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Old 10-01-2008, 10:51 AM
timma timma is offline
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Default Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Hi guys, few questions here if anyone has some free time.

Is there honestly much difference in sound quality by mounting the rack toms off the kick drum instead of using tom stands, or using extra snare stands? I have settled on buying a new Ludwig Classic Maple kit in White Marine Pearl color (in sizes 22x18 / 16x16) with a single rack tom (to be decided which size, see below) and now it comes down to deciding whether to add mounting hardware to the kick drum or leave it 'free'. I have always had kits with the toms mounted off the kick, and i like the positioning. Is there another alternative, like a single tom mount stand that could get it in roughly the same position? I know it does 'look cooler' to have a free standing kick, but surely there is more to it than that.

And also, for a single rack tom what are people's experiences with 12's vs 13's and how deep do i really need the tom? Im thinking of 12x8" at the moment, but i play hard rock and maybe need something a little bigger, but not too big, will the 12x8" be 'loud' or punchy enough for hard hitting music? I haven't had a lot of good experiences with 13's, they seem a little harder to tune and control. Does anyone else have this problem?

Thanks for the help guys.
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Old 10-01-2008, 11:53 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

For years I ran a Luddie Vistalite kit 22, 14, 16, 18 kit. Virgin kicks rock. You can run a rack tom off a snare stand, a tom stand, a cymbal stand, or a combo stand. I don't believe in that "13s are harder to tune than 12s". Good drums tune easy. Some have wider ranges than others. I'd run a 22, 13, 16 rather than a 22, 12, 16. I like big drums. My Rogers project is soon to get a 26x14 added to the equation. Think of all the possible combo's available with a 22 and 26 inch kicks, and 12, 13, 16, 18 toms. 6 drums for all occasions.
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Old 10-01-2008, 03:36 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

I have had both. I honestly do not like my toms mounted off the bass. I think it puts too much pressure on the bass shell which alters the sound. If you really like to have your toms over the bass though, I would just go with a rack.

I think back in the 70's and 80's the rock drummers used very deep shells, such as 12x11 and 13x12.

I'm not sure if that is really needed any more, or if was really ever needed.

And I havent had a 13" tom in years so I can't help you there.
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Old 10-01-2008, 05:12 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

I love the irony when someone gets a nice kit with a virgin kick and then stuffs a pillow inside because it "rings too much"...

I have had a few of both, and I can say that I like virgin kicks much better. With the toms mounted, you get all kinds of vibration conducted between the kick and the toms. I notice the same thing when I mount a tom off of a cymbal stand, but not as much.
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Old 10-01-2008, 07:35 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

I do like separating the sympathetic vibrations from the kick and the toms. Of course, I haven't mounted a tom to a kick since the tom mount broke on my old 4 piece years ago.

I would agree that a 13" tom tends to be the redheaded stepchild- it CAN tune well, it just tends to have a narrower range for tuning well. I ran two toms for a long time- 12" and 16". I still had the 13"... but rarely used it. With my new kit, I'm running 10, 12, 16 toms, and now it's the 10" that's causing me frustration. I think that's more because I can't tune it as low as I'm used to my "high" tom sounding.

Depth? Well, my old kit had a 16x16 floor tom, and my new one has 16x14 (or something like that). The old one was a lot easier to tune to a deep, punchy tone. Any head would get *that* sound. The new one now sounds better than the old one did, but that's more about materials and workmanship, and it did take me a LONG time to tune and find the right heads.

Does that mean that deeper toms = deeper tone? Depends on the kit.
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Old 10-01-2008, 08:02 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Buy it virgin. If you decide you don't like it you can always add hardware, but if you get it already drilled it's too late.
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Old 10-01-2008, 08:24 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

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Originally Posted by GRUNTERSDAD View Post
Buy it virgin. If you decide you don't like it you can always add hardware, but if you get it already drilled it's too late.
i agree.
honestly im a little tired of people criticizing the idea of dampening.
you buy a virgin kick and muffle it with a pillow. so what?
you get that virgin kick to start with the most resonance possible and go from there.
why would you want a pre-muffled drum? you need the flexibility to go resonant and open to tight and punchy.

we are all trying to find the sound we desire.
if that means moongelled hydraulics on a unix kit, so be it...

and for all you who criticize, remember your coated heads are a form of dampening.
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Old 10-01-2008, 10:26 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

i took my toms off my bass drum (i was tuning them) and i decided to play a little groove and i started thinking... how the hell could i play with those things on there?
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  #9  
Old 10-02-2008, 10:01 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

My favorite tom size is 13"...pretty classic too. One of my kits has the 'floating tom' idea where its on a cymbal stand and I'm really thinking of buying a rail mount to attach it to the bass. Floating toms from third party stands is a pain. As for the toms on the center post mount idea, those are no fun either. Also, I'm tired of these isolated mount things. They require too much set-up time and offset the toms really. Plus you cant really tilt them at the right angle, as they seem to favor only forward to back tilting instead of he side to side tilt (which is great for traditional grip players).
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Old 03-07-2018, 01:32 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by timma View Post
for a single rack tom what are people's experiences with 12's vs 13's and how deep do i really need the tom? Im thinking of 12x8" at the moment, but i play hard rock and maybe need something a little bigger, but not too big, will the 12x8" be 'loud' or punchy enough for hard hitting music?
For single mounted tom, I would go with 12". 8" deep is fine, but 9" works well too.
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Old 03-07-2018, 02:56 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Everyone's been talking about (as a pair) 12 and 13 MT... how about a 12 and 14?

Is that 2" diff between toms an old wives tale?

I want 12, 14, 16, and 18.
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Old 03-07-2018, 03:30 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MasterBlaster View Post
Everyone's been talking about (as a pair) 12 and 13 MT... how about a 12 and 14?

Is that 2" diff between toms an old wives tale?

I want 12, 14, 16, and 18.
My Sonor Delite kit is 10x8, 13x10 rack toms, 16x16" floor with a 22x17.5" kick. I love the 3" tom intervals.
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  #13  
Old 03-07-2018, 03:47 AM
MasterBlaster
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

So, that's another way to go? 3" intervals?

How many more types are there?

And do 3's work best with 3 drums? 2" for 4 drums?

Is there a thread here somewhere about this???
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  #14  
Old 03-07-2018, 05:20 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

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Originally Posted by MasterBlaster View Post
So, that's another way to go? 3" intervals?

How many more types are there?

And do 3's work best with 3 drums? 2" for 4 drums?

Is there a thread here somewhere about this???
I guess it's up to the individual as to what config they like. All 3 of my sets are different configs. I find it fun to change it up as they all sound different.
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  #15  
Old 03-07-2018, 05:30 AM
MasterBlaster
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

For sure it's up to the individual, that's the beauty of the instrument.

I was just curious if there was some rule of thumb about the intervals

I guess the ultimate would be toms in 1" increments, all the way - 8" to 18"?

11 toms? Ha, sweet.
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Old 03-07-2018, 06:19 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by timma View Post
Im thinking of 12x8" at the moment, but i play hard rock and maybe need something a little bigger, but not too big, will the 12x8" be 'loud' or punchy enough for hard hitting music? I haven't had a lot of good experiences with 13's, they seem a little harder to tune and control. Does anyone else have this problem?

Thanks for the help guys.
A 13" won't be louder or harder to tune IMO, with a 16x16 I would definitely go 13"x9. It will go lower and feel better with the 16x16. I never understood the legend being a 13 is difficult to tune because it's not square number, it's all about interval, and with the 16" it's no problem. 13 14 16 can be difficult and long to tune (especially with power toms, I've been through this) but with a standard depth, 13" is a great Tom.
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Old 03-07-2018, 07:03 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

10 year old thread fellas.
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  #18  
Old 03-07-2018, 07:23 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

I love old good threads bumped at my forum.

Some of them surprise me, forgetting about them.
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  #19  
Old 03-07-2018, 07:25 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Keith Moon played three mounted 14" toms back in the day.
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  #20  
Old 03-07-2018, 08:08 PM
MasterBlaster
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Default HuH?

Can you explain how that worked? Diff tunings, for sure? Diff depths?

Can the tunings range that far and still sound good?
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  #21  
Old 03-08-2018, 01:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MasterBlaster View Post
Can you explain how that worked? Diff tunings, for sure? Diff depths?

Can the tunings range that far and still sound good?
I don't think Premier made anything but 14" toms at the time. They were just tuned to different pitches. You can make a 14" drum sound high (snare) or low (floor tom).
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  #22  
Old 03-08-2018, 01:11 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

So, three different tunings... interesting.
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  #23  
Old 03-08-2018, 05:19 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Size intervals are a funny thing. Consider this: decades ago, the variety in head selection wasn't as varied as it is now. Today's various ply and thickness configurations allow us to get a much broader range of sounds/tones from our shells.

I have a '91 Tama kit w/ a 10x10 and a 11x10 (diameter x depth) that if I use the same type of batter and reso heads on and tune each drum to where I feel it sounds best, the 2 drums sound too similar. If I put a thinner batter on the 10" or a thicker on the 11" and then tune them to where I feel each sounds best, I can get much more separation and the interval between them is much more apparent. To accomplish this, I had to get over my "all batter heads must be the same" mentality.

Choosing batter and reso heads for each drum's size and what type of interval sound you want is much easier to accomplish today than it used to be and the reliance on the actual physical size difference between the toms to attain an interval sound has been reduced -it's still important and significant, just not as much.
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Old 03-08-2018, 06:21 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

How do you determine what type of interval sound you want?

Is it a note thing? A pitch thing?

I kinda thought the 4 toms were supposed to play that horseracing bugle call song, the 4 note one... know what I mean? That 4 note tune?

Hell, I don't know - trying to learn here.
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Old 03-08-2018, 08:44 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MasterBlaster View Post
How do you determine what type of interval sound you want?

Is it a note thing? A pitch thing?

I kinda thought the 4 toms were supposed to play that horseracing bugle call song, the 4 note one... know what I mean? That 4 note tune?

Hell, I don't know - trying to learn here.
"First Call" is what you're referring to. Some people call it "Call to the Races."

Re: interval, mine isn't scientific. For gigs, I typically play 2 up, 1 down in a 10" 12" 14" configuration. I tune my 12 first and then the 14 and once I'm satisfied how they sound going from another, I tune the 10 in relation to the 12. If I add my 8" tom and 16" floor tom, then I tune the 8 in relation to the 10 and the 16 in relation to the 14. Keep in mind that the gigs I'm playing there's a 50% chance I won't have my toms mic'd -just kick, snare, and 2 overheads. Because of that, I do tend to tune a little bit higher than normal.

All that being said, if I'm playing the entire kit (3 up, 2 down) AND I'm going to be mic'd up, I tune the 16" floor tom first and tune it to where I feel it feels natural and then tune all the smaller toms in succession.

If someone is using a 12, 13, 16 configuration, there's usually enough size difference between the 12 & 13 to where good tuning will give you the separation you're looking for. Would I call it a "true interval?" Probably not. If I wanted to make sure there was enough distinction between the drums, I'd look at putting a single ply batter on the 12 and a (overall) thicker batter on the 13.

Regarding the calculated intervals and tuning to specific notes, there are more qualified people on this forum who do that who can guide you there.
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:13 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Thank you, sir!



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FZo9w0Avjnk
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  #27  
Old 03-09-2018, 05:42 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MasterBlaster View Post

Is it a note thing? A pitch thing?
Interval. A perfect fourth is ideal, but a Major 3rd is nice too. Anything smaller than a Minor 3rd and you lose the separation.

I start with the lowest pitched drum (the largest floor tom) and get it sounding good, then go up in 4ths/3rds from there.
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Old 03-09-2018, 06:09 AM
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Excellent!!!

What note do you usually start with?
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Old 03-10-2018, 04:13 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

I don't tune to any specific note. I just start with the lowest floor tom and get it as low as I can where it sounds good to me. I don't have perfect pitch so I would have to check with a piano to see what note it was, but it really doesn't matter.
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Old 03-10-2018, 06:12 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

Interesting. I've read where some tune to a certain key... does anyone here do that?
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  #31  
Old 03-14-2018, 10:45 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

I personally prefer to have my toms mounted on a rack or on stands so they do not sympathetically vibrate with the bass drum or vice versa. My drum set is a PDP Double Drive with 8", 10", 12", 14", and 16" toms, and I simply tune the 16" to the lowest note that still has full resonance, and tune the other ones each up a 4th from the previous one.
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Old 03-14-2018, 10:53 PM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

13x9 and 16x16 sound great together.
Also a white marine classic maple player.
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Old 03-17-2018, 12:39 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

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13x9 and 16x16 sound great together.
Also a white marine classic maple player.
This is true. That is what I play at church: 22/13/16/snare. Peace and goodwill.
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Old 03-17-2018, 12:54 AM
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Default Re: Rack Toms - sizes & mounted off the kick or not?

My preference to whether or not to mount on the bass drum is down to mechanics and logistics, not sound. I don't mount toms on my Standard kick because I don't have a tom holder that fits the original mount. I do mount the toms on my Yamaha kick, but when I played two up/two down, I had them off to the side on a stand.

If I had a modern mount like the Atlas Arch, I'd use it on my Standards. And I will probably get a tom mount installed on my next set if I buy new.
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