Do you have any OCD-type traits about your drums/set-up?

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
Disclaimer: I want to first say that Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is a real disorder, and this is not a slight on folks who suffer from it. This thread is not meant to make fun of anyone with the disorder as it is debilitating for many folks out there whom we care about and love. I simply couldn't think of a better way to word this as it has become the norm in many vernaculars, so I'm simply using it as a simplified label and is not meant to belittle those who suffer from this. Thank you.

With that said, I got the idea from the recently-revived zombie thread about matching hardware. I know we all have our little (or big) quirks when it comes to drumming. I get that we all try to be the best that we can be, but do you have any little drumming quirks/OCD-type of habits, rituals, or beliefs when it comes to drumming? Here are a few of mine.

  • On my hi-hats and ride, I try to never play on the logo. I've gotten better about this though.

  • On my drum heads, I always line up the label on the drum head with the badge on the front.

  • On my toms, the badges on my drums have to face forward.

  • I always use some sort of stick wrap on all of my drum sticks. I can't stand playing without it now.

  • I feel like I'm constantly checking the height of the top cymbal of my hi-hats during a show or practice. I think I went way too long with a hi-hat clutch that slipped, and I'm always paranoid of it slipping again.

  • I don't want to admit how long it takes me to make sure a new front logo head on a kick drum is perfectly "level." To those of you out there who spin your logo heads to the side, you are freakin' monsters and should not be trusted. All of you.

  • I mount my rack toms on a snare stand, and one of the arms of the snare stand has to be in the front, centered, and directly under the drum badge. It has to be this way on my practice kit at home as well.

These are just a few of mine. How about you?
 
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Frosticles

Silver Member
Quite a few of the above..............

Drum head logo's must be showing the same face as the drum logo.
Any hoops with stamps or stickers must be as above.
All badges must face forward. Including the Floor Tom
Kit must be clean
Bass drum head logo MUST be 100% straight.
No silly angled tom's. Gaps must be perfect.
Snare logo must be at 10 O Clock.

Just a few off the top of my head............
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Stand feet must not protrude past bass drum spurs.

Snare must be disengaged after playing.

My pedals must be symmetrical. The snare stand feet must form a triangle that sits equidistant from the pedals and pointing at me.

I always use the same stick in the same hand. When one dies, they are both replaced.

Bass drum logo must be perfect.

I always check my tuning before playing. I won't play if I can't tune first.

This is just scratching the surface. My OCD is bad and follows me everywhere. It's really hard for me to not get mad at people who are "doing it wrong" even though I know they really aren't. And thanks for understanding, tons of people just don't get it.
 

Stroman

Platinum Member
I have fewer and fewer of these traits as the years go by. The only ones I still really have are lining up the head logos with the badges.

I also really prefer to have all one brand of drumhead on the kit at a time, but that isn't a hard and fast rule anymore.

The biggest OCD-type thing I do is that I constantly fiddle with the tuning. I've always been particular about it, but these days I futz with tuning pretty much every time I sit down at the kit. I'm not sure what that's about.
 

AzHeat

Platinum Member
Damn! I’m crazier than I thought and pretty much on par with you guys.

I put the head logo in line with the badge. I picked this up when bearing edges weren’t perfect, so I knew where the head lined up, if I removed any. I guess I just keep doing it, but from my view it still looks cleaner.

Bass drum logo being off to me looks like you were in a rush. Kinda like wearing a tie that’s off to one side.

Don’t really care where Cymbals are, but if lined up, then they have to be lined up, or they look like you were rushed to throw things on stage.

Logos must face forward. That way I know which leg goes where on floor toms, when setting up. Rack tom logos just have to be consistent, not one visible and not the other. It just looks cleaner.

Cymbal stand legs go in the same spot every time, so I don’t have to guess which went where when setting up. I have tiny numbers on the backs of them, so each mounts together exactly as I had them set prior.

Sticks somehow always end up in the same hands. Not sure why, but the HH stick always gets chewed through the same way. I must just naturally pick up the more beat up one with my right. It just happens.

Don’t like dents in my heads. Those things are a constant reminder I screwed up somewhere!
 

KEEF

Senior Member
Logo's right way up (Heads and Cymbals)
Badges facing front
Stands facing same way - 2 stage stands have to have the top section and bottom section the same lengths as each other on either side of the kit.
Wing nuts either horizontal or vertical
Pedals all match (DW5000)
Symmetry wherever possible. ( 3 cymbals LHS 3 RHS etc)

I don't freak out when things aren't straight, but I always find myself doing it that way whenever I have the choice.
 

Rattlin' Bones

Gold Member
My kick drum pedal. I don't trust house backline equipment. If I can't play kick decently then I'll royally screw up gig, so I always take my own pedal and carry a second one in my first one breaks. Of course I've never had one break, but that fact does nohting to reduce my fear. Now, is this OCD or just risk management to the extreme? Fear of failure. Over compensation (let's not even go there'll).
 

AzHeat

Platinum Member
My kick drum pedal. I don't trust house backline equipment. If I can't play kick decently then I'll royally screw up gig, so I always take my own pedal and carry a second one in my first one breaks. Of course I've never had one break, but that fact does nohting to reduce my fear. Now, is this OCD or just risk management to the extreme? Fear of failure. Over compensation (let's not even go there'll).
Risk management. I carry an extra snare head, gaffers tape and a second pedal always. Never needed them either.
 

Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
On my hi-hats and ride, I try to never play on the logo. I've gotten better about this though.
WHAT ???
This is crazy. How do you accomplish this??

The only one for me that I can think of is I have to have the front logo head on my kick drum perfectly level.


.
 

Bluekit

Member
I think 🤔not playing on the logo,s comes from the used cymbal market,,,
If u go to sell them,,it’s helps in the value of them,,,,
I am big at wiping finger prints off the chrome
 

Mustion

Senior Member
I was taught to position the hihat clutch with the winged bolt facing away so I don't accidentally hit it with the stick and disengage it--despite the fact that I probably wouldn't do that anyway due to my playing style. It's actually been an issue when a clutch starts to slip mid-song and I have to awkwardly reach around to fix it back up... not gonna change my ways though!
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
I have to have sticks in my hand.

I have to be sitting down.

There has to be a drum kit to play

The bass drum can't be behind me.

I HAVE to have a footpedal or I wont play.

That's really about it.
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
That way I know which leg goes where on floor toms, when setting up.
When I got my Ludwig Classic Maple kit, I turned on my bubble level app on my phone, and selected "Surface Level" and put it on my floor tom. I got it to the perfect height and then leveled it. I then put memory locks on the legs. Doing this has saved me a lot of time and frustration when setting up.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
I find this really interesting. So do you label your sticks?
No labels. When I get a new pair I roll them around in my hands until they feel right. The left and right both know which goes where. Once I start using them, I keep them on the snare. The left stays on the left and the right stays on the right. If for some reason they fall off between playings, my hands can tell instantly if they are wrong.

I am OCD bad about my hands. I wash them a lot. I don't like sticky, greasy, dirty, gritty, slimy, clamy, etc. I also have specific utensils I like to use when I eat. I eat finger foods with a fork. The list goes on and on. Thankfully my wife understands and is very accommodating for such things.
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
No labels. When I get a new pair I roll them around in my hands until they feel right. The left and right both know which goes where. Once I start using them, I keep them on the snare. The left stays on the left and the right stays on the right. If for some reason they fall off between playings, my hands can tell instantly if they are wrong.

I am OCD bad about my hands. I wash them a lot. I don't like sticky, greasy, dirty, gritty, slimy, clamy, etc. I also have specific utensils I like to use when I eat. I eat finger foods with a fork. The list goes on and on. Thankfully my wife understands and is very accommodating for such things.
Gah, at church they use a lotion-based soap that drives me nuts. Makes my hands slick and I hate the feel of it. I just rinse them and dry them down really well whenever it's my Sunday to play.

So how about like when you travel...do you put left-handed sticks in one area and right-handed sticks in the other? Sorry if I'm asking too many questions.

I have some really bizarre eating habits/quirks/issues too. You are not alone.
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
Very little of that these days, though definetly had more of it when I was younger.

Playing my own kit, things will usually line up and match, just because it looks more professional, but I often play other kits and I don't really care that much except that I like the sound of my kit better.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Gah, at church they use a lotion-based soap that drives me nuts. Makes my hands slick and I hate the feel of it. I just rinse them and dry them down really well whenever it's my Sunday to play.

So how about like when you travel...do you put left-handed sticks in one area and right-handed sticks in the other? Sorry if I'm asking too many questions.

I have some really bizarre eating habits/quirks/issues too. You are not alone.
Nah it's fine. When I was gigging I always bought new sticks for shows and left practice sticks in the jam room. They went in a milk crate, left sticks on the left, right on the right. Tips down, in opposite corners so they couldn't get mixed up.

I hate lotion. It drives me crazy.

As for the food thing, my wife and I don't eat out hardly at all. The idea of a stranger touching my food is horrible. I feel really bad about that one. I would love to take my wife out to a nice restaurant, but I just can't do it. It's okay though, her cooking is fantastic and she gets tons of enjoyment knowing how much we love her food.
 

Darth Vater

Senior Member
Holy Moly.....you guys are psychotic! Uh, is having my drums and cymbals in approximately the same place OCD? That's all I have for you.
 
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