My "new to me" DW Collectors

Brewkowski

Member
Well, I purchased my first DW kit. I found it on Craigslist and got it for what I feel is a really good price, $900.00. The kit is in good to excellent condition with only a few minor scratches and pedal rash on the bass hoop in one spot. No rust anywhere.

The kit is a Collectors Series in "black ice" wrap. The sizes are 18x22, 8x10, and 14x16 floor (w/ legs). The bass drum and floor tom are "gold badge" and dated Nov. 2007. The 10" rack is "silver badge" and dated in 2009. All of the wrap matches.

I have a few questions for those who own, or have owned DW Collector's Series drums.

1.) Do you guys feel that I bought these at a good price? I feel that they are worth in the $1500 range or so. I bought these as sort of an investment.. .I figured at the price I paid, it was a no loose situation.

2.) The heads on the toms at the moment are Remo Emperor White Suede, and seem to have decent life left. What kind of heads would you recommend come head change time?

3.) How do you guys prefer to tune the toms? So far I have tuned batter/reso to the same tensions using a drum dial, but I saw a video with John Good that recommends using single ply heads and tuning the reso heads "slightly" lower than the batters. I am not a huge fan of the large difference between having a 10" and 16" but, so far I think it will still work out ok.

Thanks in advance for your replies. I can try to upload a photo or two of the kit at a later time.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
A few thoughts:

You got a decent price.

Basically speaking, drums aren't considered investments. Investments put money back into your bank account without you doing any physical work. If you sell it for more than you paid, then OK I guess it could be called an investment.

The kit is obviously not all from the same original kit. (means nothing IMO, except perhaps when you try to re-sell it)

Head recommendation? That's highly personal. If you like coated G-14's with moongels then a recommendation for clear 10 mil single ply over the same might not interest you. But here's mine anyway. Ludwig smooth white mediums over Ludwig smooth white heavy. No muffling.

I would tune the 10" the same on batter and reso, kind of high. On the 16" floor, I would tune the reso a full octave above the batter head. Again, this is a highly personal thing. You need to know what YOU prefer, not me.
 

Brewkowski

Member
Thanks Larry! Yea, what I meant by investment is like you said. I figured it was a good price and that if I decided to sell them I could at least break even if not make a few bucks.. wasn't going to be a loosing situation.

I haven't owned a modern kit in about 8 years or so. I have a few vintage Ludwig kits. On those, I typically use Remo coated Emperors on the toms, and an EMAD on the batter bass (Evans EMAD's are just incredible). Thanks for your suggestions!

On my vintage sets, I usually tune the toms in a medium range, almost always with the reso head tighter than the batter. I still have some playing around to do with these.. I just got them on Saturday.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
I hear ya. Different drums take a while to get to know. I remember when I first got my DW's, I had a hard time tuning them. It was frustrating too, because I dropped all this dough on them. But I got it after a few head changes. I chalked it up to it being the thinnest shell I've had in a while, and it flexed. That was my excuse lol. I was used to a 7.5mm bombproof Pearl shell. But now the DW's tune up with ease, so I think it was most likely my problem. Still, it's definitely an adjustment when you get new drums.

Many happy returns on the DW's, you definitely made a solid deal. Why sell them anyway? Just add to them at this point. Black Ice is a classic finish you can use anywhere. DW Collectors do have a unique sonic airiness about them. You can't hear it from the stage as much, but from a distance, they do have a certain something.

I used to attend jams and there was a certain house drummer there. Good drummer, solid time, degree in performance, knew what he was doing, but IMO lacked heart. Didn't feel like trying too hard is the impression I got, lazy. Poor work ethic IMO. I saw him play once at this other, really nice place, with the same band as the jam. He was behind a set of miced DW's (not his drums) and wow what a transformation. The drums sounded phenomenal and his playing automatically sounded 7x better.
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
Without photos to say for sure, yes, you got a great deal.

But I agree with Larry, I wouldn't consider it an "investment."

As for heads and tuning, it's personal preference, and depending on what you want.

I've had good luck with three different head combinations, and they all sounded good, just different. And I've seen other DW with different heads that sounded good for what they were doing.

Right now my favorite are the Aquarian Super-2.
 

Brewkowski

Member
Here's some photos fellas! Sorry, I've been off the computer for a few days. Thanks for all of your replies.

These are just the photos that I took the day I got them. I post more later once they are set up at a gig.
 

Attachments

Brewkowski

Member
Thanks Superman! I replaced the tom heads today with coated Remo Emperors. I think I have found the sweet spot on the 10" tom.. Sounds great! Now I am playing around with the floor tom still to try and find the sweet spot on it. I am trying to find a good tone in the medium-higher range in order to have a good spread between it and the 10"
 

Brewkowski

Member
I was going to ask what you thought about the range between the 10 and the 16.
I think it will work out ok, once I play around with it some more. Ideally, I would rather a 9x12 to go with the 16 floor... Or a 14x14 to go with the 8x10 that I have... Although he doesn't play DW, check out some of Mike Johnston's stuff on youtube. He plays a Gretsch USA kit with a 10" and 16" and it sounds pretty damn good!
 

purist

Junior Member
Congratulations, nice score on the drumset. Nice looking too. I like coated G2s over coated ambassadors on my Collectors series, but as everyone says, that's a very subjective thing. I did try the coated G14s batter side, but I didn't like the stick response I was getting on the 14" floor tom. Tuning is also very subjective so tune em how you like em.
 

bub72ck

Senior Member
Sounds like you got a great deal on the kit. As far as heads go you know the two avenues that heads generally take. Clear = brighter and Coated = warmer. Since you are traditionally a classic drum guy with vintage Ludwigs tuned in classic style (coated heads with resos tuned higher than batters) maybe go the opposite on these guys with some clear heads tuned equally? It will probably give you a very different sound than what you are used to but a fun experiment regardless.
 

longgun

Gold Member
Here's some photos fellas! Sorry, I've been off the computer for a few days. Thanks for all of your replies.

These are just the photos that I took the day I got them. I post more later once they are set up at a gig.
Gorgeous drums..................for $900, it was a steal IMO
 
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