to see on a Ludwig Drum. On my personal drums, as well as my friend's, we run Remo's. We've tried many other brands looking for that "magic sound" but always came back around to the Remo's. Like the sound of the shell itself, heads are another case of personal preference so there will be many "right answers" out there.

LVDC

eric_B
11-25-2011, 10:33 PM
Hi LVDC, thanks for your elaborate post. I think what remains for me is to try each snare and choose the one I like best. Like you said: it's all about personal preference.

I was just wondering: usually items decade over time, don't snares suffer as well? Like the 60's snare: it goes back 5 decades, that's quite some time. Won't a new one last longer?

Another thing: I've read some people prefer the 6,5 deep acrolite over the 5 deep one because they can make the first sound like the latter but not the reverse. What's your opinion on this?

And which Remo heads would you recommend?

ludwigvondrumcrazy
11-25-2011, 11:06 PM
Hi LVDC, thanks for your elaborate post. I think what remains for me is to try each snare and choose the one I like best. Like you said: it's all about personal preference.

I was just wondering: usually items decade over time, don't snares suffer as well? Like the 60's snare: it goes back 5 decades, that's quite some time. Won't a new one last longer?

Another thing: I've read some people prefer the 6,5 deep acrolite over the 5 deep one because they can make the first sound like the latter but not the reverse. What's your opinion on this?

And which Remo heads would you recommend?

I've re-conditioned dozens of snares, some from the 1930's and if I thought that the older ones were weak in any way I wouldn't have sold off my newer Acro's, including a Black Galaxy, and kept the oldest.

I've never played a 6.5" Acro so someone else can probably better address that question.......

For me, I tend to use the single-ply Ambassadors on my metal shell snares, no matter if it's the Acrolite or Supra-Phonic but do also use the Emporers from time to time. Because I never use brushes I sometimes will use the smooth white coated heads but they do reduce the "attack", or stick definition, when compared to the "rough coated" version.

Since I'm not a gigging drummer anymore and have never been in the studio I'm sure others can give you better, more informed advice. I choose what sounds best to me from behind the Kit so my preference has been limited to that perspective for many years. What I hear from behind the Kit isn't necessarily what others hear out in front, especially when other instruments and room acoustics come into play.

LVDC

eric_B
11-26-2011, 08:52 AM
Thanks LVDC, you've been very helpful!

pcmckay
11-29-2011, 01:45 AM
The Ludwig Acrolite is a great little snare drum. I had one years ago and for some reason I got rid of it, and I have been kicking myself since. Well this past summer I found one at a garage sale for $15.00!! I couldn't believe it, so wrote a check and was on my way. Brand new heads, new set of snares and it sounds great. Yesterday I posted some videos of me playing my Bonham kit and jamming to some Zeppelin, the snare I am playing is the bargain Acrolite. I have been playing it a lot lately, love it!

goatatl
11-29-2011, 06:41 AM
I just thought I would bump this thread to confirm something:

6.5 Keystone Acrolites exist! Even more interesting is they have 10 lugs instead of 8, so it is basically a 6.5 Supra. Apparently there was a line of a 100 or so made for the NYC school district. I wonder what a going price would be for one of those.

http://www.vintagedrumforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=283&d=1142705214

Thanks for posting; that one's mine! The NYC story is the most plausible I've heard; the badge dates it about '66, I believe. And yes, I do need to change those bottom tension rods.

goatatl
11-29-2011, 04:48 PM
The highest I've ever seen a 6.5 10-lug go for is $780.00 on eBay. I got mine for $35.00 at Unclaimed Baggage in Scottsboro, AL about 1992-3.

jornthedrummer
01-03-2012, 02:18 PM
I just got one from Ebay. USD 190 + freight to Malaysia.

Not exactly cheap, but I wanted a non powdercoated model in very good condition.

Based on the appearance of the drum(anodized, 2 hole P85, pointy BO badge, s/n 1368778), the drum should be from 1978 or 1979.
At that time Ludwig was, by far, the leading brand in Denmark and I am happy to finally own one of their drums.

The drum is in perfect condition, no rust, no pitting, throw-off works smoothly and the shell only have one or 2 minor scratches.
And it sounds good too right out of the box.

larryace
01-03-2012, 05:12 PM
Reading LVDC's assessment of the coatings on the Acro's (the most desirable in his opinion being the anodized and not the coated) I was wondering if it's worth it to somehow removing any coating off the newer Acro's. Like if you took a wire wheel to a Black Galaxy, I wonder if you would have to protect the shell with anything after the coating is removed. Since it's aluminum, I was thinking a coating of car wax inside and out should keep any oxidation in check. Any thoughts?

tamadrm
01-03-2012, 06:16 PM
Reading LVDC's assessment of the coatings on the Acro's (the most desirable in his opinion being the anodized and not the coated) I was wondering if it's worth it to somehow removing any coating off the newer Acro's. Like if you took a wire wheel to a Black Galaxy, I wonder if you would have to protect the shell with anything after the coating is removed. Since it's aluminum, I was thinking a coating of car wax inside and out should keep any oxidation in check. Any thoughts?

Most agree that the 60's acros are clear coated to prevent oxidation.A few guys on some forums where I'm a member,have removed the black galaxy finish on some blackros.They all feel its a propritary powder coating its a b*tch to remove.Once its off,they went to an auto body shop to have the drum bead blasted,then sanded with various grades of sand paper till they got the finish to where it could be clearcoated.

A few guys went the other way,and refinished their supras,and then did an ultra fine polishing and clear coat that is real close to chrome.I saw this done to a 6 1/2x14 acro,and it looks spectacular.

The car wax thing I have done to my acro and supra, and it does seem to help in keeping the finish of both drums looking good.

Steve B

mlaugh
01-06-2012, 01:13 AM
I just got one from Ebay. USD 190 + freight to Malaysia.

Not exactly cheap, but I wanted a non powdercoated model in very good condition.

Based on the appearance of the drum(anodized, 2 hole P85, pointy BO badge, s/n 1368778), the drum should be from 1978 or 1979.
At that time Ludwig was, by far, the leading brand in Denmark and I am happy to finally own one of their drums.

The drum is in perfect condition, no rust, no pitting, throw-off works smoothly and the shell only have one or 2 minor scratches.
And it sounds good too right out of the box.

well congrats on your new Acro. I just got one too. Looks like yours but mine has the round corner BO badge. I think mine is a 1979. Good shape and sounds fantastic.
Do you know if the serial number can tell you the production date?

take care,
Mike

mlaugh
01-08-2012, 04:23 AM
LVDC I wanted to thank you for your information on the Ludwig Acrolites. I just got one and I am so happy with the sound. The best I can tell (from reading your information) is that it is a 1979 round corner B/O drum. Its in very nice shape and I kinda think I stole it.

Any way thanks. I will keep checking back to see what going on.

http://i96.photobucket.com/albums/l179/mlaugh/myacrolite.jpg

jornthedrummer
01-08-2012, 05:16 AM
mlaugh,

There is some info here regarding the serial numbers:


http://www.vintagedrumguide.com/serial_numbers.html

And congratulations with a very nice drum. It looks flawless.

jorn

Cameo
01-08-2012, 08:23 AM
I'd love an Acro, just hate the fact that they're so expensive here. Sells for more than 500 dollar everytime...

valkyrievf2x
01-10-2012, 02:59 AM
OK, figured this was the best place to ask:
Which snare wires are best for a good sounding Acrolite? I just put some Puresounds 24's on mine, but it sounds...well, too snare-y. Is 24 too much for this drum, or should I go for something smaller? I realize it is a personal thing, but seeing that this is my first "real" snare, I'm kinda wondering what is the deal.

This is my Acrolite, for reference:
http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y52/valkyrievf2/DSC_5003.jpg

jodgey4
01-10-2012, 04:23 AM
I have a 42 strand on one of my snares. It sounds really fat and snare-y. With an Aquarian Jack DeJohnettehead, it's real good for a dark phat sound. With a twenty strand set, it's more versatile and open. That's preference - experimental. What's more important is the quality. Somebody recently did a review of many types of wires, try to find it. You want to worry more about quality of the wires than the quantity.

macr0w
01-10-2012, 04:31 PM
I have what I believe to be a late 70's or 80's Acrolite.

I have never been thrilled with the sound of it though.

I put new heads and new wires on it a while back and still didn't like it.

After reading this thread it made me want to re-visit my old Acrolite.

It seems that with mine the tighter I turn it up the better it sounds.

Lose tuning just doesn't do it for me.

Am I doing something wrong?

mandrew
01-10-2012, 10:21 PM
I have an acrolite with a Puresound concert set of wires (16 strand) I also have an Evans Genera dry head. I was looking for a dry, more symphonic sound. 16 strand wires work well for my sound, but the wonderful thing about the Acrolite is its versatility. Decide what combo works for your sound.

BachBeat
02-17-2012, 06:24 PM
Was great to see that this thread exists :)

Just put some money down on a 14 x 5 Rounded B/O badge Acro in excellent condition - 42 strand wires, Coated Ambassador. Very nice! Pics when paid off :)

Was originally checking between the Acro and the Supra, (and listening between the 5 and the 6.5), but the price difference (around $200) in OZ didn't translate to aural differentiation IMO - and these, while cared for, will be working drums.

Exciting times, though, none-the-less.

Also - picked up a set of near-new Sabian hats (I know it's off topic) - Evolution bottom and a Paragon top (13"). Found the sound I have been looking for for the last 8 years or so. Awesome-town.

mlaugh
02-25-2012, 06:41 AM
My Acrolite vintage 1979 has is Ambassador coated batter and Ambassador clear bottom heads. I crank it up kinda tight. It really has a great sound. I am so happy now its the only snare I wanna use. I dont know if it makes much on a difference but I use 5A nylon tip sticks. I tried using some 5B wood tip sticks and it was too fat sounding, Any one else find this????

audiotech
02-25-2012, 07:51 AM
A few weeks ago I bought a used Ludwig Acrolite Snare from one of my local GC's. When I first played it the tuning was atrocious. It still had the original Ludwig heads on it top and bottom and it came with a backpack sort of case. The drum actually looked unused. I bet there were some irate parents connected to that drum, lol. Anyway, I tore it apart, cleaned it lubed it and it looks brand new. I haven't had a chance to photograph it just yet. It was a nice addition to my Ludwig Classic Maple snare and it was just $75 USD. I enjoy finding sales on nice merchandise.

Dennis

KirbyM
02-26-2012, 11:37 PM
Nice imformative post 'ludwigvondrumcrazy'.

the only difference between the two being that the 400 was drilled for ten Lugs and was chrome plated with the 404 getting eight lugs

Actually no drum manufacture 'drills' metal they 'punch' the holes out, Ludwig is no exception. Drilling stresses the metal, is costly (bits, clean up etc.) and makes a messy hole that takes another step to clean up. Wood shell's are 'drilled', metal 'punched'. Ludwig made a run of 200 10 lug 404 Acro's, hope you can post a pic.

Ludwig should seriously consider jumping on the 'vintage reproduction' band wagon ala Fender Guitars. With a little bit of creative thought (just use the Fender marketing template as an example Ludwig), Ludwig could regain a big chunk of the market share, as no other drum company can match their storied history. Ludwig could easily knock the rust off their crown and have the other drum manufactures lining up below them.

They're dabbling with the Bonzo reissue, but need to get serious with some cool reissue 60's kits and snares. Bowtie lugs on sets, bring back the original gold sparkle wrap etc. Largley unchanged metal snares could be reissued vintage pretty easily with a few original spec parts. They would definitely create a new/renewed interest in Ludwig and further complicate the the vintage sceene which they're not getting a piece of. Go Ludwig! Its time to shine once again.

I totally agree with Les. Ludwig really should enter the market with more "vintage" style gear. Though I did not own a kit in gold sparkle, the finish still catches my eyes quicker than anything else. Too bad that Ludwig has started using what I refer to as "crinkle" finishes instead of "sparkle" finishes. Yeah, I know they list them as "sparkle", but take a close look at the new finishes. Not sparkle. A local Marietta, GA store had a green sparkle Bonham kit that was part sparkle, part crinkle finish - did not match !!

KarlCrafton
02-27-2012, 08:40 PM
I haven't ever seen the "crinkle" wrap. Not disputing it, just haven't seen it on a drum.
I've seen sample chips though, and it's pretty crappy.

Ludwig's new samples are sparkle--and the sample pieces are large. 5" square at least.
The Black Glitter Glass is BLACK also. Not Blue-ish, or Grey-ish, or Root Beer-ish, it's BLACK.

Ludwig would probably sell a lot more Acro's if they offered a more "original silvery" version. "The Legend returns" or something like that for the 6.5.

I'd buy a 5 and a 6.5 if they offered it in that polished Aluminum shell.

The Black Galaxy is nice, and looks a lot cooler in person, but that semi-chrome/polished Aluminum is the bomb. The contrast between the shell, and the chrome parts looks fantastic.

My Acro is the version just before the flatter Grey color, and has the pointed B/O badge.
Awesome snare, and sounds great with the bottom head real tight, and with 42's.

longgun
02-27-2012, 08:49 PM
Here are a couple of pics....I have three acros and love them all. Best drum, for the money, ever produced. My favorite is the "Camolite"

Liebe zeit
02-29-2012, 08:52 AM
I got an 80s Acrolite recently from the US on ebay. I absolutely love it. It's like a gunshot if hit near the middle of the head and lovely and ringy further out.

KarlCrafton
02-29-2012, 06:54 PM
NEW! Acrolite Classic and LTD just came over Facebook.

Brushed Aluminum shell, 5 and 6.5, chrome hardware, 2.3 hoops, B/O badge etc...
LTD has brushed chrome hardware and hoops, strainer etc...

Butt plate is up higher too.
Here's the 6.5 with chrome hardware.

http://i66.photobucket.com/albums/h257/KarlCrafton/431289_10150708667838529_25815273528_11273309_1001 164784_n.jpg

Soupy
02-29-2012, 07:33 PM
Like if you took a wire wheel to a Black Galaxy, I wonder if you would have to protect the shell with anything after the coating is removed. Since it's aluminum, I was thinking a coating of car wax inside and out should keep any oxidation in check. Any thoughts?

Aluminum oxide is good. It is durable and stable, and actually forms a protective layer over the aluminum. The process of anodizing aluminum actually makes the aluminum oxide layer thicker for a more durable finish. So no finishing is required on top of bare aluminum.

fammdw
04-16-2012, 07:10 PM
I have been shopping Craigslist for a good used snare to replace the POS Pearl Vision Series Sensitone that came with my kit. I found a 14" x 6.5" DDrum Dominion Ash in a custom carbon fiber finish. I was attracted to the DDrum because of it's 10 lug diecast hoops and I've always been curious about a snare in Ash wood. I planned to pull the trigger on this drum for the $125 asking price, but after several attempts the owner didn't return my emails.

I then ran across a 14" x 6.5" Ludwig Acrolite in Galaxy Black for $175. I contacted the owner and offered him the $125 that I was going to spend for the DDrum and he came back with the counter-offer of $140. I thought this was a pretty good deal considering the drum was less than two years old and in perfect condition. I haven't had an Acrolite since my original snare in elementary school back in the late 70's. I sold that snare (like the idiot I was back then) with an old kit in the late 80's. I bought the like-new Black Galaxy Acrolite for $140.

I was wondering if everyone here thinks I made the right choice. I know that opinions may be a bit biased since this is an Acrolite thread, but I'm interested none the less. It seems that I read somewhere that this Acrolite has 2.3 hoops instead of 1.6. Is that correct? Also... what would be a complimentary drum head for this snare? I play mostly 80's and 90's rock covers.

Thanks!

Mike

http://i1215.photobucket.com/albums/cc516/fammdw/LudwigBG.jpg

KarlCrafton
04-16-2012, 08:52 PM
fammdw--

An Acro is a can't miss.
I wouldn't second guess the choice.
Nice price you paid too.

Yes 2.3 hoops (never minded the 1.6 hoops myself though).

Most heads will sound great on this drum also.

Have fun with it!

Olimpass
04-19-2012, 08:32 AM
I have a couple. One I had put a "Trick" cam style throw kit as to not drill any holes.

areFish
04-22-2012, 04:42 AM
I found one today I couldn't pass up. It cleaned up really nice. The last pic is a shot of the snare stand that came with it

http://i910.photobucket.com/albums/ac302/areFish/Drum%20Pictures/IMG_3025-1.jpg

http://i910.photobucket.com/albums/ac302/areFish/Drum%20Pictures/IMG_3026.jpg

http://i910.photobucket.com/albums/ac302/areFish/Drum%20Pictures/IMG_3027.jpg

http://i910.photobucket.com/albums/ac302/areFish/Drum%20Pictures/IMG_3020.jpg

jornthedrummer
04-22-2012, 10:01 AM
areFish; Wow perfect condition.

On the day of the leap year 29/02/2012 Ludwig released a special 6.5 x 14 Acrolite.
I got one of those on order and will come back with pictures when I get it.

My Acrolite introduced me to the sound of Aluminum and I came across this Taye snare with a thick Alu shell and wood hoops. Check it out on youtube.


I ordered one and its the best sounding snare I have ever owned or played.

She is also a looker.

thx

jorn

areFish
04-22-2012, 02:22 PM
areFish; Wow perfect condition.

On the day of the leap year 29/02/2012 Ludwig released a special 6.5 x 14 Acrolite.
I got one of those on order and will come back with pictures when I get it.

My Acrolite introduced me to the sound of Aluminum and I came across this Taye snare with a thick Alu shell and wood hoops. Check it out on youtube.


I ordered one and its the best sounding snare I have ever owned or played.

She is also a looker.

thx

jornThe Acrolite re-issue is a 10 lug no? Awsome Taye you got there. I have been wanting an aluminum snare and had narrowed it down to the Taye like yours, DW wrinkle finish, Tama Starphonic and Tama SLP Super Aluminum. I still want one of those 4, but this Acrolite will tie me over for a bit.

jornthedrummer
04-22-2012, 03:21 PM
Yeah it a 10 lug design.

This video sold me on the Taye

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iq3Qdq4KIww

The snare really sounds like this person and is exactly the sound me likes.

Dave from Perth
04-22-2012, 05:27 PM
Thank you for the very informative post; I appreciate your time and effort.

Chief Wampum
05-17-2012, 04:48 AM
Late to the proverbial party, but I've been wondering about a Blacrolite I picked up on Ebay a year ago. It's a standard 8 lug, 5" Black Galaxie shell, but it has Imperial lugs instead of the bowties.The guy I bought it from said the lugs were original .The throw off was broken so I replaced it with a black faced P 85 , which i think looks better anyway. The internal muffler was also missing, but other than that the drum was in great shape. Can anyone confirm whether any of the standard blacro's were made with Imperial lugs? Thanks
[http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e109/EYEtalian/DrumStuff/P1050255.jpg
http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e109/EYEtalian/DrumStuff/P1050252.jpg

valkyrievf2x
05-17-2012, 02:36 PM
Here is more of a theoretical question:

Would the lugs on the Acro affect the sound considerably? Or would it be marginal? I have tube lugs in mine (I got it as a shell only, and put it together little by little--it's the blue one earlier in the thread), and the sound is...sometimes almost unrestrained. I used to have a coated G1 on it, and it would ring for days. Hitting it off center would bring out all kinds of overtones (and not always pleasant ones, either). I like ring and all, but it was a bit much. Just put a G2 coated on it and high tuning, and while it still rings a lot, the excess ringing is gone, and is generally more pleasant.

I was just curious if the mass of the lugs really do affect the sound of the drum. At least to me, I think they do. The normal Acros have those much bigger and massive luges that have far more contact with the surface area of the drum's shell, while the tube lugs have very minimal contact points. My theory is that the tube lugs are opening up the shell considerably...but I'm probably wrong, lol.

Any thoughts?

radman
05-17-2012, 03:13 PM
Interesting. I recently have revived a 1970-71 Acro (stock everything, incl heads!). However, I was surprised at how "controlled" the sound was. It is obedient to the point of being too dead for my taste. I actually had to check several times to ensure the damper was off!

I play jazz and the cross stick clicks are really, really nice. However, the rimshots sound dead to me ... I'd like to hear more ooomph. I'm running Remo Fiberskyn on top (I play a lot of brushes) and a hazy on bottom.

It has been 30 years since I fiddled with an Acro so I couldn't remember them well. I thought they did ring a lot more than mine. I did notice the top rim is bent a little bit, so perhaps that is killing the sound on mine. Wanna switch rims? ;-)

Cheers,
radman

KarlCrafton
05-17-2012, 07:00 PM
A bent hoop, and (mostly) the Fiberskyn will deaden the ring quite a bit.
I've always been able to get more or less ring by adjusting tension on the bottom head on my Acro.

The re-issue 6.5 Acro is a 10 lug, the 5 is still an 8 lug.

I really want one of the new 6.5's.
I had a 6.5 Black Galaxy finished snares (and liked it), but I was able to sell it at a really nice price (a 100th Anniversary badge is pretty desirable I found out!).

I always wanted an Aluminum finished 6.5, so I haven't regretted selling the BG drum.

Money is tied up in a couple other drum related things, but after that, I'll start on getting one.

Tube lugs do open the sound up a little, and the gaskets (found on most of the snares now) would control it more.

opentune
05-17-2012, 07:10 PM
Interesting. I recently have revived a 1970-71 Acro (stock everything, incl heads!). However, I was surprised at how "controlled" the sound was. It is obedient to the point of being too dead for my taste. I actually had to check several times to ensure the damper was off!


Cheers,
radman


I found the same, and was surprised. I did appreciate its 'control' and even warmth, but my preferred snare sound is a little wilder with ring and resonance. It didn't seem to open up. But then i changed the stock head out (from stock Ludwig 'medium' to an Amb) and that helped a lot. With a Fiberskyn I would think you're making it even warmer.

radman
05-17-2012, 10:55 PM
Late to the proverbial party, but I've been wondering about a Blacrolite I picked up on Ebay a year ago. It's a standard 8 lug, 5" Black Galaxie shell, but it has Imperial lugs instead of the bowties.The guy I bought it from said the lugs were original .The throw off was broken so I replaced it with a black faced P 85 , which i think looks better anyway. The internal muffler was also missing, but other than that the drum was in great shape. Can anyone confirm whether any of the standard blacro's were made with Imperial lugs? Thanks
[http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e109/EYEtalian/DrumStuff/P1050255.jpg
http://i38.photobucket.com/albums/e109/EYEtalian/DrumStuff/P1050252.jpg

Chief W,

Drum looks to be in good shape ... but ... I've never seen anything on Acro's other than the bowties. Admittedly, I have looked at more 60s and 70s than the later blacro's.

Best,
radman

jornthedrummer
06-06-2012, 03:43 PM
I got my new Ludwig Acrolite Limited Edition 6.5x14 snare today. Apparently they are only made in 2012,
It features a classic brushed Aluminum shell with chrome 2.3mm triple-flanged hoops and 10 classic bowtie lugs, P-85 strainer, milled center bead, and Blue/Olive Badge. Limited to production in 2012. Model # LM405C.
I don't like the Blackolite's or the grey powdercoated Acrolites as I believe the coating muffles the drum.

I did some recording with the stock heads and it sounds great. A good supplement to my standard 5x14 Acrolite from 1979.

Great service from Al from Philly Drums to ship to Malaysia.

KarlCrafton
06-06-2012, 06:58 PM
Awesome pick up!
I want one of these snares myself, but I've spent quite a bit on cymbals so far this year :-) ....aaaannnnd... I don't really need another snare (not with already having 10 haha!).

But, I know they sound great, and when I was a kid, I always wished I could get this (finish) Acrolite snare in a 6.5. I was happy when they offered the Blackrolite, but it's not the same...

I'm selling some stuff right now, so if I happen to get a few more bucks I might just spring for one :-)

I have a feeling they will have them after 2012 too...

drumhedd
06-07-2012, 12:00 AM
Nice looking drum! I thought the Ltds. had brushed hardware and hoops though...

major_panic
06-07-2012, 04:29 AM
I got my new Ludwig Acrolite Limited Edition 6.5x14 snare today. Apparently they are only made in 2012,
It features a classic brushed Aluminum shell with chrome 2.3mm triple-flanged hoops and 10 classic bowtie lugs, P-85 strainer, milled center bead, and Blue/Olive Badge. Limited to production in 2012. Model # LM405C.
I don't like the Blackolite's or the grey powdercoated Acrolites as I believe the coating muffles the drum.

I did some recording with the stock heads and it sounds great. A good supplement to my standard 5x14 Acrolite from 1979.

Great service from Al from Philly Drums to ship to Malaysia.

Very nice! Although, isn't there another name for a 6.5 x 14, 10 lug aluminium Ludwig drum..?

*cough* Supraphonic *cough*

Just kidding, of course, and glad to see that Malaysia's getting some service now! I grew up there...

charliedrummer
06-07-2012, 02:05 PM
Nice looking drum! I thought the Ltds. had brushed hardware and hoops though...

There are in fact two versions of this drum being offered. The one pictured in this thread is the Acrolite Classic, while the one with the brushed hardware is the Limited edition. I heard the Limited will only be offered in 2012. Not sure about the Classic.

drumhedd
06-08-2012, 12:33 AM
There are in fact two versions of this drum being offered. The one pictured in this thread is the Acrolite Classic, while the one with the brushed hardware is the Limited edition. I heard the Limited will only be offered in 2012. Not sure about the Classic.

Aaaah, thanks for the clarification!

eric_B
06-08-2012, 11:19 AM
I got my new Ludwig Acrolite Limited Edition 6.5x14 snare today...
I don't like the Blackolite's or the grey powdercoated Acrolites as I believe the coating muffles the drum.

Looks great, enjoy it!

The one thing I don't understand: you say you don't like a muffled drum but you put a whole piece of moongel on it?

jornthedrummer
06-08-2012, 02:39 PM
eric_B I was playing an ABBA song -)

Joke aside, I was recording (which is new to me) and was concerned about too much ring. I will for sure experiment more regarding this.

SAINTDRUMS
06-08-2012, 09:11 PM
I didn't see a direct answer to Chief Wampum's question, but I too have a black galaxy acro that I've come to assume came from the factory with imperial lugs. I thought that maybe someone at some point switched them out, so I removed a couple of the lugs and noticed the outline "imprint" of the lug in the galaxy finish. I know that this doesn't prove anything per se, but it does seem to have left the factory that way. I've also seen one or two on ebay every once in a great while.

So, the question still stands - did Ludwig make some blacros with imperial lugs on it?

eric_B
06-08-2012, 09:19 PM
eric_B I was playing an ABBA song -)

Haha, then I guess it probably wasn't: ring, ring, ring :-)!!

Enjoy your snare man, I already have too many, but an acrolite still appeals to me.

HMNY
08-09-2012, 04:10 PM
I'd just like to add to the other 'thank yous' to LVDC for this fantastic write up, it makes searching for a used acro so much easier.

When can we see the Supra & BB threads?

:-)

Filacterua
08-10-2012, 05:16 AM
Finally! An excuse to post pictures of my "Monster Blacro"!

Enjoy!

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-inQzycjzpDs/TtjSHhp8D0I/AAAAAAAAAbQ/i4V4NK56W7U/s1205/DSC_5957.JPG

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-YYLTyFQOuEw/TtjSIRi36sI/AAAAAAAAAbU/Fy9OrvxxprM/s1205/DSC_5958.JPG

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-ZtdAPQnfQOs/TtjSI8w35aI/AAAAAAAAAbY/60_pA3GsWsY/s1205/DSC_5959.JPG

KarlCrafton
08-10-2012, 05:38 AM
I have 42's on my Acro too. It sounds GREAT with them.

Bull
08-10-2012, 07:02 AM
I need one of the new Acro Classic 6.5x14s.

zarrdoss
08-10-2012, 02:30 PM
I have two for the time being, a 1982 5 x 14 black acro a brushed 1972 5 x 14 and soon I will have this.

50559

its on lay away and I am really looking forward to get it out soon.

larryace
08-10-2012, 04:14 PM
I need one of the new Acro Classic 6.5x14s.

I just pulled the trigger on a new 10 lug 14 x 6.5 acro. Something told me I should buy this drum. They are doing a limited run for 2012 as I understand. I paid 368.50 USD, 392 w/ tax.

I saw a vintage 14 x 6.5 acro on the Bay, only 8 lugs, listed as one of the 200 made for the New York City school district in the 70's. They want $999.00 for it. $999.00! Why should I pay that kind of coin? In my mind, the new ones should sound just like the older ones. A metal drum doesn't go through tone variations like wood does. Right?

longgun
08-10-2012, 05:05 PM
I need one of the new Acro Classic 6.5x14s.

I have two for the time being, a 1982 5 x 14 black acro a brushed 1972 5 x 14 and soon I will have this.

50559

its on lay away and I am really looking forward to get it out soon.

I just pulled the trigger on a new 10 lug 14 x 6.5 acro. Something told me I should buy this drum. They are doing a limited run for 2012 as I understand. I paid 368.50 USD, 392 w/ tax.

I saw a vintage 14 x 6.5 acro on the Bay, only 8 lugs, listed as one of the 200 made for the New York City school district in the 70's. They want $999.00 for it. $999.00! Why should I pay that kind of coin? In my mind, the new ones should sound just like the older ones. A metal drum doesn't go through tone variations like wood does. Right?

Would love to get one of the new 6.5" acros too...maybe when they hit the used market....if they do.

Here's a pic of one of my acros....picked it up for $35....cleaned it up, added some new Trick hardware....worked great

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a2d902b3127ccef0fbd7a4fe2300000030O00AasWTZozbuG gPbz4S/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a2d902b3127ccef0fbc44fbe5900000030O00AasWTZozbuG gPbz4S/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a2d902b3127ccef0fb361d3f4200000030O00AasWTZozbuG gPbz4S/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/

zarrdoss
08-25-2012, 05:46 PM
I got it out of lay away and after some tuning and experimenting I have to say I was disappointed with it compared to some of my other snares. It sounded thin and boxy so I returned it and got a DDrum Shawn Drover snare, just kidding. But it did sound thin and boxy so I replaced the stock heads with an Evans G1 on top and Hazy 300 on bottom, huge improvement, I have some puresound customs 24 strand on the way and also some 20 strand blasters. I will try both and see which one I like more. I also have an Evans Genera dry and PCRD that I will also try out. Any suggestions on what I have that you would prefer? With the G1 I only need a half a moongel to get the desired ring I like, this snare does not seem to need a lot of dampening, if any.

Bull
08-25-2012, 06:13 PM
I think the Genera Dry will be a bit much for that drum.
I have a 5x14 Blacro. One of the new 6.5s will be my next snare purchase.

B-squared
12-19-2012, 03:10 AM
This is a great thread! (LVDC should be paid by Ludwig). I read through all of it after buying an Acro over the weekend. I am trying to establish a manufacture date for this drum and I have found that ebay is unreliable for that purpose.

This little guy has a chrome face P85, a large tone control knob, a rounded B/O badge with S/N 2057540, and a very flat grey finish. I can't tell if it's a baked on finish or an anodized one. I thought it would be easy to tell but it's not.

It is 1979 at the earliest and I'm guessing about 1993 at the latest. I read somewhere that a variant kind of like this was out just prior to the issue of the Black Galaxy variety. It doesn't seem to match the serial numbers from that time, but I have read that the serial numbers post-'79 don't mean much. The other puzzling aspect is that it just doesn't look like a baked on / powder coated finish. Somewhere in here, I thought I read that strainers are often changed on these, which makes sense, but I can't see anyone changing the tone control knob.

I'm mainly looking for the date and shell type so I can evaluate how I want to clean the shell up. It has a couple noticeable scratches and black marks. I will probably end up changing the hoops because I think the chrome has chips that won't come out with a brush, but the lugs look clean and the drum sounds great. It has a 20 wire set of snares that I will keep and I will probably will change the snare cords with plastic strap. The sound is awesome, so I just want to clean it up to where it looks nice and keep it.

Does anyone want to take a guess at the manufacture date and the shell finish?
Thanks in advance!

zarrdoss
12-19-2012, 03:52 AM
has to be late 70's on, this might help http://www.acrolitesnaredrum.com/drum_articles.html

http://www.vintagedrumguide.com/ludwig_acrolite_snare_drum.html

B-squared
12-19-2012, 04:37 AM
Thanks, Zarrdoss.

I saw that page, it's pretty cool. I am starting to zero in on 1984. That could explain 3 of the features: 1) The anodized were giving way to the powder coated that year, and 2) the chrome faced P85 had just arrived then. 3) That would comport nicely with the relatively low Serial Number. Round corner B/O serial numbers from the late 80's seem to fall into the 3XXXXXX values, and even though Ludwig didn't keep really good track of serial numbers, I have to believe that they kept at least a rough sequence.

Also, the odd combination of an anodized shell with a chrome face P85 (if this is, indeed, anodized as I suspect) could have happened in 1984 when Ludwig moved to NC. This is probably from one of the first batches from Monroe or one of the last from Chicago.

Thanks for the help!

Brent

zarrdoss
12-19-2012, 05:05 AM
Your welcome if it helped, mine was pretty easy.

53307

Mendozart
12-19-2012, 04:17 PM
.

Here's a pic of one of my acros....picked it up for $35....cleaned it up, added some new Trick hardware....worked great
http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a2d902b3127ccef0fbd7a4fe2300000030O00AasWTZozbuG gPbz4S/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/





Hey longgun,

It looks like you need a retroplate for your Trick strainer, if you want it to sit flush on the shell. Look up member "skitch" on this forum, he sells them.

HMNY
12-19-2012, 04:19 PM
Some great information here, there should be one of these for every snare drum, or at least the icons, as it is a great resource.

One question I do have, having recently bough a used 'blackrolite', the strainer and butt both have conventional slotted head screws, and the ones on my drum are looking very tired, is these a general fix/replacement that some some one could suggest?

Is it just a case of getting some replacement screws from hardware store?

Thanks

KarlCrafton
12-19-2012, 06:33 PM
Some new screws will work.
I also used allen head screws and small nuts behind the plate (just to be sure) a couple times. Screws are easier to deal with on the fly, but the allen head screws look nice. If the hole is stripped at all, the nuts are a good idea.

I've never really been bothered by the regular screws as some have been. I don't have to change the cord often at all (every couple years), so I don't see what the big deal is.
It's not that "inconvenient", and the screw is less prone to be over tightened and have the key head break off with as small a thread as these use.
It'd be rare that it would happen, but, you KNOW someone would do it.

The screw doesn't even have to be super tight using cord either.

I like those Trick lugs on longgun's drum. That looks cool!
That's the shell and badge my '75 has. I really need to get the Black paint I put on in '86 off of it. It looks good, but it needs to get back to it's natural state.

I heard Flitz will get the paint off without messing up the shell. Anyone know if this is the case?

tamadrm
12-19-2012, 06:51 PM
Thanks, Zarrdoss.

I saw that page, it's pretty cool. I am starting to zero in on 1984. That could explain 3 of the features: 1) The anodized were giving way to the powder coated that year, and 2) the chrome faced P85 had just arrived then. 3) That would comport nicely with the relatively low Serial Number. Round corner B/O serial numbers from the late 80's seem to fall into the 3XXXXXX values, and even though Ludwig didn't keep really good track of serial numbers, I have to believe that they kept at least a rough sequence.

Also, the odd combination of an anodized shell with a chrome face P85 (if this is, indeed, anodized as I suspect) could have happened in 1984 when Ludwig moved to NC. This is probably from one of the first batches from Monroe or one of the last from Chicago.

Thanks for the help!

Brent

I'd bet real money your drum isn't later than 81,more like 80.Your drum should have the original P-85 would have been the "black face" and was replaced mid 90's the earliest with the plain face P-85.Yours is the smooth shell.The powder coated drums didn't come out till 84-85.So your drum has be be earlier .

The last recorded serial numbers were in 79 and it was 2013537.Ludwig was producing around 60,000 drums a year so,deduct your serial number from the last recorded one and you get 44,003.That would place the drum in the 80-81 time frame.

Steve B

longgun
12-19-2012, 07:34 PM
Hey longgun,

It looks like you need a retroplate for your Trick strainer, if you want it to sit flush on the shell. Look up member "skitch" on this forum, he sells them.

Thanks..........going to look into it. Works fine the way it is, but sure looks "off"

Mendozart
12-19-2012, 11:34 PM
Thanks..........going to look into it. Works fine the way it is, but sure looks "off"

There's a pic of one on my Supra 402, in this thread.
http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=31227

B-squared
12-20-2012, 12:45 AM
I'd bet real money your drum isn't later than 81,more like 80.Your drum should have the original P-85 would have been the "black face" and was replaced mid 90's the earliest with the plain face P-85.Yours is the smooth shell.The powder coated drums didn't come out till 84-85.So your drum has be be earlier .

The last recorded serial numbers were in 79 and it was 2013537.Ludwig was producing around 60,000 drums a year so,deduct your serial number from the last recorded one and you get 44,003.That would place the drum in the 80-81 time frame.

Steve B

That could be, Steve. In fact, I suspect the shell was made in Chicago around the time you are citing. I don't think the serial numbers are quite as screwed up as some websites might lead you to believe. Ludwig even has the 1979 serial numbers as including up to 201537 on their website. I also think the chrome face P85 is original to the drum. Here's my thinking:

I don't think it's a coincidence that the powder coating, the chrome face P85, and the move to NC all occurred at about the same time ('84-'85). (Look at LVDC's post at the beginning of the thread). I can tell by looking at ebay that they took some of the badged anodized shells with them from Chicago when they moved, as well as some black face P85's and other old stock. I am making an educated guess that in '84-'85 Ludwig was using up the old stock concurrently with running new powder coated shells and chrome face P85's.

All of this would be pretty typical for product taxonomy in the musical instrument manufacturing business. (Slingerland and Gretsch were even more hodgepodge in their mixed and matched assemblies of parts from different years and models). I think that sometime in '84 or '85, somebody in NC grabbed an anodized Chicago shell off the shelf to burn up old inventory. They screwed on a new P85 and a new tone control, put 2.3 mm hoops and some heads on it and shipped it to a music store. It eventually came to be in my possession. What do you think of my theory?

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

tamadrm
12-21-2012, 10:52 PM
The chrome faced P-85 didn't show up till the mid 90's 94-95 were the first drums sporting the "new" P-85.
Those drums were not warehoused for very long and were out the door within days of manufacture.In order to powder coat the shell,they would have to remove the badge,and in all likelyhood destroy it.Time was money,and they were making close to 100 kits a day,not including all of their other percussion items.

I'm positive your drum is 80-81,original finish and badge, 1" knob muffler,but had the strainer replaced sometime after 94 when the plain faced P-85 was introduced.Look at all the catalogs and you can see late 80's early 90's drums with blackface P-85's.

Steve B

B-squared
12-21-2012, 11:15 PM
The chrome faced P-85 didn't show up till the mid 90's 94-95 were the first drums sporting the "new" P-85.
Those drums were not warehoused for very long and were out the door within days of manufacture.In order to powder coat the shell,they would have to remove the badge,and in all likelyhood destroy it.Time was money,and they were making close to 100 kits a day,not including all of their other percussion items.

I'm positive your drum is 80-81,original finish and badge, 1" knob muffler,but had the strainer replaced sometime after 94 when the plain faced P-85 was introduced.Look at all the catalogs and you can see late 80's early 90's drums with blackface P-85's.

Steve B

Thanks so much for the help, Steve. I think you have it right on. I took it down to Drum City (Wheatridge, CO) to get some advice on how to clean it, and Tim, the owner, said basically the same thing. I am so glad I read your posts because that is why I bought this thing and I love it!

Next year, it will be a Supra project. Well, after all, the world didn't end today, so.....

Brent

Aeolian
12-22-2012, 01:45 AM
Would love to get one of the new 6.5" acros too...maybe when they hit the used market....if they do.

Here's a pic of one of my acros....picked it up for $35....cleaned it up, added some new Trick hardware....worked great

http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47a2d902b3127ccef0fb361d3f4200000030O00AasWTZozbuG gPbz4S/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/
Similar to the moongel comment above. What is the point of putting low mass lugs on a drum and then putting a completely dead EC head on it? Only in very live rooms do I bother with a piece of dirty and not very sticky moongel on my '70s Acro, with an Ambassador on it. The drum is pretty controlled as it is. I don't have it up very tight, that's not it's strong point in my book. More of a fat crunch type of drum. Sound like most pop or rock records I grew up with. I have other louder and tighter snares. But for what it does, the Acro is something special.

tamadrm
12-22-2012, 01:54 AM
Thanks so much for the help, Steve. I think you have it right on. I took it down to Drum City (Wheatridge, CO) to get some advice on how to clean it, and Tim, the owner, said basically the same thing. I am so glad I read your posts because that is why I bought this thing and I love it!

Next year, it will be a Supra project. Well, after all, the world didn't end today, so.....

Brent

Glad I could be of help Brent(that's my brothers nickname).Enjoy your Acro.Just think,Ludwig introduced the spun ludalloy(aluminum/zinc alloy) as a cost saving measure,and not because thay sounded great.

Supras are great drums too.My 65 is pitted up pretty good,but she has the "sound".:)

Steve B

deluxemeat
01-18-2013, 01:02 AM
curious- has anyone ever seen an acrolite deeper than 6.5"?
my old 5x14 acro was probably my favourite drum ever.
wish there was an acrolite thats 8x14.

Pocket-full-of-gold
01-18-2013, 01:29 AM
curious- has anyone ever seen an acrolite deeper than 6.5"?


Nup. No such thing mate. 5" and 6.5" is all you'll see.

wy yung
01-18-2013, 11:07 AM
Wow, old thread.

I am taking my Acrolite on a gig tomorrow. Date stamped Nov 1970. The drum sounds great. Funnily, I am taking an LM400 along as a spare. :-D

FlamingGong
01-18-2013, 09:07 PM
Great thread. My very first snare was a 5x14 Acrolite and it sounded amazing. Have no idea why I sold it. I miss it to this day. Don't have one in the arsenal now but looking.

zarrdoss
02-02-2013, 03:00 AM
I did not know acrolites were made with no snare beds

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ludwig-Acrolite-w-Snare-Beds-Ultra-Rare-/221184279583?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item337f9c441f

and a rare 10 lug?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ludwig-RARE-10-LUG-ACROLITE-SNARE-DRUM-/111003762929?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item19d85700f1

Pocket-full-of-gold
02-02-2013, 03:23 AM
I did not know acrolites were made with no snare beds

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ludwig-Acrolite-w-Snare-Beds-Ultra-Rare-/221184279583?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item337f9c441f

and a rare 10 lug?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ludwig-RARE-10-LUG-ACROLITE-SNARE-DRUM-/111003762929?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item19d85700f1

I've never heard that either. But logic tells me how can they not? If it's the same aluminium shell as the Supra and the Supra has those same snare beds (albeit very gradual and subtle) but snare bed nonetheless, then how can the Acro have never been made with them to begin with?

I think that guy is talking bollocks. Just trying to talk up the price of a run of the mill Acro.

And 10 lugs Acro's were certainly rarer than the more traditional 8 lug version.....but $850 rare? He'd better be careful or it'll come off in his hand at this rate. :-)

zarrdoss
02-02-2013, 03:31 AM
I've never heard that either. But logic tells me how can they not? If it's the same aluminium shell as the Supra and the Supra has those same snare beds (albeit very gradual and subtle) but snare bed nonetheless, then how can the Acro have never been made with them to begin with?

I think that guy is talking bollocks. Just trying to talk up the price of a run of the mill Acro.

And 10 lugs Acro's were certainly rarer than the more traditional 8 lug version.....but $850 rare? He'd better be careful or it'll come off in his hand at this rate. :-)

I have to agree I think he is just making stuff up to sell it for more. I just looked at my 1972 Acro snare and it has a snare bed, I guess it is ultra rare also.

I was not aware they made a 10 lug acro at all besides the 6.5 x 14 but aparently they did but is the extra $700 worth the to exta lugs?

B-squared
02-02-2013, 04:57 AM
I didn't know they came with snare beds, until I Googled a picture of one. Neither my Acrolite nor my Supraphonic have snare beds. If you sit the shells down on a table, the bearing edges are planar. There are no bends/beds. (I remember snare beds from when I was a kid. My drum teacher's ancient marching drum with gut snares had them).

The ebay ads are false in claiming they're rare. The 10 lug Acro's are discussed on page 4 of this thread. I researched Acrolites quite a bit after getting hooked on them here. This thread is the best reference for Acrolite information I found after doing a lot of Google searches.

KarlCrafton
02-09-2013, 05:17 PM
IMO-and it's just MY opinion, the re-issue of the Brushed Aluminum shell has blown the "rare" NY School stuff out of the water. So, they have a pointed badge, big deal.
The new drums sound like my 1975 BA Acro. with a pointy badge.

A 10 lug 5x14 is different, but not $850 worth of different. $3-400 is more reasonable (for an Acro like that) vs. the $50-100-ish they usually get--unless someone goes insane on eBay and bids too much to get one that is.

I'd have to take apart my '75 to see if it has a snare bed, but I don't remember it being totally flat, so I'd say the seller is saying crap to sell his drum.
Buyer beware.

StickIt
04-01-2013, 05:14 PM
This past weekend, I decided to start a clean-up/resto job on my 404, and figured I'd post a couple pics. I think that this is a model between 78 and 84, but I could be wrong. The pictures look similar to me in comparison, so what is the giveaway that it is a powder-coated shell vs the regular anodized shell? It was a hand-me-down from my dad 20 years ago, and I have loved it. The Original strainer is now on my 400 (a broken-handled 2-hole), and I think I'm going to try and find another "black-face" 85 for the acro instead of "upgrading".

55608


55609


Here's my 400. Does anyone have any advice for cleaning/resto on the chrome plated shells? I'm worried about further destroying the plated finish!

55610


55611

KarlCrafton
04-03-2013, 07:08 PM
That's not the powder coated Grey shell.
My '76 looks like this shell with the pointed badge too, so it's (obviously ha!) older than the rounded B/O. You're closer to '78 than '84 with this one.
Mine also had the same Black faced, 2 hole P-85 (I put a P-86 on it though).

Steve B would have more info too I'm sure.

Have fun with the clean up!

longgun
04-03-2013, 08:34 PM
Similar to the moongel comment above. What is the point of putting low mass lugs on a drum and then putting a completely dead EC head on it? Only in very live rooms do I bother with a piece of dirty and not very sticky moongel on my '70s Acro, with an Ambassador on it. The drum is pretty controlled as it is. I don't have it up very tight, that's not it's strong point in my book. More of a fat crunch type of drum. Sound like most pop or rock records I grew up with. I have other louder and tighter snares. But for what it does, the Acro is something special.

...............had the trick lugs laying around and the old acro hardware was tore up..................I thought it turned out pretty good.

................I've always liked a "controlled" sound...................nowadays, it is definitely not seen as correct, but all my favorite music has the "dead" sound.................child of the 70's I guess

StickIt
04-04-2013, 04:22 AM
That's not the powder coated Grey shell.
My '76 looks like this shell with the pointed badge too, so it's (obviously ha!) older than the rounded B/O. You're closer to '78 than '84 with this one.
Mine also had the same Black faced, 2 hole P-85 (I put a P-86 on it though).

Awesome...thanks for the info! And, to be honest, I said that about the strainer before I did my research...then I ordered an 86 as well, lol. She's clean, but headless, and I want to try something new (Been using reverse dot Remo heads), but haven't figured out what yet! Will post pics when I do, though.

eric_B
04-23-2013, 06:19 PM
I finally got my Acrolite, probably a mid to late 80s one. Not sure if everything is original but so far I like it.

radman
04-24-2013, 12:51 AM
Nice score, Eric. Very clean.

Was that the head that came with it, or your own choice? (just curious)

radman

eric_B
04-24-2013, 06:31 AM
Nice score, Eric. Very clean.

Was that the head that came with it, or your own choice? (just curious)

radman

Thanks. Yes, the snare looks nice, is in good condition. Sounds great as well.

About the head: it came with the snare, I was wondering about it as well.
It's an older Evans G1, no idea which year though.

eric_B
04-24-2013, 06:53 PM
I just did a first recording with the Acrolite and start to understand some of the Ludwig Supraphonic / Acrolite snare hype. This drum records pretty well and seems to blend great with the drumkit and song.

Great buy, I like it a lot - and I own several other good snares.

LarryG
04-24-2013, 11:58 PM
Today I picked up a Black Galaxy Acrolite at the local pawn shop. $80 with ufo case. Excellent shape. Sounded great right out of the case! Also, I was reading back into this thread and realized I also have an Acro with the 12 hole strainer with the grommet.

rowfour
04-26-2013, 07:22 AM
I got a '79 BO Acrolite as my first snare upgrade few months after I picked up drumming. I enjoyed the sound and for $70 with new heads. I think it's an awesome snare!

turbojerk
05-23-2013, 08:03 PM
While doing some research on the Acolite I stumbled upon this thread…

Finally found the Acro that I was looking for last week on craigslist! Sounds freakin sweet! Been using it non-stop since I picked it up!

Paid $135
https://fbcdn-sphotos-a-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-frc3/431803_4946508426813_427501092_n.jpg

KarlCrafton
05-23-2013, 10:17 PM
WOW sweet!!
There were a few like this (my fave too) at the Chicago show, and they were between $175- $225 (the nicer shells being $225).
Nice score!!

kevin3001
05-28-2013, 07:21 PM
heres one of my acro's!! just had another given to me. i want to do something different with it. thinkin about the trick lugs. what do some of you suggest? only has 3 lugs on it and the hoops.

http://i1276.photobucket.com/albums/y472/s12512/null_zpse6143dc2.jpg (http://s1276.photobucket.com/user/s12512/media/null_zpse6143dc2.jpg.html)

http://i1276.photobucket.com/albums/y472/s12512/null_zpsa7c92aa8.jpg (http://s1276.photobucket.com/user/s12512/media/null_zpsa7c92aa8.jpg.html)

http://i1276.photobucket.com/albums/y472/s12512/null_zps17e9d97b.jpg (http://s1276.photobucket.com/user/s12512/media/null_zps17e9d97b.jpg.html)

http://i1276.photobucket.com/albums/y472/s12512/null_zps8e316d2e.jpg (http://s1276.photobucket.com/user/s12512/media/null_zps8e316d2e.jpg.html)

Midnite Zephyr
07-28-2013, 03:09 AM
I just picked up an Acrolite from a local music store today for $100. It is a little dirty and scuffed up with some rust showing. I wasn't really planning on buying anything when I walked in there. But I started tapping on this thing and it just sounded so good even in its very used condition. So I got it knowing what a versatile and classic snare drum this is.

They told me in the store it was from the 1970's, but after reading this thread, it seems that the Blue and Olive badge with rounded corners and serial #' that start with a 3 would put it in the late 80's. The thing that has me puzzled is that it has a black face P-85 with 12 holes, just like the one in the mid-70's catalog. So, I guess somebody changed the strainer for an older one. Mine is gray powder coated.

I'm thinking now that $100 was not that great of a deal, especially since I have to do a lot of work to do to clean it up. But the sound is really nice and I think that's what really sold me. I was kinda looking for another snare drum to buy so I saw this one and just had to have it. I'll be eating p-nut butter and jelly sandwiches for the next 2 weeks, but it's worth it, I think. I am now the proud owner of a Ludwig snare drum! Exciting stuff....huh?

Midnite Zephyr
07-28-2013, 07:38 AM
Today I picked up a Black Galaxy Acrolite at the local pawn shop. $80 with ufo case. Excellent shape. Sounded great right out of the case! Also, I was reading back into this thread and realized I also have an Acro with the 12 hole strainer with the grommet.

So what year is your gray Acro because I have the same exact one?

mandrew
07-28-2013, 09:15 PM
I think $100 for any Acro in halfway decent shape is a reasonable cost. clean it up, play it for the rest of your life.

larryace
07-28-2013, 11:11 PM
I'm thinking now that $100 was not that great of a deal, especially since I have to do a lot of work to do to clean it up. But the sound is really nice and I think that's what really sold me. I was kinda looking for another snare drum to buy so I saw this one and just had to have it. I'll be eating p-nut butter and jelly sandwiches for the next 2 weeks, but it's worth it, I think. I am now the proud owner of a Ludwig snare drum! Exciting stuff....huh?

I don't think you overpaid. 100 for a timeless snare is a good deal IMO.

Midnite Zephyr
07-29-2013, 02:08 AM
I don't think you overpaid. 100 for a timeless snare is a good deal IMO.

Yes, you guys are right. I just spent a couple hours tis afternoon shining it up and getting the rust off of it. Don't have enough money for new heads yet, not really. Found out there are 2 missing mounting screws for the lugs and there is a little ding on the side in addition to the little scratches. I'm amazed how well a 150 grit sanding sponge did removing the rust, you can hardly tell how rusty it was. It's pretty now and I think it's a keeper. Yep, I'm jazzed. Now I'm gonna go try it out at practice.

valkyrievf2x
08-26-2013, 06:59 AM
Not the greatest quality pic, but...

Scored me a Blacrolite off of Craigslist. Heads were a bit beat up and it needs new wires, but everything else is near mint condition. Came with the big snare bag, a stick bag, and a Ludwig stand. I'll let my daughter use this one (I have my own Acro ;) ). The best part was the price: $50. Even came with a free drum key, lol. The new head is one of those tattoo skyns from Remo I found on clearance. Figured it'd beat a dented head... Matches the drum rather well, though.

I have to say it is interesting owning a few of these. The Blacro is tuned around medium or so. My Blue Acro (Bluecro??) is tuned quite high for a more poppy sound (still pretty full sounding, though. It isn't choked.). And I have one of their close cousins, the Ludwig Standard (seamless aluminum shell, but with no bead), which is tuned fairly fat and low (2 ply head and moongel to get it wet and fat). They all sound similar, yet they have their individual character. It is quite nice. I can really see why there is so much love for this drum!

B-squared
08-27-2013, 01:36 AM
That's a nice find. It's cool that you can start your daughter out on that drum. She will appreciate the history as well as the sound.

NYCgroove
09-03-2013, 04:16 PM
Hello All,

Posting this in a couple of forums... I have an interesting one that I'm hoping someone can shed some light on. It's a 5x14 Silver Acrolite, 10 Imperial Lugs, Large Keystone, P85, Round Muffler, and it's stamped "490" inside. The hoops are also interesting. At first I thought someone refinished a supra, but when I took it apart, the shell is consistent inside and out. Doesn't appear to be tampered with. This drum was found in North Carolina... maybe a Ludwig employee made something fun one day? I know all about the NYS Dept of Education 70's 6.5's, but this appears to be a late 90's 5x14. Let me know what you guys think!

Thanks!
Andrew

valkyrievf2x
09-03-2013, 05:18 PM
Can't say that I have a clue....

but that drum is GORGEOUS!!!!!

BGH
09-16-2013, 03:13 AM
Just scored a nice Acro, supposedly no scratches or dents. Pic looks great. Looking for forward to getting it.

KarlCrafton
09-16-2013, 03:41 AM
Nice one GBH!

NYC, that could be a one off for someone, (endorser or employee). It's not unheard of for Ludwig to do something like this.

If it didn't have the stamp, you'd just assume someone refurbed a Supra because of the 10 lugs. The hoops are a stumper though. They look like the chrome has been removed. They don't look like the Brushed Aluminum finish my (2012) Acro Classic LTD has. These look shinier.

It could also be that someone just DID refurb a Supra shell, the hoops and did their own stamp. THAT isn't impossible either, A stamp (and ink for metal) is easy to get, and they're cheap. Someone could easily fake a "rare" snare, but maybe you got your hands on something one of a kind. That would be cool.
It's a really nice drum regardless!

Maybe contact WFL3 (like a facebook message) with some pics and see what he has to say. Todd Trent would be a good one to ask as well. he is on FB too.
Both are very nice guys.

Enjoy that snare!

larryace
09-16-2013, 03:49 AM
If someone is trying to fake something, the hoops are all wrong. They look powder coated. It looks like the badge is stamped with a number. Pro photography. Hmmm.

BGH
09-20-2013, 05:56 AM
Wow, I just rec'd my Acro today. Its just as it was advertised. Man, this thing could almost pass as new. I found maybe one tiny little scratch-that's it. I'm super happy with this purchase. I've always wanted a nice raw aluminum Acro, and now I have one! I don't need to change out anything on it. Its got heads in good shape that I actually like and Puresound wires, which are additional reasons I bought this particular one. The P-85 is even in great shape, nice and smooth. This drum looks like it was barely ever used.

larryace
09-20-2013, 05:58 AM
Hey man that's a beaut.

BGH
09-20-2013, 06:28 AM
Hey man that's a beaut.

Thanks. Sometimes, things just work out the way we expect them to...

mandrew
09-20-2013, 08:58 AM
Great looking drum! Hope you play it.

BGH
09-20-2013, 09:20 AM
Great looking drum! Hope you play it.

Thanks. Trust me, this is going to be played and enjoyed.

turbojerk
09-24-2013, 03:01 AM
Love Craigslist, and was on my way home from work... A whopping $30... LoL!

http://img826.imageshack.us/img826/8213/ijit.jpg

http://img17.imageshack.us/img17/966/n6pi.jpg

mind_drummer
09-24-2013, 03:46 AM
Damn ! An hell of a deal !

It's even a pinpoint badge ! Congrats !

mandrew
09-24-2013, 03:48 AM
Don't ever let loose of it! a great deal on a great drum.

BGH
09-24-2013, 04:46 AM
$30 for that condition? What a steal, congrats! You will love it.

turbojerk
09-24-2013, 12:28 PM
They are great snare drums...

Wish I would of only paid $30 for this one... Paid $100 which was still good for the vintage...

https://scontent-a-atl.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-frc3/431803_4946508426813_427501092_n.jpg

KarlCrafton
09-25-2013, 05:52 PM
All those look great! Nice score BGH!!

30 bucks on that 70's too, oh yeah!!
Turbo- that same shell Acro was $225 (at least) at every booth that had them in May at the Chicago Show. $100 is still a steal!

MusiQmaN
09-29-2013, 07:37 PM
My new main snare.


Yes I am a Yamaha man, but this.. this is awesome sounding...

http://scontent-a-iad.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/1235913_10202105841627158_469606871_n.jpg

60's model. Paid 250,- € (+/- 338$) for the snare, a case and s&h. Quite a lot (even though this earlier model is harder to find in Europe) but still worth every Euro.

I'm now searching for the rare 60's 14x6,5 model too!

Road Bull
09-29-2013, 08:02 PM
My new main snare.


Yes I am a Yamaha man, but this.. this is awesome sounding...

http://scontent-a-iad.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/1235913_10202105841627158_469606871_n.jpg

60's model. Paid 250,- € (+/- 338$) for the snare, a case and s&h. Quite a lot (even though this earlier model is harder to find in Europe) but still worth every Euro.

I'm now searching for the rare 60's 14x6,5 model too!

That is a classy new addition to your drum family. When you find something that rare and nice, you have to jump on it. Congrats on the new snare!

mandrew
09-29-2013, 11:22 PM
Great drum! The Acrolite is still the best value, cost per sound quality ,ever made. They just sound good, depending on how you set it up.

Dignan
10-09-2013, 12:07 AM
Alright, so I'm on the hunt for a snare to go with my newly purchased PDP M5 shell pack (got it for $200 I might add). I originally was trying to get the matching Maple M5 snare so if I ever sell this kit I have a complete package. Then I read some reviews on the M5 snare which weren't that good so I thought maybe I should just "upgrade" now to something else.

I've been searching craigslist and used stuff at GC and Sam Ash and my price requirements and desire to have something "versatile" keep bringing me back to the Acrolite. I get the feeling a lot of people are selling them on CL for WAY lower than they are worth because GC doesn't seem to have any for less than 150$, some as high as $300. Where as I've seen some acros on CL for like $50.

So my question is: are there any Acros that are not good? Too old? Cheap Knockoffs that I should watch out for? Or are all authentic Acrolites created equal?

For some background I don't gig, tour or record. I'm a drummer getting back into this as a hobby after about 15 years away. All signs keep pointing me back to the acrolite... will it fit my needs?

B-squared
10-09-2013, 01:25 AM
The condition is always an issue with any drum, but other than that, I can't think of any Acrolites that are inferior to others.

Dignan
10-09-2013, 04:45 AM
This drum is on sale on CL near me. Owner doesn't know much about it. Is this an acrolite? The lugs make me think so but its missing the ridge running around the shell.
It came with a rolling case so I'm wondering if its one of those student snares. He's asking $75

http://www.mediafire.com/convkey/b23d/co5jyfp6o4s6nib4g.jpg (http://www.mediafire.com/view/co5jyfp6o4s6nib/drum.jpg)

http://www.mediafire.com/convkey/0352/agnt281550i47284g.jpg (http://www.mediafire.com/view/agnt281550i4728/badge.jpeg)

Pocket-full-of-gold
10-09-2013, 04:53 AM
Is this an acrolite?

Nup. Ludwig Rocker series steel snare with bow-tie lugs.

Acro's share the same shell as a Supraphonic. They are all seamless aluminium (just without the chrome finish like the Supra) and have the centre bead.

BGH
10-09-2013, 05:01 AM
I don't think there have been any 'knock off' drums since the 1960's Japanese stencil kits. No one would go to the trouble of making a knock off Acro. You can find them cheap because tons of parents bought these for their kids when they were learning to play, they don't play anymore and dad is selling the drum.

If you are a hobbiest, any Acro will do. Yes, the prices are all over the map. If you can find one cheap on CL, its probably as I mentioned a parent selling a no longer used drum that might be in primo shape. They often include a case, a rubber practice pad and a stand, although the stand is usually concert (standing) height, as it wasn't sold as a 'drum kit snare.'

The best way to educate yourself is to just keep looking at them. There is no rush to buy-there are always tons of them for sale. You need to determine what the most important factors are in deciding which one to buy. Do you want the cheapest one? Do you want one ready to play as is? Do you want one that you can add heads and snares of your choice (ie not the most expensive one)? Can you swap out the strainer if its needed? Does the color matter? The most frequent versions you're going to see are the plain aluminum shell and the black galaxy. There is also the gray coated model the the early 'orange peel' model.

If you see one on CL that says 'bought this for my son who only played it one year,' that is probably one to jump on and you can usually get them cheap. Other than that, think of the factors I mentioned and keep looking til you find the one that seems right for you. Good luck with it and have fun looking!

Dignan
10-09-2013, 05:01 AM
Nup. Ludwig Rocker series steel snare with bow-tie lugs.

Acro's share the same shell as a Supraphonic. They are all seamless aluminium (just without the chrome finish like the Supra) and have the centre bead.

Ok thanks. I'll keep looking.

BGH
10-09-2013, 05:07 AM
This drum is on sale on CL near me. Owner doesn't know much about it. Is this an acrolite? The lugs make me think so but its missing the ridge running around the shell.
It came with a rolling case so I'm wondering if its one of those student snares. He's asking $75



If you are asking this question, then you really have no idea what you are looking at. Go onto eBay. Do a search on 'Ludwig Acrolite.' Look at all of the pictures. Look for the common features that have been stated. Almost none of them will be chrome. So if its chrome, 99.99% its not an Acro. The Acro always has the center bead. It has 8 bowtie lugs in almost every case. It will have a Keystone badge or Blue and olive badge. The black galaxy has the black and white badge.

Edit: the 5x14 will have 8 lugs in almost every case. The 6.5x14 will have 10 lugs.

valkyrievf2x
10-09-2013, 06:02 AM
I've been searching craigslist and used stuff at GC and Sam Ash and my price requirements and desire to have something "versatile" keep bringing me back to the Acrolite. I get the feeling a lot of people are selling them on CL for WAY lower than they are worth because GC doesn't seem to have any for less than 150$, some as high as $300. Where as I've seen some acros on CL for like $50.

So my question is: are there any Acros that are not good? Too old? Cheap Knockoffs that I should watch out for? Or are all authentic Acrolites created equal?

For some background I don't gig, tour or record. I'm a drummer getting back into this as a hobby after about 15 years away. All signs keep pointing me back to the acrolite... will it fit my needs?

Well, just to open up your horizon's a bit (hopefully not too big a derail...), you can also look for a Ludwig Standard Aluminum snare. Why do I bring it up? Same shell as the Supra and the Acro, except WITHOUT the center bead. They sound virtually the same, 8 lugs, and that silver pain that later Acros have. I'm only bringing it up since a)it is a close kissing sibling of the Acro and b)you might be able to score one on the cheap if the person doesn't know what they have..... Here is a thread talking about this drum: http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=105304

As for Acros.... Check this one out. Probably a good one to jump on given the price: http://www.guitarcenter.com/In-Store-Used-USED-LUDWIG-ACRYLITE-14X5XSNAR-DRUM-MISSING-BADGE-108665985-i2973613.gc

Dignan
10-09-2013, 02:04 PM
If you are asking this question, then you really have no idea what you are looking at. Go onto eBay. Do a search on 'Ludwig Acrolite.' Look at all of the pictures. Look for the common features that have been stated. Almost none of them will be chrome. So if its chrome, 99.99% its not an Acro. The Acro always has the center bead. It has 8 bowtie lugs in almost every case. It will have a Keystone badge or Blue and olive badge. The black galaxy has the black and white badge.

Edit: the 5x14 will have 8 lugs in almost every case. The 6.5x14 will have 10 lugs.

You're correct. I'm not an expert on the different types of Ludwig snares. That's why I'm on here asking the informed drummers. I also found another "beadless" ludwig online like the on in the picture that said it was an acrolite so I wasn't sure anymore. Thanks for the clarification on chrome vs. not chrome.

Well, just to open up your horizon's a bit (hopefully not too big a derail...), you can also look for a Ludwig Standard Aluminum snare. Why do I bring it up? Same shell as the Supra and the Acro, except WITHOUT the center bead. They sound virtually the same, 8 lugs, and that silver pain that later Acros have. I'm only bringing it up since a)it is a close kissing sibling of the Acro and b)you might be able to score one on the cheap if the person doesn't know what they have..... Here is a thread talking about this drum: http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=105304

As for Acros.... Check this one out. Probably a good one to jump on given the price: http://www.guitarcenter.com/In-Store-Used-USED-LUDWIG-ACRYLITE-14X5XSNAR-DRUM-MISSING-BADGE-108665985-i2973613.gc

Thanks Valkyrie. That is a tempting deal. Its missing the badge but I suppose I could always find one later if it still bothered me. I just checke out your thread on the Standard you refitted. Very nice looking drum. I'll keep my eye out for one of these too.

Dignan
10-09-2013, 02:11 PM
I don't think there have been any 'knock off' drums since the 1960's Japanese stencil kits. No one would go to the trouble of making a knock off Acro. You can find them cheap because tons of parents bought these for their kids when they were learning to play, they don't play anymore and dad is selling the drum.

If you are a hobbiest, any Acro will do. Yes, the prices are all over the map. If you can find one cheap on CL, its probably as I mentioned a parent selling a no longer used drum that might be in primo shape. They often include a case, a rubber practice pad and a stand, although the stand is usually concert (standing) height, as it wasn't sold as a 'drum kit snare.'

The best way to educate yourself is to just keep looking at them. There is no rush to buy-there are always tons of them for sale. You need to determine what the most important factors are in deciding which one to buy. Do you want the cheapest one? Do you want one ready to play as is? Do you want one that you can add heads and snares of your choice (ie not the most expensive one)? Can you swap out the strainer if its needed? Does the color matter? The most frequent versions you're going to see are the plain aluminum shell and the black galaxy. There is also the gray coated model the the early 'orange peel' model.

If you see one on CL that says 'bought this for my son who only played it one year,' that is probably one to jump on and you can usually get them cheap. Other than that, think of the factors I mentioned and keep looking til you find the one that seems right for you. Good luck with it and have fun looking!

BGH, just saw this post of yours now. Not sure why I mised it before.

I know I've seen lots of these for sale on CL under just the circumstances you describe (i.e. Dad selling it because son played it one year in music class and never looked at it again). I just want a decent sounding snare to complete my kit for now. I'll probably also want to put on new heads on and new snares if necessary. So I'll probably wait for another one of these with the case and stand to pop up on CL. Thanks again for the input.

RickVandeven
10-09-2013, 06:54 PM
Be careful on the student Acro's. Sometimes they have been dropped, and may be out of round or have bearing edge damage.

If you do get the student Acro, the stand works great for changing heads, tuning, or displaying toms and snares. And you get a case!

Good luck! I have played Acro's for over 20 years, and would put them up against any snare in the world.

robthetimekeeper
10-10-2013, 05:38 PM
Two time academy award winner Mr. Tom Hanks knows a good snare drum when he sees one. Perhaps he's preparing for his role in an upcoming Neil Peart biopic! BTW, Capt. Phillips = great movie!

drummer-russ
10-10-2013, 08:16 PM
he sure looks like him.

Dignan
10-14-2013, 05:27 PM
Be careful on the student Acro's. Sometimes they have been dropped, and may be out of round or have bearing edge damage.

If you do get the student Acro, the stand works great for changing heads, tuning, or displaying toms and snares. And you get a case!

Good luck! I have played Acro's for over 20 years, and would put them up against any snare in the world.

I will be sure to check all those things out. I'm actually going to go look at this one. I had the owner send me a pic if the badge. It's the olive and blue badge. I can't upload the pic he sent right now but here is the CL link. http://chicago.craigslist.org/chc/msg/4127533987.html. The owner didn't know It was an acrolite. Said he used it for band in middle gchool back in 1983 and it's basically been in storage ever since. Anyone see anything in the photos that should make me wary of this? I talked him down to $85 for the whole kit.

stueybonzo
10-21-2013, 01:49 PM
I've picked up a '67 Acrolite which I'm restoring. I have a question about the fitting of the P83 strainer. It would appear it was fitted with a washer between the mounting bracket and the shell. Was this how Ludwig would have fitted the strainer or was it just screw through bracket with washer and nut on the inside?

tamadrm
10-21-2013, 06:18 PM
All the ones I've ever seen were flat or cup washer on the interior only.

Steve B

poika
10-22-2013, 12:07 AM
I though this was interesting.

I was cleaning up my Acro a while back and as I was removing the lugs I was surprised at how much impact the lugs had on the tone of the shell.

So I made a short recording.

I took apart the whole drum, apart from the butt plate.
I hung the shell from the butt plate and hit it with a mallet two times; first on the inside of the shell and then on the outside. (The rattling sound comes from the butt plate screws, apparently I forgot to take those out)

I took three samples:
A - zero lugs
B - four lugs
C - eight lugs


The change from zero to four is a lot bigger than from four to eight.
To me it seems that as long as you put any kind of actual weight on the shell the characteristic changes drastically,

I'd love to hear someone do the same thing to different kinds of supra shells with imperial and tube lugs to see how they would sound. I don't have any other Ludwig snares to put into comparison


Here's the clip
https://soundcloud.com/poika/ludwig-acrolite-shell-test

valkyrievf2x
10-22-2013, 05:42 AM
Hmmmm....
VERY interesting comparison!! I always thought that the lugs made a difference, but wow! You are right, the difference from 0 lugs to 4 is much bigger than 4 to 8. I'm assuming these are the bowtie lugs, right?

I've always wondered about the lug mass and the shell's resonance. I have 2 Acros now: A Blacro and a regular Acro (commonly referred to in the house as the "Bluecro", lol) with tube lugs. Even tuned the same, the Bluecro rings for days on end--far longer than the Blacro. Sounds more open, I guess you can say. The tube lugs are much lower mass than the bowties, and have a smaller footprint on the shell...

poika
10-22-2013, 09:15 AM
Correct, these are bowtie lugs.

Apparently a shell with tube lugs would produce more ring / resonance / shell tone because of lower mass, and vice versa. Perhaps not a surprise for more experienced drummers (or drum builders), but nevertheless I found the change in tone interesting

It's a good thing that I happen to like the dryness of a bowtie Acro :)

valkyrievf2x
10-22-2013, 03:39 PM
Correct, these are bowtie lugs.

Apparently a shell with tube lugs would produce more ring / resonance / shell tone because of lower mass, and vice versa. Perhaps not a surprise for more experienced drummers (or drum builders), but nevertheless I found the change in tone interesting

It's a good thing that I happen to like the dryness of a bowtie Acro :)

I didn't realize it would have that big an impact, truth be told. I just liked the way it looked (got the shell, then started piecing it together). Have to keep the internal muffler slightly on to keep it from ringing into next Tuesday (singly ply head).

longgun
10-22-2013, 05:01 PM
All the ones I've ever seen were flat or cup washer on the interior only.

Steve B



I've only seen the cup washers.................were the flat washers used on earlier models?

stueybonzo
10-22-2013, 05:20 PM
Hi longgun and tamadrm thanks for the response...I'm talking about the strainer mounting and not the lugs. I understand the bell and cup washers exist for the lugs but it's the P83 strainer fitting I'm looking for answers on. It looks like the tiny screw is threaded through the mounting bracket of the strainer and fixed to the inside of shell with a large washer, a small spring washer and then the hex nut. I'm interested to know if any of you have a washer between the mounting bracket and the shell on the outside. I picked my '67 up like this but I don't seem to see the strainer fixed to the shell like this in any pictures. I'd like my restoration to be as close to the original setup as possible you see ;-)

gmiller598
10-22-2013, 06:35 PM
My first drum was a student kit from Ludwig that was brand new around 1988. I don't have the drum any longer but it seems to look a lot like an Acrolite but I seem to think it was a Ludwig Rocker by that time for some reason.

Were there Ludwig Rocker snares made in the same matte gray finish of the Acrolites in the mid to late 80's?

dbshorter
11-13-2013, 05:34 AM
Just got my first Acrolite! I found it on Craigslist with a bag and stand, and talked the seller down to $80!! It's a B/O badge and in great shape....I love it.

poika
11-13-2013, 12:17 PM
Man these deals you get over there...
In my country, the prices for used Acrolites usually start from 200-250 euros (that's roughly about 270 - 330 dollars)

valkyrievf2x
11-14-2013, 06:04 AM
Modified my Bluecrolite today (silly name, I know) with a die cast batter hoop. Sorta. Ordered the hoop, and it turns out it was a snare side hoop.... Can't complain for $20, though....

It is on there as the batter now, and I have to say, I am really liking it. The shell still sounds really open, but that annoying ringing it used to do has been minimized a good bit. The attack (I think that is the right term? The sound from actually hitting the head) seems to be a bit more focused. My wife commented that it seemed louder than usual. Rimshots are painfully loud, too.

Still using an Evans G1 over a Hazy 300. Tuned fairly high, as well.

longgun
11-14-2013, 06:37 PM
Two time academy award winner Mr. Tom Hanks knows a good snare drum when he sees one. Perhaps he's preparing for his role in an upcoming Neil Peart biopic! BTW, Capt. Phillips = great movie!


eery .......


Modified my Bluecrolite today (silly name, I know) with a die cast batter hoop. Sorta. Ordered the hoop, and it turns out it was a snare side hoop.... Can't complain for $20, though....

It is on there as the batter now, and I have to say, I am really liking it. The shell still sounds really open, but that annoying ringing it used to do has been minimized a good bit. The attack (I think that is the right term? The sound from actually hitting the head) seems to be a bit more focused. My wife commented that it seemed louder than usual. Rimshots are painfully loud, too.

Still using an Evans G1 over a Hazy 300. Tuned fairly high, as well.

The blue along with the tube lugs look great....................but the snare side hoop????................oh well, as long as it sounds good.

valkyrievf2x
11-15-2013, 06:57 AM
The blue along with the tube lugs look great....................but the snare side hoop????................oh well, as long as it sounds good.

What is it they call it... a player's drum? Pretty much what she is. I put it on the bottom earlier this evening, but I didn't find the sound to be too different from the regular hoops, so I put it back to its original screwy version, except with a bit lower tuning. The snare slots are now on the side; use them as handles lol.

But yeah, it sounds really good and focused :)

m.clover
11-25-2013, 07:43 PM
Yeah, I too am lurking CL, e-bay etc. for an Acrolite. There was a guy who played for the Animals back in the late 60s named Barry Jenkins. He had such a great style and his Acro had that very distinctive crack to it. I've been envious ever since. Trying to get back after many years of laying off.