How do you feel about lug gaskets?

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
This is for those of you who have drums with lug gaskets, or want to put them on your drums. This is purely non-scientific, just seeing how everyone feels. Here are the scenarios:

They work and I like how they look

They work, I don't like the look, but I leave them on

They work, I don't like the look, and I remove them

They have no effect, but I like the look and leave them on

They have no effect, I don't like the look, but I leave them on

They have no effect, I don't like the look, and I remove them

They hurt the sound, but I like the look and leave them on

They hurt the sound, I don't like the look, but I leave them on

They hurt the sound, I don't like the look, and I remove them

My lugs didn't originally have them, but I want or installed them


Which applies to you?

Bermuda
 

Stroman

Platinum Member
I don't have any drums that have lug gaskets, but if I did and they hurt the sound, I would remove them. I would not remove them for purely cosmetic reasons, though...

EDIT - when I read this at first, I was only thinking of snare drums, but I do indeed have drums with gaskets - my Classic Maples. Doh!

So, I will say they have no effect, I don't mind how they look, so I leave them on.
 
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ddrumman2004

Senior Member
You forgot...."No opinion".....LOL!

My Pearl Masters came with lug gaskets and I have no idea if they work for their intended purpose or not. They are not ugly or obtrusive by any means either.

I do think they protect the shells as I have removed the lugs from my 1960 Ludwig Pioneer snare to clean everything and there are outlines of the lugs embedded in the shell.
 

wsabol

Gold Member
On wood drums

They work, I don't mind the look, so I leave them on

On Chromed metal snares with chrome lugs, like Supras

I hate the look. if they do anything, they hurt the sound. I will remove them.

On other metal drums

It depends.
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
I leave them on my wood shells. I took them off of the only brass shell I have and really havent noticed any tonal difference and will put them back on so that I don't lose them and if I wish to sell the drum ever.
 

Mad About Drums

Pollyanna's Agent
I'll choose "They work and I like how they look" option from your list, as I believe they're protecting the shells on my drumkit (maple shells, including the snare drum), now for me the look doesn't matter as I have a "piano black" laquer finish on my kit and the gaskets are black, so they don't show, you'll have to look closely to the shells to see them.
 

diegobxr

Silver Member
They do protect a lacquered finished drum from getting marked with the outline of the lug.

I also think they give a more solid-well built-expensive look on a kit.

And finally, a shell vibrates. If something solid is attached to it (lug), it should vibrate sympathetically too. Now, if you put something soft like rubber between the two, I believe the rubber would absorbe some of the energy, making the lug vibrate less than the shell, and that's a good thing. (Pure theory, I don't know if this actually works this way).

Anyway, I favour lug gaskets. ;)

Cheers.
 

Mikeyboyeee

Senior Member
I've actually added them on a kit I just got --- I think they protect the finish and they don't seem to hurt the sound (at least to my ear)... the kit I added them to is just a sparkle wrap finish -- I think it protects the finish (whatever it happens to be) and I kinda like the looks of 'em

Mike
 

Zickos

Gold Member
All Zickos drums come with acrylic gaskets inside and out along with a full metal back up plate (not washers). They also have acrylic sleeves on the bolts that go through the shell. No metal touches the shell anywhere. The idea at the time was to let the shell vibrate more with the heads. I'm not sure if anyone else was doing this in the 1970's. I think Bill Zickos was ahead of his time.

DSCF0919.JPG

I can't tell you if they work or not as I have not tried them without the gaskets, but the drums have a big, resonant sound and, being acrylic, you hardly see them, so appearance is not really a factor.
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
And finally, a shell vibrates. If something solid is attached to it (lug), it should vibrate sympathetically too. Now, if you put something soft like rubber between the two, I believe the rubber would absorbe some of the energy, making the lug vibrate less than the shell, and that's a good thing. (Pure theory, I don't know if this actually works this way).
But doesn't the rubber gasket also act as a dampening factor, inhibiting the shell's vibration?

Bermuda
 

tamadrm

Platinum Member
But doesn't the rubber gasket also act as a dampening factor, inhibiting the shell's vibration?

Bermuda
+1..thats what I think also.If you put moongel/gaff tape/zero rings ect.,on a drum head,considereing the small area they impact,have a great effect on the vibration of a drum head.I know a drum head is much thinner that a shell,but there must me some kind of muffeling effect

So,given how much area a lug gasket takes ,say maybe 10%(this is just a wild guess,I didn't do the math),there has to be some of the same effect taking place.I would think more on a metal shell,than a thicker wooden one.Just my 2 cents.

Steve B
 

keep it simple

Platinum Member
This is purely non-scientific, just seeing how everyone feels.

Bermuda
Through painstaking A - B testing, I know exactly how gaskets affect drums, & I'd have to reveal the science, & that would ruin the thread. I am super interested in the range of theories though :)

Some posts are close in principal, but there's a bunch of conditions & caveats.
 

wsabol

Gold Member
In my mind, you would ideally have a freely vibrating head and shell assembly and a perfectly rigid assembly of lugs, tension rods, and hoops that are completely isolated from each other. Thats why you see a bunch of people trying to perfect the free-floating thing. Vibrating lugs, tension rods, and hoops can theoretically jack with tuning; plus the added mass diminishes the resonance capabilities of the head/shell, which is no bueno. Gaskets help isolate the lugs from the shell to better reach that goal of a rigid tuning assembly.
 

8Mile

Platinum Member
For the purposes of complying with the guidelines of the survey, I'll answer:

They work and I like how they look

But the real answer is: I'm not sure what effect they have, but the idea of having the metal lug come directly in contact with the shell is so unappealing to me that I leave them on and don't even bother to do the comparisons that might reveal I'm missing out on a better sound.

How's that? :)
 

MikeM

Platinum Member
I don't mind how they look in principal, and if it's a wood drum, I probably wouldn't bother, but if it's a thinner shelled metal snare drum (not cast) I would remove them for fear that they'd noticeably dampen the shell.

I don't care for the tacky look of rubber, though. A felt-y material seems classier with less potential for dampening the shell and dry-cracking with age.
 
S

sticks4drums

Guest
It is actually confusing what there real purpose is. My Saturns have a thin black nylon gasket behind the lugs, which I think just helps to protect the shells. The new Black Panther drums have a rubber gasket behind the new lugs. My Black Beauty has thick round rubber gaskets behind the tube lug mounting locations which I think were put there recently to get rid of the dreaded tension rod splay the older ones suffered from.

My thought was that the rubber gaskets on drums helped to isolate the lug,rod,and hoop from the shell. Some of you are saying that the rubber will dampen the shell. I think we need an expert. :)
 

diegobxr

Silver Member
Through painstaking A - B testing, I know exactly how gaskets affect drums, & I'd have to reveal the science, & that would ruin the thread. I am super interested in the range of theories though :)

Some posts are close in principal, but there's a bunch of conditions & caveats.
Oh, c'mon man!! Don't be like that!!!

Maybe after post #25 you can tell us? ;)
 

diegobxr

Silver Member
But doesn't the rubber gasket also act as a dampening factor, inhibiting the shell's vibration?

Bermuda
Well, it could be.. I don't know.. My reasoning comes from stuff like putting rubber under studio monitors to stop rattling, or under vibrating machines.. or like floating floors or floor toms.

For instance, I put little pieces of foam under my floor tom legs, and to my humble ear, there is a noticeable difference. The shell sounds and feels more "free" and resonant than just laying on the hard floor.

Anyway, I may be wrong. I'll wait 'til Andy gives us his insight.

Cheers!
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
Visually:

I can't say they're noticeable. I've never heard one comment over the years about someone saying the noticed the gasket or not, unless either it was pointed out to them, or the drum is being dis-assembled/assumed for repairs. They are pretty small and unobtrusive to the eye.

Sound:
I'm sure if you had two kits that were equal in every way (size, heads, tuning) in the same room, with the only variable being the gaskets on or off, I would hear a difference.

But in the grand scheme of things, I can't imagine the difference is significant. The room, head selection, tuning, shell design and mounting are going to make a greater impact on the drum tone than the gasket itself.
 
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