Ludwig's new Signet 105 drum line!

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
There’s already been a lot of speculation and opinion and misinformation about these, based entirely on a cursory press-release, and the handful of kits that GC has displayed over the last few weeks. Hopefully I can help clarify what these drums are - and aren’t - with more complete info, and my observations having played and been hands-on with them for the last three days.

First off, the “105” in the name is not how many loose parts come in the box... it stands for the 105th anniversary of Ludwig. However, I doubt there’ll be a Signet 106, Signet 107 etc in subsequent years. :)

The shells are made in Ludwig’s Monroe factory, alongside the Classic Maple, Legacy and Keystone drums. It’s a 6-ply maple shell, with the 7th “ply” being the finish. It’s not applied as a wrap though, it’s a ply, and there’s no obvious seam. The edge is a dual 45, like the Keystones, and the three finishes are Indian Teak, Alpine Blue, and Macassar Ebony, which is my favorite. (see pics below, sorry about the flare on the teak bass drum...)

Assembly is painless and fast, they say 30 minutes for a full kit, although it would certainly go faster for most people, 20 minutes maybe? Lugs ‘snap’ into existing holes, and the legs and mounts are tightened into place with a drum key – no other tools needed. (see pic below) And you need only do it once, nobody is expected to regularly disasemble and reassemble them. A lot of people will buy them right off the dealer’s floor, so they’ve already done the work for you.

The drums are supplied with Monroe-made clear Ludwig heads, so they have some attack, but not in a cheap, bangy way. There’s obvious full tone and good decay, and I’m sure that your favorite heads will yield an excellent sound. I’m thinking a coated head would sound best, even on the kick. Don’t forget, these have a Classic Maple and Keystone pedigree, they’re not engineered to sound cheap. They sound like more expensive drums, go figure!

The lugs are lightweight, with a hint of the old Standard lug design and the familiar 3 lines Ludwig has used for decades. Tom and floor tom leg mounts are the triad Suspension Mount, an ATLAS-like mount that also serves as a replacement or upgrade to the Keystone mount (same hole spacing.) It’s a lower profile than the ATLAS, the T-screw is more on the side of the mount so it doesn’t stick out. It’s designed for a larger post, but easily grips 9.5mm (3/8”) classic “antler” holders. The kick spurs are a very simple, fold-down, one-position design. There is no height adjustment, and the front of the drum is angled up at a comfortable level, possibly a little high for some though. But they’re sufficiently sturdy. And if a drummer expects to be able to thrash on these, he’s barking up the wrong kit in the first place. They’re not designed for abuse.

Head changes are as normal, with one small detail... the lugs may rotate slightly out of alignment after the tension rod is removed. They won’t fall out, but they can skew a little. It’s a simple matter of turning the lug back into the right direction when screwing the rod back in. It’s not really a big deal, unless you’re constantly changing heads.

I was amazed at was the lightness of the drums, particularly the kick. The lighter spurs, lugs and claws make a huge difference, and that’s nice for everyone who carries their own drums... which is everyone. :)

There are two configurations. The GigaBeat: 8.5x12, 14x14, 15x20”, and the TeraBeat: 8x10, 8.5x12, 16x16, 16x22. MAP on the GigaBeat is $950, and the TeraBeat is $1100. I don’t know if there are plans to expand the line, I suppose that depends on how well sales do.





Go check these out!

Bermuda
 
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larryz

Platinum Member
Thanks for the review. Any new Ludwig line is exciting. Interesting design I must say. Kind of out of left field for Ludwig. Little odd bass drum sizes. I assume dealers will sell for less than those prices. I hope they do well. Can't wait to try them out!
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Shhhhhhhhhhhhh....Don't tell Gretsch but I really like that ebony model. The price seems good considering what Jon showed was MAP. Will have to go look at them. Maybe for 50 bucks I will lend myself out for assembly and tuning.
 

keep it simple

Platinum Member
Great pictures Jon, & they give a better impression of quality, which especially at that price point, seems very good. I notice you make mention of weight. That's a big benefit as far as I'm concerned, & not just for carrying purposes. Less hardware mass = more low dynamic resonance response. It wouldn't surprise me if these found real favour with the small gig & lighter players, especially if the size range was expanded to cover more jazz/bop orientated sizes.

Overall - good call Ludwig! :)
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
The Signa Gigabeat are 800.00 at MF. The Terabeat is 949.00 They should sell well. Any clue on the lead time Jon.?

The only con for me is the 8 lug bass drum
 

larryz

Platinum Member
I notice they have the specs wrong on the 3 pc kit and none are in stock yet. At least they're coming, though!
Good point. I would not, repeat NOT, pay for these in advance and play the waiting game. It could be months until they arrive. I know from personal experience w/MF.

I like how the description assumes the buyer will find the assembly process "rewarding".

Who writes that?
 

ianjphil

Member
Thanks for the heads up about these kits. Really liking the Ebony finish. I'm pretty sure that I'll be giving an Ebony Gigabeat a home in the future...
 

BradGunnerSGT

Silver Member
I like the idea, but I have two concerns.

The first is that I would imagine that after a few years of playing (with all of the micro vibrations from the hitting the drum) that the lugs would "wear" against the wood, causing the hole to slightly enlarge. I can see head changes becoming "oops, that lug fell out...now that one did too!".

The second is...those are the ugliest finishes I've ever seen.

Some people may like them, but I have to pass on these for now. (It's not like I have the money to get a set right now anyway!)
 

Tommy_D

Platinum Member
I have to agree, Brad. What is the draw to this kit? You have to build the thing yourself, your drums have huge holes cut in to them for these lugs to go in, the lugs are held in only by the tension of the head so any head changes will result in a mess of lugs falling all over the floor, the colors are horrendous, and for all that you get to pay $1000 for a basic 4 piece shell pack.

Who would buy this kit?

Pick up a Gretsch Renown 4 piece (see link) for the same price and have a kit that is of far nicer quality, IMO.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Gretsch-Renown-Maple-4-Piece-Drum-Kit-in-Ruby-Sparkle-Fade-RN-F604-RSF-/390690081201?pt=US_Drums&hash=item5af6f189b1
 

bobdadruma

Platinum Member
And my Gretsch Renown has 10
The truth is that the amount of lugs really isn't as great a factor as it is cranked up to be.
Personally I don't care for these new Ludwig offerings. That doesn't mean that they are bad drums though. I see no reason why they wouldn't perform really well.
 

porter

Platinum Member
The truth is that the amount of lugs really isn't as great a factor as it is cranked up to be.
Absolutely agreed. 8 lugs is not any kind of disadvantage. My custom kit has 8 lugs on the kick. No big deal

I have to agree, Brad. What is the draw to this kit? You have to build the thing yourself, your drums have huge holes cut in to them for these lugs to go in, the lugs are held in only by the tension of the head so any head changes will result in a mess of lugs falling all over the floor, the colors are horrendous, and for all that you get to pay $1000 for a basic 4 piece shell pack.
They're... not held in by head tension alone, though.
 

Tommy_D

Platinum Member
They're... not held in by head tension alone, though.
Upon second look, they are held in place ever so slightly by the inner lip of the lug coming through the shell. The had tension pulls the lug tightly against the shell. However without a head its a bit precarious if you ask me.

I still don't get what you are getting with this kit though. It looks like Ludwig make the kit intentionally inexpensively, they make you assemble the thing, and they charge quite a premium for it.
 

drumhedd

Senior Member
I still don't get what you are getting with this kit though. It looks like Ludwig make the kit intentionally inexpensively, they make you assemble the thing, and they charge quite a premium for it.
Because if they built a kit in America... with North American Maple shells... with regular lugs already assembled by American workers... you'd have a Classic Maple kit and you'd be paying upwards of $2500.

It's a way to get an intermediate kit that's American-built, with American maple shells for a third of the price. When was the last time you saw a USA maple kit advertised for $8-900 like the Signets are?
 
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