Tips for faster setup/teardown times

Trip McNealy

Gold Member
My biggest timesaver is using straight stands that I don't pull apart. Pull them out of the bag, extend them to the desired height and they're ready to go. In general, I try to avoid pulling apart my stands more than I absolutely have to. Not even my hihat stand gets pulled apart when I pack it in my bag.

Other than that, memory locks on floor tom legs is a big timesaver, and a tape-marked drum rug shows where everything goes.

I can have my kit from bags to stage in ten minutes if needed (rack tom, two floor toms, five cymbal stands, hihat, snare)
Ditto all around!! I use the same methods.


Platinum Member
This might go without saying, but especially if we aren't going on first, I do a mock setup off stage to get things set on tom legs and cymbal stands and what not. Then when it's our turn, we just haul it all up and I'm ready to go in literally a few minutes. I can't remember the last time I wasn't the one waiting on string players as they tuned and figure out their pedal settings. Also helps that I use a small kit. Sometimes only one tom.


Gold Member
Set-up took me 7 min 57 seconds
Set-down took me 6 min 58 seconds

What? Me a geek? How dare you : )

I only have 1 up 1 down, kick, snare, HH, ride and crash

Anyone want to challenge my time?



Silver Member
Ah. I get it. That's just the name of the game sometimes. It's the nature of the instrument you deal with, the other musicians (save for the keyboardist) will always be done before you. Unless you have minions.

I got minions and it definitely helps. If you can get pretty female minions, then people will be flocking to you anyway ;)
Where can one get Minions? Guitar Center? Musicians Friend? Craigslist? I gotta get me some minions.