Hating New Ludwig Snare - NEED ADVICE

Brandtwi

Member
I just bought a new Ludwig Supralite (it's not light) snare drum and I am having trouble getting it to sound even decent. I bought the Supralite because it is $400. less expensive than the Supersonic that I really want. I think the main problem is that suck a$$ throw-off (P-85 I think although I suspect it's a Chinese copy). The throw-off seems very cheap and if I tighten the snares even close to where they need to be, then I can't get the throw-off to close.
I was wondering if a P-87 or even P-86 throw-off replacement might make me happy??? What do y'all think? Can a P-87 be put on a new Supralite?

I also have an Ludwig Acrolite snare & I love it and it has a P-85 throw-off that works OK.

HELP HELP .... Thanks
 
P

paradiddle pete

Guest
Take the wires off and start again, basically copy the way the other drum is set up.
 
D

drumming sort of person

Guest
if I tighten the snares even close to where they need to be, then I can't get the throw-off to close.

That doesn't make any sense. Can you elaborate or explain more clearly what it is that you're having trouble with?
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
That doesn't make any sense. Can you elaborate or explain more clearly what it is that you're having trouble with?

I'm wondering if he might be setting his snare wires with the strainer disengaged?


OP, if so, back off the tension screw. Engage the strainer and then set your snare wires. Clamp it down. Turn the drum over. Adjust the tension screw to taste and you should be good.
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
First, the Supralite is a welded steel shell with tube lugs, and the basic Supraphonic is a seamless aluminum shell with Imperial lugs. The drums are going to sound different even with the same throwoff, wires, and heads.

The entire drum is Asian-made, and it does have a somewhat budget throw-off, that's just part of the reason that series is priced so low. But it's also worth noting that the throw-offs and other hardware on Ludwig's "U.S." drums are OEM'd in Taiwan, so it's not strictly a problem with Asian manufacture. That's the same for almost every drum company, big or small.

But the Supralites sound very good in my experience (I have the 5.5x14 and 5x15) and I'm not normally a fan of steel snares. There's nothing inherently wrong with the design, and assuming that the drum doesn't have any defects, it's a simple matter of using your favorite heads, and tuning and wires adjustment.

Hang in there with it, I think you'll find it's a nice drum after all.

Bermuda
 

Winston_Wolf

Platinum Member
I actually think the Supralite/Black Magic throw off is a bit of an improvement from the P-85. Both of mine feel solid without being stiff and gives me no problems at all.

I'm focusing on the comment about "tighten the snares even close to where they need to be, then I can't get the throw-off to close" because I think that's the root of the problem. The wire tension should be adjusted with the throw off "on" not off.
 

Rosemarydrumco

Senior Member
Sounds like the issue is with the way you are attaching your wires. You want to loosen the knob on the strainer to around halfway I'd say and then disengage the strainer. Center your wires on the snare and attach to the strainer and butt end without pulling super tight...you just don't want any slack in your cord or tape. Then once you engage the strainer your tension should be very close to where you want to play it...so you only need to make minor adjustments with the knob. Also check your reso head tension. You want to start around medium high tension. If you crank it it's gonna choke the drum IMO.
 

Bull

Gold Member
I also have an Ludwig Acrolite snare & I love it and it has a P-85 throw-off that works OK.

The Acro has the same shell and strainer as a Supraphonic. It's going to sound closer to a Supraphonic than the Supralite will.
 

KamaK

Platinum Member
1: Disengage the throw
2: Loosen the throw all of the way.
3: Tighten the throw two turns
4: Undo the clamp for the plastic snare strap.
5: Pull the strap tight by hand
6: tighten the strap clamp just enough so that it applies tension to the strap, but the strap can still slip.
7: Engage the throw slowly, allowing the strap to slip as it engages.
8: Tighten the strap clamp
9: You can now tighten the throw via the adjustment knob.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry" - Administrator
Staff member
You may just not like the tone of the drum. I had one and I couldn't return it fast enough. It worked fine as far as the strainer went, but the tone was so not for me. It went back after I played it for 5 minutes.

If you can't close your strainer, your wires are too tight, back off the tension knob. But this would be something I would say to someone who never touched a drum before. I am assuming you know how to properly install snare wires, not upside down or anything, since you mentioned having an Acro, and apparently having no issues. So I'm a little befuddled as to what exactly the problem is.
 

wildbill

Platinum Member
If you really don't like it, bring it back.

Sounds like you might need to make your adjustments differently though.
 

pgm554

Platinum Member
Sounds like you got the same Carl Palmer Venus signature issue I had.
I had to end up returning the drum.
It looks like Ludwig has a real OEM QA issue on the off shore stuff.
They did fess up to the problems though.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lj_r6UoKOjQ
 

AirborneSFC

Gold Member
I just bought a new Ludwig Supralite (it's not light) snare drum and I am having trouble getting it to sound even decent. I bought the Supralite because it is $400. less expensive than the Supersonic that I really want. I think the main problem is that suck a$$ throw-off (P-85 I think although I suspect it's a Chinese copy). The throw-off seems very cheap and if I tighten the snares even close to where they need to be, then I can't get the throw-off to close.
I was wondering if a P-87 or even P-86 throw-off replacement might make me happy??? What do y'all think? Can a P-87 be put on a new Supralite?

I also have an Ludwig Acrolite snare & I love it and it has a P-85 throw-off that works OK.

HELP HELP .... Thanks


If you are not happy with it then I would take it back. Also the acrolite is a great all around snare. My advice is if you want a nice Ludwig snare that is metal then go for an LM402. If not an LM402 then the classic maple snares are really great sounding wood snares.

Vintage Ludwig snares are also great but that is another story. I have yet to meet an LM402 new or vintage I did not like.
 

Icetech

Gold Member
I have had one for over a year without a issue at all.. and sounds great. BUT i would return that one on the price alone.. a 15" supralite is 199 everywhere. i paid 150 for mine shipped.. $400 is insane for that drum. at least in my eyes.. or i read your post wrong. If so.. then disregard:)
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
$400 is insane for that drum. at least in my eyes.. or i read your post wrong. If so.. then disregard:)

I think you mis-read, he said it was $400 less... The Supralites all sell for $199 or less.

Bermuda
 

pgm554

Platinum Member
>I was wondering if a P-87 or even P-86 throw-off replacement might make me happy??? What do y'all think? Can a P-87 be put on a new Supralite?

The issue is Ludwig has a manufacturing QA issue in that part of the world.
I had a Carl Palmer snare that had the exact same problem.
Ludwig acknowledged the issue.
You should get in touch with Ludwig and let them know what's going on.
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
Check out the INDe snare strainer if you're set on changing it. It's not expensive, has gotten some pretty good reviews, and looks very Ludwig-y (because the guy who designed it also designed for Ludwig).
 

markdrum

Silver Member
Here's another vote for the INDe. I've replaced strainers on several snares with the INDe and it's always been a great success. The adjustable hole spacing is great and the unit is solidly built. At around $40 for the strainer and butt combo it's hard to beat.
 

pgm554

Platinum Member
Here's another vote for the INDe. I've replaced strainers on several snares with the INDe and it's always been a great success. The adjustable hole spacing is great and the unit is solidly built. At around $40 for the strainer and butt combo it's hard to beat.

Why spend more $$ on a cheap Ludwig steel snare?
It's probably a Ludwig QA problem and they should refund his money.
For $99 bucks on sale at GC you can get a Yamaha steel 10 lug snare that is as good as, if not better.
Why throw good money after bad?
 

Brandtwi

Member
UPDATE ON HATING SUPRALITE:

First, I want to thank all of you for the advice. It has helped and while I'm still not in love with the Supralite, I'm no longer hating it. I have done all the things y'all have suggested and it has helped a little, but the throw off handle still bumps into my hoop when I try to close it & engage the snares & it takes two hands to get it to close. It is probably a defect.

I decided to stop buying cheap snare drums and get the ones I really want. So I broke down and bought a 6.5x14 Supraphonic and I LOVE IT! I got a new open box for $409. Now I have the wonderful problem of deciding wether to play the Supraphonic or the Acrolite. I paid only $150 for the Acrolite. They both sound great.

I also bought a TAMA 8x14 G-Bubinga snare that I am still trying to get to sound good. I love the hardware on the TAMA. I paid $399. They claim TAMA only made 50 of these worldwide & I'm wondering why? Did it not come out the way they wanted it to??? It is a beautiful drum. The throw off is perfect and I wish Ludwig would greatly improve theirs.

I have tried every tuning possible and can't get it to sound like I think it should. It almost doesn't sound like a snare at all - more like a floor tom with a snare on it. It's hard to describe in words. I was looking for that super FAT funky sound in the direction of Don Henley's snare but even FATTER & FUNKIER. Maybe a thicker batter head might help??? What do y'all think about a thicker head???

Thanks again to all....Bill
 
Top