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  #1  
Old 01-14-2019, 04:35 AM
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Default Vintage Pearl Drums!

I'm a vintage guy - and I think this is my problem with being associated with Pearl Drums. New stuff doesn't really speak to me that well. OTOH, some of my favorite kits have been the various 1970s Ludwigs I've owned, Slingerlands, Rogers, and my current 1972 Gretsch kit.

But whenever I've seen a vintage Japanese kit, they always seemed to be broken and abused. Not so with this one. This one was from an estate sale, and I felt a little guilty after offering $300, and the owners telling me yes. It had been one of their brothers and he just passed away. The family didn't know much about it but didn't feel they should keep it. Along with the drums, they gave me the associated cases, hardware, a couple of cymbals - all of the stuff was from 1980 - but the trap case also contained a clean 1970s Rogers Swiv-O-Matic bass drum pedal!

My Pearl research told me this was the "Big Beat" kit from the 1980 catalog. Up until then, Pearl always pushed their wood-fiberglass shells, and didn't really prominently feature straight maple until 1980 and beyond. Pearl was also known back then for using only 6mm tension rods on their bass drums, and that's what's on this drum - I wanted to replace the bent T-handle rods with new drum key rods, and nobody has 6mm. I had to order those!

So, I spent $400 (I had to replace the bass drum head, and get two new heads for one of the toms), but that's it. Alot of elbow grease when I got them home, but here they are all clean and ready. Of course, the white marine pearl has aged over the years and the floor toms do appear a little more yellow than the rest of the kit, but it is ironic companies are offering an "aged" looking white marine pearl. I say just wait 40 years and you'll get that look naturally ;)

But it's your standard Tony Williams set, with beautiful maple shells - perfect edges, and perfect wood on the insides: 14x24 bass drum, 9x13 and 10x14 rack toms, and 16x16 and 16x18 floor toms, with a matching 5x14 snare. Incredible.
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Old 01-14-2019, 04:42 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

Looks like it was a fun project that turned out good.

I thought you were paring down to 1 or 2 kits to prepare to move into a smaller place though.
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Old 01-14-2019, 05:18 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Looks like it was a fun project that turned out good.

I thought you were paring down to 1 or 2 kits to prepare to move into a smaller place though.
Yeah, once those red Yamahas are gone, I'll be down to this kit and the Gretsch ones. The others have new homes.
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Old 01-14-2019, 09:24 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Yeah, once those red Yamahas are gone, I'll be down to this kit and the Gretsch ones. The others have new homes.
Thatís a beauty! Congrats!

Wait, did you sell your new Pearl set or do you still have them?
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Old 01-14-2019, 10:06 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Thatís a beauty! Congrats!

Wait, did you sell your new Pearl set or do you still have them?
Theyíre with different relatives these days.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:29 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

Nice vintage pearl Pearl set. Good deal too.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:59 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

All you need to do is put some proper bass drum hoops on that. Looks like it's been cared for all it's life.

How are the tom holders on the older Pearl stuff. I still have flashbacks to the old school export where nothing would stay put :)
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Old 01-14-2019, 12:59 PM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
Theyíre with different relatives these days.
I appreciate how you are able to move on from gear so quickly when you know it isn't for you. So, you have a vintage Pearl and a vintage Gretsch kit, is that right? Do you feel like those kits will cover most/all of your bases?
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Old 01-14-2019, 04:47 PM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

WOW, WHAT A FIND!!
Those are pretty awesome.
Have fun!!
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Old 01-14-2019, 05:23 PM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

Ya - $300 for that set is a really good deal, no matter how much elbow grease it needed.
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Old 01-14-2019, 07:22 PM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

Killer score. And in traditional sizes. Sweet !!!
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Old 01-14-2019, 07:43 PM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Originally Posted by Chunkaway View Post
I appreciate how you are able to move on from gear so quickly when you know it isn't for you. So, you have a vintage Pearl and a vintage Gretsch kit, is that right? Do you feel like those kits will cover most/all of your bases?
Yeah. The job of drumming hasnít changed for me - I can groove on anything. If I donít have to worry about mucking up the finish, thatís even better ;)
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Old 01-14-2019, 07:46 PM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Originally Posted by mikyok View Post
All you need to do is put some proper bass drum hoops on that. Looks like it's been cared for all it's life.

How are the tom holders on the older Pearl stuff. I still have flashbacks to the old school export where nothing would stay put :)
Iím debating on the hoops. I just want to be able to transfer the white marine pearl strips to the new wood hoops and will be a considerable investment. Let me sock away some pennies.

But the tom mounts are rock solid.
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Old 01-15-2019, 02:49 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
My Pearl research told me this was the "Big Beat" kit from the 1980 catalog. Up until then, Pearl always pushed their wood-fiberglass shells, and didn't really prominently feature straight maple until 1980 and beyond. Pearl was also known back then for using only 6mm tension rods on their bass drums, and that's what's on this drum - I wanted to replace the bent T-handle rods with new drum key rods, and nobody has 6mm. I had to order those!
Nice score!

The older wood/fiberglass construction, where was the fiberglass placed?

And what part of the rod is 6mm? The shaft diameter? (It doesnít look like it)
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Old 01-15-2019, 02:56 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Nice score!

The older wood/fiberglass construction, where was the fiberglass placed?

And what part of the rod is 6mm? The shaft diameter? (It doesnít look like it)
Nope, these are straight maple shells. No fiberglass. This coincides with my research that in one catalog in the 70s, they sold maple drums, but after that, it was all wood-fiberglass until the 1980 catalog, which offered pure maple shells.

And the bass drum T-handle rods are 6mm. Some of them are bent after 39 years so when I tried to go replace all of them with regular tension rods I had, they didn't fit. So I knew they were 6mm and had to order 20 replacements. The regular tension rods on the rest of the drums are the traditional 12-24 size. Pearl just did this weird thing with their bass drums back then, not sure why they thought this was cool.

OTOH - I'm trying to sell this pristine Rogers Swiv-O-Matic pedal I also got. Who wants it? I think $150 is fair since they're more expensive on eBay ;)
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Old 01-15-2019, 03:01 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Nice score!

The older wood/fiberglass construction, where was the fiberglass placed?

And what part of the rod is 6mm? The shaft diameter? (It doesnít look like it)
For what it is worth, even though Bo said those weren't wood/fiber. I think it was wood with a fiberglass lining on the older ones. If you look at the 70s catalogs they are listed as Fiberglass lined 9-ply wood shell.
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Old 01-15-2019, 03:01 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Originally Posted by cbphoto View Post
Nice score!

The older wood/fiberglass construction, where was the fiberglass placed?

And what part of the rod is 6mm? The shaft diameter? (It doesnít look like it)
The fiberglass was hand laid on the inside of the shell. Could be considered the inner play if you will. I would take a photo but my kit is cased and put away. Too big for my practice space.
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Old 01-15-2019, 04:40 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

OK I'll prove it when I open the bass drum again. Pearl clearly identified either "wood-fiberglass" or "maple shell" on their kits from those days. And this says "maple shell". When I inspected the shells, there is no fiberglass layer, but I do know that was what Pearl did back then on most of their drums - which is why I think these are even rarer, especially considering the shape they're in.

But even for $300, if they were wood-fiberglass, that's a deal too ;)
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Old 01-15-2019, 11:30 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

Yeah mine says Wood/Fiberglass. The fiberglass is white and you can feel it's texture. I have no doubt your kit has no fiberglass. It would be obvious.
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Old 01-15-2019, 12:26 PM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
Iím debating on the hoops. I just want to be able to transfer the white marine pearl strips to the new wood hoops and will be a considerable investment. Let me sock away some pennies.

But the tom mounts are rock solid.
Vintage style bass drum hoops with the aged WMP inlay would look amazing. The WMP strips are the easy bit. The vintage hoops in good condition will be slightly trickier.

All good fun, I'll probably see the finished hoops on FB in a couple of weeks.
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Old 01-15-2019, 06:31 PM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Vintage style bass drum hoops with the aged WMP inlay would look amazing. The WMP strips are the easy bit. The vintage hoops in good condition will be slightly trickier.

All good fun, I'll probably see the finished hoops on FB in a couple of weeks.
I was looking around and discovered that Drumfoundry.com will custom make hoops and cut an inlay to fit my existing inlays. I need to contact them on how long it would take, and then consider if $70+ per hoop would be worth it.

Part of me wonders if Pearlsí idea of metal hoops was meant to help the shell support the mounted tom weight. With the tom arms and both 13 and 14 toms mounted, it seems ALOT heavier - and after 39 years, when I installed new heads, the shell is still round (it didnít seem bent and followed the new heads roundness perfectly). Of course, if I keep the metal hoops, I would never have to worry about hoop damage if I transport it without cases.
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Old 01-16-2019, 11:53 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
I was looking around and discovered that Drumfoundry.com will custom make hoops and cut an inlay to fit my existing inlays. I need to contact them on how long it would take, and then consider if $70+ per hoop would be worth it.

Part of me wonders if Pearlsí idea of metal hoops was meant to help the shell support the mounted tom weight. With the tom arms and both 13 and 14 toms mounted, it seems ALOT heavier - and after 39 years, when I installed new heads, the shell is still round (it didnít seem bent and followed the new heads roundness perfectly). Of course, if I keep the metal hoops, I would never have to worry about hoop damage if I transport it without cases.
$70 a custom hoop isn't bad at all. I wouldn't transport that without cases, looks too nice to risk damaging it.

I'm guessing you're gonna play it 24/13/16 with the rack on a snare stand so the weight on the bass drum won't be a problem.

I don't know why drums were so heavy from that period, I had a 22x14 Tama Superstar which was heavy on its own, the 12 and 13 made it crazy heavy. Good thing is the hardware was built to last or survive a nuclear blast if the cold war kicked off at the time :)
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Old 01-16-2019, 12:09 PM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

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$70 a custom hoop isn't bad at all. I wouldn't transport that without cases, looks too nice to risk damaging it.

I'm guessing you're gonna play it 24/13/16 with the rack on a snare stand so the weight on the bass drum won't be a problem.

I don't know why drums were so heavy from that period, I had a 22x14 Tama Superstar which was heavy on its own, the 12 and 13 made it crazy heavy. Good thing is the hardware was built to last or survive a nuclear blast if the cold war kicked off at the time :)
That is actually a pretty good deal. I paid not much less than that for standard wood hoops for mine.
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Old 01-16-2019, 04:46 PM
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That is actually a pretty good deal. I paid not much less than that for standard wood hoops for mine.
Yeah, $70 a hoop isnít bad. But the size of the box means it also costs an additional $73 for shipping. So $210+......not sure I wanna spend that.

Also finally tried playing the kit the other day and if I do 2-up, mounting on the bass drum doesnít work for me as the toms canít be pushed far enough away from me - I need to break out the tom/cymbal stand combos for mounting. Iíll play with that today ;)
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Old 01-16-2019, 04:54 PM
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Yeah, $70 a hoop isn’t bad. But the size of the box means it also costs an additional $73 for shipping. So $210+......not sure I wanna spend that.

Also finally tried playing the kit the other day and if I do 2-up, mounting on the bass drum doesn’t work for me as the toms can’t be pushed far enough away from me - I need to break out the tom/cymbal stand combos for mounting. I’ll play with that today ;)
Yeah, that shipping is a killer. Depending on the size of the inlay, you might be able to find a stock wood hoop that would fit from somewhere that wouldn't be a killer on shipping.... you might even be able to get free shipping.
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Old 01-16-2019, 11:36 PM
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  #26  
Old 01-17-2019, 12:17 AM
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Yeah, that shipping is a killer. Depending on the size of the inlay, you might be able to find a stock wood hoop that would fit from somewhere that wouldn't be a killer on shipping.... you might even be able to get free shipping.
Funny thing is, I did. This guy had two Ludwig hoops for sale for $55 with only $25 for shipping. When I bought them, the next day he gave me a refund because he couldnít ship them for less than $70! Doh!
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Old 01-17-2019, 12:24 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

Is it the box size that is so pricey? Surely it isn't the weight. Precision Drum has 22" maple hoops, 12 ply, sanded, unfinished, 3/4" inlay for $52 a piece.
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Old 01-17-2019, 12:25 AM
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Is it the box size that is so pricey? Surely it isn't the weight. Precision Drum has 22" maple hoops, 12 play, sanded, unfinished, 3/4" inlay for $52 a piece.
It is probably something with the dimensions. Over a certain size it automatically gets calculated as like an extra-heavy package.
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Old 01-22-2019, 01:35 AM
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Default Re: Vintage Pearl Drums!

Nice find!

I have been trying to find a Pearl bass drum in this wrap to go with the Pearl Fiberglass toms I picked up recently - 14x10 and two 16x16 floor toms.
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Old 01-22-2019, 02:25 AM
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Nice find!

I have been trying to find a Pearl bass drum in this wrap to go with the Pearl Fiberglass toms I picked up recently - 14x10 and two 16x16 floor toms.
This kit is for sale if you want it. Shipping would suck though ;)
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Old 01-22-2019, 02:56 AM
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This kit is for sale if you want it. Shipping would suck though ;)
What? Already? Bo you change kits like changing socks. What don't you like about this one?
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Old 01-22-2019, 02:57 AM
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What? Already? Bo you change kits like changing socks. What don't you like about this one?
It has been a week...
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Old 01-22-2019, 04:15 AM
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What? Already? Bo you change kits like changing socks. What don't you like about this one?
Due to the fact that I got this kit for only $300 - I'm looking into the potential of flipping it for a much higher amount. I'd like to see what it would fetch. Of course, this is an experiment - there may not be a market for this kind of stuff, but I figure anything over $400 would be making my money back.

Between the Gretsch's and my little Yamaha's, those kinda have everything covered. And I really like the sound of those Gretsch drums. So just for fun, let's see who bites. Somebody probably will, but I got NAMM this week, so my mind will be there for the weekend ;)
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Old 01-22-2019, 11:42 AM
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Due to the fact that I got this kit for only $300 - I'm looking into the potential of flipping it for a much higher amount. I'd like to see what it would fetch. Of course, this is an experiment - there may not be a market for this kind of stuff, but I figure anything over $400 would be making my money back.

Between the Gretsch's and my little Yamaha's, those kinda have everything covered. And I really like the sound of those Gretsch drums. So just for fun, let's see who bites. Somebody probably will, but I got NAMM this week, so my mind will be there for the weekend ;)
I see. I thought the Yamahas we're going and these would stay.

I'm sure someone will snatch them up. Their beautiful and old.
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Old 01-22-2019, 06:55 PM
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I see. I thought the Yamahas we're going and these would stay.

I'm sure someone will snatch them up. Their beautiful and old.
The Yamahas have been repaired too much in my somewhat shoddy manner. That alone will scare off regular people from wanting them, but itís a cool kit.

Or I may keep all of them - I did set the Pearls up in my usual 4-piece configuration and they play really well for me like that. Iím no longer a 2-up guy. And I may have a line on some wood hoops for it, itís just a matter of wanting to spend more on it.
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Old 01-22-2019, 08:25 PM
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The Yamahas have been repaired too much in my somewhat shoddy manner. That alone will scare off regular people from wanting them, but itís a cool kit.

Or I may keep all of them - I did set the Pearls up in my usual 4-piece configuration and they play really well for me like that. Iím no longer a 2-up guy. And I may have a line on some wood hoops for it, itís just a matter of wanting to spend more on it.
Oh I totally get that. Until money grows on trees, no need to justify not wanting to overspend.
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Old 01-22-2019, 09:31 PM
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Oh I totally get that. Until money grows on trees, no need to justify not wanting to overspend.
Personally, I think the existing hoops are ok. But itís that ďbass drum wood hoopĒ snob in me that says I must do it. But I think if I replace the spurs with new Pearl SP30ís, that would be a better investment considering the existing ones have developed slight issues after 40 years. And the newer ones look totally macho ;)
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