Seeing cymbals for what they are

EarthRocker

Senior Member
Around two years ago I adopted the mantra of "no crashes / no rides" only cymbals. I came to this conclusion after noticing that the majority of drummers, especially those with small cymbal configurations (less cymbals) crash on their ride cymbals, and riding on crashes is nothing new either. So now, for almost a year, I've been using three "ride" cymbals. A 20" medium ride, which is mainly for crashing, a 22" medium ride, which is mainly for ride patterns, but occasionally crashed, and then a 20" heavy ride used for both riding and crashing pretty evenly.

To me, anything below an 18" is a "splash" cymbal. The big cymbals let me get a wide array of sounds, so nothing on my set is a one trick pony.
 

Redbeard

Senior Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Nothing wrong with that; it's all about getting the sound you're after.
While it's great that we have an almost overwhelming variety of cymbals available these days for every possible niche, you're right that the labels are really just suggestions.
 

MJD

Silver Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

I have a 22 in medium ride that is quite crashable on my right and an 18 in crashride on my left. the crashride is about the thickness of a normal thin crash but of course has a crashride shape. 14in hats and that is my cymbal setup for everything. I also have an Ufip 13 in cymbal which i sometimes use as an extra crash/splash though it is really a hi hat top from the 70's and the thinnest cymbal i own. I dont bring it out often cause i barely use it even when i do bring it out, though it does sound killer for ride patterns in certain songs that we do.
 

SquadLeader

Gold Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Around two years ago I adopted the mantra of "no crashes / no rides" only cymbals. I came to this conclusion after noticing that the majority of drummers, especially those with small cymbal configurations (less cymbals) crash on their ride cymbals, and riding on crashes is nothing new either. So now, for almost a year, I've been using three "ride" cymbals. A 20" medium ride, which is mainly for crashing, a 22" medium ride, which is mainly for ride patterns, but occasionally crashed, and then a 20" heavy ride used for both riding and crashing pretty evenly.

To me, anything below an 18" is a "splash" cymbal. The big cymbals let me get a wide array of sounds, so nothing on my set is a one trick pony.
I do a loosely similar thing, and always wondered if it's bad form, so appreciate this thread.

My 20" ride (currently Sabian XS20 but I'm just awaiting delivery of a 24" APX) is rarely pinged on but usually 'crash ridden' through songs.

My 17" Stagg DH, whilst a killer crash which I really love, is my go to cymbal for crash ride patterns on choruses, and uplifted parts of our music. It sounds totally special. I also use the bell on this cymbal as the bell on the XS20 I find just really awkward to use and the DH sounds peachy. Really loud and cutting.

My 18" ride (XS20) is my normal crash (only) cymbal. And I use my 16" XS20 for accents mainly.

I feel I get more out of the 17" DH than the XS20s...which is weird as Stagg cymbals are supposed to be inferior.

Really though, I can't wait to replace my 16 and 18" XS20s with larger DHs or Furias and it's what I'm currently saving up for now I've got my new ride covered.
 

drummer-russ

Gold Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Can you help me understand what you mean by 'crash ridden' ? Is there a song I could listen to so I can understand it?
 

TColumbia37

Silver Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Can you help me understand what you mean by 'crash ridden' ? Is there a song I could listen to so I can understand it?
Say you have a beat in which you would play consistent eighths on the ride. Move that to a crash, and/or crash your ride in the same way you would a crash, and there you go.

I have been playing lately with my 14" hats, and just an 18" and a 20". Both used as crashes, and both used as rides. I really like the simplicity of it.
 

eclipseownzu

Gold Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Some people are just more experimental than others. I tend to be fairly traditional in my playing and set up. I like the sound of 14" hats and 18" crashes and 22" rides. They sound like drumset cymbals should sound to me. It is cool that people are pushing the boundaries and coming up with new ideas. I will just never be one of those guys.
 

mikel

Platinum Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Help. I thought a crash went.....well, crash, and a ride went ping when ridden and boom whoooosh when crashed. My 22" ride sounds like that anyway. I thought crashes were fast attack and fast decay, and rides were slow attack and slow decay. Is this old style thinking or do I simply have the wrong cymbals?
 

dwsabianguy

Senior Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Help. I thought a crash went.....well, crash, and a ride went ping when ridden and boom whoooosh when crashed. My 22" ride sounds like that anyway. I thought crashes were fast attack and fast decay, and rides were slow attack and slow decay. Is this old style thinking or do I simply have the wrong cymbals?
That's generally how they are. There are certain profiles and thicknesses that lend themselves to better use with a particular type of cymbal - hihat cymbals don't open up quite the same way 14" crashes will. Typically rides will have features that keep them from opening up too much, but of course that isn't always the case. Some heavy crashes will be slower and louder than lighter ride cymbals.
 

groove1

Silver Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Cymbals are cymbals..you are right about that. The labels of splash, crash, ride, crashable ride etc are used to help save time in discussions about what someone is looking for or the sound they are trying to describe. If I'm playing in a B3 band and want a fast crash, when I go into the local drum shop and say I''m looking for a fast crash, it saves everyone time. They won't take me over to 10" splash cymbals or 22" rides etc. Just a convenience.
 

SquadLeader

Gold Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Can you help me understand what you mean by 'crash ridden' ? Is there a song I could listen to so I can understand it?
OK...Excuse me...I'm no Neal Peart !!!! And the sound quality, video quality, and drummer quality are not great :)

But on this video I'm basically playing a ride pattern on my DH17 crash cymbal at the parts where the bass player joint in with "ahhhhh ahhhhhh ahhhhhhhhhhh"

We basically think it adds more excitement on the more accented parts of the song...seems to work live.

There is a part in the middle...where the small angry man has finally lost his temper "round 2....**** you" where I play the same pattern on bass along with the crashing....it sounds superb live and really gets the blood flowing.

Hard to see but my crash cymbal is just above my ride cymbal on the right hand side...and I use the bell mainly on the crash cymbal (as opposed to the ride).

I very rarely play ride lightly or 'pingy'. Our music just sounds empty when I do that, although on the rare quieter parts of songs we play I will do that rather than use Hi Hat...I really, REALLY, dislike Hi Hat.

Weird I guess....but it works for us:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ImR3Nlr9VVA
 

EarthRocker

Senior Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Help. I thought a crash went.....well, crash, and a ride went ping when ridden and boom whoooosh when crashed. My 22" ride sounds like that anyway. I thought crashes were fast attack and fast decay, and rides were slow attack and slow decay. Is this old style thinking or do I simply have the wrong cymbals?
Back in the day, there were no "Crashes" or "Ride" cymbals. There were just cymbals of different sizes and weight. Gene Krupa, I believe, approached Zildjian, and wanted thinner cymbals for the drum kit, instead of having marching cymbals. So when I'm looking for a cymbal, it doesn't matter if it's labeled as a crash or a ride, I'll use it for whatever application I see it best.

That being said, most crashes below 18" are one trick ponies. Like the 16" crash, it really only does one thing. But once you mess around with bigger cymbals like 20" and up, you can get all kinds of sounds out of them.

I guess the gist of my approach is, I want to "play" my cymbals, rather than just bash them. So as stated in my OP, my setup consists entirely of "ride" cymbals.

My hi-hats are a 16" Sabian B8 Pro medium crash bottom, and a 16" Sabian Pro Series thinn crash on top.
 

porter

Platinum Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

What is a crash-ride shape?
Usually, smaller crash rides (in my experience) are crashes designed to be more ride-like. That usually means less bell diameter (gives more stick definition), high bell profile (raises pitch/separation of bell sound) and thicker center (again, more stick definition). Very general definitions but that's usually what those techniques do. A larger crash-ride is basically a ride with a thinner edge and probably a larger bell to open up the stick definition.

Honestly, I don't think there's much point to separating cymbals like their current manner when many are crazy versatile (I've used a 17" Saluda crash as an incredible light ride, and a 21" HHX Legacy ride as an amazing crash)- but it likely helps beginners a lot to know what purpose some are designed for, as they can often judge based on what vocabulary they're told rather than what they actually hear. Much easier to associate words than learn the spectrum of sounds that constitute a "crash".
 

lefty2

Platinum Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Yesterday I made a trade at midwest for a Sabian ISO 20" crash. (It's one of those vote on cymbles,) Mainly for ride purposes. It sound pretty good as a crash and a ride. Until now I've never had a ride that was crashable. I think I'm gona like it.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

This is why its so important to test out cymbals before you buy them. Labels are just a starting point but you can't really trust them.
 

makinao

Silver Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

That being said, most crashes below 18" are one trick ponies. Like the 16" crash, it really only does one thing. But once you mess around with bigger cymbals like 20" and up, you can get all kinds of sounds out of them.

My hi-hats are a 16" Sabian B8 Pro medium crash bottom, and a 16" Sabian Pro Series thinn crash on top.
Hmmmm ... I get lots of sounds out my 16" thin crash. Its not a one-trick pony. So either you haven't found one that has a repertoire of sounds and applications, or you haven't figured out how to use them beyond crashing.

Again, hmmmmm .... you claim small crashes are one trick ponies, then you say that they can also be used as hi hats. Sounds contradictory to me.
 

porter

Platinum Member
Re: Seeing cymbals as what they are... cymbals.

Hmmmm ... I get lots of sounds out my 16" thin crash. Its not a one-trick pony. So either you haven't found one that has a repertoire of sounds and applications, or you haven't figured out how to use them beyond crashing.

Again, hmmmmm .... you claim small crashes are one trick ponies, then you say that they can also be used as hi hats. Sounds contradictory to me.
Yeah, I think the boundary for a "one trick" pony is much lower than that, probably around 10-12" crashes/splashes. Even some of those have a great repertoire in them. Now, a 6" splash... sure, there's really only a limited amount of significantly different sounds one can get.
 
Top