LEGEND 4X14 PHOSPHOR BRONZE SNARE DRUM 90S. Are these any good?

az drum pro

Member
Hi all. I have a line on buying one of these and never heard of them and there's not much info online about them. My question is does anyone have any experience with these and if so are they good snares and do they sound good? They have a black badge with a red dot, were made in the U.S.A, and have the name Kaman on them.

Thanks much.
 

single-ply

Senior Member
My understanding is that those are great drums. Long since out of business, but well built drums. I will say though that I've never seen or played one, so I can't speak from experience.
 

pgm554

Platinum Member
Worth between $150 to $250 bucks.
I nearly picked one up ,but one of the lugs was broken and it's a real pain to find a replacement.
 

Vintage Old School

Gold Member
Yes, they are great drums! I own a 4" X 14" Legend Phosphor Bronze. Sounds awesome.
Personally I prefer it over many other bronze snares.

Tommy Wells, late Nashville session drummer, was a huge fan of the Legend
phosphor bronze snares, and he sung praises for the 4" X 14" phosphor bronze.

I'd snag it! You can't go wrong with it.
 

Vintage Old School

Gold Member
Real good, um hmmmm. Don't know why they went with the LEGEND moniker, IMO should've just called them GIBRALTAR drums. Mid 90's They flirted with a Free Floater design too.
The drums were more of less hand built to order rather than being mass produced. They were only built for several years before Kaman pulled the plug.
The value of these drums to some drummers is that Joe Montineri and his brother built the first round (possibly two) of snares, so there was a good deal of
attention given in the assembly process.

I can't speak directly for the wood shells, but the 4" X 14" Phosphor Bronze really is a great little drum. Very versatile. The crown jewel of their snare line up
in my book. Their 6.5" X 14" Phosphor Bronze snares are cannons.
 

az drum pro

Member
Thanks Vintage. I did buy it and just waiting on shipping. Should have it wed of next week. I know they were only making drums for a few years in the early 90's so I'm surprised someone on here has that same snare. I have heard good things about them but it's nice hearing it from someone who has one.
 

Les Ismore

Platinum Member
The drums were more of less hand built to order rather than being mass produced. They were only built for several years before Kaman pulled the plug.
The value of these drums to some drummers is that Joe Montineri and his brother built the first round (possibly two) of snares, so there was a good deal of
attention given in the assembly process.

I can't speak directly for the wood shells, but the 4" X 14" Phosphor Bronze really is a great little drum. Very versatile. The crown jewel of their snare line up
in my book. Their 6.5" X 14" Phosphor Bronze snares are cannons.

All drums are 'more or less' hand built.

LEGEND was trying to produce a hi-end kit with what they thought were hi-end design aesthetics at the time and come in under with a price point under the other 'custom' built drums of the time.


8 Ply maple shells
Their own 'radical cut' bearing edges
Machined lugs
2.3 mm hoops on toms/FT's
They believed in air vents at he bottom of the shell (EAMES did this bf them) and two air vents for BD's
Lug hole mounted brackets
Memory locks
Come w/or w/o RIMS mounts


6 ho-hum stain finishes with applied by OVATION guitars, styramica clear coat protectant. Cheaper solid colors were applied with their unique BLACK ROCK texture paint, touted by LEGEND to be better than plastic wrap.

The lack os competitive finish options hurt LEGEND IMO.
24 different kit configurations

Not the 4" bronze snare is billed as 'seamless', the 6.5 they listed as having a seam.
 

Vintage Old School

Gold Member
All drums are 'more or less' hand built.

LEGEND was trying to produce a hi-end kit with what they thought were hi-end design aesthetics at the time and come in under with a price point under the other 'custom' built drums of the time.
Les, poor choice of words on my part. I meant to emphasize Legend snares were built to order with attention to detail, a notch above most mass production drums. Your point is well taken.

Thanks Vintage. I did buy it and just waiting on shipping. Should have it wed of next week.
AZ Drum Pro, let us know what you think of the 4" X 14" phosphor bronze model after you have some time to tweak it and log some playing time on it.
 

Les Ismore

Platinum Member
Good, well built drums for the time, price 'was' competitive for what you got. 2.3 hoops were considered an upgrade in the 90's, 8 ply then trumped 6, even today machined lugs are always going to get the nod, throw in some radical-cut bearing edges and forward thinking air-vent placement and you had something to talk about.

LEGEND had wonky, less than zero looking finish options for their price point tho... IMO.
 

Vintage Old School

Gold Member
Good, well built drums for the time, price 'was' competitive for what you got. 2.3 hoops were considered an upgrade in the 90's, 8 ply then trumped 6, even today machined lugs are always going to get the nod, throw in some radical-cut bearing edges and forward thinking air-vent placement and you had something to talk about.

LEGEND had wonky, less than zero looking finish options for their price point tho... IMO.
Agreed. The only wood shell "Legend" I might consider buying would be this one (pictured below) if it ever came up for sale.

The 4" X 14" Phosphor Bronze Legend on the other hand--to me--is a well kept secret. Looking forward to what the OP thinks of his new purchase.
 

Attachments

az drum pro

Member
Les, poor choice of words on my part. I meant to emphasize Legend snares were built to order with attention to detail, a notch above most mass production drums. Your point is well taken.



AZ Drum Pro, let us know what you think of the 4" X 14" phosphor bronze model after you have some time to tweak it and log some playing time on it.
I will post back when I get this drum on Wednesday and after spending some time tuning and playing it. I am looking forward to it as I have had a bronze snare once before and it was a little lower end one and it sounded great. I get the feeling this one will be everything I suspect it will be.
 

az drum pro

Member
As I see other Legend drums and sets online (the few I can find any pics of) they all seem to have a silver dot on the badge and the drum I'm getting has a red dot on the badge. Does anyone know the meaning or significance of that? Again there's not much info out there since Kaman stopped making these after only a few years. Thanks.
 

Vintage Old School

Gold Member
As I see other Legend drums and sets online (the few I can find any pics of) they all seem to have a silver dot on the badge and the drum I'm getting has a red dot on the badge. Does anyone know the meaning or significance of that? Again there's not much info out there since Kaman stopped making these after only a few years. Thanks.
I've been told the shells went through three "badging" phases. The red dot badges are the earliest drums. There is more of a chance that Joe Montineri and his brother likely handled these early drums, and for some buyers,
these drums may have more inherent value. Joe left Kaman shortly after the start up. At some point Legend switched to the black dot badge. No idea why or how long that time frame was. Then the corporate division of
KAMANN decided they weren't making enough return on the Legend drums. Their reasoning was that the drum market was saturated so they focused their funding in manufacturing Ovation guitars (I believe all Legend
drums were being assembled in the Ovation guitar factory) and the newly formed Gibraltar hardware line. After corporate pulled the plug on drum production, Legend staff continued to assemble and sell a number of the
phosphor bronze shells to the public. These drums have no badge, but are still authentic Legend drums. When the Legend factory closed I've been told that Gretsch purchased the remainder of the phosphor bronze shells.
 

az drum pro

Member
That sounds like a viable explanation. Thanks bro. I just seem to always see the badges with the silver dot on the black badge and the one I'm getting is the only one I've seen so far with a red dot on the black badge. I was hoping that didn't mean my snare was a manufactures defect or something lol, just kidding.

Out of curiosity Vintage what color dot is on your snare? Is it red too or is it the silver? And it is pretty cool to think Joe Montineri and his brother might have had a hand in this snare. Thanks for that tidbit.
 

Vintage Old School

Gold Member
Out of curiosity Vintage what color dot is on your snare? Is it red too or is it the silver? And it is pretty cool to think Joe Montineri and his brother might have had a hand in this snare. Thanks for that tidbit.
My Legend has no badge. It was one of the last ones assembled and sold.
 

az drum pro

Member
Okay so I've had the snare for a week now. It came with an ambassador batter and snare side. They looked good so I tuned it with those and after playing with the tuning a little it is maybe the best sounding snare drum I've ever played on. This thing is responsive and has a smooth nice snappy crack to it. Just enough ring to cut through without sounding like playing a 14 inch coffee can. With an O-ring on it the little ring disappears and just has the nice crack but still projects well. I'm really glad I came across this snare. The serial # on the badge is 0563 so I take that to mean this was the 563rd one of these made and completed.

Thanks again Vintage for recommending me to get it. I might not have otherwise and lost out on a really sweet snare.
 

Blisco

Senior Member
After doing some checking and making the purchase, I found this thread. A lot of great info here on a brand long forgotten. Here's my story.

Twenty years ago, I bought a snare to go with my new short stack kit. It was a Legend free-floater maple in 7X12 and it was my workhorse for many years and gigs. When it was time to move along, I foolishly included it in the sale. I've regretted that for the last 10 years.

In the meantime, it was replaced by a Black Beauty for 7 years. I loved that snare but it was always missing something to me. Then came the Supra and that lasted 2 months. Not a fan. A couple of years ago I had the good fortune to get one of the first Copperphonics released. Now that was a snare! But, somehow, it was missing something in an opposite way the BB was. I let it go.

I said to myself, maybe metal isn't your thing. Get a Classic Maple and see. Although it is an incredible snare, once again I was left wanting. So, what was left? Bronze? I found this rare honey and scooped it up immediately. I just finished putting a new batter and diecast hoops on it. Holy Heck! There it is. That's my sound. I am so glad I found my forever snare. All because of a little firecracker I missed so many years ago.



 
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