THE DRUM MODIFICATION THREAD.

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
I wanted a softer beater. I have been using a large felt beater but it still felt and sounded a bit hard at times so I took my Taye Metalworks beater and glued a cymbal felt to the wooden side I never use. time will tell how long it lasts, but it will be cheap to replace.
 

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gabrioli

Junior Member
I have a question.
I'm converting an old Pearl Fiberglass Wood 16" floor tom to a small bass drum. I'm thinking about buying wooden bass drum hoops and since those are thicker than regular steel hoops; do I need to buy higher lugs?
 

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STXBob

Gold Member
I have a question.
I'm converting an old Pearl Fiberglass Wood 16" floor tom to a small bass drum. I'm thinking about buying wooden bass drum hoops and since those are thicker than regular steel hoops; do I need to buy higher lugs?
You will need to fabricate some spacers, yes. Depending on what material you choose, your experience in tooling that material, and your shop situation, fabricating these could be fun, or could be a nightmare.

Here's an excellent tutorial on getting the layout for your material.

Material choice is tricky. You want something that won't compress like the foam used in the tutorial. You want something that's relatively easy to machine, and which will present a reasonably attractive result.

McMaster-Carr has a wide selection. I've used nylon and ABS before. You can machine it with simple tools and patience. You'll need to experiment with thickness before you arrive at the appropriate thickness of material for your situation.
 
This summer, I had started to refinish an old Stewart kit, but I did no research, planning or anything else I should have. The shells were incredibly dry and I just started slapping on coloured stain without properly priming or sanding them. Obviously, the shells drank up the stain and came out way too dark for my liking, and now I have a complete mess of a kit (or a more in depth future project, if that's your mindset). Live and learn.

Undaunted, I decided to refinish a Taye ProX 3 piece (13,16,24) in emerald green. It was originally wrapped in a very heavy blue wrap that had started to loosen from the bass drum, and the original plan had been to re-finish the Stewart kit as practice for the Taye. I figured I could learn from my many mistakes and do a better job the second time around.

And for some insane reason, I decided to add sparkles. Because I didn't know any better.

This is the before, during and after.
 

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Right nice job, I'd say. How'd you get the sparkles to stick? What kind of top coat did you apply?

GeeDeeEmm
Thanks! I used Krylon spray glitter, Minwax coloured wood stain and Minwax polyurethane for the top coat. I'm experimenting now on other ways to apply glitter, but without the proper equipment, this is the best I've found.
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
Bought these Puresound Pro snares a few years ago and was never really happy with how they sat on the head with the clip that was supplied. Sometimes straight, sometime not. Easy to change heads but just not happy with how they sounded. I cut two pieces of aluminum rod, and put them through the hems on the ends. They now are straight, sit flat and sound much better. And they still come off easy to change heads. With the snares tensioned, they will not fall out.
 

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downbeat

Junior Member
Bought these Puresound Pro snares a few years ago and was never really happy with how they sat on the head with the clip that was supplied. Sometimes straight, sometime not. Easy to change heads but just not happy with how they sounded. I cut two pieces of aluminum rod, and put them through the hems on the ends. They now are straight, sit flat and sound much better. And they still come of easy to change heads. With the snares tensioned, they will not fall out.

excellent idea!
Thanx!
 

longgun

Gold Member
Bought these Puresound Pro snares a few years ago and was never really happy with how they sat on the head with the clip that was supplied. Sometimes straight, sometime not. Easy to change heads but just not happy with how they sounded. I cut two pieces of aluminum rod, and put them through the hems on the ends. They now are straight, sit flat and sound much better. And they still come of easy to change heads. With the snares tensioned, they will not fall out.
I like that...............thought of doing something similar because the clips can be a PITA
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
I posted the final results in the Your Playing section. But for here is the explanation and procedures. I was talking to a rep from GMS drums at a Drum Clinic and we got to talking about the LP Octo-Cajon. He said he played one in a few acoustic gigs and that got me to thinking I may be able to build one. I was able to obtain a 4 x 14 , 10 ply maple drum shell. I already had some 3mm Luaun sheets that I could use for the top and bottom panels. I traced the shell onto the sheets for size and cut them with a jig saw. Close enough to being round that I could sand down the difference. I used Gorilla Glue wood clue to mount the panels to the shell and used a set of Active snares, and glued and screwed them to the one panel. Lots of sanding to get the shell and panels ready for clear coating. Clear coating coming soon. Attached are some photos of the process. Any questions, please ask.
 

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jabster

Junior Member
Back to drum mods.

So I took apart my Thor set, cut off 4in from each rack tom, sanded the ends flat, and cut new bearing edges, just a 45deg angle on each side leaving a bit of flat in the middle. Then I filled in any imperfections and unused holes with putty, sanded them, and used Rustoleum 2X gloss paint with primer, and finished up with a few coats of high gloss clear coat. I sandblasted all the hardware and again used that 2x gloss paint for that.

And all that was fine, because they're cheap and it'd be hard to actually "ruin" them. ;-)

But now I'm considering getting a new 8x10dia shell and adding that to my kit. And I'm a little concerned with just using spray paint on a nice new shell. Is there anything inherently wrong with what I did? Whatever I do, I'd keep red and black, but a slight difference won't matter to me. I kind of plan on gradually replacing the other toms as well over the next few years, depending on finances and all that. And I'd obviously buy new black hardware.

The whole new drum would cost me around $200 (shell, lugs, heads, iso mount, etc).

I suppose my other option would be to buy used drums on ebay and refinish those, but then I'm taking my chances on getting matched brands and series over time.

So, after all that rambling....will I be ok with just spray painting a new shell?

Thanks,
John
 

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CommanderRoss

Silver Member
Back to drum mods.

So I took apart my Thor set, cut off 4in from each rack tom, sanded the ends flat, and cut new bearing edges, just a 45deg angle on each side leaving a bit of flat in the middle. Then I filled in any imperfections and unused holes with putty, sanded them, and used Rustoleum 2X gloss paint with primer, and finished up with a few coats of high gloss clear coat. I sandblasted all the hardware and again used that 2x gloss paint for that.

And all that was fine, because they're cheap and it'd be hard to actually "ruin" them. ;-)

But now I'm considering getting a new 8x10dia shell and adding that to my kit. And I'm a little concerned with just using spray paint on a nice new shell. Is there anything inherently wrong with what I did? Whatever I do, I'd keep red and black, but a slight difference won't matter to me. I kind of plan on gradually replacing the other toms as well over the next few years, depending on finances and all that. And I'd obviously buy new black hardware.

The whole new drum would cost me around $200 (shell, lugs, heads, iso mount, etc).

I suppose my other option would be to buy used drums on ebay and refinish those, but then I'm taking my chances on getting matched brands and series over time.

So, after all that rambling....will I be ok with just spray painting a new shell?

Thanks,
John
Looks great man! I had a set of Thor's and used them as guinea pigs for my experiments as well (since like you said, there's no "ruining them").

I sanded my hardware with a 200 grit paper & painted them flat black like this as well. The shells took to primer & the paint was easy. Thor's may not be the best kit out there, but after the mods, people loved the look. Never once questioned the brand or quality.

Sold them and bought other "crap kits" to try out other ideas. Turned myself into a Dr. Frankendrums as I'd look for ways to think outside the box for what looked and sounded good.

If the rest of the kit looks like this drum, you're well on your way to being a Doctor too. Keep it up!
 

jabster

Junior Member
Thanks Commander Ross.

Here's the finished set.

My biggest problem with the Thors is the hardware is just so frakking cheap. Several of the lugs have split. The 13-inch still has a broken one, and the floor tom is missing a few on the resonant head. Oh well.

My thoughts are to replace each drum over the next few years: Buy a shell, stain, all new hardware, isolation mounts, etc.

Fun lesson:
1. Sand bearing edge of drum flat.
2. THEN cut the other end off.
3. When trimming the shell, set the fence on the table saw so that it is against the flat bearing edge.

On one of the drums the two bearing edges are probably 20deg out of parallel. Oops.

And honestly, I think the Thors sound a lot better having been cut down.

Maybe I'll eventually sell it for $50. Or $20. Or gas money. :)
 

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bearblastbeats

Senior Member
Had my buddy do a quick refurb on my 76 supraphonic.

We could get it quite back to a chromed mirrored finish so we opted for the black beauty appeal.

All new parts (lugs, rods, throw, etc.) and new heads. The only thing original on this is the shell.

Can't wait to play it.
 

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microkit

Senior Member
Or you could use a paint-strip gel and remove the black paint. I did much the same to heavily scratched up ultra cast and it now looks great. Strip the hardware off, and take your time also make sure you strip the paint in a well ventilated (garage or outside shed) area.
What color did you do the Ultracast? I've always been interested in the Pearl cast snares, but they sure do look dull.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
High!

Well our first post on DW, we hope you dig it like we do!

We make a very cool bass drum adapter we call the LowDown

Its amazing to use. as it makes drumming more comfortable for some people by its innovative quality design plus the enhanced sound performance with a great punch is awesome and when mic'd well forget about it!

We also are the inventor and USA patent holder.

As you can see its very cool and a unique quality design we custom build for any drummers bass set up that you got.

Check it out, You gotta try the LowDown people!

What do you think?

We can make what you like!



A few sample pics of a few LowDown's that we make:



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Okay I'll bite. What is the point/purpose of this? I'm genuinely curious, not being snarky.
 

K Chez

Member
Got a cheap Floor tom to use for potentially a second small kit-ad said it had been re-wrapped. Except the wrap was paper backed prismatic that looks like it was glued/wall paper pasted to the bare wood after the original mylar wrap was removed (along with a good amount of the outer veneer). Not looking for a show room quality refinish, but something that doesn't look so gaudy. Started by removing the "wrap". The drum as I received it...
86618

86619

After having to wet sand off the paper stuck to the wood, this was what I was left with.
866208662186622

Next up I get to use my body shop skills that I really don't have to somehow make a smooth surface as my wrap is going to be the same material as a vehicle wrap. To be continued...
 

CompactDrums

Silver Member
If you use vehicle wrap. Don't use the PSA to adhere it to the shell. It will bubble up around the lugs. Better to leave the backing paper on the wrap.
 

K Chez

Member
Been super busy with work - time for an update!

The tools.... (and some debris that didn't want to be part of the drum anymore)
Tama-Floor-9.jpg

During the filling/finishing process

Tama-Floor-11.jpg

Tama-Floor-12.jpg

Tama-Floor-10.jpg
This took A LOT of wood filler and multiple stages of filling/sanding/removing loose splinters. (Four times total plus a couple more touch ups. Could have got it better, but I wasn't going for showroom quality.) Next step - sealing the surface. I taped off the bearing edges and sealed the inside and out with One Shot clear acrylic. Also made a mahogany tint & scuffed the inside of the shell and refinished to hide some imperfections.

Tama-Floor-13.jpg

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Tama-Floor-15.jpg

Tama-Floor-16.jpg

More to come...
 

K Chez

Member
Nothing left to do but wrap this sucker up!

Tama-Floor-17.jpg
Sized out a piece of 3M 1080 matte black wrap vinyl and, figuring that there would still be surface imperfections that the matte black would amplify, I made a graphic of a digital soundwave and cut it out of gloss black vinyl. ( was rolling at this point and didn't take a pic of this stage).

The end result...

Tama-Floor-18.jpgTama-Floor-19.jpg

Drums sounds good and doesn't look too bad considering what I started out with. Currently doing an oxaclic acid bath on the legs to get them looking proper.
 
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