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  #1  
Old 12-14-2008, 05:38 AM
Flam_Taps
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Default Gilbratar Linear Bass Drum Pedal

I just got one of these pedals at a local music store for $58. The reason it was so cheap, was because a local drum shop went out of business and this other music store picked up a lot of the merchandise.

I've just had the opportunity to practice with it for 30 minutes, but this seems to be a super responsive pedal--very fast with a natural and neutral feel to it. Fast doubles are pretty easy with this thing, although the volume of the doubles themselves seem to be lower in relation to single beats, and indeed, the overall volumes possible with this pedal across the spectrum of standard technique are not nearly as loud as is possible with pedals such as DW or Iron Cobra.

Because of the design, and because it's a fairly large pedal, it is necessary to sit back away from the set by a couple of inches more than I'm used to, but adjusting to that slight difference should be worthwhile given the benefits of an extremely fast and natural-feeling action for jazz, latin and fusion style playing.

I would not recommend this pedal for heavy rock or metal playing, but most metal players use double pedals nowadays anyway so that's probably a moot point.

The beater that comes with this pedal is very large and flat like a felt pancake, and I've found that by switching to a wooden Tama Iron Cobra beater the relative lack of very loud volume possible with this Gilbratar can be offset by increased punchiness. There are hardly any adjustments possible with this pedal, but it feels good "as is" and I probably wouldn't be interested in adjusting the beater angle or footboard height anyway, even if I could. In terms of spring resistance, there is a spring running parallel to the base plate, under the footboard, but I'm not certain what tightening or loosening it could possibly accomplish because the entire point of this pedal lies in the minimal resistance, both in the down stroke and the return action.

I could get used to this thing very quickly. It might become my preferred single pedal, and I own several nice pedals, including an Iron Cobra flexi-strap, an Axis-A, an Airlogic Percussion springless compressed air pedal, a couple of old Speed Kings, a Remo pedal designed after the old Yamaha fp910, a double DW5000 and the Pearl Eliminator double.
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  #2  
Old 12-14-2008, 07:30 AM
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harryconway harryconway is offline
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Default Re: Gilbratar Linear Bass Drum Pedal

Excellent review. Not that I'll run out and buy one...but it's good to know that "more than one" person in the world likes this pedal. And perhaps, more to the point, why it's so important to try "everything you can get your feet on" when purchasing a bass pedal. Cause you never know...
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Old 12-14-2008, 03:45 PM
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Default Re: Gilbratar Linear Bass Drum Pedal

Now that have had the opportunity to play around with this pedal some more, I wanted to add that it is better to keep your foot back on the sweet spot (while using both heel down and while up on the ball of your foot) because jamming your toes up next to the front end of the footboard causes you to lose leverage, decreases the volume even more, and seems to defeat the purpose of this pedal in terms of feel. Another word I didn't use in describing it is "balanced" but if your heel isn't all the way back to the end of the footboard it feels a little like you're just trying to kick the bass drum with your foot rather than even using a pedal. Again, because of this, rather than exactly the size of the pedal, it is necessary to sit back a few additional inches from the set.
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Old 12-14-2008, 04:17 PM
Flam_Taps
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Default Re: Gilbratar Linear Bass Drum Pedal

When you keep your toes up at the front end of the footboard, you aren't getting the full effect of the linear motion rod and because the pedal relies upon the full range of the rod to provide its natural motion, if you don't stay back on the footboard you seem to be defeating the action and responsiveness by not letting the beater swing back fully. Everything about this pedal, including volume control, seems directly related to where your foot happens to be on the footboard. for greater volume, move the ball of your foot back even farther toward you. I find that I can play samba doubles with heel-down on this pedal at speeds previously only possible heel-up on standard design pedals. I consider this to be a good thing.

Hope all this commentary helps.
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Old 12-14-2008, 04:46 PM
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Default Re: Gilbratar Linear Bass Drum Pedal

Another thing just occurred to me-- you probably wouldn't like this pedal (so much) if you're a "bury the beater" player. Or maybe it would be more accurate to say that you probably wouldn't NEED this pedal in that case because unlike most other pedals, this pedal seems designed to work and feel the way it does by maximizing the effect of a free-swinging beater. That's probably why I've been referring to it as having a "natural" and "balanced" motion. Burying the beater with this Gilbratar linear pedal would be like buying a Ferrari to drive your kid to soccer practice.
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Old 12-14-2008, 06:48 PM
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Default Re: Gilbratar Linear Bass Drum Pedal

Another thing I've just discovered--if you move your entire foot way back on the footboard, so far back that your heel is actually off the footboard, you can get good volume and do about anything you want with this thing. It would be an effective technique for really busy bass drum patterns, and by alternatively having your foot slightly higher up on the footboard, you can use the technique of just flat-footing everything while relying on the weight of your leg coming down on both your heel and the ball of your foot simultaneously, because it's a long, one-piece footboard without a hinge or heel plate.
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  #7  
Old 12-14-2008, 06:53 PM
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Default Re: Gilbratar Linear Bass Drum Pedal

I almost got this pedal... but I got a regular Pearl pedal instead.

I didn't like this pedal because it felt really loose, even after adjusting it, and there wasn't enough power. I like my pedals to be tight and have a powerful feel.
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  #8  
Old 12-14-2008, 11:13 PM
Flam_Taps
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Default Re: Gilbratar Linear Bass Drum Pedal

Yes, come to think of it, you might be right. I'm going to start using extremely heavy, metal weighted practice sticks all the time because my 5a's are too "loose" and not powerful enough.
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  #9  
Old 05-13-2009, 04:48 AM
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victoriousmusic victoriousmusic is offline
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Default Re: Gilbratar Linear Bass Drum Pedal

Flam Tap.
Would this pedal be a good candidate for learning the heel toe technique. I've never used it but tried it on my cheap pedal with poor results.
thanks
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