Ongoing hi hat problem

I have been having a hi hat problem that has been ongoing for at least 10 months. What happens is that I will be playing my hi hat, and then it will suddenly close as im playing it, and it will stay closed. But then, when I try to open it, it will autumatcally close again without me doing anything. I would then do that another few times, and the same thing would happen. Then it would be fine for a while, and then maybe a week later or so, it would happen again.

This has been an ongoing problem that I cant seem to figure out. Anyone know what I should do?
 

Red Menace

Platinum Member
First lets isolate the problem. Is the clutch falling on you? Is the spring in the hihat pedal failing? Is the pedal connected to the hihat stand failing?
 

BillRayDrums

Gold Member
I have been having a hi hat problem that has been ongoing for at least 10 months. What happens is that I will be playing my hi hat, and then it will suddenly close as im playing it, and it will stay closed. But then, when I try to open it, it will autumatcally close again without me doing anything. I would then do that another few times, and the same thing would happen. Then it would be fine for a while, and then maybe a week later or so, it would happen again.

This has been an ongoing problem that I cant seem to figure out. Anyone know what I should do?
Tighten your hi hat clutch more often! Because you tighten it once won't ensure that it will stay that way. When you're playing on them they create lots of vibrations and those vibrations cause things to loosen up.

Now that you know this make sure to check on all the parts of your kit, make sure they're not loose.
 

lefty2

Platinum Member
Sounds like you sould get a higher quality clutch, or torque it down real tight. There are some real fancy ones on the market now. I've got a Yamaha and a old Tama. They both work fine.
 

MileHighDrummer

Senior Member
I've played on some real junk and never had that problem. Either you have a bad clutch or you're not securing it properly. If you feel you're tightening it properly, get a new one. Having it close spontaneously is not good for playing.
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
It sounds like air lock.

If the top hat hits the bottom exactly perfectly all the way around at the same time, the air inside the two cymbals creates a vacuum, and holds the cymbals together. It only occurs now and then because the chances of both cymbals hitting each other perfectly all the way around at the same exact time are small.

Your hi-hat stand should have a little screw under the bottom cymbal. Adjust this so your bottom hi-hat is not 100% perfectly flat (even just a hair off from flat is fine) and this should solve your issue.
 

BillRayDrums

Gold Member
One more thing- put a bit of lube on the tightening screw on the side of the clutch; threads will bind if they are not lubed properly. Make sure that's not the case.
 

Naigewron

Platinum Member
First thing that came to my mind is that he has a drop clutch and doesn't realise it. But I'm most likely wrong.
 

Aeolian

Platinum Member
When this happens take note of what moves with the pedal and what doesn't. Does the rod move up and down? Is the clutch following it but the cymbals stay together.

I really like the Remo quarter turn clutches. I stamp down pretty hard and have a compound chain Pearl stand and have never had any issues although I carry a spare along with the original Pearl clutch. I like how the tension is managed on the cymbal, and it never comes loose in the middle of the night.

More likely the pull rod is coming undone. I've you're not constantly breaking down and setting up the stand the upper pull rod comes loose and may or may not follow the pedal depending on if the threads catch. Many drummers will absent mindedly spin the clutch to make sure the rod is tight without even realizing that they're doing it. Just a habit developed over years of having them come apart.
 
When this happens take note of what moves with the pedal and what doesn't. Does the rod move up and down? Is the clutch following it but the cymbals stay together.

I really like the Remo quarter turn clutches. I stamp down pretty hard and have a compound chain Pearl stand and have never had any issues although I carry a spare along with the original Pearl clutch. I like how the tension is managed on the cymbal, and it never comes loose in the middle of the night.

More likely the pull rod is coming undone. I've you're not constantly breaking down and setting up the stand the upper pull rod comes loose and may or may not follow the pedal depending on if the threads catch. Many drummers will absent mindedly spin the clutch to make sure the rod is tight without even realizing that they're doing it. Just a habit developed over years of having them come apart.


The clutch does not move. I think the rod does move.
 

Aeolian

Platinum Member
If the rod is moving within the clutch, the clutch just needs to be tightened up a bit. There are some that instead of the standard set screw lock have a sort of clamp with the screw off to the side pulling the clamp together. The one that came with my dual chain Pearl is like this. Never had one of those come loose during a set. But even though I do a lot of heel up stamping I've never had the simple set screw type thing on the Remo clutch come loose. I did have my old DW come loose a couple of times, but that's a pretty quick thing to reach over and re-set.

If it's something else, that's more involved. The next time it happens make note of what moves and what doesn't.
 
If the rod is moving within the clutch, the clutch just needs to be tightened up a bit. There are some that instead of the standard set screw lock have a sort of clamp with the screw off to the side pulling the clamp together. The one that came with my dual chain Pearl is like this. Never had one of those come loose during a set. But even though I do a lot of heel up stamping I've never had the simple set screw type thing on the Remo clutch come loose. I did have my old DW come loose a couple of times, but that's a pretty quick thing to reach over and re-set.

If it's something else, that's more involved. The next time it happens make note of what moves and what doesn't.
The rod does move. The cymbals seem to lift a tiny bit, but then they close completly.
 
It sounds like air lock.

If the top hat hits the bottom exactly perfectly all the way around at the same time, the air inside the two cymbals creates a vacuum, and holds the cymbals together. It only occurs now and then because the chances of both cymbals hitting each other perfectly all the way around at the same exact time are small.

Your hi-hat stand should have a little screw under the bottom cymbal. Adjust this so your bottom hi-hat is not 100% perfectly flat (even just a hair off from flat is fine) and this should solve your issue.
I tried this, but it keeps happening.
 
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