Rack Toms Angled or Flat

PetesPonies

Junior Member
Year old, but interesting thread. Why do some people sit close to the steering wheel in a car and others sit way, back, even tilted farther back? Everyone sees and feels differently. And/or likes the look enough to alter their opinion about what works for them. I like the rack toms angled. I can see why many tilt the snare away . . just ergonomics with the snare being close to your body, your arms being higher. If don't want to move your body away as you use the snare, angling it away, helps your arms fall right to the correct spot on the snare. Depending on your seat height, all these factors are changed, for all the drums . . .so back to my opening statement . .why do some sit close to the steering wheel . . . . .
 
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KamaK

Platinum Member
.so back to my opening statement . .why do some sit close to the steering wheel . . . . .
Because they learned to drive before power steering was invented and they think they need leverage at 10/2.

If you learned to drive after power steering (and airbags), you likely sit farther away with a 4/8 or 3/9, and the only time you need 10/2 is when you blow a tire up front or are driving high-speed on dirt.

In addition, before power brakes, you occasionally had to literally stand on the brake and pull yourself toward the pedals with the steering wheels... Like a full on double footed 150kg leg press at the gym.
 

J-Boogie

Gold Member
For me the toms need to be at a slight angle, not flat. I like economy of motion and to play my toms, I dont lift my shoulders straight upwards, instead I sorta shift my elbows forward, the higher I go to reach a tom, the more angle I need to be comfortable. I dig the concept of flat toms, seems like it would be the perfect form, but with my technique and height, a flat tom with have me smacking the rims.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Because they learned to drive before power steering was invented and they think they need leverage at 10/2.

If you learned to drive after power steering (and airbags), you likely sit farther away with a 4/8 or 3/9, and the only time you need 10/2 is when you blow a tire up front or are driving high-speed on dirt.

In addition, before power brakes, you occasionally had to literally stand on the brake and pull yourself toward the pedals with the steering wheels... Like a full on double footed 150kg leg press at the gym.
Or they are short. My wife is 5'3, I am 6'0. I can't even get in her car without moving the seat back first. Conversely, she can't reach the pedals in my car at all until she moves the seat forward. You can't judge a person's height when you see them drive by. FWIW, I will be doing a power steering delete in the future.

My toms are mostly flat. There is a slight angle so the rims are pretty even with the snare. They aren't table flat, but close. I tower over my kit and have to reach up for nothing. My arms and hands get to stay on the same plane and only really have to move laterally.
 

PetesPonies

Junior Member
Because they learned to drive before power steering was invented and they think they need leverage at 10/2.

If you learned to drive after power steering (and airbags), you likely sit farther away with a 4/8 or 3/9, and the only time you need 10/2 is when you blow a tire up front or are driving high-speed on dirt.

In addition, before power brakes, you occasionally had to literally stand on the brake and pull yourself toward the pedals with the steering wheels... Like a full on double footed 150kg leg press at the gym.
Ehh . i don't think it's that cut and dry. But certainly non power makes a difference in leverage, where you are sitting. But the diameter of the wheels changed, as power was used. Older cars without power had larger steering wheels. I started driving in 1975. I sit relatively close to the wheel compared to others. IO can't stand being far away, I feel not in control . .makes no difference to me whether it is power steering or not ( I own many of both types ). The point I was trying to make it, much of this is just personal preference. Once you choose your sitting height, your distance from the drums, along with your own physical measurements . . you can adjust the drums to fit your needs.
 

wildbill

Platinum Member
I like a little angle towards me.

Much more important to me is rim height though.
I like all my rims to touch at the same height.
I rarely see others set up like that.

Like this:
 

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Tamaefx

Silver Member


Simon Philips plays big toms relatively flats ; on this picture (from his drummer world page) you see how he has to reach the rack toms.
To me me it seems awkward and strange to have to raise the elbows that much, really above the snare playing position.

But still he's so brilliant at what he does, and does it much better than average... He is one of 4 favourite drummers (being : Ian Paice, Simon Philips, Mike Portnoy, Ian Mosley)

I guess Simon Philips found a way - as he did with the low hi hat played left handed though he is right handed.
 
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mrfingers

Senior Member
IMO 20 inch kick makes flatter tom angles more likely. Not for me, tho, with 22” kick- I need slight angle to keep away from rim shots( I sit high and have longer than ave. arm length).
 

Morrisman

Platinum Member
Depends on how high you sit. If the seat is tall, you can reach down to flat drums.
If you’re not so high up you’ll need to angle the drums.

If you sit really low with high toms, they’ll need a steep angle like in the 80’s.

The bottom line is the the stick shouldn’t stretch below the line of your forearm to hit the drum, and you shouldn’t have to contort yourself to hit a drum.
Whatever is comfortable for you.
 

Chollyred

Senior Member
Was just watching a new video of Todd Sucherman playing a new kit. His toms have a slight tilt toward him; but what surprised me was the height of his snare! Maybe he can do this since he plays a traditional grip? Me playing match grip would constantly be either smacking the rims, or having to hold my elbows up at an incredibly uncomfortable angle.

 

bud7h4

Silver Member


Simon Philips plays big tom relatively flats ; on this picture (from his drummer world page) you see how he has to reach the rack toms.
To me me it seems awkward and strange to have to raise the elbows that much, really above the snare playing position.

But still he's so brilliant at what he does, and does it much better than average... He is one of 4 favourite drummers (being : Ian Paice, Simon Philips, Mike Portnoy, Ian Mosley)

I guess Simon Philips found a way - as he did with the low hi hat played left handed though he is right handed.
I'm not criticizing a great like S. Phillips but I see his tom setup as an example of how not to do it. It works for him obviously, but really, what wouldn't?
 
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