The Ludwig Acrolite

HMNY

Silver Member
I'd just like to add to the other 'thank yous' to LVDC for this fantastic write up, it makes searching for a used acro so much easier.

When can we see the Supra & BB threads?

:)
 

zarrdoss

Gold Member
I have two for the time being, a 1982 5 x 14 black acro a brushed 1972 5 x 14 and soon I will have this.

0713121653-001.jpg

its on lay away and I am really looking forward to get it out soon.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
I need one of the new Acro Classic 6.5x14s.
I just pulled the trigger on a new 10 lug 14 x 6.5 acro. Something told me I should buy this drum. They are doing a limited run for 2012 as I understand. I paid 368.50 USD, 392 w/ tax.

I saw a vintage 14 x 6.5 acro on the Bay, only 8 lugs, listed as one of the 200 made for the New York City school district in the 70's. They want $999.00 for it. $999.00! Why should I pay that kind of coin? In my mind, the new ones should sound just like the older ones. A metal drum doesn't go through tone variations like wood does. Right?
 

longgun

Gold Member
I need one of the new Acro Classic 6.5x14s.
I have two for the time being, a 1982 5 x 14 black acro a brushed 1972 5 x 14 and soon I will have this.

View attachment 50559

its on lay away and I am really looking forward to get it out soon.
I just pulled the trigger on a new 10 lug 14 x 6.5 acro. Something told me I should buy this drum. They are doing a limited run for 2012 as I understand. I paid 368.50 USD, 392 w/ tax.

I saw a vintage 14 x 6.5 acro on the Bay, only 8 lugs, listed as one of the 200 made for the New York City school district in the 70's. They want $999.00 for it. $999.00! Why should I pay that kind of coin? In my mind, the new ones should sound just like the older ones. A metal drum doesn't go through tone variations like wood does. Right?
Would love to get one of the new 6.5" acros too...maybe when they hit the used market....if they do.

Here's a pic of one of my acros....picked it up for $35....cleaned it up, added some new Trick hardware....worked great





 

zarrdoss

Gold Member
I got it out of lay away and after some tuning and experimenting I have to say I was disappointed with it compared to some of my other snares. It sounded thin and boxy so I returned it and got a DDrum Shawn Drover snare, just kidding. But it did sound thin and boxy so I replaced the stock heads with an Evans G1 on top and Hazy 300 on bottom, huge improvement, I have some puresound customs 24 strand on the way and also some 20 strand blasters. I will try both and see which one I like more. I also have an Evans Genera dry and PCRD that I will also try out. Any suggestions on what I have that you would prefer? With the G1 I only need a half a moongel to get the desired ring I like, this snare does not seem to need a lot of dampening, if any.
 

Bull

Gold Member
I think the Genera Dry will be a bit much for that drum.
I have a 5x14 Blacro. One of the new 6.5s will be my next snare purchase.
 

B-squared

Silver Member
This is a great thread! (LVDC should be paid by Ludwig). I read through all of it after buying an Acro over the weekend. I am trying to establish a manufacture date for this drum and I have found that ebay is unreliable for that purpose.

This little guy has a chrome face P85, a large tone control knob, a rounded B/O badge with S/N 2057540, and a very flat grey finish. I can't tell if it's a baked on finish or an anodized one. I thought it would be easy to tell but it's not.

It is 1979 at the earliest and I'm guessing about 1993 at the latest. I read somewhere that a variant kind of like this was out just prior to the issue of the Black Galaxy variety. It doesn't seem to match the serial numbers from that time, but I have read that the serial numbers post-'79 don't mean much. The other puzzling aspect is that it just doesn't look like a baked on / powder coated finish. Somewhere in here, I thought I read that strainers are often changed on these, which makes sense, but I can't see anyone changing the tone control knob.

I'm mainly looking for the date and shell type so I can evaluate how I want to clean the shell up. It has a couple noticeable scratches and black marks. I will probably end up changing the hoops because I think the chrome has chips that won't come out with a brush, but the lugs look clean and the drum sounds great. It has a 20 wire set of snares that I will keep and I will probably will change the snare cords with plastic strap. The sound is awesome, so I just want to clean it up to where it looks nice and keep it.

Does anyone want to take a guess at the manufacture date and the shell finish?
Thanks in advance!
 

Attachments

B-squared

Silver Member
Thanks, Zarrdoss.

I saw that page, it's pretty cool. I am starting to zero in on 1984. That could explain 3 of the features: 1) The anodized were giving way to the powder coated that year, and 2) the chrome faced P85 had just arrived then. 3) That would comport nicely with the relatively low Serial Number. Round corner B/O serial numbers from the late 80's seem to fall into the 3XXXXXX values, and even though Ludwig didn't keep really good track of serial numbers, I have to believe that they kept at least a rough sequence.

Also, the odd combination of an anodized shell with a chrome face P85 (if this is, indeed, anodized as I suspect) could have happened in 1984 when Ludwig moved to NC. This is probably from one of the first batches from Monroe or one of the last from Chicago.

Thanks for the help!

Brent
 

Mendozart

Platinum Member
.

Here's a pic of one of my acros....picked it up for $35....cleaned it up, added some new Trick hardware....worked great
Hey longgun,

It looks like you need a retroplate for your Trick strainer, if you want it to sit flush on the shell. Look up member "skitch" on this forum, he sells them.
 

HMNY

Silver Member
Some great information here, there should be one of these for every snare drum, or at least the icons, as it is a great resource.

One question I do have, having recently bough a used 'blackrolite', the strainer and butt both have conventional slotted head screws, and the ones on my drum are looking very tired, is these a general fix/replacement that some some one could suggest?

Is it just a case of getting some replacement screws from hardware store?

Thanks
 

KarlCrafton

Platinum Member
Some new screws will work.
I also used allen head screws and small nuts behind the plate (just to be sure) a couple times. Screws are easier to deal with on the fly, but the allen head screws look nice. If the hole is stripped at all, the nuts are a good idea.

I've never really been bothered by the regular screws as some have been. I don't have to change the cord often at all (every couple years), so I don't see what the big deal is.
It's not that "inconvenient", and the screw is less prone to be over tightened and have the key head break off with as small a thread as these use.
It'd be rare that it would happen, but, you KNOW someone would do it.

The screw doesn't even have to be super tight using cord either.

I like those Trick lugs on longgun's drum. That looks cool!
That's the shell and badge my '75 has. I really need to get the Black paint I put on in '86 off of it. It looks good, but it needs to get back to it's natural state.

I heard Flitz will get the paint off without messing up the shell. Anyone know if this is the case?
 

tamadrm

Platinum Member
Thanks, Zarrdoss.

I saw that page, it's pretty cool. I am starting to zero in on 1984. That could explain 3 of the features: 1) The anodized were giving way to the powder coated that year, and 2) the chrome faced P85 had just arrived then. 3) That would comport nicely with the relatively low Serial Number. Round corner B/O serial numbers from the late 80's seem to fall into the 3XXXXXX values, and even though Ludwig didn't keep really good track of serial numbers, I have to believe that they kept at least a rough sequence.

Also, the odd combination of an anodized shell with a chrome face P85 (if this is, indeed, anodized as I suspect) could have happened in 1984 when Ludwig moved to NC. This is probably from one of the first batches from Monroe or one of the last from Chicago.

Thanks for the help!

Brent
I'd bet real money your drum isn't later than 81,more like 80.Your drum should have the original P-85 would have been the "black face" and was replaced mid 90's the earliest with the plain face P-85.Yours is the smooth shell.The powder coated drums didn't come out till 84-85.So your drum has be be earlier .

The last recorded serial numbers were in 79 and it was 2013537.Ludwig was producing around 60,000 drums a year so,deduct your serial number from the last recorded one and you get 44,003.That would place the drum in the 80-81 time frame.

Steve B
 
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longgun

Gold Member
Hey longgun,

It looks like you need a retroplate for your Trick strainer, if you want it to sit flush on the shell. Look up member "skitch" on this forum, he sells them.
Thanks..........going to look into it. Works fine the way it is, but sure looks "off"
 

B-squared

Silver Member
I'd bet real money your drum isn't later than 81,more like 80.Your drum should have the original P-85 would have been the "black face" and was replaced mid 90's the earliest with the plain face P-85.Yours is the smooth shell.The powder coated drums didn't come out till 84-85.So your drum has be be earlier .

The last recorded serial numbers were in 79 and it was 2013537.Ludwig was producing around 60,000 drums a year so,deduct your serial number from the last recorded one and you get 44,003.That would place the drum in the 80-81 time frame.

Steve B
That could be, Steve. In fact, I suspect the shell was made in Chicago around the time you are citing. I don't think the serial numbers are quite as screwed up as some websites might lead you to believe. Ludwig even has the 1979 serial numbers as including up to 201537 on their website. I also think the chrome face P85 is original to the drum. Here's my thinking:

I don't think it's a coincidence that the powder coating, the chrome face P85, and the move to NC all occurred at about the same time ('84-'85). (Look at LVDC's post at the beginning of the thread). I can tell by looking at ebay that they took some of the badged anodized shells with them from Chicago when they moved, as well as some black face P85's and other old stock. I am making an educated guess that in '84-'85 Ludwig was using up the old stock concurrently with running new powder coated shells and chrome face P85's.

All of this would be pretty typical for product taxonomy in the musical instrument manufacturing business. (Slingerland and Gretsch were even more hodgepodge in their mixed and matched assemblies of parts from different years and models). I think that sometime in '84 or '85, somebody in NC grabbed an anodized Chicago shell off the shelf to burn up old inventory. They screwed on a new P85 and a new tone control, put 2.3 mm hoops and some heads on it and shipped it to a music store. It eventually came to be in my possession. What do you think of my theory?

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
 
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