Size Matters?

synergy

Senior Member
This may be a stupid question but I am having a little difficulty figuring this out.

I currently have 1 rack tom that without going to measure now is 12x12 or close to that- the head is deffinately 12.

I want to buy a smaller tom as an add on- Though I have having a little trouble finding what I want in the correct colour, size and i admit price range- I am having trouble buying 1 tom from ebay for the same amount I can grab a whole use kit from craigslist!

i was thinking an 8 or 10 but would prefer the larger size.

My question is , what determines the pitch of the drum? Is it the depth of the drum or the head size?

I ask because i would like a higher pitch then what I already have and have not really found what I need- but have found toms that are 10x12-- As i currently have a 12x12 would this be enough of a pitch difference or should I go with something like 10x8?

Like I said I want the smaller drum to be higher in pitch then what I have

Thanks for any help given
 

Mr. Compactness

Senior Member
Tricky question because I personally believe that pitch comes from the diameter, the head size, the thickness of the shell, the wood the drum is made out of etc... My meaning that you can take identical size drums, slap the same heads and hoops on them, the only difference is that they're made out of different wood types and are of varying thickness, and each drum will have a wider or narrower range of pitches that it can be tuned to.

That being said, you will have an easier time tuning the 10x12 to a higher pitch than the 12x12 than if you were trying to tune two 12x12's to different pitches, but even that isn't impossible. I believe Stewart Copeland uses or used two 9x13's in his setup.

I think the bigger issue will be how balanced they'll sound next to each other, and again that comes just as much from how and of what the shell is made as much as the size.

I'd personally go for a 10, but if you want to stay with a larger size, 10x12 and 12x12 should be no problem.
 

synergy

Senior Member
Errrrmmmmmm- I knew that!

I was......... just testing!!!!!!!

haha-

phew! got away with that one! No one noticed : )
 

tbmills

Gold Member
what i have heard is that, for the most part, diameter determines pitch, while depthe determines sustain.
 

Mikecore

Silver Member
Here's the skinny:

Diameter=pitch. There's no way a 13" tom will reach the same note as a 6" tom, and vice-versa. That's why bass drums are so large. A larger membrane can move those low&slow sound waves better than smaller ones.

Depth=tone/timbre. Deep toms are good for saving your duct tape for something else. Much like a 20x22" bass drum has a nice punch, but no real note, toms like your 12x12 are going to hit hard but sing little. I have found that reducing depth increases a drum's ability to sing a note....within reason.

If you want to add another drum, I would suggest a different diameter than what you have. That way you can get a different note value, but keep your timbre in line with the rest of the kit.
 

caddywumpus

Platinum Member
Pitch is determined by how fast the membrane (drum head) vibrates. Think of a small trampoline (3 ft diameter) and a large one (10 ft diameter). Which one will vibrate slower after it propels you up in the air? Same with the 10" and 12" toms, only they're much smaller and you don't jump on them...
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
With one drum being a 12x12, I'd look first for a 10x10, if you want a higher pitched drum. That said, a matching 12x12 could be tuned higher (probably) to fit the bill, but a 10x10 would be easier to tune. I had, at one time, not one, not two, but four Zickos clear 14x10 toms. And I was able to tune them all "enough" apart to run them in a 2 up, 2 down configuration. Old "vintage" kits came "factory", in some cases, with matching 12x8 rack toms. Lots of 10x(?) drums on eBay right now here: http://search.ebay.com/search/search.dll?sofocus=unknown&sbrftog=1&from=R40&dfsp=1&satitle=10+tom+drum&sacat=-1&catref=C6&bs=Search&sargn=-1&saslc=2&sadis=200&fpos=91105&sabfmts=1&ftrt=1&ftrv=1&saprclo=&saprchi=&fsop=1&fsoo=1&coaction=compare&copagenum=1&coentrypage=search&fgtp= you might have to re-finish or re-wrap a drum to match. No one said drumming was easy.
 
While an additional 12" tom can be tuned to give you a higher pitch, it will be much easier as well as more versatile for you to buy a 10". I would try to match the depth (10x10) as well as the wood type (maple, birch etc) as well to ensure a better match to your existing set up.
 

synergy

Senior Member
Thanks guys,

I went back and actually measured what I have and I have a 12x10 rack tom-

So I think I will try to look for a 10x8 to get that tone a little higher then I already have
 

Elvis

Silver Member
This may be a stupid question but I am having a little difficulty figuring this out.

I currently have 1 rack tom that without going to measure now is 12x12 or close to that- the head is deffinately 12.

I want to buy a smaller tom as an add on- Though I have having a little trouble finding what I want in the correct colour, size and i admit price range- I am having trouble buying 1 tom from ebay for the same amount I can grab a whole use kit from craigslist!

i was thinking an 8 or 10 but would prefer the larger size.

My question is , what determines the pitch of the drum? Is it the depth of the drum or the head size?

I ask because i would like a higher pitch then what I already have and have not really found what I need- but have found toms that are 10x12-- As i currently have a 12x12 would this be enough of a pitch difference or should I go with something like 10x8?

Like I said I want the smaller drum to be higher in pitch then what I have

Thanks for any help given
In reality, both diameter and depth play a role in the pitch of the drum, however, between the two the diameter plays a much larger role.

Get a 10x8 and you'll be happy.



Elvis
 
T

trkdrmr

Guest
In reality, both diameter and depth play a role in the pitch of the drum, however, between the two the diameter plays a much larger role.

Get a 10x8 and you'll be happy.

Elvis
Off the beaten path: Octabans provide a definite change in pitch, with a 6" diameter and a 2" difference in depth.
 
T

trkdrmr

Guest
hey there, mister...no 4by'n! ;-)


Elvis
I feel bad now :(

I am driving to Seattle (and the many music/drum shops in the area) tomorrow. I am voluntarily drum teching for a blues band called "Blues attitude" this weekend.

Donn Bennetts/American music here I come.
 
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