The First Kit You Got

Chollyred

Senior Member
My first kit was a Penncrest tiger striped kit like this. Crappy thin cymbals and hats that would turn inside out if you hit them too hard. The "L" shaped bass drum mounted cymbal stand would often come loose and fall over. I used to borrow cymbals to play gigs and record. After moving on, they stayed down in my dad's basement for years. Finally, my brother gave them to a coworker's little boys. They were like gold to those kids. Sometimes I wish I had them back.

 

RockNGrohl

Senior Member
These are my first drums. Bought X-mas of '95 at Strings and Things in Memphis, Tenn. My kit was a Sunlite from Taiwan. Drums weren't too bad, decent steel snare with cheap strainer. but the hi hat and bass pedal were awful. The bass pedal it came with was one thin strip of metal held on by a single tiny wing screw that also tightened to the hoop. The cam and beater was one unit and it came loose and moved from side to side. I replaced it with the Gibraltar Prowler pedal pictured here. Then the spring in the hit hat broke right before I was to play at my friend's church. I just played closed hats thank you not so much! haha.. so I replaced it with a cheap one from the house brand for Cascio Interstate music. That was my go to catalog before Musician's Friends expanded. The stands were thin and wobbly, the snare stand was very risky dink. It was like a low tech sixties design but new.. very cheap and unstable. I spent was too much time messing with it always readjusting the snare back in place. For the longest time it had Remo Pinstripe heads on it. I had bought some hockey grip tape for my sticks, that I really used to repair broken ones that had split and was too poor to replace. No budget in my allowance! My friend Ragan decided to put this tape all over my heads to get a "Metallica drum sound" he had heard. I told him was probably some muffling and studio trickery. Damage was done though, thanks Ragan! ha.. A bit later I pulled the tape off and it left strips of residue everywhere. I finally years later replaced those heads to sell it it and was bummed to hear them sound so good after all that. But I had a brand new Mapex kit at the time so I was not that bummed. I did manage to wreck the snare drum though. Long story short, you guys all know that high pitched funky snare sounds were the thing in the mid '90's. RHCP, the Spin Doctors, Matt Chamberlain on the Wallflowers "Bringing Down The Horse". One day fooling around with my snare, I decided to crank that sucker up tight. It sounded good. But I figured stupidly, why not crank it more? So I cranked it all the way up. Too tight. Cross threaded three of the tension rods into the lug nuts on a six lug snare. Dad was pissed, and we found much to our chagrin you can't just buy tension rods at the hardware store. Found the tiny local mom and pop shop had some for sale. He then took it and me down to the Memphis Drum Shop and they took apart my drums, replaced the nuts and new rods and showed me how to PROPERLY tune it. lol.. lesson learned!
 

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Rattlin' Bones

Gold Member
A lot of first kits noted on this thread were MIJ stencil kits. Mine, too. A sorta sparkle tiger stripe wrap. It was in the 60's. I have no idea what brand. The heads were used when I got them and I never changed them. Back then I wasn't as OCD about such things. My snare was a nice Acrolite I got new several years earlier as a Christmas present from parents. Never changed heads on it for 10 years lol.
 

wraub

Well-known member
My first real kit, bought "new to me" on a low budget over 2.5 years- I know it is basic, but I am pleased...

The shells came with Evans EC2 heads, and a second snare drum (Pearl EX) and a bunch of other stuff. Cymbals are Zildjian ZHT hats, crash, and crash/ride ( I have a larger ZHT ride also) and Meinl HCS Splash and China- I acquired all these separately from the drums. The stands also came from different deals.
I've had it all together for about three weeks. :)

20200205_195857-2.jpg
 
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Rhythm666

Member
My first kit ( and still have it) is an old olive badges Ludwig set, don't know exactly what kind of wood its made of.
Has an old black beauty snare with it. Sizes 22 bass drum, 12 and 13 inch toms,16 floor. With Paiste 2002 cymbals: 14 inch hi hats, 16 and 18 inch crashes and 2o inch ride
 

specgrade

Senior Member
Pawn shop special. A gold sparkle 5 piece. It had a Ludwig head on the bass so I thought it was a Ludwig kit, probably not. One cymbal stand with an 18" crash/ride. No hi-hat. I loved that kit and played the crap out of it for 5 years. This was back in 1980 or 1981. No pics that I know of.
 

timmdrum

Silver Member
1991 Tama Rockstar kit. Pic taken in '97. Please forgive the way overdone tom muffling. Noisy rock band needed nearly staccato tones, I thought; I've since learned better (not long after this pic, actually- got 1st gen Star-cast mounts, pulled the tom mount brackets off the shells and put them on the mounts, which opened them up nicely).

Tim with Tama Rockstar kit at Peasants 1997.jpg
 

Otto

Platinum Member
Black Mateo 5 piece...aluminum snare...camber hihats, old 24" thick ride and a few cymbals that can more accurately be described as 'targets'.

A very poor quality set that I was ready to move beyond within a couple weeks but took me over 3 years washing dishes and giving drum lessons to buy a used light blue CB700 5 piece...and a very nice zilidj. thin 16" crash and an avanti 10" splash.

Lots of duct tape and clamps....and the surprise of the throne main tube breaking through the stop just under the seat and dropping me right on it...lucky I didnt get really hurt.

Low quality drums can not only sound bad but can really hurt you!
 

Juniper

Gold Member
Thread bump, but came across a photo of my first ever set from a handful of years ago.

It’s in storage and I still have it and I’ll never part with it (plan on handing it down to my daughter as her first set) due to sentimental reasons.

1997 Pearl Export. Spent thousands and thousands of hours on this lady.
 

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iCe

Senior Member
A Pearl Export 1999 Anniversary Edition. I believe what it made special was that it came with an additional tom and hardware pack. Stupidly sold it and still regret it... but it had a nice Deep Blue wrap and looked amazing. Had huge sizes at the time: 10x10, 12x10, 13x11, 16x16, 22x16 (i think) and a 14x5.5 snare. I find these days that I'm still leaning towards those bigger drums. Was a great set of drums and sounded nice as well! Made a lot of errors and learned a lot on it, like tuning; didn't know what i was doing and never heard/read about evening the tension on the lugs. Still remember that i had slapped a clear Pinstripe on it (suggestion from the sales rep because i cracked a few snare heads in a short time) and i snapped it literally in half when i was playing it.

Got a set of Paiste 302's to go with it and sounded pretty nice at the time. 14" hats, 16" crash and 20" ride. After a while i got the 18" crash/ride as well. Cracked them all except the ride due to poor technique, playing through the cymbal and overall hitting way to hard... good old days :)
Luckily i haven't cracked or broken anything for over a decade now, so I'm on the path of righteousness :p
 

moxman

Silver Member
Ludwig Club Date made in 1967!
Got it from my cousin who wasn't interested - for $75! kick and snare. Bought the toms later for $200.
When I sold them 15-20 years ago at a drum shop - I was blown away by how much they were worth!
 
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WhoIsTony?

Member
This is the first kit I ever played in 1979
Still have it and recently restored it to period correctness after sitting on a shelf in my moms basement for 3 decades

'65 Slingerland with Gene Krupa Sound King that originally came with it

it used to have a full set of mixed A and K Zildjians ... but I have no idea where they are today









 
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larryace

"Uncle Larry"
That's some first kit there Tony. They look like 24/13/16, but I can't tell if it's a 12 or 13 up top. Or for that matter if it's a 22 or 24.

And you still have it, that's pretty boss. That kit was 14 years old when you got it? Where did you get it?

I had a smaller set of *imported* gold sparkle drums whose name began with an S too :)
 
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WhoIsTony?

Member
That's some first kit there Tony. They look like 24/13/16, but I can't tell if it's a 12 or 13 up top. Or for that matter if it's a 22 or 24.

And you still have it, that's pretty boss. That kit was 14 years old when you got it? Where did you get it?

I had a smaller set of *imported* gold sparkle drums whose name began with an S too :)
22,13, 16
The original owner was a family friend who was also my brothers drum teacher

it’s pretty mint

thanks uncle L
Stewart eh?
 

gdmoore28

Gold Member
Approximately 1965, Christmas night. First kit was a three-piece Apollo in white marine pearl, 20/12/5X14. This was the happiest day of my life and came after years of begging my parents for a drum set. For the previous five years, I'd made do with a Kent snare drum and pots and pans. Later managed to find a matching floor tom, a hi-hat stand, and some Zildjians. Then came the first band . . . .

Christmas 1966.JPG
First Drum Set, First Band 004.JPG
 

caddywumpus

Platinum Member
CB MX kit. Cheap Philippine Mahogany, 12/13/16/22 with the crappiest of crappy metal snares. I did upgrade the cymbals to Sabian B8s and bought a double bass pedal to go with it.

I sold the whole lot when I upgraded to my DW Collector's Series kit, 7 years later. Then, I bought a "crappy" old 70s Ludwig kit as my beater kit to take to bar gigs and such, and THAT'S when the G.A.S. started...
 

Juniper

Gold Member
Thread bump, but came across a photo of my first ever set from a handful of years ago.

It’s in storage and I still have it and I’ll never part with it (plan on handing it down to my daughter as her first set) due to sentimental reasons.

1997 Pearl Export. Spent thousands and thousands of hours on this lady.
Just found another, the kit set up in front of Stephen Morris from New Order

(A previous band of mine supported them on tour a few years back)

C2433522-7CFE-4B5B-B986-35296FE66142.jpeg[/QUOTE]
 

justadrummer

Junior Member
Mine was really beat to death MIJ "Del Rey" stencil kit. I gigged with it for a few years until replacing it with a beautiful 1965 Slingerland kit.
 
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