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  #1  
Old 01-05-2008, 08:41 PM
wormtownpaul wormtownpaul is offline
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Default compression springs versus expansion springs

I've read that the main difference between old Ludwig speed king pedals and old Camco pedals is that the Speed King used a compression spring and the Camco an expansion spring. Also read that the DW5000 pedal and all pedals of that basic design are essentially modeled after the old Camco. I just read where the Trick Pro 1-V Detonator uses, like the Ludwig, a compression spring. It costs however a gulping $325.

I always preferred Speed Kings to Camco's, and DW pedals have never felt quite right to me. Can anyone explain to me the real difference between the two types of springs, and if anyone other than Trick Pro and the new Ludwig Speed King (which I've read is a dog) makes a pedal with a compression spring?

Thanks
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  #2  
Old 01-05-2008, 10:58 PM
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harryconway harryconway is offline
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Default Re: compression springs versus expansion springs

There's at least one "other" main difference between the Camco and the Speed King, being the Camco is a chain drive and the Speed King is direct drive. I have seen a Camco strap drive, but they are rare. The only other 2 compression spring pedals I know of is the Tama 6750, a sorta Speed King clone with twin compression springs but strap drive http://www.tama.com/history/history_detail.asp?i=18 and the Tama 6755 King Beat, a single compression spring direct drive pedal http://www.tama.com/history/history_detail.asp?i=13 which looks much like the Trick. Both Tama pedals are 70's vintage. The Speed King, while not a "modern" pedal (patented in 1936), is certainly no dog. John Bonham, Ian Paice, and Carl Palmer (to name 3) all did quite well with the Speed King. As far as compression vs. expansion, on the compression side, your foot "compresses" the spring(s) as it pushes the footboard down and the beater makes contact with the drum head. The pedals rebound action is driven by the spring decompressing (pushing) . With the expansion spring, it's an opposite situation. The foot drives the beater towards the drum head, and the spring(s) expand. Pedal rebound is driven by spring contraction (pulling).
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Last edited by harryconway; 01-05-2008 at 11:13 PM.
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Old 01-06-2008, 12:48 AM
wormtownpaul wormtownpaul is offline
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Default Re: compression springs versus expansion springs

Didn't mean to suggest the Speed King in general is a dog. To the contrary, I love the old models. I've simply read (without first hand experience) that the new reissue has some structural problems. Thanks for your insight. I wonder why no one is making compression models other than Ludwig and the super expensive Trick Pro?
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Old 01-06-2008, 02:14 AM
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harryconway harryconway is offline
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Default Re: compression springs versus expansion springs

Quote:
Originally Posted by wormtownpaul View Post
I've simply read (without first hand experience) that the new reissue has some structural problems.
I think, quite frankly, that people so often just get hung up on "the older ones were better". They don't make 'em like they used to. And since there are plenty of old ones on eBay ($25-50), why buy a new one ($99+) I've certainly seen no quality issues with current models, which are virtually unchanged save for an additional bushing to try to eliminate the classic "Speed King squeak". The one feature I think does help is adding a floor plate to the venerable "King".
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Old 01-06-2008, 10:10 PM
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Les Ismore Les Ismore is offline
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Default Re: compression springs versus expansion springs

Is it an optical illusion, or are thos screw heads 'not' countersunk on the bottom of the foot plate?

I wonder why no one is making compression models other than Ludwig and the super expensive Trick Pro?

Shows you the power of advertising.

Speed King in dire need of a materials upgrade. The cam/shaft assembly is pot metal, the rear hinge is a joke and the connecting strap is steel on steel.

All this equals a light weight feel, but modern drummers don't play their bass drums anymore, they play the pedal. Speed King is not up to the punishment of pedal play, it needs to be strengthened.

Last edited by Les Ismore; 01-06-2008 at 10:21 PM.
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Old 01-07-2008, 03:14 PM
wormtownpaul wormtownpaul is offline
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Default Re: compression springs versus expansion springs

Les,
That was a curious line, "drummers don't play their bass drum any more, they play their pedals." What did you mean by that?
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Old 01-08-2008, 10:50 AM
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harryconway harryconway is offline
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Default Re: compression springs versus expansion springs

Quote:
Originally Posted by Les Ismore View Post
Is it an optical illusion, or are thos screw heads 'not' countersunk on the bottom of the foot plate?
All screws are countersunk, to my knowledge. My drummer bud modified two of his Speed King pedals this way.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Les Ismore View Post
Speed King in dire need of a materials upgrade. The cam/shaft assembly is pot metal, the rear hinge is a joke and the connecting strap is steel on steel.
Agreed, but Ludwig probably wants to keep the nostalgia of it all. Most "hard hitters" from the 70's on moved to the Ghost or Camco...and beyond.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Les Ismore View Post
All this equals a light weight feel, but modern drummers don't play their bass drums anymore, they play the pedal. Speed King is not up to the punishment of pedal play, it needs to be strengthened.
Can't argue with that at all. Except, probably from Ludwigs side, why spend any money at all updating the Speed King when no one's gonna buy it anyways. Young drummers want new, fresh, Ironsonicdragonhammernator pedals. Not grandpaws Speed King. That's advertising too. I can't play a Speed King to save my life, but I've owned 3 over the last 20 years. You can pick 'em up for less than $25 at swap meets and such. I'm sure I'll own another one someday. Kinda like a VW bus.
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Old 01-08-2008, 11:26 AM
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Default Re: compression springs versus expansion springs

What's there to upgrade? The Speedkings I've got, which are modern reissues seem pretty comparable to a DW 5000. The only difference is the lack of a floor plate, but it seems fine without it. The foot plate seems to be made of the same type materials as the 5000. The cams and cam arms seem beefier than the old Speedkings of yore. My DW500 had to be repaired at least 3 times a year compared to the zero repairs I've had with Speedy (my backup speedking is dusty and lonely). One of these days I'm gonna toy with putting a footplate on one just for curiosity's sake but really it's perfectly fine. Velcro tape on the bottom makes up for no plate spurs. Now I've never used one on a modern style kick, tuned low with pinstripes and pillows, so it may be a dog in that case, but on a tight kick with felts, it's the bomb.

--LG
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Old 01-08-2008, 09:26 PM
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Default Re: compression springs versus expansion springs

Quote:
Originally Posted by wormtownpaul View Post
Les,
That was a curious line, "drummers don't play their bass drum any more, they play their pedals." What did you mean by that?
Just as there's technique with the hands, there's technique with the feet. Modern players have gotten away from total foot technique, total meaning using the foot, pedal and bass drum together to maximize playability.

Today (with few exceptions) the bass drum is pretty much out of the equation. The heads are tuned and muffled to not produce a 'dribble' off the beater head (playing the pedal). Old school drummers like Buddy Rich and the guy from Led Zeppelin, etc. would use the rebound of the bass drum head to their advantage, actually making playing easier (playing the bas drum).

Lighter used to be better, it was easier to stop the pedal and set it in the other direction with the slightest movement of the foot, the head was providing the bulk of the 'spring' and you won't need 'foot board breaking' force to make this happen. Today drummers want the 'action' centered on the foot board, not the drum head. Its not at all unlike getting bounce on your snare head, as opposed to all wrists.

Too little 'dribble' is a disaster and most drummers get scared of when this happens and never think to venture past it. A lot of 'dribble' (or should we say "The right amount") can be mastered/controlled with amassing results, a lost art.
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