Drum Features You Miss

Rattlin' Bones

Gold Member
What features of drums or hardware from the past do you miss the most? What is missing from modern drums or hardware that you wish would come back?

For me it's a muffler being standard on every snare. It's such an important feature. Moon Gel or a wallet don't work as well as ability to fine tune a muffler for a particular gig or sound or recording session. It works from underneath the batter head, which has advantages. Anything laid on top of head has gravity working along with it so it is always laying there. The only variable is weight. Plus it can get in the way. A muffler is almost infinitely adjustable it's working against gravity. I've gotten to point of selling all my modern snares and going exclusively with vintage snares with requirement they must have a muffler.

What features of drums do you miss most and wish would come back as standard equipment?
 

beatdat

Senior Member
Bass drums with the necessary hardware pre-installed to mount a ride cymbal. Seems like the only options today are to either drill holes into the drum and use an appropriate cymbal mount that you can buy, or do what I did which is to use the existing hole for the tom mount and cobble together various pieces of hardware to do the job.
 

Push pull stroke

Platinum Member
I’m not old enough to remember this, but drums coming with calf heads. I love the feel and sound of natural hide heads.

I also am not old enough to remember getting old-growth rosewood mallet instruments, but they definitely sound better.
 

Rattlin' Bones

Gold Member
Yup...that, too. What a major convenience that is to have one less cymbal stand on floor or in bag.

Bass drums with the necessary hardware pre-installed to mount a ride cymbal. Seems like the only options today are to either drill holes into the drum and use an appropriate cymbal mount that you can buy, or do what I did which is to use the existing hole for the tom mount and cobble together various pieces of hardware to do the job.
 

justadrummer

Junior Member
Bass drums with the necessary hardware pre-installed to mount a ride cymbal. Seems like the only options today are to either drill holes into the drum and use an appropriate cymbal mount that you can buy, or do what I did which is to use the existing hole for the tom mount and cobble together various pieces of hardware to do the job.
Agreed. I used a INDe mount and a DW arm on my new Gretsch USA Custom kit as not to have any extra holes.
 

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larryace

"Uncle Larry"
I don't miss anything. Everything is much improved today. I don't see how A drums can get any better now that the hardware and bearing edges are so much improved. Rogers is probably an exception, maybe Gretsch too.

When I think of drums from my youth...yea, give me today's stuff.

I think the current drums of today will make fantastic vintage instruments in 50 years.
 

TK-421

Senior Member
I've been playing for nearly 40 years, and I've very happy with the current state of drums and hardware. There's really nothing that I miss from the old days. I play all of my drums wide open, so internal mufflers aren't needed. Plus, if they're not putting pressure on the head, they have a tendency to rattle. So I'd just as well not have them.

As for bass drum T handles, maybe it's just my OCD, but I would need to have all of the T handles parallel to the hoop, or it would look "off". Therefore I wouldn't be able to get the tension exactly even all the way around. Again, it's probably just me on that one, but I'd still rather choose perfect tuning over the "convenience" of not pulling out a key (exactly how difficult is that, anyway?). And while I've never owned a bass drum that can mount a ride cymbal, my guess is that you'd have limited positioning options. Personally, I'd rather just carry a separate stand and get my ride exactly where I want it.

So again, I'm perfectly happy where things are now. Tuning is easy, and nothing rattles. I can loosen any component of any stand with just my fingers, unlike the old days when I practically needed a wrench just to raise my cymbal stand an inch. Plus, I can position everything exactly where I want it, and it stays put. Even the bass drum, thanks to modern spurs (I can't stand old telescoping spurs because they were only designed to keep the bass drum from rocking side to side... they do nothing to keep it from creeping forward).

Needless to say, I don't own any vintage gear.
 

donzo74

Junior Member
I miss snares with extended snare wires and roller guides like the 80's and 90's Recording Customs and 1st and 2nd Gen Pearl Free Floaters. Getting the big metal end pieces of the snares off the bottom head has many advantages. It really opens up the sound of the drum, it makes the snares more sensitive and the drum has a consistent sound throughout it's full dynamic range. Some systems, like the Yamaha and 1st Gen Pearl FFS, allow for fine tuning adjustments of the roller guides. I'd like to see some modern offerings of this snare strainer configuration.
 

Rattlin' Bones

Gold Member
Exactly. No way you can duplicate the precise tuning you get with a muffler. Moon gel or a wallet just lay there and gravity does the work. The heavier the more damping. An internal muffler does it all.

I've been playing for only a few years so I can't speak to what I miss from years ago (except maybe a thicker head of hair) but my snare is a '71 Acrolite and I love the built-in muffler because it is so easy to dial in the dampening.
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
I miss the T handles on bass drums.
Took the words out of my mouth. I think they make any drum look classier. As for having all of them parallel with the rim, the fact that they aren't tends to make it appear that the head has been tuned.
 
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Tamaefx

Silver Member
I miss the T handles on bass drums.
Oh Yesss, I'm happy to see some today's manufacturer offering T handle again (Yamaha, on the last RC for instance).
Very practical, except for the guitar cable when it gets caught in the T :)
I have T handles on both of my bass drums, aligned to the hoop rim. I think it looks classy.
 

paradiddle pete

Platinum Member
I don't miss anything. Everything is much improved today. I don't see how A drums can get any better now that the hardware and bearing edges are so much improved. Rogers is probably an exception, maybe Gretsch too.

When I think of drums from my youth...yea, give me today's stuff.

I think the current drums of today will make fantastic vintage instruments in 50 years.
Ace, I have a Rogers Powertone kit that looks like Factory new, not bad for just on 50 years.
 

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PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
I guess my own personal off-the-beaten-path answer is that I sort of miss the mystique of it all. When I was a kid, I was absolutely fascinated with the magic of drums. Don't get me wrong - I do love playing, and I enjoy getting better and better. With that said, there was something very magical about listening to a drummer playing a cool groove that I just couldn't get enough of. But I digress...

In regards to trends? I think one of the things that I miss was all of the crazy-looking finishes that the Keller-based drum companies started doing back in the late 1990's/early 2000's (e.g. Spaun, OCDP, Pork Pie, Truth, SJC, etc.). While I didn't want to buy anything terribly crazy, I enjoyed seeing what these companies would put out next in regards to their wraps, finishes, stains/lacquers, hardware colors, etc. That was a pretty cool time to be paying attention.
 

Rattlin' Bones

Gold Member
Check out the crazy INDe finishes they're offering right now. Lots of crazy finishes in 2019.

I guess my own personal off-the-beaten-path answer is that I sort of miss the mystique of it all. When I was a kid, I was absolutely fascinated with the magic of drums. Don't get me wrong - I do love playing, and I enjoy getting better and better. With that said, there was something very magical about listening to a drummer playing a cool groove that I just couldn't get enough of. But I digress...

In regards to trends? I think one of the things that I miss was all of the crazy-looking finishes that the Keller-based drum companies started doing back in the late 1990's/early 2000's (e.g. Spaun, OCDP, Pork Pie, Truth, SJC, etc.). While I didn't want to buy anything terribly crazy, I enjoyed seeing what these companies would put out next in regards to their wraps, finishes, stains/lacquers, hardware colors, etc. That was a pretty cool time to be paying attention.
 
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