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  #1  
Old 04-25-2008, 09:53 PM
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Default Breaking the bass drum batter

I have gone through two remo coated ambassadors on the batter head on my 18" bass drum in a short period of time and keep kicking holes through them. I play all jazz and some funk on it. It's a gretsch catalina club 18x16 bass drum. I do not use a patch where the beater hits it because it affects the sound in a way that I don't want it to. The beater is the classic felt "cartwheel" shape so it is not too hard. Could it be the angle that the beater is on? Or am I just hitting it too hard? Would a bass drum riser help in this situation?

Would you recommend a tougher head that would be suitable for light jazz? Like the Brian Blade, Greg Hutchinson, Bill Stewart sound...

Thanks
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Old 04-25-2008, 09:57 PM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

It's probably a combination of single ply head, no patch and too much kick...
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Old 04-25-2008, 10:14 PM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

Your Catalina didn't come with the riser?

What kind of head are you using?

-Ryan
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Old 04-25-2008, 10:30 PM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

...and the angle. So yes. Everything you've mentioned is contributing. If the beater is only contacting the head at the top or bottom edge instead of full faced straight on, then less contact area is gonna translate to more wear in a concentrated area. A riser might help. A softer beater certainly. I own about 12 different types, myself. Have you tried "other" types of patches besides the Remo kevlar flam that probably came with your Ambassador head?
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Old 04-25-2008, 10:48 PM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

I use no riser on my 18" and no plans to change my "sound" by doing so. What I did have to change was not using a hard wood beater any more. As much as I like the sound I just popped a 18" bass drum clear ambassador head for the first time ever. Basically the wood beater wore a hole right threw the head at a reh. for a recording session in a rather intense number that evening. At least it wasn't at the recording session itself and I already had a new 18" coated ambassador backup in a box ready to go Caught me by surprise but could see it coming since I don't like or use any type of patch on the target spot for sound reasons and could see the effect the wood beater was taking on the head over time. I've switched back to a very hard felt beater which i've used for 30 years so far with no head breakage on record at least in regards to clear and coated ambassador 18" bass drum heads.
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Old 04-25-2008, 10:55 PM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

I've been using the Aquarian super-thin patch along with the plastic side of a DW beater with great success. The patch has minimal effect on sound but really protects the head well.
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Old 04-25-2008, 11:01 PM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

Quote:
Originally Posted by volvoguy View Post
Your Catalina didn't come with the riser?

What kind of head are you using?

-Ryan
No it did not come with the riser...The head is a remo coated ambassador 18".

Does anyone know how to fix the angle that the beater hits the drum? because only the top half of the beater is striking the bass drum.
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Old 04-26-2008, 12:07 AM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

What pedal are you using??
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Old 04-26-2008, 12:11 AM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

tama jr. with a hard felt cartwheel beater
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Old 04-26-2008, 12:21 AM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

Quote:
Originally Posted by gretsch223 View Post
No it did not come with the riser...The head is a remo coated ambassador 18".

Does anyone know how to fix the angle that the beater hits the drum? because only the top half of the beater is striking the bass drum.
I had to think about this one for a few. Now I may be wrong here, but I dont think there is any way to adjust the pedal for that angle. Its basic geometry. The pivot point on the beater (the shaft) is behind the head. So you will always have the beater hitting the head at an angle. The way I see this is that if the head was not inset behind the hoop and you could get the pedal right even with the head that angle would be minimized. But you would still have a small amount of angle. Now how could we move the head closer to the beater. Angle the kick up slightly (front higher than rear) is one way. You know how a kick as spurs up front? If you look at that with the spurs fully extended you will notice an angle from front to back. This helps a bit. The riser might help ya out here a bit. Perhaps not. Would have to see that setup. Now what the riser will do is get the beater more on the center of the head. You (IMO) dont really want to be dead center. I feel ya get a little better tone when slightly off center. Now I read that you dont like a patch cause it changes the tone. And yes it does to a small extent. But with the classic rock style I play its not a big issue.

Now I have seen beaters that have an angle to the shaft but I for the life of me cant remember brands....

Bottom line here, I dont think that angle is much of an issue.

Hope this helps ya out a bit and sorry if its a bit wordy...

Mike
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Last edited by Pearl Player; 04-26-2008 at 12:26 AM. Reason: Additional Thoughts.
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  #11  
Old 04-28-2008, 04:09 AM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

my catalina club jazz bass drum which is an 18x14 came with a riser.
i thought the gibralter riser actually made the beater hit at a weird angle. it was more than 90 degrees. so i stopped using it.(and it was chewing up my hoop)


as for some sort of patch have you ever considered cutting out a small portion of an old coated head and taping or gluing it to where the beater hits.
ive never done this but i dont think it would have such a drastic change on the sound.

a couple years ago i bought an iron cobra power glide.
with the beater it came with you can change the angle which isnt really a problem now that i dont use the riser.
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Old 04-28-2008, 05:43 AM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

If the angle is the problem and you can't adjust it on the pedal, you could bent the beater shaft a bit with some pliers.
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  #13  
Old 04-29-2008, 01:21 PM
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Default Re: Breaking the bass drum batter

Quote:
Originally Posted by thesilentnoise View Post
my catalina club jazz bass drum which is an 18x14 came with a riser.
i thought the gibralter riser actually made the beater hit at a weird angle. it was more than 90 degrees. so i stopped using it.(and it was chewing up my hoop)


as for some sort of patch have you ever considered cutting out a small portion of an old coated head and taping or gluing it to where the beater hits.
ive never done this but i dont think it would have such a drastic change on the sound.

a couple years ago i bought an iron cobra power glide.
with the beater it came with you can change the angle which isnt really a problem now that i dont use the riser.
hmm thats a nice idea...ill try that. thanks
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