Open Handed Cymbal Positions?

Backspacez

Junior Member
Open Handed Kit Setups?

Open handed players, how do you have your cymbals set up?

I have my ride between my toms and hi hat and crash on the other side of the kit

Here's a picture of how I have my kit setup:



i'm not the biggest fan of this steup, i've experimented a lot and can't really find a comfortable spot for both the crash and the ride.

any open handed drummers have their kit setup differently?
 
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spelman

Senior Member
Use a hacksaw and cut off most of that hi-hat rod. Put your ride above your hi-hats.

I can't understand how you manage to play your toms at those angles though.
 

Backspacez

Junior Member
Use a hacksaw and cut off most of that hi-hat rod. Put your ride above your hi-hats.

I can't understand how you manage to play your toms at those angles though.
How would you place them? I haven't ever found a really comfortable position for my toms
 

Arky

Platinum Member
Good advice to cut that hihat rod.

Try bringing your drums up some more and adjust your sitting position accordingly. Thus, you could decrease the tom angle towards a flatter position and the toms should also face you and not each other.

Do you have a pic with you playing your kit? I know many drummers prefer to sit low and also have their setup quite low as a result. But ideally (as recommended by various pro drummers), for example to find out the ideal position of your snare, close your eyes, play a rimshot and stop your hand where you see the snare in your imagination. Then open your eyes and check where your hand acutally is. Your snare might be way lower than that. -> Bring it up until your imaginary position matches the actual one.
 

evolving_machine

Silver Member
I am 6' 1" and sit on the thrown where my knee bends at a 90 degree angle. I use a lot of rehearsal studio time and find that a lot of drummers about my height sit a lot lower. I really can not agree with this, but understand it is a personal choice. What Arky is suggesting to just sit higher makes a lot of sense, but if you do not want to change the thrown height, try what I am suggesting below.

It appears that you sit low on the thrown and therefore you can not have the toms high enough so that the bottom of the toms clear the bass drum. A solution may be to mount the toms on a stand, which would swing them over to the left and also do what Canyonero said about the high-hat. Another option is to put the toms on a stand over to the right side, since your an open handed player, your right hand will have access to the toms and your left hand can have access to the ride cymbal.
 

Duck Tape

Platinum Member
Open handed means not crossing your arms up. I'm guessing you ride with your left hand mostly? With your equipment that's prob as good as it gets.

If you want to see some Tom angles check out the 'your gear' section.
 

uhtrinity

Senior Member
This is how my ride and other cymbals are setup. I used to have my ride to the far right in the traditional location until I started having wrist pain. It sits just left of the right rack pillar now.

On the topic of tom height and angle, mine sit rather low with a slight tilt. It was one of the reasons I picked these shells, 7" deep Ddrum Dominion Duo Fade Maples. My first floor tom is actually rack mounted atm like a traditional 7 piece rock set. For gigs I can leave the far right and/or left toms at home and play as a 5 or 6 piece set.
 

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Backspacez

Junior Member
This is how my ride and other cymbals are setup. I used to have my ride to the far right in the traditional location until I started having wrist pain. It sits just left of the right rack pillar now.

On the topic of tom height and angle, mine sit rather low with a slight tilt. It was one of the reasons I picked these shells, 7" deep Ddrum Dominion Duo Fade Maples. My first floor tom is actually rack mounted atm like a traditional 7 piece rock set. For gigs I can leave the far right and/or left toms at home and play as a 5 or 6 piece set.
Wow nice finish!

I love the way your rack toms are setup, my friend has his toms setup the same way. Whenever I play on his kit I can do nice tom rolls and wayyy better fills than I can do on my kit.

I can seem to find a way to get close to that with the little bass drum mount thing I have for my toms.

Any suggestions on that? Do you have a separate piece for your toms or are they mounted on your bass drum?

Good advice to cut that hihat rod.

Try bringing your drums up some more and adjust your sitting position accordingly. Thus, you could decrease the tom angle towards a flatter position and the toms should also face you and not each other.

Do you have a pic with you playing your kit? I know many drummers prefer to sit low and also have their setup quite low as a result. But ideally (as recommended by various pro drummers), for example to find out the ideal position of your snare, close your eyes, play a rimshot and stop your hand where you see the snare in your imagination. Then open your eyes and check where your hand acutally is. Your snare might be way lower than that. -> Bring it up until your imaginary position matches the actual one.
Amazing tip. I found my snare was about two inches below where my stick naturally hit. I get a much better hit now. Thanks!
 
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Arky

Platinum Member
Amazing tip. I found my snare was about two inches below where my stick naturally hit. I get a much better hit now. Thanks!
Haha - cool!! Thank Dave Weckl next time you see him ;-)
(He's not the only drummer giving that advice but the first one who made me aware of this.)

Seriously, the drummer who got me into a higher snare position is Todd Sucherman - I simply tried to copy his snare position from his DVDs. But then kept experimenting with snare height, lowering it a bit, bringing it back up etc. That's because I'm switching between matched and traditional grip and haven't found an ideal position that would fit perfectly for both styles yet.

There's a great DVD by Derek Roddy ("Playing With Your Drums") that focuses entirely on (ergonomic) drum setup - that one might help you. It's full of cool ideas:
http://www.hudsonmusic.com/product/playing-with-your-drums/
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
I can seem to find a way to get close to that with the little bass drum mount thing I have for my toms.

Any suggestions on that? Do you have a separate piece for your toms or are they mounted on your bass drum?
His toms are mounted to a rack.

You need to play around with the angles. Your toms can definitely be angled towards you and brought in closer together. Untighten any memory locks you may have on the tom arms and don't tighten them again until you've finished the whole process. Then raise them up higher by exposing more of the tom arm from inside the bass drum. Then reduce the angle of the tilter to lower the actual toms down to a level where you can hit them. Then swing them in together so that they're much closer to each other. The drums need to face you.....not each other. It'll take a little bit of trial and error til you get them into a comfortable position, but it can definitely be done using the equipment you have already.
 

uhtrinity

Senior Member
Any suggestions on that? Do you have a separate piece for your toms or are they mounted on your bass drum?
Like another member pointed out I use a rack. That in combination with a 20" X 20" Bass drum allow everything to sit low and tight. My spare set is a more typical 80's setup with deep toms and a 22" bass drum. They have to be mounted quite a bit higher.
 

JimFiore

Silver Member
My kits are set up more or less symmetrically. I'm right handed and the ride is off to the right and normally played with the right hand. The HH is off to the left and played with my left hand. I also had a kit (which I just took down the other day) that had a HH center with two rides, one to the left and one to the right. Lefty usually had a chain/beads on it. Personally I don't really get the idea of putting both the ride and HH on the same side (unless you have multiples of each).
 

Drumolator

Platinum Member
Sorry, but it bugs me to see toms like that. I can see from your photo that there is more of the "down pipe" on your tom arms that you are not using. Pull them way up and move the tom closer together. Then twist the toms on the arms so that the rims are parallel to the floor. Then adjust the angle where the top of the tom arm meets the bottom of the tom arm. Of course you must loosen and tighten everything accordingly.

Go to the Pearl forum and look at the kits in the Export and Vision sections. Then you can see what we are talking about.

By the way, I have been playing open handed since 1970. I place the ride closer to the hi-hats. Here are my kits.Peace and goodwill.
 

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