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Old 02-13-2018, 02:37 PM
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veecharlie veecharlie is offline
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Default Deciding bearing edges

Hey guys,

I still haven't decided what bearing edges to put on the toms, so I'd love to hear what you guys have to say and what creative idea could spark.

I have ordered some maple shells for the snares already, which I'll put a custom bearing edge, but I haven't yet decided for the kit itself.

The kit will be maple/walnut/maple (last moment change). I'm searching for a warm tone, able to go very pounchy. Preferably clear heads on them. Sizes: 10x8 (in future), 12x9, 16x14, 24x16 with die-cast hoops.

I have been really out of idea what I really want on the bearing edges... I guess standard 45 would be the easiest to choose, but I'm wondering if I'm making the right choice or is there maybe a better cut for these specs?

I'd love to have a big wood tone, but at the same time also like the versatility of standard 45. Ideas? Maybe just a very small outer cut together with the 45?
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Old 02-13-2018, 02:46 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

Bearing edges are just one element of many that must be considered together with all other elements. Think of drum design as a recipe, & bearing edges as merely one ingredient. The result depends on everything working in a direction to achieve the end result.

Are you doing this work yourself?

If you've engaged a builder to do this work, ask them for recommendations based on your priority of characteristics. If they can't offer definitive recommendations c/w an explanation of their approach, find another builder.
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Old 02-13-2018, 02:50 PM
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veecharlie veecharlie is offline
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

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Originally Posted by Andy View Post
Bearing edges are just one element of many that must be considered together with all other elements. Think of drum design as a recipe, & bearing edges as merely one ingredient. The result depends on everything working in a direction to achieve the end result.

Are you doing this work yourself?

If you've engaged a builder to do this work, ask them for recommendations based on your priority of characteristics. If they can't offer definitive recommendations c/w an explanation of their approach, find another builder.
Yea I completely agree.
A builder is doing my shells, but I'm doing the rest, including bearing edges. I have specialized machines for that and won't have to worry about anything else.

It's very easy to ask a drum builder, but I can assure you every drum builder has a different opinion on what they like to build. So, at this point, I'm trying to take external opinions too and be really critical on what to decide. I like to hear different inputs and different sides of the coin.
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Old 02-13-2018, 03:13 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

The bearing edge determines how much energy is transferred to the shell- more contact = more transfer. The rest of the drums design determines what happens to that energy when it is in the shell. If you use a sharp bearing edge, the drum design doesn't matter too much- you will hear mostly the heads. If you go with a more rounded edge, you are taking energy from the heads, and putting it in the shells- inefficient shells and high mass hardware will make the drum sound very dead and "thuddy". A low mass & efficient drum design will give you more shell tone in the mix- more depth and "warmth". As mentioned by Andy- it all works together, and all of the components of the design should be considered.
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Old 02-13-2018, 03:13 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

The last few years I've been cutting a 45 inside with a roundover outside, peak in the center, on all my drums. I love the way this edge performs.

It gives that punchy, warm, woody, vintage-like tone and is very easy to tune.
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Old 02-13-2018, 04:54 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

I tried a 30 degree outside with bb on inside on the top 50% of the bearing edge, and a straight 45 degree on bottom (the 50% closest to me) that worked quite well for me. I also took out 1/4" from each side left to right just cut a groove so there was no contact at all at that spot. Gave drums lots of flavorful tuning opportunities. Hell on heads though.

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Originally Posted by CompactDrums View Post
The last few years I've been cutting a 45 inside with a roundover outside, peak in the center, on all my drums. I love the way this edge performs.

It gives that punchy, warm, woody, vintage-like tone and is very easy to tune.
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  #7  
Old 02-13-2018, 06:52 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

Whatever Pork Pie USA does seems to work well for me!
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Old 02-13-2018, 06:55 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

Quote:
Originally Posted by veecharlie View Post
It's very easy to ask a drum builder, but I can assure you every drum builder has a different opinion on what they like to build. So, at this point, I'm trying to take external opinions too and be really critical on what to decide. I like to hear different inputs and different sides of the coin.
Find a builder whose knowledge and judgment you respect, and start with explaining what sort of sound(s) and character you're looking for. The "I like these" and "I like those" opinions aren't going to be particularly helpful in making you happy with the end result.

Bearing edge profile decisions will affect more than just the tone-vs-ring question -- they can also determine the tuning range, ease of tuning, and functional relationships of the various drums in the kit. If you're doing a custom build, you should end up with something that serves your needs.
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:11 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

Agreed. I really like the bearings on Gretsch toms and kicks, but I use a Pork Pie snare a lot and it has a sound I really like.

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Whatever Pork Pie USA does seems to work well for me!
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:21 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

I have 2 bits for my router for this very thing: One 30 degree & one 45. When I recut a shell, I'll tap the wood to see if it has any tonal qualities in and of itself. If it does, I'll cut a 45.
If it sound flat or doesn't really ring much, I'll use the 30.
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:36 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rattlin' Bones View Post
I tried a 30 degree outside with bb on inside on the top 50% of the bearing edge, and a straight 45 degree on bottom (the 50% closest to me) that worked quite well for me. I also took out 1/4" from each side left to right just cut a groove so there was no contact at all at that spot. Gave drums lots of flavorful tuning opportunities. Hell on heads though.
That's very interesting! I wonder how that sounds!
I'm having a 45 1/4" from the outside with the snares, it's my favorite cut.
I indeed know that cutting bearing edges on the outside of the edges cause tuning nightmares... something I should be careful with.
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:40 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

Quote:
Originally Posted by motleyh View Post
Find a builder whose knowledge and judgment you respect, and start with explaining what sort of sound(s) and character you're looking for. The "I like these" and "I like those" opinions aren't going to be particularly helpful in making you happy with the end result.

Bearing edge profile decisions will affect more than just the tone-vs-ring question -- they can also determine the tuning range, ease of tuning, and functional relationships of the various drums in the kit. If you're doing a custom build, you should end up with something that serves your needs.
yes absolutely agree. That's exactly why I think in a forum with multiple builders is ideal to ask, as I can get different opinions. It can be useful until I talked with different ones and had many times luthiers disagreeing with each other and contradicting each other. At last, I mostly have to take the physics part of it and my experience with it, not to forget the biggest input from the luthier who is doing my shells, however I can't go empty handed.
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Old 02-14-2018, 01:02 AM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

What if you made a test drum with which you can try different edges?

Or maybe have your drums all made deeper than you want and experiment with different edges until you get just what you prefer.
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Old 02-14-2018, 02:20 AM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

What about a standard 45 do you find to be so versatile? And if you find it versatile, then why not go with that edge?
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  #15  
Old 02-14-2018, 01:55 PM
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veecharlie veecharlie is offline
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

Quote:
Originally Posted by WallyY View Post
What if you made a test drum with which you can try different edges?

Or maybe have your drums all made deeper than you want and experiment with different edges until you get just what you prefer.
I definitively have to do this. Thanks for the idea!
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  #16  
Old 02-14-2018, 03:44 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

Or maybe narrow down your edge choices and make two identical shells in your favorite size with different edges to compare side by side?
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  #17  
Old 02-14-2018, 04:16 PM
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Default Re: Deciding bearing edges

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rattlin' Bones View Post
Agreed. I really like the bearings on Gretsch toms and kicks, but I use a Pork Pie snare a lot and it has a sound I really like.
The Pork Pie site used to have a huge list of pro drummers who sent their drums to PP to cut their edges. It was pretty extensive.
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