A battle of millimeters

So, I just upgraded to a slightly larger kit (larger in dimensions, not # of pieces). I didn’t have much wiggle room with the previous kit and now that this kit is slightly larger (18in bass to a 24in bass, extrapolate from there), getting everything positioned as I like has become a battle of millimeters and fractions of degrees. i.e. “So, my snare is too close but if I move this stand about 3 cm to the right and then rotate this Tom stand about 3 degrees, I think i can move the snare stand by about 0.05%.” Y’all feel me on this? Can anybody offer any advice or words of wisdom that could be helpful in this situation?
 

Trommelmonsterbvb

Active member
be Patient,
Always try to reset your seating Position to the Position you Play them in to avoid getting angles wrong based on where you sit at the Moment,
be Patient,
make your drumthrone doesnt move, or youll be doing this everytime you sit down on your kit...
did I Mention Patience?

getting all the angles just Right can be tedious enough as it is, limited space amplifies that.

really no easy way around just sitting down and wiggling on everything till it fits, getting some locks so I doesnt move while playing, I guess.
 

jimb

Member
No wisdom but maybe a kindred spirit as such.
Dare I mention the Starclassic at the rehearsal studio this week.....aagh!...Toms hanging from cymbal stands neither of which I could move closer. Bigger bass drum and wonky BD pedal...Fills were woeful. Forget millimetres it was multiple centimeters that I needed.
 

roncadillac

Member
I have been guilty of getting a measuring tape involved while setting up a new kit or changing around an existing kit. Looks crazy from an outside point of view but it works wonders for my ocd haha.

I like things low, flat, and tight together. Besides hating having to carry heavy stuff (and driving a small 4cyl hatchback) that is exactly why I use really small drums.

For your situation you ultimately will have to make some sort of (minor) sacrifice in terms of your 'usual' set up to make it work. For example: if you like your mounted toms low and flat like I do you either will have to have them further off to the side of the bass drum then usual to remain flat OR position them higher up then usual to keep them tighter in your set up ultimately causing you to tilt them a little bit.

I went the opposite way, my drums gradually got smaller, but I still had to adjust.

Don't be afraid to play around with it a bit, modern drum hardware allows for infinite possibilities in your set up.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
I learned on a 4 piece 22 in bass drum. I was playing a 4 piece 13/16/24 in bass. Now I’m playing a lil 4 piece 10/14/16 in bass. What’s funny is I discovered my leg spread to hats and kick pedals determine my kit space. So I always sit with feet same leg angle and that space is big enough and makes the same footprint no matter what I put between it (my bass drum size) -smaller is more empty space. The height of bass is more an issue. Now in orchestra pit ive scrunched everything close and odd angles and just had to adapt my play and deal with it. But my footprint always fits my rug In general. I was surprised the larger kit didn’t give me issues, but I empathize with adjusting Tom heights and angles in general to find that ergonomic sweet spot. It can get down to microns.
 

Woolwich

Silver Member
The only time I played a kit with 24" bass drum and 18" floor tom was in the rehearsal studios we use. I loved it but found that the extra movement involved was slightly more tiring and difficult compared even to their usual 22"/16" kits. I didn't need to adjust much as it happens but i can appreciate and imagine the difficulty.
 

NouveauCliche

Senior Member
So, I just upgraded to a slightly larger kit (larger in dimensions, not # of pieces). I didn’t have much wiggle room with the previous kit and now that this kit is slightly larger (18in bass to a 24in bass, extrapolate from there), getting everything positioned as I like has become a battle of millimeters and fractions of degrees. i.e. “So, my snare is too close but if I move this stand about 3 cm to the right and then rotate this Tom stand about 3 degrees, I think i can move the snare stand by about 0.05%.” Y’all feel me on this? Can anybody offer any advice or words of wisdom that could be helpful in this situation?
This happened to me when I went from a 4 pieces to a 5 piece - it's amazing how a couple of rack toms can just throw everything into a tailspin.

My advice is start with the essentials: Kick, Snare, Hats - gets those exactly where you want them and are comfortable then build out from there.

I've had to make a couple of compromises to add that 10" tom mounted on a bass drum: but now after a bit, I'm super comfortable on the new config.
 

roncadillac

Member
This happened to me when I went from a 4 pieces to a 5 piece - it's amazing how a couple of rack toms can just throw everything into a tailspin.

My advice is start with the essentials: Kick, Snare, Hats - gets those exactly where you want them and are comfortable then build out from there.

I've had to make a couple of compromises to add that 10" tom mounted on a bass drum: but now after a bit, I'm super comfortable on the new config.
Very well said!

I learned on a 4 piece 22 in bass drum. I was playing a 4 piece 13/16/24 in bass. Now I’m playing a lil 4 piece 10/14/16 in bass. What’s funny is I discovered my leg spread to hats and kick pedals determine my kit space. So I always sit with feet same leg angle and that space is big enough and makes the same footprint no matter what I put between it (my bass drum size) -smaller is more empty space. The height of bass is more an issue. Now in orchestra pit ive scrunched everything close and odd angles and just had to adapt my play and deal with it. But my footprint always fits my rug In general. I was surprised the larger kit didn’t give me issues, but I empathize with adjusting Tom heights and angles in general to find that ergonomic sweet spot. It can get down to microns.
Not to slightly derail but if you have a pic of your kit I'd love to see it! I can't see myself ever going above 18" bass drum again and I love my current 16".
 

KamaK

Platinum Member
My advice is start with the essentials: Kick, Snare, Hats - gets those exactly where you want them and are comfortable then build out from there.
I echo this. Set up the kit in the order of priority. Kick, snare, hat, throne. Follow that with Ride, RT, FT. Follow that with left crash/accent and right crash/accent.

When I went from a 22 to a 24, everything came up about an inch. Only the left crash took some getting used to, as I'd whiff it on occasion due to muscle memory.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Very well said!



Not to slightly derail but if you have a pic of your kit I'd love to see it! I can't see myself ever going above 18" bass drum again and I love my current 16".
Sure I recently moved but I found my old basement setup with "about" the same perspective and my lil SONOR Safari with 16 in kick and then my Pearl Decade 13/16/24 though I was moving cymbals (and different sizes) around a bit and my toms. It's about the same size area.
 

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C.M. Jones

Well-known member
The most obvious "words of wisdom" are that you've changed your configuration and must adapt accordingly. Let go of your previous expectations. Reorienting yourself to new measurements is your only option. As @KamaK mentions above, you'll need to reprogram muscle memory. That will occur only through repetition.
 

jimb

Member
I like things low, flat, and tight together. Besides hating having to carry heavy stuff (and driving a small 4cyl hatchback) that is exactly why I use really small drums.
Here too tho I use a 20 BD. I play from the wrists and like the kit to feel like one instrument and not a collection of parts. Low ride is a gnats whisker from the tom etc...everything as tight and close as poss and as I said above if another kit ain't well I'm done for. But yes get the throne, snare, hat and BD right and it shld all happily work.
 

roncadillac

Member
Here too tho I use a 20 BD. I play from the wrists and like the kit to feel like one instrument and not a collection of parts. Low ride is a gnats whisker from the tom etc...everything as tight and close as poss and as I said above if another kit ain't well I'm done for. But yes get the throne, snare, hat and BD right and it shld all happily work.
Another good example (this may or may not hit home for you) is video games. You get used to a specific controller, when you change consoles it feels weird at first but you get used to that as well.

My set up is so tight that if I put my right hand straight out at the elbow while holding a stick I can hit my snare, floor tom, or ride just based off the direction I flick my wrist without having to move the rest of my arm at all. I love it.
 

roncadillac

Member
Sure I recently moved but I found my old basement setup with "about" the same perspective and my lil SONOR Safari with 16 in kick and then my Pearl Decade 13/16/24 though I was moving cymbals (and different sizes) around a bit and my toms. It's about the same size area.

Cool, those set ups look fun!
 

rocker261

Junior Member
I've got a very large kit, and the battle of millimeters is very accurate. Move one thing, and everything else is affected by it, causing you then to have to move or adjust many things. I've gone through it quite a bit, and my advice is to start in the middle and work you way to the sides. With large kits, a small fraction of a change can pay huge dividends in the comfort of playing. Take the time to get it perfect, it's worth the effort. I've also found that once I think I'm "done" adjusting, and go a few days without playing, I'll come back to it with new perspective of how to get things in the ideal position. But I enjoy doing the adjusting, it's satisfying! Here are some photos of what I had to setup...
 

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sillypilot

Junior Member
I've been where you are....many times. I've found lately that what works is to start with the bass, snare first and nothing else around me. Once I'm comfortable with those, I add the two rack toms (I have two on a stand). Once I like the position of those things I add the hihat. Then I add the floor tom, then the ride, and final the crashes. I've found that order always works pretty well and makes things quick for me.
 

johnwesley

Silver Member
You'll figure it out. Be glad you're not dealing with millipede or centipedes. I was MCing a Western type festival in California once. Sitting down I felt something ticklish on my leg beneath the shaft of my tall cowboy boots. Took off the boot and Holy S**t, there was a six inch millipede with 8 thousand wiggling legs on my calf. Knocked him off and all was well, but damn! what a thing to have exploring your body. I know, this is off topic,but the milli in millimeters sparked my memory. SO....be glad you're not dealing with millipedes or centipedes.
 
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Peedy

Guest
A few options you might want to explore: small footprint throne, a stand that will accommodate two cymbals, making the base of the other stands smaller. Smaller snare might not be a bad idea for a practice kit.

Pete

Edit - sorry that I’m not familiar with your financial situation.
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
There's always gonna be some "adjusting" when making a change that big. An 18 to a 24. And usually bigger rack and floor sizes accompany those 24 inchers. Plus, you're moving "up" in sizes. Imagine if you'd started with the 24. Then you step into an 18. Wow, what a cute little kit. I can set this thing up real tight:).

I have 16, 18, 20, 22, 26 inch bass drums. Still, my pedal, snare, hi-hat, ride, 1st floor tom relationship pretty much stays the same.

Moving stands around .... you just gotta put in the time ..... find what works for you. Get to know your hardware. Or more important, get to know what's out there. I pretty much use all Yamaha stuff racks, stands, tom mounts, arms, trees, etc). I use any and every which kind of accessory/auxiliary clamp there is. And still, every once in a while I have to get out the hacksaw.😄
 
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