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  #1  
Old 02-19-2013, 11:13 AM
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Default Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Guys, as you know, I've been designing a new strainer. I came on here to ask advice last time around, & I've changed the design according to your responses. A significant number of you didn't like the idea of the tension adjustment being only on the butt, so after some 40 hours of total redesign, that's been addressed :( (see, you guys really do influence what we do :)

This time, it's tension adjustment again (sorry). The redesign has meant that the tension knob operates in the reverse way to what you're used to. To increase tension, you have to turn the knob anti clockwise, not the usual clockwise direction. It makes no practical difference, but I'm wondering if any of you perceive this as an issue we should be concerned about? We can change it, but it will need more work & cost more money in tooling. Creating a strainer from the ground up is a fairly expensive process, so I'm counting on you for some good advice here.

On the plus side, I think the effort will be worth it, as this strainer design is completely new to the drumming world, & offers some real advantages.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Andy.
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Old 02-19-2013, 11:22 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

It wouldn't matter to me but drummers are resistant to change....
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  #3  
Old 02-19-2013, 11:30 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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Originally Posted by keep it simple View Post
but I'm wondering if any of you perceive this as an issue we should be concerned about?
It would only be an issue because I've spent years turning the other way. I imagine that if using the thing on the fly, mid gig, old habits would die hard and I'd do the opposite to what I intended. Certainly not the end of the world.....more of an annoyance......like when I drive a car where the indicator lever is on the opposite side and I keep putting the windscreen wipers on to turn the corner instead. Easily overcome and far from the end of the world, yet still one of those nagging little things you can just do without.

Any reason for the gas pipe threading? If there is a practical reason to change it, I'm sure I could live with it. If it's purely to differentiate it from the rest, I'm not sure it's the best option to tinker with.
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Old 02-19-2013, 11:39 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

I don't think it would bother me. In fact, I'm not even sure I'd notice it.


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Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
It would only be an issue because I've spent years turning the other way.
Man, you must really like your snares tight!




;-)
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Old 02-19-2013, 12:34 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
... not the end of the world.....more of an annoyance......
Agree - I'd find it irritating but probably easy enough to adjust to.

Not sure how late I am but I like a snare strainer that stays in place but is easy to throw off quickly and quietly.
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Old 02-19-2013, 01:01 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

In my book that would be very odd to get use to and I could see many shying away from it because of that.
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Old 02-19-2013, 01:15 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by latzanimal View Post
It wouldn't matter to me but drummers are resistant to change....
& this is my worry - hence this thread to sample opinion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
It would only be an issue because I've spent years turning the other way. I imagine that if using the thing on the fly, mid gig, old habits would die hard and I'd do the opposite to what I intended. Certainly not the end of the world.....more of an annoyance......like when I drive a car where the indicator lever is on the opposite side and I keep putting the windscreen wipers on to turn the corner instead. Easily overcome and far from the end of the world, yet still one of those nagging little things you can just do without.

Any reason for the gas pipe threading? If there is a practical reason to change it, I'm sure I could live with it. If it's purely to differentiate it from the rest, I'm not sure it's the best option to tinker with.
Well put. We're not using a pipe/gas thread. At the moment, it's designed with a normal right handed thread, but our mechanism works in a totally different way to other strainers. It's not an attempt to differentiate - quite the reverse actually. To change the tension adjustment to clockwise tighten, we'd need to invest in left hand roll cutter taps & gauges. Cost = $500 :(

Quote:
Originally Posted by Naigewron View Post
I don't think it would bother me. In fact, I'm not even sure I'd notice it.

Man, you must really like your snares tight!

;-)
LOL!!!

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Originally Posted by Anon La Ply View Post
Agree - I'd find it irritating but probably easy enough to adjust to.

Not sure how late I am but I like a snare strainer that stays in place but is easy to throw off quickly and quietly.
Your requirements of ease of operation, smoothness, & stability are our aims too. This new mechanism has very few moving parts, & everything runs on ball races. It also may have a very nifty mechanism that ensures each wire is evenly tensioned, irrespective of how badly the wires are installed (string or ribbon). That feature isn't yet guaranteed to make the cut, but I'm hopeful.

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In my book that would be very odd to get use to and I could see many shying away from it because of that.
That's what I need to hear. Thanks.
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  #8  
Old 02-19-2013, 01:31 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

I'd do it.

Wouldn't that be an aspect to stand out from the other drum manufacturers?
Your drums are special, so why should the direction you have to turn to tune the heads be any exemption of the rule? Haha.

Time to break old habits. Be a pioneer!

As for the turning direction being a deterrent - I think those that are willing to embrace (and able to finance) a Guru drum should do this with nothing holding them back, even not turning something in the opposite direction.
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  #9  
Old 02-19-2013, 01:43 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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That's what I need to hear. Thanks.
Well, here we are then... In my book that would be very odd to get use to and I could see many shying away from it because of that... :)

Seriously though, it won't make any difference to me, clock wise or anti clockwise, I'll get use to it in no time...

Those who have a Sonor kit with another brand's snare have to cope with two different tuning keys, it's kinda the same, once you're use to it, you won't even notice.
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Old 02-19-2013, 01:54 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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Originally Posted by Anon La Ply View Post
Agree - I'd find it irritating but probably easy enough to adjust to.

Not sure how late I am but I like a snare strainer that stays in place but is easy to throw off quickly and quietly.
This would be my exact response as well.
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  #11  
Old 02-19-2013, 02:31 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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Originally Posted by Arky View Post
I'd do it.

Wouldn't that be an aspect to stand out from the other drum manufacturers?
Your drums are special, so why should the direction you have to turn to tune the heads be any exemption of the rule? Haha.

Time to break old habits. Be a pioneer!

Nooo Arky, it's not tension of the heads, it's adjusting tension of the snare strainer :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad About Drums View Post

Seriously though, it won't make any difference to me, clock wise or anti clockwise, I'll get use to it in no time...
Good stuff Henri. Interesting how opinions swing from one to the other. Keep 'em coming guys, I need more!

Do we spend the extra money to go clockwise snare strainer tension adjustment, or not?

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This would be my exact response as well.
Middle ground then :) Irritating, but not a deal breaker?
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  #12  
Old 02-19-2013, 02:36 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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Originally Posted by keep it simple View Post
Do we spend the extra money to go clockwise snare strainer tension adjustment, or not?
I'll just throw this out there: Most people here know and support you and your work... We might not be the most representative group to ask.

That said, I don't really have any better ideas about how you could make a decision either.
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  #13  
Old 02-19-2013, 02:53 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

I dunno, maybe I don't do it right but I usually dial everything in with the strainer until I have it where I want it and leave it alone.... mostly. On those rare occasions that I do fool with it I try it both ways anyway, just to see how it affects the sound.

I suppose with the relatively small numbers of drums you are producing, and for a very select clientele, having small (luxurious?) differences in how the hardware works can be seen as attractive. With each snare you might send a special card that instructs the buyer in the operation of their genuinely unique, built especially for them, hand-crafted instrument. After all, that sort of attention to detail is what you are all about, and cards sure as heck don't cost what a complete re-tooling would.
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  #14  
Old 02-19-2013, 02:56 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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Originally Posted by Naigewron View Post
I'll just throw this out there: Most people here know and support you and your work... We might not be the most representative group to ask.

That said, I don't really have any better ideas about how you could make a decision either.
I wouldn't have a problem with your strainer working differently Andy, for me (and most folks I guess) if something works better I would adapt and re-define what I considered "normal".
I think Naigerwron has made a useful point but of course that assumes you only post your ideas on this forum. I wonder what verbal responses you'd get from customers browsing in a drum store? My guess most would be non-commital, its no big deal.

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  #15  
Old 02-19-2013, 03:15 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

6 of one half a dozen of the others, but I am pretty tolerant. Ludwig's super sensitive strainer mechanism operates differently from anything else out there and I never read any complaints about that. Just another reason that Guru's aren't like anything else out there.
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  #16  
Old 02-19-2013, 03:31 PM
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Originally Posted by keep it simple View Post
Middle ground then :) Irritating, but not a deal breaker?
Correct. Again, I'm a set it and forget it person. Once I dial it in, wouldn't matter much to me.
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  #17  
Old 02-19-2013, 03:39 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Would not matter to me as long as the darn thing doesn't de-tune will your playing like so many others do
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  #18  
Old 02-19-2013, 04:07 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

I am of the set It and leave it be type.

That said, I am also dyslexic, so I have to try both ways every time I use it anyway!
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  #19  
Old 02-19-2013, 04:32 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

My Gretsch Brooklyn snare has the strainer on the left and the adjustment on the butt end. I think this make the strainer less expensive and actuallv easier to adjust. As was said people in general are resistant to change, but lefty or righty it wouldn't to me.It's like buying a new car. Some things on the dashboard take some getting use to.
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  #20  
Old 02-19-2013, 04:50 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

It would be odd but not so much as to break a deal. Im not sure about everyone else but i dont change the snare wire adjustment very often so it wouldnt be a hardship. if i had multiple snares and one was left handed thread, while adjusting i would hear it getting loose instead of tight and remember " oh yeah, this is left handed thread" and go the other way. Its different for sure but i dont think it matters that much.
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  #21  
Old 02-19-2013, 06:23 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
It would only be an issue because I've spent years turning the other way. I imagine that if using the thing on the fly, mid gig, old habits would die hard and I'd do the opposite to what I intended. Certainly not the end of the world.....more of an annoyance......like when I drive a car where the indicator lever is on the opposite side and I keep putting the windscreen wipers on to turn the corner instead. Easily overcome and far from the end of the world, yet still one of those nagging little things you can just do without.
^ What Pocket said.

......................
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  #22  
Old 02-19-2013, 06:43 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Dealbreaker, and I would be even more upset if I bought a snare not knowing that it was the case. You're adjusting the thing in the middle of a song (and you're not thinking very hard about it, because you're trying to make music, after all), and it gets loose instead of tight, or vice versa. Annoying! And there's no good reason it should be that way, no other benefit to offset this design shortcoming.

Don't annoy any of your customers, Andy, if you can possibly help it. Anticipate their needs and deliver.

Your products already stand out as unique, and for the right reasons. Standing out for being impractical or lazily designed, all to save $500? A professional reviewer will burn you on this, rest assured.
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  #23  
Old 02-19-2013, 08:37 PM
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I don't see any problem with it at all. Any snare drum is an instrument like any you would have to get used to. I've played quite a few snare drums with different strainers, some really easy, some too easy (DW magnetic thing, hate it when it "claps" into place), some really hard/difficult (an old steel Tama Rockstar I found in an old building we used to rehearse in, rusty and bad), super sensitives, multisonics and some somewhere in the middle ground. I have still to come across a gig where I can't make it work because of a strainer. Both in a classical and in a band setting.

I don't see why you should do it if it costs more, that means it will cost more for us too. So lastly, speaking as a percussion bachelor student, I really like it when people and/or companies make great tools for the trade more affordable by cutting away stuff that really isn't that necessary ;-)
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  #24  
Old 02-19-2013, 09:18 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Thank you so much for chiming in guys. This sort of response is invaluable to us - really. Interesting that we have the widest possible range of views. Please keep 'em coming!

For me personally, having the tension knob work anti clockwise wouldn't be an issue, but I'm not interested in what I think. I can see both sides of opinion, & all have merit. I suppose the pessimist in me thinks that if you offer an opportunity for players to dis your product, no matter how minor, there's some that will beat you up over it. Then the optimist in me thinks that, so long as the function is superb, having a knob work in the opposite direction to usual, is quirky, & in some way offers distinction.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:52 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

What were most little kids taught?
Righty Tighty- Lefty Loosey

Not too many kids deal with gas piping.

Not a deal breaker to someone like me that would just set it and forget it, but I'm of the mind that if you give people something to complain about...... they will.
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Old 02-19-2013, 10:03 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

My only complaint is that you refer to it as "anti-clockwise" instead of "counter-clockwise". </sarcasm>

I think it would be remarked on by reviewers, and possibly in the following way: "For a company that makes such a big deal of paying attention to the very smallest detail, Guru's decision to thread their snare adjustment counter-clockwise is surprising and confusing." I personally think it's something an owner would quickly and easily adjust to, but first impressions are often the ones that matter.
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Old 02-19-2013, 10:19 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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...but first impressions are often the ones that matter.
So true... and you only get one shot at it :)

Reading the comments on this thread makes one thing very clear to me, it is an odd design to have the knob turning anti-clockwise to tighten your strainer, it wouldn't matter to me, but... yes, first impression? ...why? ...strange design? ...or even worse, WTF :)

Perhaps for the sake of conventionality, you need to review your design Andy, just for the "first impression" factor.
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Old 02-20-2013, 12:13 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

I don't adjust my strainer very often, so it wouldn't be a big deal to me.

I do think counterclockwise tightening goes against every engineering standard I can think of in any device I've ever owned here in the U.S.

But honestly, I think the "unique" factor would be kind of cool. It's fun to be that one exception that people talk about. It's the stuff dialogue like Tarantino puts in his films comes from.

"Strainers are strainers. The P-85 gets a lot of complaints, but I don't mind it. They all pretty much work the same. Flip it on and off, set it and forget it, who cares? Oh, except those Guru drums; you tighten the strainer counterclockwise on those. British company, probably some metric system thing. I think the water goes down the drain backwards there, too."
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  #29  
Old 02-20-2013, 01:20 AM
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I'm of the mind that if you give people something to complain about...... they will.
That's my concern. Thanks for chiming in, & welcome to the forum :)

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Originally Posted by alparrott View Post
but first impressions are often the ones that matter.
again, I'm taking this on board. "Counter clockwise" might be a small detail, but we pay attention to those, so not addressing the issue may be perceived as a slip in standards.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad About Drums View Post
Perhaps for the sake of conventionality, you need to review your design Andy, just for the "first impression" factor.
i'm rapidly coming to that conclusion, if for no other reason, that a perceived negative may distract from reporting the positives.

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But honestly, I think the "unique" factor would be kind of cool. It's fun to be that one exception that people talk about. It's the stuff dialogue like Tarantino puts in his films comes from.
Yes, there's always that aspect too, but there'll be enough to set this strainer apart without resorting to perceived novelty.
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Old 02-20-2013, 01:39 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Good luck making a decision. The ones who are against are pretty adamant about it. For such a minor detail, it sure is agonizing. Will it hurt sales being different? I would hope not. It probably would be best if you went what everybody else does, just so no one can complain about anything.

Ask yourself this....after all is said and done, and the strainer is in production, if you decided to go counter clockwise to tighten, will you regret it? Probably, but only for the fact that some people will complain about it and it might be put in the negative column. Very petty IMO but people love to nitpick and complain. There's no agonizing going clockwise. Just going counter. Is saving 500 bucks worth the ag? Not IMO. Maybe 5000. But if it's only a matter of 500 you should probably just suck it up. I'll give you an extra 50 for my snare, to offset the extra cost, so now it's 450. How's that?
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  #31  
Old 02-20-2013, 01:40 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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Originally Posted by keep it simple View Post
perceived novelty.
Great term....and words that cover what I was searching for when I responded initially.

Certainly my first thought was, is this change for the sake of practicality....or change for the sake of being different? There is already plenty that sets you apart from everyone else....I would view a backward tension knob as "trying too hard" to be different, had you not explained your reasons for considering it in the first place. There's always a danger others will as well and they may not necessarily have the benefit of your prior explaination.
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Old 02-20-2013, 04:56 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Andy, Just wanted to throw my 2 pence in here.

It seems that people are very receptive to the botique strainer market right now. I remember reading an article by the guys at Trick and they recalled all theresistance they recieved about marketing a $70 strainer. Now a few other companies have jumped on the bandwagon although in my opinion none with the same quality as Trick.

A custom throw just adds that little extra to the "percieved value" of a custom snare. There is a stave builder here in AZ who modifies a Trick throw to make it sleeker and adds wood accents. He doesn't so ala carte orders though as I figure it'll cheapen his product.

Anyhoo, my point is that the market of the botique strainer is still new. The only custom companies that offer their own strainer that come to mind are Trick and Dunnett. I think that strainer will set you so appart from the other botique builder that a little odd action won't matter. You Brits already drive on the wrong side of the road and spell "colour" funny, what more is a little odd-twisting?

My one actually helpful suggestion I have to add is maybe an embossed image on the tension knob with an arrow indicating which way to turn to tighten.
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  #33  
Old 02-20-2013, 07:10 AM
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I'm not sure. Drummers who are willing to be 'pioneering' I think would get on with it, but at the same time, we're used to things working a certain way. Has there ever been a strainer that turned counter clockwise? If so, does anybody complain about it?

When I was walking around the NAMM show, I got to overhear alot of people talking musical instrument design, and one of the things I heard alot was "Why the heck did they do that?" and then walk off to look at something else. Regardless if we like it, if you hear that phrase enough at the NAMM show, its not long before the product is being avoided and not being bought in to by the people who would be purchasing the product for sale. I'm not sure that would be the case with Guru, but I tend to believe that no matter how pioneeering a drummer wants to be, there's still alot of traditionalism out there.

I look at Gain's snare drum as an example - there's nothing about those drums that are new and different, it's just loaded with refinements of things he wanted standard that he would usually have to do himself. And even then who knows how many they'll sell for a big company like Sonor?
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  #34  
Old 02-20-2013, 10:09 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

For me, it's not an issue at all. I set the strainer and forget it.

But philosophically, Guru drums represent the absolute pinnacle of drum construction. The drumming equivalent of Saville Row or Bentley. NO compromises. Your customers are told upfront that the drums are extremely expensive. It is, incredibly, a selling point. (If you don't believe that then you need to see how sales of high luxury items have continued to rise during the recession)

If you follow that line of thought to it's logical conclusion then you must spend the extra $500 and pass it on to your customers. The concept being that, once a consideration other than Quality is allowed to enter into the mix, the whole thing could possibly begin to slide downhill,
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Old 02-20-2013, 11:07 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Andy, this seems to be an all or nothing venture for you. So, why stop here?
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Old 02-20-2013, 11:44 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

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Originally Posted by larryace View Post
Good luck making a decision. I'll give you an extra 50 for my snare, to offset the extra cost, so now it's 450. How's that?
Thanks Larry, & most generous, but we'll suck that up into our development (lack of) budget. Our hope is to recover setup costs some years down the line - maybe :(

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Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
Great term....and words that cover what I was searching for when I responded initially.

Certainly my first thought was, is this change for the sake of practicality....or change for the sake of being different? There is already plenty that sets you apart from everyone else....I would view a backward tension knob as "trying too hard" to be different, had you not explained your reasons for considering it in the first place. There's always a danger others will as well and they may not necessarily have the benefit of your prior explaination.
All taken on board! I think the uninformed would certainly thing we've made a conscious decision to be different, & that was a silly choice.

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Originally Posted by Red Menace View Post
You Brits already drive on the wrong side of the road and spell "colour" funny, what more is a little odd-twisting?
You have a point. A "reverse" thread would add a degree of British eccentricity to the mix - almost expected - although that would only carry weight in the USA. The Australians + 1/3rd of the planet would disagree with you on the driving thing, & as for the American bastardisation of our beloved language, that's a whole 'nuther thread dude ;) ;) ;)

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post

When I was walking around the NAMM show, I got to overhear alot of people talking musical instrument design, and one of the things I heard alot was "Why the heck did they do that?" and then walk off to look at something else.
Most valid point Bo, & it's drummers who don't/won't look beyond their first impression that concern me

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Originally Posted by Jeff Almeyda View Post

But philosophically, Guru drums represent the absolute pinnacle of drum construction. The concept being that, once a consideration other than Quality is allowed to enter into the mix, the whole thing could possibly begin to slide downhill,
& that's the killer point right there Jeff!

Quote:
Originally Posted by latzanimal View Post
Andy, this seems to be an all or nothing venture for you. So, why stop here?
It is an "all or nothing" venture for sure, & that's absolutely manifested in the product of our labour. OK, there are some very minor things we'd like to improve in an ideal world (like molding our own floor tom leg feet & spur rubbers), but thay will just have to wait until we can afford the setup costs.
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Old 02-21-2013, 05:53 AM
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  #37  
Old 02-21-2013, 05:54 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

I wouldn't do it, Andy.

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Originally Posted by larryace View Post
Probably, but only for the fact that some people will complain about it and it might be put in the negative column. Very petty IMO but people love to nitpick and complain.
Shoot, half this forum is dedicated to nitpicking and complaining.
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Old 02-21-2013, 05:59 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

First of all I have no problem with the adjustment on the butt side. I have a beautiful old Gretsch COB snare that is like that and I have loved it for about 40 years now.

I do have an issue with something that isn't, :Righty Tighty, Lefty loosey"
That would drive me crazy.
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Old 02-21-2013, 08:52 AM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Probably late to the party, but I'd agree that it would be better to be a conventional righty-tighty set up. Granted that it's British, land of Whitworth and Lucas, and folks may be more tolerant of an oddball set up in a boutique product. But I think that the reality of the boutique market is that it is very faddish. Internet buzz sells much more product than just being good. And something against the grain could easily pick up a negative connotation and put a substantial dent in sales. Look at the urban legends that crop up over things that make absolutely no difference like the color of magnet wire in a guitar pick up. When I was at Hitachi, I push a new disk drive to have the controller card upside down with the components facing inward. It was more space efficient and allowed better thermal coupling of the ASICs to the chassis. But one of the other reasons I had was the internet mania that gets kicked up when someone reports that the drives that have grey capacitors are unreliable and to only get the ones with brown capacitors. So suddenly all the stores are going though their stock and trying to return the ones they can't sell. It's crazy, but it's today's reality.

I'd agree that at the high end, a bit more in price isn't that much of an issue. And amortizing a die set over a years production shouldn't kick things out of the ballpark. I'm not fond of the way Steve Jobs treated people (including some of my friends) or ran businesses, but I will grant that he got one thing right. The user experience is everything. Make the product as intuitive and straightforward as possible and people will flock to it. Making a throw off that's simple, effective and reliable is a great feather in your cap. I wouldn't sully it with a backwards knob.

Just my $0.0002
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Old 02-21-2013, 12:00 PM
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Default Re: Please help me with a little challenge (again) :)

Tell them the Strainers are produced in Australia......
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