Muffling a 20" x 16" bassdrum


Silver Member
For a small kick - I recently modded a 14"x 16 birch FT. - outdoors for a cottage thing.. as it a small drum I used the 70's Ludwig Classic maple technique of lowering the heads so they are just tight enough to not wrinkle. It needed some muffling, so I hooked a bungy cord from a tension rod on one side across the front head to the other side.. then wrapped a beach towel over the bunjee. Surprizingly it looked cool and sounded great - got a nice low thunk out of it!

I forgot to mention - I was unsure at first if I could get a 14" diameter FT to sound like a kick.. so I didn't change the heads - just used the existing 2ply batter and single ply reso.. and much to my surprize it really worked. Hanging a bit of towel on the bungee against the lower 1/3 of the front head allowed a lot of flexibility to dial in the right amount of muffling. It's for playing small outdoor gatherings at cottages with friends... not usually paying gigs. Although I'm thinking of using it for an annual charity event where we play for a hundred+ boats from a dock.. I have to mic the kick anyway so it might sound awesome through a PA..
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Gold Member
I only have kits with 20” bass drums these days . My favourite head and muffling combination is a
Remo PS3 Coated with Control Sound dot on the batter side .
A Gibraltar Felt strip is installed on the batter side running from 9 o’clock to 3 o’clock right at the beater impact point .
The resonant side head can be posted or imported depending on what gig I am doing and the mic setup .

This set up gives me a nice controlled resonance and tons of bottom end . It has great projection as well . I hate that sound where people put tons of pillows and blankets in a bass drum and have them completely dead .