Nylon lug washers?

mike d

Silver Member
I decided to get some and put them on my toms after realizing that both my Tama snares came with them. Anyone else using them? Do they make a difference? Will they help drums to stay in tune?

mike d

Silver Member


Here's a couple of links to the same discussion of nylon washers. I put them on some of my drums, and can't tell any difference. Some people say there is a difference.
Thanks for the links. That confirms my suspicion that the jury is till out. :)
I have had no problems on my snares (Tama Performer B/B, and Tama Stewart Copeland Sig), so I thought I'd try them on the toms. From reading the links, it looks like the lower head tension of the toms might actually be a better application then the - potentially - higher tension of a snare. I keep my Tama SC tuned pretty high, but not drum corp high, and have had no problems so far, but I've only had it for a month or so. My B/B I keep tuned pretty low, and I can still bang it out of tune over the coarse of a couple weeks with rim shots. I'll update as I have more experience with them, good or bad.


Platinum Member
I think the following can be said:

Metal on metal is usually a bad thing.
The torque you need to apply to tune is more consistent with a plastic/nylon/composite/ceramic washer.
Less static friction means that the lug that gets rim-shot may detune faster.
Nylon washers will fail at high tensions. They herniate and blow out.
The Hendrix sleeved-washers are quite stylish.
Ceramic/composite washers are (relatively) expensive.


Platinum Member
There are leather washers (Canopus?) which help reduce detuning. I think I read that Brady snares came fitted with these over the last few years.


Silver Member
I use the little plastic "Top Hat" washers that eliminate all contact with the lug screw from the hoop on both my kits & all my snares. Lovely little things :)


Gold Member
I find that they make tuning a bit easier (the actual turning bit), and add a bit of stylish accent to the overall look. I use them on all of my snares.


Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
I typically change-out nylon washers for metal ones, and also typically remove lug gaskets. If you believe that the parts of the drum - the shell, heads, and hardware - need to work together as a unit, and I believe that they do, then any kind of isolation or detachment between those elements will alter the sound. Is it audible to the ear? Sometimes. Is it audible to a mic? More likely, yes. Is it better or worse? Well, that's a matter of opinion, but I can tell you that drums 'back in the day' sounded great without the benefit of adding plastic and rubber elements to the instrument.

I agree that the more a shell can vibrate, especially for toms, the richer the sound will be, with more sustain. But attempting to separate the hoop from the lug (by means of a nylon washer) is really not enough, and a rubber gasket under the lug offers no isolation, since the lug is attached directly to the shell anyway via the screws on the inside. There would have to be more isolation factors involved if the shell is to be allowed to vibrate as much as possible.

Then again, my Blaemire toms are very dense, have no lug gaskets or nylon washers, and use a shell-mounted holder... and they have wonderful body and a long decay. So I don't completely subscribe to the 'free-floating' shell concept to get the best sound.

The real answer is, if the drum sounds the way you want, regardless how it's set up, then it's 'right'.