Question about rubber gasket under imperial lugs

Boom

Silver Member
Thanks for the post Bob. In your opinion, after reading this thread and seeing how much rubber is added to the shell of the drum, do you think all of those gaskets affect the BB's sound?

I know your earlier post said you like them fine with gaskets. It just seems very hard to believe that you could add that much rubber (which is under tension as you've described) to any shell and not affect it's sound.

Virgin bass drums, RIMS, low mass lugs etc. It would appear that one of the main improvements in drum manufacturing has been in minimizing the hardware's effect on the drum's sound. But in this case, Ludwig is going against that trend and actually adding more hardware to the shell. Doesn't that seem odd to you? (even taking into account the logic of your post for less rattle/play and protecting the finish). Don't you think there has to be a better way for a high end snare drum to be manufactured?
 

Soupy

Silver Member
Without a proper double-blind test, I'm not going to believe there is any noticeable difference in sound. If drummers can't tell the difference between birch, brass, and aluminum, there's no way that the difference between gaskets and no gaskets is obvious.

Confirmation bias easily trumps most anecdotes.

But also, I am a bit of a skeptical, grumpy old goat, so take that as you will.
 

Boom

Silver Member
Soupy, now don't take this as being argumentative (at least not aggressively so), but isn't there a point of diminishing returns when it comes to dampening on a drum? I'd assume you'd agree that covering 100 percent of the drum in rubber can't be a good thing.

So, I guess you are saying that amount of rubber shown earlier in this thread doesn't seem substantial enough to you to make a difference.

Your point about a double blind test is well taken. I won't be able to A/B side to side the BB that I've ordered as I don't have any other BB's. I guess I'll stop harping on this as I see I seemed to have stirred up a little bit of a bee's nest here.

Thanks for all the input, guys.
 

bobdadruma

Platinum Member
Thanks for the post Bob. In your opinion, after reading this thread and seeing how much rubber is added to the shell of the drum, do you think all of those gaskets affect the BB's sound?

I know your earlier post said you like them fine with gaskets. It just seems very hard to believe that you could add that much rubber (which is under tension as you've described) to any shell and not affect it's sound.

Virgin bass drums, RIMS, low mass lugs etc. It would appear that one of the main improvements in drum manufacturing has been in minimizing the hardware's effect on the drum's sound. But in this case, Ludwig is going against that trend and actually adding more hardware to the shell. Doesn't that seem odd to you? (even taking into account the logic of your post for less rattle/play and protecting the finish). Don't you think there has to be a better way for a high end snare drum to be manufactured?
My take on it is that the lug contacts the shell with or without the gaskets. The screw and the washer are the main contact point between a lug and a drum shell. The vibration will still be transfered from the hoop to the shell. I don't think that the gaskets make much difference in the sound at all.
Again, If you want to remove the gaskets you can do so in a short amount of time with simple hand tools and little effort.
All of the intermediate level drums that I have bought in recent years have had gaskets.
I never thought much about it because I liked the drums.
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
Without a proper double-blind test, I'm not going to believe there is any noticeable difference in sound. If drummers can't tell the difference between birch, brass, and aluminum, there's no way that the difference between gaskets and no gaskets is obvious.

Confirmation bias easily trumps the anecdotes in this thread.

A mate bought one a few months ago and we were able to a/b the two. Putting two drums side by side you can hear it. Definitely a quicker decay of the fundamental overtone (but not as much as say, swapping the flanged hoops for die casts). But the difference is there in that environment. However, it's that brass ringyness that decays quicker.....which is exactly the overtones that disappear once a band cranks up around you anyway. In that respect the difference in the two shells is gonna be negligable.

It's certainly not worth losing sleep over, but for anyone seeking that fundamental tone that the BB has built it's reputation on.......take 'em off. It's not gonna be world's apart if you leave 'em on, with very few ever likely to notice.........but sometimes it's the subtleties that make the difference to the sound in our own heads..........or maybe I'm just a traditionalist at heart. :)
 

Sean75

Junior Member
I can tell you this. I just sent back a 410 Super Sensitive I bought after hearing some older ones on Youtube, and they sounded so much like the John Bonham sound I personally like.Got it, but it did not have all this resonance I heard on videos. I saw the rubber gaskets and wondered what it would sound like if I took them off. Wish I had. The P-70 strainer had a minor issue not staying alighned right after making numerous adjustments, so just sent it back today for a refund to get a Black Beauty with tube lugs. Yes I know Bonham did not use a Black Beauty lol.

For those who DO NOT want that open ringy sound with overtones, then these gaskets are perfect for you! If you want that classic sound of the 70's versions, take them off!!! All that rubber dampens the shell! There is a very convincing video on Youtube showing this.

And the worry about the imperial lugs going to scratch the shell without the gaskets. Yes they will. I had one from 1989 I bought, and I took a lug off and could see a slight indention in the shell, but did no harm to the sound of the drum. No one would ever know unless they took the lug off. Not a big deal to me. I but most of those have them. If the drum sounds great, don't change a thing.

By the way, I am just getting back into drums after a 14 year vacation from playing, and don't know half of what you all do, but I used to hate ringy overtoned snare drums, and I was wrong so I learned how important it is to leave them open to get that full sound I was always taping and muffling.

Watch Youtube videos from the Drumcenter, and memphisdrumshop. The videos you see with the imperial lugs just do not have that sustain as the tube lugs have. A 5X14 and a 6 1/2 black beauty video from the memphisdrumshop site shows the tube lugs with great sustain and overtones compared to the imperial lugs mainly on the 5X14 version. That is just my ear anyways, and maybe how they was playing on the drums with the imperial lugs was a factor? We all hear different things I guess. If we all liked the same sound I guess the world would be boring. Hope this helps somebody.
 
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mandrew

Gold Member
There is another option that Ludwig could take, and that would be to make he gasket material out of a harder compound that allows vibration to pass through it rather than dampen. I have tube lugs and use gaskets with them, but they are more of a hard plastic, which eliminates splay, but does not dampen any noticeable amount. another reason for gaskets is to stop any vibration between the metal lug and shell if the fit is not perfect.
 

Frosticles

Silver Member
Thread revival................ :)

I bought a BB on Tuesday. It is the hammered shell & has the gaskets. Would it be inadvisable to remove the gaskets with it being hammered? I also have a Supraphonic which doesn't have the gaskets.
 

Al Strange

Platinum Member
Still has the gaskets on, never even played it? Don’t touch it… don’t point! It can’t be played. Stop looking at it!! 😂 Based on the pics, if it sounds as good as it looks I would leave as is mate; stunning drum!:unsure:(y):)
 

Frosticles

Silver Member
Ok, I restored the Supraphonic today & it already has the gaskets removed by a previous owner. The gasket was still on the Butt Plate though. Any reason for this? When I re assembled it all, I left the gasket off.

Untitled by Kevin Frost, on Flickr
 

Frosticles

Silver Member
No reason not to take them off.

The only side effect with be a light increase in rod splay, which unless severe, is no problem.

Even if removing them has no effect on the sound, the gaskets that Ludwig uses on the beaded imperial lugs just look terrible. They are die cut from rubber sheet so they have rough edges and are way to big. I call them floor mats.
Certainly have to agree that they are not very pleasing to look at.
 

Fritz Frigursson

Senior Member
i have one of the newer LM402s and even with the gaskets off there is no lug splay. i still keep them on because if i take them off then the shell gets scratched a little by the metal on metal contact between shell and lugs, and i don’t want to scratch it any further.
 

davezedlee

Senior Member
Drums are a vibratory instrument. The entire drum including the heads, shell and everything attached to it contribute to the sound. How many instruments use rubber to isolate everything from the rest of the instrument? If you look at a piano, the cast iron harp is screwed directly to the sound board. The strings are stretched across bridges that are part of the harp. Everything is meant to vibrate together.

Same thing with violins, cello, acoustic guitars. Is there a single guitar or other strung instrument made that uses rubber to isolate the neck from the the body? Everything is glued together. The same is for electric guitars. Everything is glued or screwed together.

Rubber gaskets are a marketing gimmick and that is all there is to it.
make your own out of solid plastic... problem solved

i'm not big on soft rubber or vinyl... i get that they'd have a deadening effect
 

Fritz Frigursson

Senior Member
And what happens if the shells gets scratched when the lugs are bolted on? Who will ever see it? What effect will it have on the sound?

I find it very interesting that many drummers are so obsessed with such things. Drum companies made drums for decades with no gaskets with nary a problem until they decided we needed gaskets.
well first of all it’s my drum and i am going to worry about my 700 dollar snare getting scratches, i think that’s pretty reasonable. i don’t buy drums exclusively for their sound, drums are a very visual instrument and scratches will bother me. instruments aren’t supposed to scratch themselves on their own, and we shouldn’t defend manufacturers that make instruments that do.

if we all bought drums for the sound we would live a very boring life with no color
 

Fritz Frigursson

Senior Member
I'm going to blow you mind then. There are no gaskets under the strainer so there are scratches underneath it. There are no gaskets under any of the screws or cup washers holding your lugs, strainer and butt plate, so there are scratches underneath them too. When the aluminum collar of the drum head rubs on the shell, it will cause scratches.

How do you prevent the inevitable scratches that will be caused through normal use? Do you wear white cotton gloves when you put it in its fabric bag that goes on before you put it in it's padded flight case?

If you are more of a collector than a player, then it makes sense to want everything to be pristine. I don't buy your argument of "we shouldn’t defend manufacturers that make instruments that do." Take any Stratocaster apart and you will find scratches and indentations "under" anything attached to the body and neck. If you are a player, then no matter what you do, you are going to get scratches.

Don't ever volunteer with your local marching band. Every instrument will be beat and scratched to crap.
im going to blow your mind too, mine does have gaskets under the strainer and butt plate. I can't do anything about the inside of the drum so I don't mind the inside scratches but I plan on keeping my instruments looking as pristine as possible. I keep my drum from scratches wherever possible and don't like my stuff getting scuffed or damaged. scratches due to daily use? fine by me. deep scratches from something that could have been avoided? that stings more. I keep my snare in a snare bag when it's off the kit and wipe it every few months. If you're not down to doing that, that is your problem and you shouldn't shame people who take care of their things. "being a player" doesn't mean you shouldn't take care of your gear. I paid a premium for my stuff, i'm not going to throw my snare around like it's a CB percussion i bought off craigslist for 20 bucks. I don't throw my p bass around either, maybe you are into that but i am not.

is taking care of your stuff a concept too hard for you to grasp, i'm sensing some hostility from you. maybe you should go and scratch your snare to feel better? maybe it'll make you feel like "a player not a collector" lol :ROFLMAO:
 

Frosticles

Silver Member
i have one of the newer LM402s and even with the gaskets off there is no lug splay. i still keep them on because if i take them off then the shell gets scratched a little by the metal on metal contact between shell and lugs, and i don’t want to scratch it any further.
When I removed the ones on mine there was no marking at all without the gaskets :)
 

Jeremy Bender

Platinum Member
After hearing the demo on the YouTube video, I decided to remove the gaskets from my late model Bronze Supra and noticed how it opened up the drum to be more resonant and breath a little more.
A small fraction of an inch gap between the lug casing and the center bead- no visible scratching and it is still installed firmly.
No real tension rod splay of significance as they're not binding when I tighten the heads.

drums in car-7.jpgdrums in car-6.jpg
 
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