Advice sought - loose air grommets on Yamaha BCA’s…

John Q. Drummer

Well-known member
The band has started proper recording for album #2. I had decided to use my early 2000’s Yamaha Birch Custom Absolutes this time for about half the songs on the album. They are 12” x 8” rack, 15” x 13” floor and a 20” (dia.) x 18” deep kick drum. (I have a matching 10” rack tom as well, but I’m primarily a 4-piece player.)

After we had mic’ed everything and started getting levels, we kept hearing that dreaded “rattle” that no drummer wants to hear going into a recording session. Took a while to realize that the rattle was coming from not only one of the air grommets on 12” rack tom, but THREE of the air grommets on the 20” kick. Oh boy. As time was ticking away, I came up with a solution to continue moving the recording session forward: stick a piece of gaff tape on the air grommet and the shell to prevent it from rattling. It worked, and we moved forward with recording. (Left the hole open for venting purposes.)

Now I’m faced with trying to solve the loose grommet situation as the Yamaha’s are my primary gigging kit. I would prefer to not gig a kit with bits of gaff tape on the outside of the shells holding the grommets tight. Not inspiring to this fella. I’ve searched here and other drum forums for solutions to this problem, but I haven’t found one that I feel comfortable with. Putting a bolt through the vent and tightening a nut against it didn’t work. (It’s a black lacquer shell, and I felt like I could easily crack the lacquer before the grommet tightened up.)

This is the first kit that I’ve ever experienced this problem with. I’ve owned like a 100 kits by now (not currently) from a variety of manufacturers so I’m really kind of thrown for a loop by this dilemma.

Help a fellow drummer out. Thanks in advance.
 

ineedaclutch

Platinum Member
I don't recall what my vents looked like on my Yamaha Maple Custom, but I think they are threaded. I think. Possibly.
 

J-W

Well-known member
I had a Recording Custom kit for years (regret selling it now), and never had a problem with the grommets, nor do I remember if they were threaded or not.
That said, you could drill out the old, loose grommets and replace with the threaded style.
 

MusiQmaN

Platinum Member
The grommets are riveted, not threaded.

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This is the later Absolute model, but the first gen had a regular riveted gronmet under the Yess mount too.

If it had a threaded grommet, this was done after-market.
 
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MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Perhaps you can find some proper thickness/diameter circlips to put between the vent and shell on the inside.

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Rotarded

Senior Member
I think the bolt is the safest option of all. If you go slowly and carefully, you can mitigate the possibility of cracking the lacquer. An 1/8 of a turn, loosen, check. Repeat....


Only other option I would think, but comes with more risk as well, is:
Remove the lugs on either side of the grommet.
Place the drum shell on its edge on a work bench or other solid surface with the badge on the surface of the bench.
Place the ball end of a ball peen hammer on the inside of the grommet. (ball bearing larger than the hole will work as well)
Use a regular hammer to give a couple solid taps to the flat side of the ball peen hammer that is facing up.
The grommet should now be tight.
 
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Old Dog new Cans

Senior Member
So when I restored my buddy's Premier kit, I had to figure out a way to install smaller air grommets--I've never found smaller threaded grommets.

I bought regular 3/8" grommets from DFD and used the following video. I know you're not looking to replace them. But the video may give you another possible idea. It may feel a little safer than using a hammer. I actually did both! I swear, using a hammer on my bud's 50+ year old Premiers, I about left a load in my Levi's 👀👀 I used this exact method (although I'm pretty sure I did a better job than the guy in the vid).




Sorry. . .I was ready to post and then I actually read the rest of your post.

Also, I just read a post from a thread here on DW from 10 years ago. Exact same problem. Guy tried a ball peen hammer, didn't work.

Here. . . .https://www.drummerworld.com/forums/index.php?threads/how-do-you-fix-loose-air-vent-in-tom.67473/


I still wonder if the video method I suggested might work??
 

someguy01

Well-known member
So when I restored my buddy's Premier kit, I had to figure out a way to install smaller air grommets--I've never found smaller threaded grommets.

I bought regular 3/8" grommets from DFD and used the following video. I know you're not looking to replace them. But the video may give you another possible idea. It may feel a little safer than using a hammer. I actually did both! I swear, using a hammer on my bud's 50+ year old Premiers, I about left a load in my Levi's 👀👀 I used this exact method (although I'm pretty sure I did a better job than the guy in the vid).




Sorry. . .I was ready to post and then I actually read the rest of your post.

Also, I just read a post from a thread here on DW from 10 years ago. Exact same problem. Guy tried a ball peen hammer, didn't work.

Here. . . .https://www.drummerworld.com/forums/index.php?threads/how-do-you-fix-loose-air-vent-in-tom.67473/


I still wonder if the video method I suggested might work??
That's an oval head screw. Said so right on the drawer he got it from at Home Depot. 🤦‍♂️
 
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