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  #1  
Old 02-18-2013, 03:11 PM
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Default What did you pay, back in the day?

The other day I was talking to a buddy about how absurdly priced top of the line kits were, and how basically, with a good sound man, nobody in the club is gonna know the difference between middle of the road drums and top of the line. (and I firmly believe this, but I digress....)

.....but then I remembered, when I was 21 in 1991, I took out a LOAN to buy a Tama Rockstar kit!! It was either $2100 or $2300, and was a 7 pc double bass kit. Upon reflection, $2k for a 3 pc Ludwig Legacy kit doesnt sound that bad!

So what did you shell out for middle of the road kits and top of the line kits way back when? Maybe I just got taken to the cleaners by the local music store?
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Old 02-18-2013, 03:55 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

I don't remember exactly, but in 1998 when I got my Tama Starclassic it was around 2 millions or maybe a bit below that. Well that was in old Liras. :-)
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Old 02-18-2013, 04:08 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Way back in the early to mid 70's top of line 5 piece shell kits were around 800 bucks IIRC.
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Old 02-18-2013, 04:56 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Weren't Rockstar kits maybe $599 for a 5-pc back in the '90s?

When I was drooling over new kits back in the '60s & '70s, before you could expect much of a discount at music stores, a 5-pc USA kit - with hardware - was $500-1000. Sonors were more, Japanese brands were less.

Of course, with inflation, the prices are fairly comparable, maybe a little lower today than they would have been 45+ years ago.

And remember that a budget/entry-level kit back then was pretty iffy, the majors didn't even offer them as part of their line... you just bought a different brand if you wanted a different level of kit. Compare that to today's Asian lines from US companies, most of which are world class drums.

Back in 1980, I bought a 4-pc Yamaha shell pack - 26/14/15/18 - on sale for $500, and it was a great kit, comparable I think to the Stage Series at the time. Just a few years later in 1984, at the same store, I bought a Sonor 5-pc with snare, hardware & pedals, for $1500. I can only imagine what those prices might be today!

But overall, I'd say prices are lower today by comparison.

Bermuda
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Old 02-18-2013, 05:38 PM
tamadrm tamadrm is offline
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

I bought my first brand new kit at Sam Ash in Brooklyn.They were Ludwig Standards,a 5 piece kit with hardware was 425 US.I also bought my first new Zildjian cymbal which was a rock 21(not the rock ride) model for 45 US.The year was 1971.

Not to forget the Speed King pedal,which was 22.50.

I wish I never sold those drums.

Steve B

Last edited by tamadrm; 02-19-2013 at 10:28 PM.
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  #6  
Old 02-18-2013, 06:00 PM
Bart Hodge Bart Hodge is offline
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

I paid $300 for a used (1966) 4 pc Slingerland set sometime in the mid 1970s.

Where I was taking lessons, they had a new Ludwig Big Beat 5 pc for $749 in about 1978.

I bought a used Ludwig Big Beat 5pc for $750 in 1982 with two Zildjians.

My Yamaha Recording Customs (7 pc) were about $2500 in 1992.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AZslim View Post
Way back in the early to mid 70's top of line 5 piece shell kits were around 800 bucks IIRC.
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  #7  
Old 02-18-2013, 06:03 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

1969, my first new kit was a Ludwig Standard 5-pc, with Ludwig/Paiste cymbals, and list price was $532. We had a friend who owned a music store and gave us an amazing discount at the time, 35% off, so the price was $346.

Wish I still had those too...

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  #8  
Old 02-18-2013, 06:35 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

I got a used three-piece Gretsch kit (13-16-20) for $300 back in 1977. Came with a Rogers Holiday snare, 16" New beats, 20" and 22" Zildjians, Ludwig Speed King, and Ludwig flat-base cymbal stands. I think that's gotta be the deal of the century. I still use the cymbals and the Speed King with my Stage Customs. (I paid $650 for the Stage Custom shell pack) I gigged with the Gretsch kit for many years and they're my practice kit now.
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  #9  
Old 02-18-2013, 06:37 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

New 5-piece Rogers shells for $900 in the late 70s.
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:39 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

I custom-ordered my Gretsch USA shell pack in 1977.............I traded in my old eight piece Ludwig kit and saved every dime I could to pay for the Gretsch.............don't remember how much they were but it was not nearly like today.............with the Ludwig trade-in, I remember the balance being less than $1,000.

The list price for my kit today is approximately $9,000..............one could likely get that down to about $5,500 at Forks.

As I think about it, I got a good deal and I am very happy I bought them back in '77............36 years later, here they are :

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  #11  
Old 02-18-2013, 06:40 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

While the absolute top, cream of the crop, high high end drums are more expensive, overall, drum prices are much, much cheaper today

And you have to account for that fact that most of these super high end custom drums weren't widely available 20 years ago.

But in the last 80s, to get anything with a maple or all birch shell, you had to spend at least $2k just on a shell pack. Today, there are variety of shell packs made with maple or birch in the $900-$1500 range.

Most mid-line kits today would rival or top the professional line kits of 25 years ago.
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Old 02-18-2013, 06:50 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

In 1975 i bought a new Slingerlands with the black niles badges 24,16,13,12 with 2 cymbal stands for $628.00.im looking at the bill of sale i still have! ...................Then went back 2 days later got 4 Zildjians i set of Hi Hats and 2 crashes for 175.00 ...............Later on 2 weeks a trap box and soft covers for drums another $128.50.4 MONTHS LATER?? a ghost pedal for $68.00.................Last but not least i add a 18x20 floor tom for 160.00...........Had that kit from May of 1975 till a few years back when i finally sold it for 850.00.......Miss those things even thou the legs on the bass were shot,there was a crack developing on the bottom of the bass drum,and the tom mount was going...Played countless gigs with my trusty slingerlands......But the time had come,but i dont know any drummer who sells stuff even if you make a profit thats happy about it.........Morel of the story.Dont sell your kit if you really dont need 2....
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  #13  
Old 02-18-2013, 06:51 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lsits View Post
I got a used three-piece Gretsch kit (13-16-20) for $300 back in 1977. Came with a Rogers Holiday snare, 16" New beats, 20" and 22" Zildjians, Ludwig Speed King, and Ludwig flat-base cymbal stands. I think that's gotta be the deal of the century. .
Holy shmoly, did they throw in a free dinner and tickets to the opera as well? That is a steal.
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  #14  
Old 02-18-2013, 06:57 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

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Originally Posted by bermuda View Post
Wish I still had those too...

Lol, that is some kind of stick holder, looks like a mailbox.
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  #15  
Old 02-18-2013, 08:34 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

That's an old Rogers stick tray, I'll bet they're worth a fortune now!
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  #16  
Old 02-18-2013, 08:52 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Compared to what other things cost, nowdays ..... drums are a bargain. Like Bermuda said, you could get a 1969 Luddie Standard, for $350. A top line Classic could be had for $500-$600. And a new car could be had, for $1200. Fast forward to now, What's a new car cost ..... about $17,000. But not too many drummers are spending $8,500 for new tubs.
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  #17  
Old 02-18-2013, 08:57 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

2 g's for rockstars? I would say that whatever cleaner you got taken to had an awesome sales day.
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  #18  
Old 02-18-2013, 09:07 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Bought this kit for $975.00 in 1982 just sold them last year for $1600.00
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  #19  
Old 02-18-2013, 09:26 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

It was the mid 80s. I bought these Corder drums for about $800: 22x14, 16x16, 13x9. Peace and goodwill.
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  #20  
Old 02-18-2013, 09:51 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

My parents paid $1000 including tax for my Ludwig Super Classic kit in black diamond pearl wrap in 1958.

For that I got a snare, 13" mounted tom, 22" BD, 14" Zildjian hats, 16" Zildjian that I used as a ride, a cymbal holder attached to the BD, the wonderful flat-base snare and hi-hat stands, and a Speed King bass drum pedal.

They didn't know I would want a floor tom because when they were at the music store looking at the Ludwig catalog and preparing their big surprise the above configuration was the one in the first picture. And, it didn't hurt that it was the least expensive kit in the Super Classic series.

Kept and used, to one degree or another, all that stuff for over 50 years. Except for the snare stand. That died at about the age of 40.
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  #21  
Old 02-18-2013, 10:15 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Seems you can get great sounding kits a lot cheaper these days.

Around 1987 or so, I bought a very slightly used 5 piece Tama Granstar Custom kit from Daddy's Junky Music in Boston, and they were only that cheap because a National Act had come to town and rented them for a night at a local club.
It came with the snare stand, HH stand, and 1 cymbal stand,
They were in Absolutely Mint condition, except the Tama Insignia Bass Res had an ugly 6" hole cut in it for a mic.....looked like they cut that hole with a butter knife.

Took years off from playing until just recently, but these are the drums I still use today.
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  #22  
Old 02-18-2013, 11:41 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

I rarely buy anything new but, In 1968 (high school) , I specifically remember buying a used Rogers 5 piece w/ Zildjian hh, crash and ride for $300.


45 years later, I think I could get a comparable used kit today for about $500.

To put it in perspective, minimum wage was $1.25 and gas was under 50 cents a gallon.

Today, minimum wage is 7.80 and gas is 4.00.

Wages ...........up 524%
Gas............... up 700%
Used drums.....up 66%
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  #23  
Old 02-19-2013, 02:01 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

In 1987 I bought a Pearl Export 5 piece kit for $750 Canadian. That was a good deal for the kit at the time. Regular music store prices were about $1000. It came with a free set of nomad cases, because my little local music store wanted to get rid of them.

In November last year I bought a gretsch catalina maple 7pc shell pack for $890 Canadian.
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  #24  
Old 02-19-2013, 02:20 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

I don't recall exactly... In 1982 I saved up my own money and purchased a 7 piece Tama Swingstar set and something tells me it was around $800 but I may be wrong. Most of what I played up until that point was Royce junk. It was all my parents could afford.
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Old 02-19-2013, 08:00 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bermuda View Post
That's an old Rogers stick tray, I'll bet they're worth a fortune now!
That sure is vintage. It's very practical, arguably too much so.

When I recall how it was between Rogers and Ludwig back in the day I think of beta and VHS, Blackberry and iPhone, Garfunkel and Simon ...
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:47 PM
sk8inmadkid sk8inmadkid is offline
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?




This wasn't back in the day as such, but it was back in the day for me! It was a Premier Royale kit, 22, 12, 13, 16 with a 14 steel snare. All hardware and ZBT cymbals for 350 back in 2003
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Old 02-19-2013, 10:32 PM
tamadrm tamadrm is offline
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

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Originally Posted by bermuda View Post
1969, my first new kit was a Ludwig Standard 5-pc, with Ludwig/Paiste cymbals, and list price was $532. We had a friend who owned a music store and gave us an amazing discount at the time, 35% off, so the price was $346.

Wish I still had those too...

Bermuda...I had the same kit in blue mist sparkle,but with the(S-101) chrome plated aluminum snare.Great sounding drums

Steve B
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  #28  
Old 02-20-2013, 12:08 AM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

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Originally Posted by dmacc View Post
I don't recall exactly... In 1982 I saved up my own money and purchased a 7 piece Tama Swingstar set and something tells me it was around $800 but I may be wrong. Most of what I played up until that point was Royce junk. It was all my parents could afford.
D, there are some things about our lives that are eerily similar. Just seems like a striking number of parallels. Kinda spooky.

My grandpa had picked up some Royce garbage from a junk house that I banged on until it fell apart. Which was about 15 minutes, I reckon. But my first real set was a five-piece Swingstar and I can tell you mine cost me $550. I saved up the tips I made caddying at the local golf course that summer and bought my drums with it.
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  #29  
Old 02-20-2013, 02:07 AM
Bart Hodge Bart Hodge is offline
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

This is what happened to my 1979 Ludwig set. All-original Ludwig hardware. The knobs broke off nearly all of the Hercules stands. The snare stand snapped off at the gooseneck. The hi-hat pedal broke at the pedal. The bass drum tom mount broke in two places. The bass drum spur mounts cracked (both sides). The screws attaching the lugs to the shell started to vibrate and many snapped off while I was tightening them. The Speed King pedal also broke.

This is what happens to a drum set that sees a lot of gigs. I still have the drums, but none of the original hardware - thankfully.

Quote:
Originally Posted by A-customs View Post
Miss those things even thou the legs on the bass were shot,there was a crack developing on the bottom of the bass drum,and the tom mount was going...Played countless gigs with my trusty slingerlands......But the time had come,but i dont know any drummer who sells stuff even if you make a profit thats happy about it.........Morel of the story.Dont sell your kit if you really dont need 2....
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  #30  
Old 02-20-2013, 02:33 AM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Tricks View Post
I rarely buy anything new but, In 1968 (high school) , I specifically remember buying a used Rogers 5 piece w/ Zildjian hh, crash and ride for $300.

45 years later, I think I could get a comparable used kit today for about $500.
To put it in perspective, minimum wage was $1.25 and gas was under 50 cents a gallon.
Today, minimum wage is 7.80 and gas is 4.00.

Wages ...........up 524%
Gas............... up 700%
Used drums.....up 66%
http://www.clevelandfed.org/research...?DCS.nav=Local
As another reference... I'll stay out of the monetary policy/ political debates :)
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  #31  
Old 02-20-2013, 02:43 AM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

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Originally Posted by HipshotPercussion View Post
My parents paid $1000 including tax for my Ludwig Super Classic kit in black diamond pearl wrap in 1958. .
That's huge money for 1958. You were one lucky kid.

I ruined my first kit. 1967 Ludwig Classic in white marine pearl like the one pictured. My brother bought it for me for $300 in 1976. It was 13,16,22 and I bought another kit that was 15,18,24. I recovered them to match and drilled holes for newer bass drum mounts. Sold the 16 and ruined the 22 bass drum the seond time I tried to recover it. Still have the rest of the drums but wish I had that first kit.

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  #32  
Old 02-20-2013, 05:14 AM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Got my 5 piece Pearl set for about $500 (+ whatever I paid for cymbals) in 74. To pay for it, I made 2.50 an hour at my summer job.
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  #33  
Old 02-20-2013, 05:41 AM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

In 1976 I paid $835.00 USD for my brand new 3 ply Blue Oyster Pearl Ludwigs. 12,14,16,18, 24 with a 14 x 5 supra and 2 atlas cymbal stands, a snare stand, a Speed King, and possibly a hi hat, don't remember. Sold it for 100 bucks in 1982. Yea, I know.

I also had a Tama Bell Brass. It was 500 bucks new in 1978. Not sure whatever happened to that one. I probably let it go with my Ludwigs. Yea, I know.
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  #34  
Old 02-20-2013, 12:33 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

Back in the late 60s I could not afford a kit, so I bought a guitar. A Gibson SG with P90 pickups. It cost about 220 back then, making it about 4 months wages for me at the time.
I cant believe how much cheaper, top line instruments are now. A new SG, depending on model, is between 600 and 1800 now, about ONE months wages.

In 1981 I bought a used Rogers 5 piece kit (from the early 70s) for 100. Best kit I ever owned and I still beat myself up for selling it.
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  #35  
Old 02-20-2013, 03:59 PM
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Default Re: What did you pay, back in the day?

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Originally Posted by Dr_Watso View Post
2 g's for rockstars? I would say that whatever cleaner you got taken to had an awesome sales day.
It would appear so! It was a Rockstar Pro kit, which I think just meant lacquered finishes..came with garabage Stilt hardware. Mom and pop shop.
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