DRUMMERWORLD OFFICIAL DISCUSSION FORUM   

Go Back   DRUMMERWORLD OFFICIAL DISCUSSION FORUM > Your Place > Your Gear

Your Gear Show your Gear - Pictures - Descriptions

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 06-13-2013, 08:22 AM
Winston_Wolf's Avatar
Winston_Wolf Winston_Wolf is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Posts: 1,227
Default Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

I finally made some real progress on updating my Rocker kit so I thought I'd post up some quick and dirty pics and the background of the kit.

I've had this kit for going on a couple of years now. Mid 80s Ludwig Rocker kit, used but not (too) abused, with a black wrap finish. This has been my "throw it in the car and go" gigging kit and it has served me well, but I knew it deserved a little more care and attention.

I briefly owned a Vistalite kit, and played a '68 Psych Red kit in college so I've been dying to get back in the Ludwig saddle. I wasn't really looking for another kit when I happened into the Rockers, but I thought in spite of their "budget" status I might be able to make something nice out of them. Knowing they were Monroe-made maple/poplar shells just made me even more excited to find out whet they could really do.



The finish was lifting and rippling on all of the drums, and a few lugs were broken. I got enough lugs on eBay to get the 12, 16 and 22 up and running back when I first got it, but the 13 was taken apart for donor lugs and a little experimentation. Last week I decided it was time to really begin overhauling all of the drums and get them all working and looking great. Off with all of the wrap!



In removing the wrap from the 13 I discovered that the raw shell was nice enough, so I knew if the others matched going with a natural finish was an option. I considered a few other vintage wrap options like Sky Blue Pearl and Psych Red, but once I committed to unwrapping all of them and finding all of the wood looked great I decided showing off the shells was the best choice.



Once I had all of the wraps off I had to take care of the glue residue from the tape used to hold the seam down. Removing 30-year-old glue was a lot harder to do than I thought it might but with a pad sander and a lot of sandpaper I sanded the shells smooth and got all of the glue removed.

I decided on clear satin because I thought it would be a little more forgiving with my lack of refinishing experience but it really does look great too. I did four coats, lightly sanded after each one. I was really surprised just how easy it was and the finish came out really nice.



So now I'm SUPER excited with these. They look great, but most importantly they SOUND amazing. There is something about the Ludwig sound, and these drums certainly have it. I love my Mapex kit too, but they sound completely different. They're very clean, very "contemporary" for lack of a better word, but the Ludwig kit is the exact opposite. Normally "fat and dirty" wouldn't be much of a complement, but that's how I'd describe the Rockers, and I love them for it. They're a joy to play!
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 06-13-2013, 11:35 PM
rmandelbaum's Avatar
rmandelbaum rmandelbaum is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Austin, TX USA
Posts: 2,049
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Awesome work, they look fantastic!
__________________
DW Collectors
Vintage Superstars
Roland TD-20
Misc. Snares
My Web Site
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-13-2013, 11:38 PM
opentune's Avatar
opentune opentune is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Posts: 3,743
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Hey Great job! hit them damn things, enjoy 'em.
__________________
Louis
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-14-2013, 12:08 AM
larryace's Avatar
larryace larryace is offline
"Uncle Larry"
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: In beautiful Bucks County, PA
Posts: 15,510
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Sportin wood! Way to go!
__________________
Sucking all the fun right out of life....
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-14-2013, 02:26 PM
bigiainw's Avatar
bigiainw bigiainw is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Scotland
Posts: 1,059
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Those look great. it makes you wonder why they wrapped them in the first place?
__________________
Hit me with your rhythm stick
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-14-2013, 04:32 PM
longgun's Avatar
longgun longgun is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 1,413
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Kit looks great WW !
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-14-2013, 05:21 PM
Winston_Wolf's Avatar
Winston_Wolf Winston_Wolf is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Posts: 1,227
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Thanks for all the kind words guys! :)

I wondered why they were wrapped too, since I think the wood looks pretty good. I guess that speaks for Ludwig's standards that "pretty good" isn't good enough for their Super Classic shells. There are some tiny knots and blemishes that probably kept these particular shells out of the running, and of course with the paint on the inside there's no telling what kind of flaws they covered up there.

Of course, you can't rule out total dumb luck either, but I have a feeling that more Rockers look like my drums under the wrap and there are some great looking shells lurking under the plastic.

I think the USA-made Rockers are a real sleeper hit for anyone wanting Ludwig and just can't spend the money on a pro-level kit. The hardware is really the biggest shortcoming, and buying a "fixer upper" isn't everyone's goal, but I know that sound-wise these drums can hang with anything out there and with a little care they can look good too.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-14-2013, 05:38 PM
Adam B's Avatar
Adam B Adam B is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 186
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

I could never get over the fact that the Rocker shells had an inner layer of particle board. It just looks too tacky for me. But if they sound good, they sound good.
__________________
My youtube chanel.
My Photoblog
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-14-2013, 11:04 PM
Winston_Wolf's Avatar
Winston_Wolf Winston_Wolf is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Posts: 1,227
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam B View Post
I could never get over the fact that the Rocker shells had an inner layer of particle board. It just looks too tacky for me. But if they sound good, they sound good.
That's just paint on the inside of the Rocker II. The shell itself is maple/poplar/poplar/maple like the Super Classic shell.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 06-17-2013, 06:24 PM
larryz's Avatar
larryz larryz is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 1,909
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

The 80s Made in USA Rockers are drumming's best kept secret. I love my kit.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 01-31-2015, 02:19 AM
Winston_Wolf's Avatar
Winston_Wolf Winston_Wolf is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Posts: 1,227
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

So, a year and a half later, I finally thought to take some new pics and post some updates!

After thinking these drums would look even more interesting with some wood hoops I jumped in with both feet and got some.

In the drum room:











And a couple "action shots" from a gig last September:





So this is my home and gigging set, with the Mapex kit on band rehearsal space duty. I love both kits, but the Ludwigs just have "something" that makes them so much more fun to play.

As currently set up I'm using:

12x11" tom with Modern Vintage II over Modern Vintage medium
13x12" tom with Modern Vintage II over Modern Vintage medium
16x16" tom with Deep Vintage II over Modern Vintage medium
24x16" bass with Super Kick 2 and Fiberskyn PS3 reso

14x8" Supralite with Deep Vintage II over Evans 300.

Also pictured at home is:
Paiste 14" 404 Sound Edge hi hats
Dream Bliss 10" splash
Paiste 18" PST7 thin crash
Paiste 20" 404 ride (as a crash)
Meinl 22" M Series medium ride

The gigging cymbals are:
Zildjian 15" Mastersound hi hats
Paiste 18" PST7 medium crash
Dream Bliss 10" splash
Sabian APX 20" crash
Sabian APX 24" ride

Thanks for looking!

Last edited by Winston_Wolf; 01-31-2015 at 05:07 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01-31-2015, 02:22 AM
thunderstruck thunderstruck is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Ohio
Posts: 372
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

That is just a great looking drum kit.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 01-31-2015, 03:31 AM
Pyromaniac777's Avatar
Pyromaniac777 Pyromaniac777 is offline
Silver Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Idaho
Posts: 516
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Wow! It looks even better with the new wood hoops!
__________________
Pyromaniac777
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 01-31-2015, 04:18 AM
Superman's Avatar
Superman Superman is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Metropolis
Posts: 207
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Awesome looking kit..makes me want to try the same project. So sweet looking.
__________________
Mapex Saturn Drums
Sabian HHX Evolutions
Pearl Reference/DW Collectors snare
DW 9000 hardware
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 01-31-2015, 06:13 AM
valkyrievf2x valkyrievf2x is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Ringgold, GA
Posts: 107
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Wow!!!
I always thought the Rocker II's had the less pretty wood underneath. Apparently, that is not always the case... Was the change to the lugs on the bass drum a cosmetic decision, or an practical one? I've found those lugs are not very sturdy (just replaced a broken one a couple of days ago on mine--I have Rocker II as well).

Rockers are such good drums! Extra love for the Rocker II's for obvious reasons ;)

Great job on the drums!
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 01-31-2015, 07:43 AM
Winston_Wolf's Avatar
Winston_Wolf Winston_Wolf is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Posts: 1,227
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Thanks guys!

The bass lugs aren't a change, but an entirely different bass drum. It's an 80s Pearl MX that I also "unwrapped" and lacquered.

In the last year I joined a new band that's a lot louder and heavier than what I had been doing, so I decided to move up to a 24" bass with sturdier hardware and the Pearl was a "right price at the right time" kind of purchase.

If there's any real drawback to the 80s Rocker drums, it's the hardware. The bass spurs on the Rocker II's aren't great, and the lugs on all of the drums are really prone to cracking at the screw mount.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 06-28-2015, 08:49 PM
Winston_Wolf's Avatar
Winston_Wolf Winston_Wolf is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Posts: 1,227
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

I just played out last night, so I thought I'd update the thread with some new pics.

I got a LOT of complements about the drums. The sound engineer said they were the most open and "woody" sounding drums he's ever run before and loved how big they sounded.









While getting ready for the gig I decided to try out some new tom batters and went with Remo clear Vintage Emperors. These drums really prefer 2-ply heads and with the Vintage Emperors I got a TON of tone but also a lot more snap than I usually get. Having that blend of attack and a punch of drum tone behind it sounds really satisfying. I'm REALLY impressed with these heads and I think they're my new favorite right now.

More pics and music on our Facebook page...

https://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Bre...homepage_panel
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 06-28-2015, 09:16 PM
bobdadruma's Avatar
bobdadruma bobdadruma is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: second measure of a fill-in
Posts: 10,747
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

That is like finding gold! I can just imagine your face when you discovered that you had great looking natural shells hiding underneath that worn wrap.
__________________
I kind of like old drums:)
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 06-28-2015, 09:43 PM
larryace's Avatar
larryace larryace is offline
"Uncle Larry"
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: In beautiful Bucks County, PA
Posts: 15,510
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Stupidly enough, I think I prefer the straight shelled Ludwig tone to the vintage re-ringed tone. Better edges. Outfit them with the large classic lugs if the Rockers hware is crap. That drum set looks like it sounds great. If you're going to just have one rack, you might as well go big, right? You have a seriously cool looking vibe going on there man.

If you posted a sounclip, I'd bet there would be no objections.
__________________
Sucking all the fun right out of life....
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 06-28-2015, 11:20 PM
Winston_Wolf's Avatar
Winston_Wolf Winston_Wolf is offline
Gold Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Posts: 1,227
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bobdadruma View Post
That is like finding gold! I can just imagine your face when you discovered that you had great looking natural shells hiding underneath that worn wrap.
Absolutely! You never know what might be hiding under the wrap, and even though finding an ugly knot wouldn't have been too disappointing I really was stunned at how nice all of the shells looked.

Quote:
Originally Posted by larryace View Post
Stupidly enough, I think I prefer the straight shelled Ludwig tone to the vintage re-ringed tone. Better edges. Outfit them with the large classic lugs if the Rockers hware is crap. That drum set looks like it sounds great. If you're going to just have one rack, you might as well go big, right? You have a seriously cool looking vibe going on there man.

If you posted a sounclip, I'd bet there would be no objections.
Thanks Larry! To me it's not just the straight shell, but that they're 4-ply too. They're pretty thin and light and when they're tuned to the sweet spot you hit the drum and you can hear (and feel) the whole drum resonating.

I've considered getting some classic lugs (hole spacing is the same) but I enjoy celebrating that these are "just" Rocker II's and the lugs are a big part of that.

The club's owner recorded us and is giving us the raw multitracks this week so as soon as I get them I'll post up some clips!
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 07-02-2015, 12:09 AM
Drumolator Drumolator is offline
Platinum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: central Louisiana
Posts: 2,049
Default Re: Unwrapped Ludwig Rockers!

Those are great looking drums! You did a great job with them. Peace and goodwill.
__________________
Mark Wellman

Gretsch Catalina toms and BD / Pacific SX (snare) / Sabian / Evans / ProMark
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are Off
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off




All times are GMT +2. The time now is 06:14 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Bernhard Castiglioni's DRUMMERWORLD.com