DW Classic Series Kits & Snares

digibird

Senior Member
I'm looking at ordering a DW Classic Series kit in Vintage Marine Pearl, 13-16-24 with a 6x14 or 7x14 snare. There was one of these kits on the floor at a shop near me, but it sold, so I no longer have it to reference/play/drool over.

For anyone that plays DW Classics, did you get the Classic Series snare as well, or go with the Super Solid Series or other snare? In one of the DW videos, John Good suggests going with the Super Solid snare with a Classics kit. I'm inclined to go with a Classic Series snare, but want to check out the options before ordering - these drums are a lot of $$ for me. (!)

Thanks for any help/opinions you can offer.
 
A

audiotech

Guest
I own a DW Classic kit that I bought a little over a year ago. It came as a 22" x 16", a 16" x 16" floor tom, a 12" x 8" rack tom and a 14" x 5 1/2" snare all the drums have the same shell composition. While at the store I also ordered a 14" x 14" floor tom. If they would have had "white marine pearl" in the shop at the time, I probably would have bought them, who really knows. This is also in a FinishPly, but it's "blue glass". To my ears, the Classic kits have a unique sound compared to DW's other offerings, basically due to their poplar/mahogany shells, maple re-rings, rounded ( they call them buttery) bearing edges and coated resonant heads. I fell in love with their sound with the very first taps of the sticks. Mine has the "banana rail" tom mount, bass drum cymbal mount and "t" rods. They're a keeper.







Dennis
 

digibird

Senior Member
Beautiful kit! I agree with you on the sound - I felt the same way as soon as I hit the bass drum in the store - it was jaw-dropping good. I've never cared for Collector's series DWs - I much prefer my Ludwig Classic Maples. But these DW Classic series are totally different and blew me away.

So you really like the snare as well? It's not too dark or spongey? The kit I played at the store sold so I can't go back to check out the snare. I was curious why John Good said guys were buying the Super Solid snare to go with this Classic kit. I'll call DW in Oxnard and ask them as well, but wanted to see what snare info I could learn here.

Thanks for your input. Any more on the DW kits in general or Classic snares in particular is greatly appreciated. :)
 

Olliemets

Member
I am in LOVE with my Classics kit. Purchased a Vintage WMP about a year ago. 22" Bass,12-14-16 Toms (1 up 2 down). Have a larger 7 piece collectors kit that I like but I feel more drawn to the "tubby" sound of the classics.

I am tempted to move the my collectors kit and purchase a second classics, perhaps in more Bonham type sizes. 24" inch Bass- 13 16 18 Toms.

The vintage WMP kit really turns heads when played out. I get a TON of comments on it.

It's completely subjective, but while I love the Toms and Bass Drum, I don't care much for the snare. Picked up a matching Classics snare on ebay and for some reason it doesn't suit me. I'll continue to tweak it and play around with the tuning, but I may order a 10 and 6 DW Snare(Deep 1 - 6 to 7 inches), or perhaps order something else. Has to sound/feel right.

Ter is a glut of collectors kits out there, but the classics are special.
Good Luck.
 

digibird

Senior Member
I don't care much for the snare. Picked up a matching Classics snare on ebay and for some reason it doesn't suit me.
.
Is the Classics snare too dark? Too spongey? No crack? Too tubby? Not loud enough? It's mahogany-poplar-mahogany with maple re-rings like the rest of the drums, right? How would you compare its sound to that of a Ludwig Classic maple snare or an LM 402? (I know, metal vs. wood, but a well-known reference point, nonetheless)

Thanks for your input. I'm glad you love your kit - it is a beautiful sound. So beautiful, in fact, that I now tell myself that I like DW turret-style lugs, which I never liked before. Growing up in the '60's and '70's, I liked Ludwig lugs best, Slingerland 2nd, but never Camco (now DW).
 

digibird

Senior Member
audiotech;908072. Mine has the "banana rail" tom mount said:
With the rail mount for the tom, can you still get your tom far enough to the right so that it is directly in front of your snare? I don't want the rail mount to force the tom too far to the left, but I love the look. I like the bass drum cymbal mount, too - it would work for my Paiste or Zildjian 20" rides, but probably not for my Paiste 2002 24" ride. Love the T-rods, too. Gotta have 'em. This is some serious cash to drop on a kit, however. It's freakin' me out a little bit...

The quote I got for 14" x 24" kick, 9" x 13" tom, 16" x 16" tom and 6" x 14" snare in Vintage Marine Pearl was right around $3500 out the door, with taxes. That's a lot for 4 drums, so I want to be really sure about the snare.
 

Cameo

Gold Member
I would seriously take a closer look at the PDP American vintage kits. DW had some Classic shells over so they made some ultra-sexy drums for just a bit over 1000 $. Exactly the same as the DW Classic's, they're even made in Oxnard, the only thing that's different is the hardware (still good, though). But they're only avilable in Black Oyster, Oyster Glitter and Red Sparkle.

Limited run, also. Act quick! :)
 
A

audiotech

Guest
audiotech;908072. Mine has the "banana rail" tom mount said:
With the rail mount for the tom, can you still get your tom far enough to the right so that it is directly in front of your snare? I don't want the rail mount to force the tom too far to the left, but I love the look. I like the bass drum cymbal mount, too - it would work for my Paiste or Zildjian 20" rides, but probably not for my Paiste 2002 24" ride. Love the T-rods, too. Gotta have 'em. This is some serious cash to drop on a kit, however. It's freakin' me out a little bit...

The quote I got for 14" x 24" kick, 9" x 13" tom, 16" x 16" tom and 6" x 14" snare in Vintage Marine Pearl was right around $3500 out the door, with taxes. That's a lot for 4 drums, so I want to be really sure about the snare.
In these pictures you can basically see where my rack tom sits and I have it adjusted fully to the right on the bass drum's rail. The rack tom can also be swung more forward to allow for a more "to the right" placement of the drum. There is a lot of adjust that can be made to the left of the rail if needed. I usually play two or three up, so I'm just minimizing the distance between the rack tom and the first floor tom. I also mostly play with a traditional grip, so this configuration makes room for the butt end of the stick and my hi hat.

I listened to part of the posted video and as usual, the audio quality was on the poor side. He did have his strainers set to the second position on the butt plates adjustment lever also. Depending on how tight the initial adjustment is on the throw-off, the butt plate control can make a radical difference in the sound. There are just too many variables including the room, which sounded very bright to me. To my ears the video sounded too bright and harsh and not a very good representation of the quality of it's inherit sound.





Dennis
 

digibird

Senior Member
I would seriously take a closer look at the PDP American vintage kits. DW had some Classic shells over so they made some ultra-sexy drums for just a bit over 1000 $. Exactly the same as the DW Classic's, they're even made in Oxnard, the only thing that's different is the hardware (still good, though). But they're only avilable in Black Oyster, Oyster Glitter and Red Sparkle.

Limited run, also. Act quick! :)
I saw those, and they are an amazing deal if you can accept the finishes and sizes. I have a red sparkle kit, and I'm not crazy about the other 2 finishes. The only sizes offered for the PDP American Vintage are 12-14-22. If I played a bit more quietly, or with higher tunings, I would grab those quick. It was the 24" kick that got me, with 13 & 16 toms, and I don't think the smaller drums would work for me.

Thanks for pointing out that excellent deal, though. Someone reading this thread may score a serious bargain - I so wish I could settle for that, but I can't. I would save a ton of cash. They're on Ebay for $1198 w/ free shipping.
 

digibird

Senior Member
To my ears the video sounded too bright and harsh and not a very good representation of the quality of it's inherit sound.
Dennis
Thanks so much for the rail mount info and beautiful pictures - it's a stunning look. I saw a few pics where people opted to have a mount on the rack tom itself instead of using the STM hardware. More old school look, but might choke the ring a bit - not sure.

I understand sound is subjective, but if the video's sound is a poor representation of the snare, how would you describe its sound and how it fits with the rest of the kit? How does the DW Classic series snare compare to a Ludwig classic maple or an LM 402? I appreciate your time & input.
 

Olliemets

Member
Is the Classics snare too dark? Too spongey? No crack? Too tubby? Not loud enough? It's mahogany-poplar-mahogany with maple re-rings like the rest of the drums, right? How would you compare its sound to that of a Ludwig Classic maple snare or an LM 402? (I know, metal vs. wood, but a well-known reference point, nonetheless)

Thanks for your input. I'm glad you love your kit - it is a beautiful sound. So beautiful, in fact, that I now tell myself that I like DW turret-style lugs, which I never liked before. Growing up in the '60's and '70's, I liked Ludwig lugs best, Slingerland 2nd, but never Camco (now DW).
Tough to describe. I just find the Classics snare to be sort of "dead". I have a shallow 10 & 6 DW Collectors that I like more. I also have an Allegra Snare with my other DW kit kit that's killer. Those are lighter drums, perhaps to my ear I just prefer thinner shells.

It will work out eventually. Will try to post a picture of mine, but have some difficulty shrinking my image to fit in the past on this site.

Funny you mention the lugs- I've seen several DW "Buddy Rich" kits show up on ebay. There was a limited run or 50 to 100 of them around 2005. They are the Classics shells with more traditional Ludwig/Slingerland style lugs, not the DW/Camco ones. Cathy Rich and DW had a falling out and the kits were discontinued, but from that sprang the Classics series.

The rail mount hardware is very cool. A little over engineered compared to simpler mounts but marries the distinctive DW Hardware to a more traditional look.
 

Olliemets

Member
I saw those, and they are an amazing deal if you can accept the finishes and sizes. I have a red sparkle kit, and I'm not crazy about the other 2 finishes. The only sizes offered for the PDP American Vintage are 12-14-22. If I played a bit more quietly, or with higher tunings, I would grab those quick. It was the 24" kick that got me, with 13 & 16 toms, and I don't think the smaller drums would work for me.

Thanks for pointing out that excellent deal, though. Someone reading this thread may score a serious bargain - I so wish I could settle for that, but I can't. I would save a ton of cash. They're on Ebay for $1198 w/ free shipping.
Can you believe it? 1200 bucks for these PDP Vintage drums compared to 3 Grand for the same package on the Classics. Problem is the lugs are the cheesy PDP version, and I don't love the 3 choices of finishes.
 

digibird

Senior Member
Olliemets;908487 The rail mount hardware is very cool. A little over engineered compared to simpler mounts but marries the distinctive DW Hardware to a more traditional look.[/QUOTE said:
DW hardware is kinda OCD/anal & over-engineered - that's why I only use DW hardware! :) I love how they design & manufacture.

I noticed that some kits that use the rail mount also have the rack tom drilled for a tom bracket, not using the suspension tom mount. I asked a rep at DW in Oxnard about that, and he said it was purely an aesthetic choice - that drilling the tom for a mounting bracket would absolutely not effect the sound/ring/decay of the drum - otherwise they would never let it leave the factory. That really suprised me - I thought for sure he would say the STM was better, or that placing the rack tom in a snare stand was better.
 

digibird

Senior Member
Tough to describe. I just find the Classics snare to be sort of "dead". I have a shallow 10 & 6 DW Collectors that I like more.QUOTE]

Mmmmmmm..."dead" = not very encouraging. Do you have on the 1-ply coated head that came on the drum, or did you try an emperor? I would think a 2-ply head would make that drum dead. How is your 10 & 6 made? Is it 10 plies of 1 wood and 6 plies of another, or metal & wood? They do have so many options, it's amazing.
 

Olliemets

Member
Tough to describe. I just find the Classics snare to be sort of "dead". I have a shallow 10 & 6 DW Collectors that I like more.QUOTE]

Mmmmmmm..."dead" = not very encouraging. Do you have on the 1-ply coated head that came on the drum, or did you try an emperor? I would think a 2-ply head would make that drum dead. How is your 10 & 6 made? Is it 10 plies of 1 wood and 6 plies of another, or metal & wood? They do have so many options, it's amazing.

The 10 @ 6 is all wood (maple). The rings are the 10 ply part. The particular one I have is 13 x 5. In answer to your question, I still have the stock DW coated head on the Classics snare. No I have not tweaked it enough. Perhaps this weekend. I'm all fired up now. Have a gig Saturday so perhaps I'll spend Friday night juggling heads.

Yes it is amazing how many options DW has. Although there are now many small companies that build nice drums (Precision, SJC, Allegra) to any specs you want.
I have a wood hoop Allegra Master Craft snare anchoring my DW Collectors kit...which is killer.

Regarding your other post yes they will offer the Classics without the STM Mounts.
 

digibird

Senior Member
Very nice. Thanks for the additional info/input. Enjoy your gig on Sat. - I know you'll get lots of compliments on your kit. Let me know how that Classic series snare works out for you on the gig once you play with head types and/or tweak it to your liking. The Classic snare seems to me to be a snare that is going to perform best in a lower tuning range, but you never know until you try it all.
 

baz

Silver Member
I love my classics.

I bought a five piece 22x14,16x16,14x14,12x8, with a 14x5.5"snare. My evil plan at that time was to eventually pick up a 24x14" bass drum, 13x9" rack, and a 14x6.5" snare. Here are the results





Here is the 14x5.5"snare.



I prefer the 14x5.5" 8 lug snare. It sounds a little beefier than the 14x6.5, and to my ear, has a greater tuning range. I am not sure if it is selective hearing, from playing the 5.5 these past three years, but it sounds great no matter what bass and tom combo I choose. I have been playing the 24, with the 12 and 14 for the past few months, as I love the big boom of the bass with the sharper attack of the smaller toms. The 22,16,13 combo has the nice warmth of the toms, with a little more punch from the bass.

I don't think that you can go wrong with the classics. As far as snares are concerned, I really do not know what to tell you. I love my 14x5.5, but I am not yet as crazy about the 14x6.5. I was playing a 14x6 edge as my main snare for about five years, up until I bought the classics. The edge is still my 1-A choice over the deeper classic.

Hope this was some help.

Whatever you decide, Good luck and good drumming.

Barry
 

millerscapes

Senior Member
Well, not trying to pitch gear in the wrong section but if you are looking I have a set of
vintage WMP DW Classics in those sizes (24x14, 13x9, 16x16) that I'm planning to sell so it you would like more info feel free to pm me.

Now, to your question on snares, I've heard/played both and I think with one would be great with the classics set. The super solid is more in line with the Slingerland Radio Kings (mahogany/poplar shells w/ maple re rings and solid mapel snares) but the classic series shell is warm and fluid sounding. Personally, on depth, I go 14x6 because its more versatile for me

Best of luck
 
Top