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  #1  
Old 04-05-2009, 07:01 AM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

G'day

I am a professional drummer based in Melbourne, Australia. I've been checking out the forum for players with a 20x16 Ludwig classic maple bass drum like the one I just bought. I wanted to get some advice on head selection and tuning.
Although I've been playing for over 20 years, every shell I've owned has had it's quirks!

The situation:
I have tried coated and clear emperors, clear P3, and now Superkick I. The superkick seats ok, but the bass drum hoop doesn't sit flush. As a result I think I am getting the sound of the beater on the head, but not the sound of the shell. Both emperor heads just sound small and choked. The P3 has probably been the best sound - more size and a tad more projection - bit I am still not hearing that punch and boom-type sound.

I have a home-recording setup - pro tools on mac. I am practising and recording in a small room and, admittedly, I have had resonance issues with some toms in this room. However, my Ludwig toms and 22 and 18 kicks sing unimpeded. In a live setting, the 20 has some presence but lacks punch or front end on the sound.

I noticed others with similar kick drums using a smooth white reso with felt. I am using an Encore P3 ebony with a 5" hole at 3 o'clock, one inch from the edge. I have tuned this medium tight and have a small folded towel inside the drum, but not touching either head. This placement seems to remove the 'basketball hollowness' while maintaining some of the size of the drum.

I can say with certainty that my Ludwig toms and Legacy snare, my 22x16, and 18x14 have fantastic sound, projection, tunability, and resonance, but the 20 isn't giving me the power for which I was hoping.

I would be very interested in people's thoughts. Thanks for reading my post.

http://i246.photobucket.com/albums/g...r/20Luddy1.jpg

http://i246.photobucket.com/albums/g...r/20Luddy2.jpg
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  #2  
Old 04-05-2009, 10:13 PM
zafrothunder zafrothunder is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

It seems like 20x16 is kind of small for a bass drum paired with toms that big. Usually, the standard is atleast 16x22, or 18x22. That might be a reason for not enough power...
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  #3  
Old 04-05-2009, 11:54 PM
austin412 austin412 is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

that size is still a pretty big bass in my opinion and im not sure y u cant et punch out of it

since uve been playing for 20 yrs im sure its not a tuning problem u probly had that down years ago

i would check and see if your shell is still in round im not sure of a good way to check it but just take off the heads and look at it see if it looks perfecly round

make sure its not warped by placing it on black construction paper (no heads) and shine a lite in there and make sure their is no light coming from the edges of the drums where it meets the construction paper

check your bearing edges and make sure their not all messed up

if all this is cool then i have no idea y u would be having problems

good luck
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  #4  
Old 04-06-2009, 05:28 AM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Thanks to both so far. I will check those bearing edge and in round suggestions.

After stretching the P3 over night - ie. over tensioning - it seems to have shaped itself better over the bearing edges and provides more punch; more connection with the shell.

On close inspection, the Aquarian is sitting on the bearing edges ok, but it just doesn't 'wrap' over the bearing edges, almost like it was made for a 20.5" drum. I've had undersized shells that have a lot of punch, but over-sized hoops?

The only other heads I was going to try were a coated Ambassador and Evan EQ1. But, man, this is such a money pit!!
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  #5  
Old 04-06-2009, 04:15 PM
austin412 austin412 is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

by the way u got a nice lookn set but im so stumped id say just go to your local drum dealer and ask for help maybe they would have a clue what it could be
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  #6  
Old 04-07-2009, 07:08 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

I would recommend using just an Ambassador head for the resonant side. I think the Powerstroke with the hole is ruining that resonance. Whether you choose coated, white, or black doesn't really matter. Powerstroke batter, Ambassador resonant with the front tuned higher than the batter should get a nice punchy boom out of that drum. An Ambassador one both sides could work as well. Remo CS would make a good batter head too.
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  #7  
Old 04-08-2009, 12:39 PM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Thanks austin and cymbalrider.

Coincidentally, I bought a clear CS Dot bass drum head just yesterday! Haven't yet installed it as the P3 is coming good, after having stretched it overnight.

I agree about the Ambasador potentially giving more resonance. Ludwig is sending me some replacement smooth white resos, so I will check out the difference when they arrive.

The Ludwig 20 I have been having trouble with is now recording beautifully. I am yet to get it to a gig again. I will be very interested to see if it projects better with the newly seated P3. Cant wait to hear it with the CS. I've never used a CS on kick. I love CS and Ludwig silver dots for toms. Such a funky, old school sound. And they really complement the Luddy tone - a classic tom sound, IMO.

As an aside:
The power collar heads - both batter and reso - that came with my Ludwigs are a joke. The collar sits about 3mill away from the head, thus choking the sound, instead of resonating with it. I can't understand it. Other companies use half decent remos that actually do justice to their drums. I had a Premier Genista 22 that always sounded good with the everplay P3 that it shipped with. I sold it ten years later with the same head. My student loves it!

All best.
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  #8  
Old 04-26-2009, 07:11 AM
stickers stickers is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

I have a 20x16 birch luddy kick..

I first started out with an emad, then an switched to an SKII and finally I got a PS3 coated and love it.
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  #9  
Old 05-03-2009, 01:01 PM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Quote:
Originally Posted by stickers View Post
I have a 20x16 birch luddy kick..

I first started out with an emad, then an switched to an SKII and finally I got a PS3 coated and love it.
Thanks, Stickers. What didn't you like about emad and skII?
I couldn't get the SKI to seat under the hoops, so haven't tried it again.
I have just installed a CLEAR CS DOT which sounds great. It might be the thinner head. The sound is more open - less Eq'd like a p3 - but could be more adaptable with some padding experimentation.
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  #10  
Old 06-07-2009, 06:03 AM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Further on the saga of my Ludwig 20 x16 Classic Maple bass drum...

I took it to my drum specialist here in Melbourne who shook his head and said that the shell, bearing edges, and hoop are not compatible with Remo heads. Ludwig said that I had to use their factory heads, that they would fit the hoops and shell. They also sent a jpeg of a fix for the hoop so that Remo heads fit. It requires a notch around the inside of the hoop to be machined. This would cost me about $150 or more.

I tried the factory heads and they fit worse than the Remos. The Australian distributor is still in consultation with Ludwig. They are even more frustrated than I.

I have spent $400 on heads to find the right sound that projects and I find out that the shell, bearing edge, and hoops are fundamentally wrong. The 45 deg edge is great on toms and snare. And, strangely, it doesn't appear to be as much of an issue on my 22, but the problem exists to some extent on my 18. All bass drums are the same age and 7 ply Classic Maple.

I have read others here who have made similar comments about Ludwig BD hoops not sitting flush against the drum head flesh hoop. Everyone scratches their head and says that it doesn't really affect the sound. Well, IT DOES! Get it checked out by a professional! If a head doesn't connect flat against a bearing edge, and isn't secured by the BD hoop, it doesn't resonate with the shell!

Apart from using Ludwig's stock heads (which are never in stock in Australia), the only other choice is RMV heads, which, like Ludwig, are secured into the flesh hoop. The only other options are to notch the hoops (as described above) and/or create a round over bearing edge.

Ludwig should contribute to this post.

Thanks for reading. Any comments or further contributions would be appreciated.

Cheers.

Last edited by Loopagator; 06-07-2009 at 08:14 AM.
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  #11  
Old 06-07-2009, 06:17 AM
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zambizzi zambizzi is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Say *what*? Remo heads not "compatible" w/ Ludwig's edges? That's the strangest thing I've ever heard.

I owned a 20x14" of the same drum and it sounded *fantastic*. I used a clear PS3 on the batter and a coated ambassador on the reso - wonderful, dark, resonant THUMP.

I now prefer a clear PS3 on the batter and a smooth white PS3 on the reso...it just sounds excellent and HUGE.
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  #12  
Old 06-07-2009, 08:25 AM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Ludwig's response to this problem (that Remo bass drum heads don't seat on their shell with their hoops). It appears that they are well aware of this problem, but the consumer is expected to do their own modifications, at their cost, if they want to use a different brand of bass drum head.
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  #13  
Old 06-07-2009, 06:34 PM
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zambizzi zambizzi is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Hmm...I dunno - all I know is; I never had a problem tuning mine up and there are a lot of other folks here who have Luds and use Remo heads. This is the first I've ever heard of them being "incompatible". Whether I used Evans or Remo, the hoop always sat kind of funny on the rim of the head...but they still tuned right up so I never thought much of it.
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  #14  
Old 06-07-2009, 09:18 PM
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RogerLudwig RogerLudwig is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

I use a Ludwig 14x22 Classic Maple and just ordered a 14x20. I use the Evans EMAD2 with a ported Remo Fiberskyn for a vert quiet, focused kit, but when I what it loud, I use the Ludwig clear power collar batter head and a Ludwig smooth vintage reso head with a 4" port. Seems pretty boomy to me.

A friend with a Ludwign legacy 16 x 22 uses Remo ambassadors on both sides.


I ordered my new one with a Ludwig clear power collar batter head and a Ludwing smooth vintage white with power collar on the reso head. I should be a bit less boomy, so I may change the reso head to a vintage smooth white without power collar.

PS: I switch between Ludwig medium coated and Remo Vintage A's on the batter side of my toms and I find I get good sounds from both....different, but good.
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  #15  
Old 06-08-2009, 04:11 PM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

I'm sure a lot of people just put up with this problem, depending on whether they think the drum sounds good to their ears, or if they feel they can get a mangable sound. I'm sure it's highly subjective. I have found it nothing short of frustrating and expensive. I waited 8 months for this drum.

The frustration comes from having heard other 20x16 kicks sound massive (including an old Premier Signia I formerly owned with undersized shell), and I believe my Ludwig Classic Maple 20 x16 could also have that presence. Currently, however, I am hearing the beater hit the head, but not resonate with the shell. Hence, this drum will not cut in a live setting.

I have a 22x16! And it sounds great! The head sits on the edge and the hoop sits acceptably on the flesh hoop. From what I can see, and what I've read all over this forum, is that this head/edge/hoop problem with Remos is less of an issue with 22" diameters and upwards.

Here are the photos that were sent to the distributor and forwarded to Ludwig.
Photo 1: Shows the head not seating on the bearing edge
Photo 2: Shows the 'edge' that Remo heads have, which prevents the bass drum hoop sitting flush.
Photo 3: Shows the effect of Photo 2. The only way to minimise this gap is to apply a lot of tension to the head, and that isn't the sound I like!
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  #16  
Old 06-08-2009, 04:18 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

If it's an issue for you...why not sand down the inner edge of the hoop, just enough to make it sit further down on the collar of the head? It would be fairly easy to do and it's not a part of the hoop that would ever be visible. Also, it wouldn't effect your ability to use other heads since the space you create by sanding would be small and insignificant.

Just an idea. I guess this is what I'd do - though I got a better sound out of my 20x14" w/ Remo heads than I did w/ the same drum at 22x14". Honest!
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  #17  
Old 06-08-2009, 04:28 PM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Thanks Z. This is the first suggestion my drum guy made, followed by cutting a roundover bearing edge against the current 45. I would prefer a professional did either fix.

At the end of the day, however, Ludwig is saying just use their heads and this problem is fixed. The heads I received were so bad that they fit WORSE than the Remos! Moreover, why should I have to pay for mods? This is 2009! Every modern drum should be able to accommodate heads from any company!

I endorsed Premier drums for 15 years. While I had my issues with them, I admit that I never had these kinds of problems with their edges or hoops. Premier edges are standard 45 degrees with slight round over and undersized shells, or at least enough clearance for most heads.

So the hoops are one thing, but in combination with the edges, it becomes a more costly fix.
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Old 06-08-2009, 05:11 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loopagator View Post
Thanks Z. This is the first suggestion my drum guy made, followed by cutting a roundover bearing edge against the current 45. I would prefer a professional did either fix.

At the end of the day, however, Ludwig is saying just use their heads and this problem is fixed. The heads I received were so bad that they fit WORSE than the Remos! Moreover, why should I have to pay for mods? This is 2009! Every modern drum should be able to accommodate heads from any company!

I endorsed Premier drums for 15 years. While I had my issues with them, I admit that I never had these kinds of problems with their edges or hoops. Premier edges are standard 45 degrees with slight round over and undersized shells, or at least enough clearance for most heads.

So the hoops are one thing, but in combination with the edges, it becomes a more costly fix.
Well...it's the edges that make Ludwig what they are - which are unique and wonderful sounding drums. They're an old drum company and it sounds like they don't want to make a change to their hoops for drums smaller than 22". Perhaps they can't justify the cost for this small segment of their made-to-order custom drums? I don't know...I've played several bass drums now and that little Ludwig kick was consistently bad ass! I played it outdoors (un-mic'd) a few times even...it had no problem projecting and sounded warm and fat. I remember the hoops sitting a little funny but it never caused an issue w/ seating the head. Maybe you've got a bad drum (out of round, bad edges, etc.?)

Another solution would be to just buy another set of hoops, if you wanted to leave your Ludwig hoops as they are. Either way, it'll cost you a little more and is inconvenient, for sure.

I had the same finish. ;)
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Old 07-11-2009, 07:38 PM
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zambizzi zambizzi is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Well Mr. Loopagator, I'm here to formally apologize for my stubborn criticism. I got my new Classic Maple kit a couple of weeks ago and I'm struggling with my 22x18" bass drum for exactly the reason you posted here for, originally.

The drum sounds completely choked because the hoops are resting on the head and not the collar. I've spent hours trying to tune up and have attempted every nearly type of Remo bass drum head on the market. The drum is clearly not resonating because the heads will not seat correctly, due to the hoops.

This must be a hit-and-miss issue w/ Ludwig because my 20" was perfect. In fact, it sounded better to me than this 22x18" that I have.

I get plenty of attack but the drum sounds like a cardboard box. If I don't muffle it, I get a really nasty "pong", reflective sound. I've tried ported, unported, muffled, unmuffled, etc. I've tried PowerStroke 3 clear, coated, and smooth white....coated ambassadors, ebony, and so on.

At this point I feel like I'm stuck w/ the stock Ludwig heads, which I don't particularly care for. I may order a second pair of hoops and modify them myself, to fit correctly.

So...sorry! :)
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Old 07-11-2009, 08:38 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Sure enough, I just put the Ludwig heads back on and they fit *flawlessly* and tune up without a single bit of effort. I had my bd tuned in 10 minutes and it sings like a bird.

However, I prefer Remo heads, also. It looks like Evans wouldn't be any different. I'm comparing them side by side and can see that the hoops will also sit on the head instead of the collar, just like Remo.
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  #21  
Old 07-12-2009, 07:06 AM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Thanks for your update, Z. No need to apologise. We all seem to have differing experiences with drum manufacturers. See my pics below for explanation of the essential problem. And Ludwig's response - they are obviously aware.

My 20x16 has been back in its box since my last post. The Australian distributor is absolutely livid. They are pushing for a replacement drum. However, my drum repairer and I are concerned that a replacement Maple Classic will yield the same result - lack of clearance to suit head to shell contact and undersized hoops. So, I've requested a Legacy shell replacement. The 'vintage' roundover edge is designed to nestle into the inside edge of the head. I have a Legacy snare which proves the effectiveness of this design. An amazing drum.

Re: my 18x14
I have had the hoops notched. My Remo heads definitely tune better. I have also installed a Gibraltar bass drum lift and I'm getting a much more punchy and round timbre - certainly more than a Jazz bass drum sound. However, the Remos still don't sit flush on the bearing edges! It's a trade off. I could go further and get the roundover bearing edge cut to accommodate the inside edge of the drum head much better, but I am happy with the sound and response at present.

Re: 22x16
The edges are not as glaringly bad as the 18 or 20, but the hoops still show a 2mm gap between head hoop and bass drum hoop. I am also pushing for reimbursement (or credit on the Legacy) to get mods done here. I am using a coated Emperor, which is working well tuned low and flat, but not great tuned higher (maybe that 'pong' sound you mentioned).

It would be worth lobbying your drum retailer about this to put some heat on Ludwig. They could at least offer two types of hoops, or even alternative bearing edges!! The shells are still going to sound awesome. Consumers can't be expected to shell out more cash, just so they can tune and use the drum they way we all expect to!
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  #22  
Old 07-12-2009, 08:50 AM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Have you guys given Aquarian heads a shot? They sit a little differently; if you're not digging the Ludwig heads and Remo's not getting you there, it's a possible alternative.

Check http://www.aquariandrumheads.com/products/features.asp for info on the hoop. You may want to take your drum to a dealer and see if you can try a quick pre-fit (without tension) first -- I have a Legacy drum and I can't get Aquarian heads to fit.
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Old 07-12-2009, 10:59 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Thanks for the update. I'm not convinced there's anything wrong w/ the bearing edges...I like them and I wouldn't want to lose the "Ludwig sound". I think the hoops are the main problem, anyhow. At this point I've just thrown the stock heads back on and am playing the drum wide-open. It sounds pretty good but I know it's capable of much, much more...especially if the Remo heads would tune up right.

I've already emailed my dealer and asked him to request a new set of hoops from Ludwig. If I can't get that much from them (being custom-made drums) then I may just swap them for something different altogether. I'm willing to bet the Legacy bass drums will have the same issue as I'm sure they use the same hoops and heads, correct? If not, maybe that's the way to go.

Another option, which I mentioned earlier, is to just buy a new pair of Keller hoops and try to stain/lacquer to match the drums - or have someone else do it. That would cost another $100+, which I'm not terribly happy about.

Chonson: I read your mind and bought an SK1 and Regulator last night. The issue is the same, the hoop sits on the head and not on the collar, causing it to sound terrible.

I'm surprised, given how happy I was with my little Champagne Sparkle kit. I'm pretty disappointed overall, because of a stupid pair of hoops.
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Old 07-13-2009, 04:26 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

I've got an update on this. What I lack in brains I make up for with intensely stubborn persistence.

I spent three hours last night experimenting with tuning and head combinations....again. I put an older, more broken-in clear PS3 on the batter and put the 4" ported smooth white back on the front.

Without the muffling pillow I was able to get a *fantastic* kick sound out of the drum and minimized the "pong" ringing overtones. Basically, I tuned it so low that the claws were barely grasping the hoops. It sounded great to the ears, great in the room, and *amazing* recorded w/ my Beta 52. I got it very, very boomy and it happily accepted being tuned this low. In fact it was overwhelming and might need some muffling, at least on the batter side.

The problem - it didn't stay tuned for very long. After about 30 min. of steadily hammering on it, it loosened up and sounded noticeably worse. I attribute this to Ludwig's obsessive lubrication. The tension rods and lug inserts are absolutely smothered in some kind of brown grease.

The solution - I had this problem with my stave kick drum and had to tune it the same way. I fitted it w/ replacement tension rods from TightScrew and never had a de-tuning problem again. I ordered 20 of them for my kick and this should do the trick.

$30 isn't a horrible solution. I'm happy w/ that.
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Old 07-13-2009, 11:28 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Another update...

I spoke w/ the dealer I bought the drums from and he's all over Ludwig to do something about the hoop issue. He told them basically the same thing you said here - the hoops are intentionally undersized to fit their Weathermaster heads with no regard to other (far more popular, major) head manufacturers.

He also reported that they suggested "notching" the hoops to fit. He and I came to the conclusion that this isn't an acceptable answer and I'd surely destroy the hoops trying, voiding any warranty and wrecking any resale value, should I decide I'm not happy w/ the drums because of this issue.

I'll post again when I hear something new!

Last edited by zambizzi; 07-18-2009 at 07:51 PM.
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Old 07-16-2009, 10:44 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

So, feeling a bit brushed off by Ludwig and frustrated by yet another 2 or 3 hrs. of tuning with unsatisfactory results, I took matters into my own hands. Literally.

I ran out today at lunch and bought a $60 Ryobi 1.5 horsepower router and a 45 degree chamfer bit. I did the inside edges of the hoops as cleanly and carefully as possible. I can't tell you that I did a great job, but the hoops sit flat on the collars of the heads now, instead of on the heads themselves. I'll tune it up tonight when I get home and let ya know if there's an improvement. I can't see how there couldn't be. ;)

It was quite easy and took about 30 minutes.

Here's some imagery...
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  #27  
Old 07-18-2009, 02:00 PM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Looks fine; just like the work I paid for. You are bold!

How do the hoops sit? Does the drum tune any better?
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Old 07-18-2009, 07:50 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loopagator View Post
Looks fine; just like the work I paid for. You are bold!

How do the hoops sit? Does the drum tune any better?
Maybe not so much bold as recklessly impatient? :)

The hoops *immediately* sat like they should. The drum tuned right up and the drum sounds 100% better. Rather than some dead, slapping attack, the drum sounds big, warm, round, and LOUD. The shell is clearly in the sound now and it *sounds* like a Ludwig. I'm now very, very happy with this kit.

The band was over for practice the night I did this and as soon as I hit the kick, my bassist smiled and said, "much, much better!".

The hoops aren't perfectly round so there is one spot on the batter hoop that still touches the head a little, when seating it. I really don't think it makes a noticeable difference in sound so I doubt I'll cut any more of the hoop away.

It was a simple fix and I feel confident in buying more Ludwig kicks in the future, now that I have a router on hand. I also have an excuse to buy some Keller shells and maybe try cutting my own edges, too.
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  #29  
Old 07-18-2009, 09:18 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loopagator View Post
Ludwig's response to this problem (that Remo bass drum heads don't seat on their shell with their hoops). It appears that they are well aware of this problem, but the consumer is expected to do their own modifications, at their cost, if they want to use a different brand of bass drum head.
Some one finally nailed it. I have complained here before that a PS3 didn't fit my 22 X 18 classic maple very well and experienced the same problem as you did. I thought the culprit was Remo.

Great job identifying the problem!
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Old 07-19-2009, 04:43 AM
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Steady Freddy Steady Freddy is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Hey Vinnie,

Nice fix man!
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  #31  
Old 07-19-2009, 07:41 AM
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zambizzi zambizzi is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

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Hey Vinnie,

Nice fix man!
Thanks Freddy! All in all, it was worth it because the kick sounds amazing - all complaints aside. I'm going to go ahead with either a 20" or a 26" add-on kick now - haven't decided which one I want more. ;)
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  #32  
Old 07-20-2009, 10:14 PM
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GRUNTERSDAD GRUNTERSDAD is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

So now whenever you buy a set of Ludwigs make sure they throw in a Router and not an extra tom or hardware. It would be much cheaper. I have read this entire thread and must say that Ludwigs stubborness is the best reason to buy any other manufacturers drums. That is ridiculous. I don't think I have ever seen Ludwig heads in any of my local stores.
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  #33  
Old 08-04-2009, 06:18 PM
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zambizzi zambizzi is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

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Originally Posted by GRUNTERSDAD View Post
So now whenever you buy a set of Ludwigs make sure they throw in a Router and not an extra tom or hardware. It would be much cheaper. I have read this entire thread and must say that Ludwigs stubborness is the best reason to buy any other manufacturers drums. That is ridiculous. I don't think I have ever seen Ludwig heads in any of my local stores.
Yeah, I agree with you entirely GD.

So, I got lucky a couple of times after routing the hoops but honestly, I can't consistently tune the kick drum well...most times not very good at all. After putting the hoops on a flat table-top, they're also noticeably un-true, in addition to being visibly out-of-round.

I brought my mid-level Pearl MCX drums back into my music room and compared the kick drums side-by-side. Oh my...how embarrassing for Ludwig. I tried to remain optimistic and while I love the toms, the kick drum isn't working for me. Maybe it's the hoops, maybe not. At this point I don't really care. I've set the drums aside and haven't played them for about two weeks. Ludwig promised new hoops in "about two weeks" - so according to that, they should be here sometime very soon.

I'll try them out...but if the kick sounds this flat and weak after using good hoops, I'll never bother with Ludwig again.
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  #34  
Old 08-05-2009, 03:07 AM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

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Originally Posted by Steady Freddy View Post
Some one finally nailed it. I have complained here before that a PS3 didn't fit my 22 X 18 classic maple very well and experienced the same problem as you did. I thought the culprit was Remo.

Great job identifying the problem!
Apologies for not responding sooner, but thanks for the props, Freddy. I might start another thread to try get more people on board with this.

I am not spending another cent on mods to my existing bass drums while I wait for appropriate compensation from either Ludwig or the distributor.
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  #35  
Old 08-06-2009, 07:36 PM
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Interesting thread!

Could you swap hoops from another manufacturer?

Any problems with non-Ludwig heads and the flanged hoops on the toms?

I've had good luck with the heavy Weather Masters on my 22x16 classic maple BD... though I'd like to try Emperors on my floor toms.

Thanks,
-Ryan
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  #36  
Old 08-06-2009, 10:23 PM
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zambizzi zambizzi is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Here's a raggedy little clip from last night, after I got the best tuning *so far* out of this 22x18" LCM kick of mine. It's still not very good.

Smooth White PS3s on both sides, 4" port on the front. A wadded-up t-shirt inside for the "PONG" overtones.

If it were tuned any lower the claws would be rattling around on the hoops. Both heads are tuned pretty much the same, the batter being *slightly* higher than the reso.
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  #37  
Old 08-07-2009, 03:30 PM
Loopagator Loopagator is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

I'm assuming your mic setup was - kick inside, snare, and overheads? And that's a 22x18? Hang in there, mate. See what the new hoops are like.
Are Ludwig notching them for you?

My 22x16 seats an emperor quite well and records with good punch and size. I have tried a coated p3, which was horrible: couldn't tune low and choked. An encore clear p3 (headlocked hoops) worked well: punch and projection. All but the encore sits 2mm away from the kick hoops. When I eventually get the hoops notched (on anyone else's dime but my own), I assume this will work as well as it did on my 18.

My 20x16 remains in it's box. That is a dog.

Re: toms
I am using emperors all round 10,12,13,14,16. Apart from slow seating/playing in time, I reckon they sound great. Lots of tone and punch; floor toms have good rumble.
I am also a fan of silver dots and cs dots. The silvers for a brighter attack; cs dots for old school thump.
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  #38  
Old 08-07-2009, 04:47 PM
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zambizzi zambizzi is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

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Originally Posted by Loopagator View Post
I'm assuming your mic setup was - kick inside, snare, and overheads? And that's a 22x18? Hang in there, mate. See what the new hoops are like.
Are Ludwig notching them for you?

My 22x16 seats an emperor quite well and records with good punch and size. I have tried a coated p3, which was horrible: couldn't tune low and choked. An encore clear p3 (headlocked hoops) worked well: punch and projection. All but the encore sits 2mm away from the kick hoops. When I eventually get the hoops notched (on anyone else's dime but my own), I assume this will work as well as it did on my 18.

My 20x16 remains in it's box. That is a dog.

Re: toms
I am using emperors all round 10,12,13,14,16. Apart from slow seating/playing in time, I reckon they sound great. Lots of tone and punch; floor toms have good rumble.
I am also a fan of silver dots and cs dots. The silvers for a brighter attack; cs dots for old school thump.
Exactly...that's what I said to myself. THAT'S a 22x18"?

Yes, there's a Beta 52 inside the 4" hole on the reso. I've got an SM57 on the snare and two of them overhead.

Ludwig is notching this next pair of hoops they're sending me. That really isn't a big deal and I'd have no problem doing it myself, again. The biggest problem now is that the hoops are both un-round and un-true. The east and the west side of the hoops sit right down but the rest of the hoops hover about 1/4" above the collar. It's hard to tune them this way, obviously. It's a matter of luck, getting it to sound like a bass drum.

I agree, the toms sound excellent. I have clear ambs on top right now but keep switching out with clear emperors...both sound great to me. I haven't had any issue seating heads or tuning them easily.
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  #39  
Old 08-10-2009, 05:45 AM
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tizzdizz tizzdizz is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Wow, this is an interesting thread. What a shame that you've had to deal with this stuff. I can sympathize with you though. I've had a Gretsch Renown kit for about a year and a half, and it sounded great when I brought it home. Since then, I've had a hell of a time tuning it.

It may just be me, but I've been through the stock Evans G2s, Coated EC2s, Coated Ambassador, and now I have Aquarian StudioXs and Classic clears on resos. This combination has given me the best results, but I've been suspect of the 5-lug toms and the fact that the suspension mounts grab on to 4 out of the 5 tension rods, leaving only one that's not being pulled on by the suspension mount. I don't really know if it does a lot, and maybe I'm being too critical, but I've been at the music shop since getting these and been jealous of how Pearl Visions sounded. That kinda bugs me.

Also, these came stock with an Evans EMAD on the kick, which sounds pretty good. I had a SK2 leftover from my old kit, which I really wanted to try out. The problem is that it WILL NOT fit on my kick. It's too small, or the kick is too big. I was pretty peaved when I discovered this, and the hoop doesn't seem to want to go over the head either. I think I would have traded these in for a different set a while ago if my wife hadn't bought them for my as a Christmas gift. You know how it is. To a non-drummer, it always sounds like I have "grass is greener syndrome," trying to justify another purchase when one doesn't seem necessary. Ah well. I don't gig or record, so I guess it doesn't matter that much.
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  #40  
Old 08-10-2009, 09:13 AM
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Steady Freddy Steady Freddy is offline
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Default Re: Ludwig 20 x 16 recommended heads

Quote:
Originally Posted by zambizzi View Post
Here's a raggedy little clip from last night, after I got the best tuning *so far* out of this 22x18" LCM kick of mine. It's still not very good.

Smooth White PS3s on both sides, 4" port on the front. A wadded-up t-shirt inside for the "PONG" overtones.

If it were tuned any lower the claws would be rattling around on the hoops. Both heads are tuned pretty much the same, the batter being *slightly* higher than the reso.
Your playing is really coming along. Good job.

The kick sounds pretty bad. It lacks depth and sounds really thin. Hard to believe it's a 22 X 18.

WTF is going on with Ludwig? What a friggin shame.
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