Vintage Tama Swingstars

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Question: did anybody like Tamas’ idea of installing the telescopic bass drum spurs like this:

4004AB39-9CF4-450D-89CB-800F4B127AF3.jpeg
?

Because although they work, I’m almost aesthetically opposed to it. I’m tempted to mount standard fold up spurs (like DW or Yamaha) so I get more spread. I feel like it’ll still tip over the way those spurs are. Or is it me?
 

lefty2

Platinum Member
I had some 83 Royal stars with the same spurs and I got along just fine with them. I did put a sheet metal screw with a washer on it through the inside of the rubber foot so it would have a spike Other than that they worked fine and I thought they looked fine also
 

ineedaclutch

Platinum Member
I dig them. There is less bulky hardware to cover that clean looking kit. I have a Ludwig Standard with similarly placed spurs with no issues flying a 13” Thomas and a 23” ride.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I had some 83 Royal stars with the same spurs and I got along just fine with them. I did put a sheet metal screw with a washer on it through the inside of the rubber foot so it would have a spike Other than that they worked fine and I thought they looked fine also
I actually spurs that screw down to expose a spike - the original spurs that would be installed on the then Superstars and Imperialstars, and Artstars.
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
I've never had luck with any telescoping spurs at any angle. They never seem to keep the drum steady for me. I replaced the ones on my Standards with gullwing-style Gibraltar legs; I'd do the same with any player-grade bass drum that had telescoping spurs. And I wouldn't buy one that was better than player-grade.
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
Question: did anybody like Tamas’ idea of installing the telescopic bass drum spurs like this:?

I guess not enough did, which is why they went to a more modern design. They were very Slingerland-ish.;)
They're longer than the Ludwig and Gretsch offerings. Doubled up, like on my Magnums ( and Ludwig did that on the 24 and 26 inch bass drums), they work well.


1.jpg
 
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jda

Gold Member
I actually spurs that screw down to expose a spike - the original spurs that would be installed on the then Superstars and Imperialstars, and Artstars.
you mean those spurs don't have that?
the rubber tip and wing part aren't threaded?
Looks like they'd screw-Up exposing a point or?..
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I guess not enough did, which is why they went to a more modern design. They were very Slingerland-ish.;)
They're longer than the Ludwig and Gretsch offerings. Doubled up, like on my Magnums ( and Ludwig did that on the 24 and 26 inch bass drums), they work well.


View attachment 126934
That design works ok for a ten lug bass drum. With only eight lugs, they end up looking almost too short to do the job. And sooner or later the tightening screw holding it will strip out (especially on these that are 40 years old now), so I'm debating replacing them with the modern designs that work.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
you mean those spurs don't have that?
the rubber tip and wing part aren't threaded?
Looks like they'd screw-Up exposing a point or?..
Yeah, the original Swingstar spurs were just steel rods with a rubber foot put on. I went and found somebody selling the older Superstar spur legs where you could screw the rubber foot up to expose the spike.
 
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harryconway

Platinum Member
That design works ok for a ten lug bass drum. With only eight lugs, they end up looking almost too short to do the job. And sooner or later the tightening screw holding it will strip out (especially on these that are 40 years old now), so I'm debating replacing them with the modern designs that work.
Which really shouldn't matter, how many lugs are on the drum. It's a 22" drum. But they do weird stuff. My Royalstars had their spurs replaced (modernized) ..... but the originals are in a much better angle (I think) than the Swingstars. Like jda mentioned, if your spurs were up one panel, they'd look better.

TAMA-RoyalStar.jpg
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Which really shouldn't matter, how many lugs are on the drum. It's a 22" drum. But they do weird stuff. My Royalstars had their spurs replaced (modernized) ..... but the originals are in a much better angle (I think) than the Swingstars. Like jda mentioned, if your spurs were up one panel, they'd look better.

View attachment 126954
Yes it does. With ten lugs the bracket gets placed in a better spot to facilitate a wider spur stance. If you take the same bracket on a 8-lug bass drum, the brackets get placed too high and the legs have to be really long to reach the floor - which is why Tama put them where they are, under the lug making the leg really short. When the makers got into the latest spur design, did it work on an 8-lug bass drum.
 

RobertM

Platinum Member
Question: did anybody like Tamas’ idea of installing the telescopic bass drum spurs like this:

View attachment 126930
?

Because although they work, I’m almost aesthetically opposed to it. I’m tempted to mount standard fold up spurs (like DW or Yamaha) so I get more spread. I feel like it’ll still tip over the way those spurs are. Or is it me?
Those drums remind me of Copeland's Superstar drums during the Police years. Very cool. What is the wood of those shells?
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Those drums remind me of Copeland's Superstar drums during the Police years. Very cool. What is the wood of those shells?
TBH - unknown. I've heard anything from mahogany to poplar, but you wouldn't know because they spray the inside of the shell with that granitone finish, so it really could've been anything. But, I will say, those early 80s Swingstars, build-wise, were made much better than the Pearl Exports of the same era. Alot of the Exports I see today, have lugs cracking just from age, whereas the metal bits I see on old Swingstars are still functioning pretty good. So at least Tama took the "strongest name on drums" marketing seriously to all their lines at least through the mid-90s. But as a players kit, just so long as these sound ok, I'll use them. It's kinda nice to have a kit I don't have to worry about on a gig for a change.
 

JimmyM

Platinum Member
I know what you mean. Not fond of it either, but as long as it works…
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
Those drums remind me of Copeland's Superstar drums during the Police years. Very cool. What is the wood of those shells?
Copeland played an Imperialstar kit, but the Imperialstar, Royalstar, & Swingstar all used essentially the same 9 ply Philippine Mahogany shell. With Zola coated interior. Wrapped exterior (because Philippine Mahogany ain't pretty;)).

The early Imperialstar shells had a reinforcement ring. I think 1980 was the last year, for that. Early Royalstar/Swingstar lugs (Speedboat lugs) were notorious for cracking. My Royalstars had several Imperialstar replacement lugs (same hole pattern) on them. Tama later replaced the Speedboat lug with the Staircase lug (what Bo has) in 1984. That proved to be a much better lug.
 
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RobertM

Platinum Member
Copeland played an Imperialstar kit, but the Imperialstar, Royalstar, & Swingstar all used essentially the same 9 ply Philippine Mahogany shell. With Zola coated interior. Wrapped exterior (because Philippine Mahogany ain't pretty;)).

The early Imperialstar shells had a reinforcement ring. I think 1980 was the last year, for that. Early Royalstar/Swingstar lugs (Speedboat lugs) were notorious for cracking. My Royalstars had several Imperialstar replacement lugs (same hole pattern) on them. Tama later replaced the Speedboat lug with the Staircase lug (what Bo has) in 1984. That proved to be a much better lug.
Harry: You're right about the Imperialstar kits, but he used the Superstar kits for the Zenyatta Mondatta session and tour. Joe Bergamini's Hudson book on Copeland has all his tour gear listed. The Imperialstars were used for Regatta de Blanc, Ghost in the Machine, and Synchronicity sessions/tours.

His main hi-hats starting with Ghost were Paiste 13" 602 hats. He used Zildjian 14" New Beats on Outlandos, Regatta, and Zenyatta (pre-Paiste endorsement time). Since he is know for his hi-hat work, I thought I'd mention those details.

I surprised about the New Beats because, to my ears, Paiste 602 and Signature hats are way more articulate and bright than Zildjian A New Beats. The closest Paiste-sounding Zildjian hats I've played were the A Customs (for Sabian, 13" HHX Evolution hats). Like most things regarding drums and guitar/bass sounds, I guess it is ultimately all in the hands!
 
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AzHeat

Platinum Member
Exactly the spurs I had on my old Tamas. I still think they are the best and simplest design. Only grip I had was making sure I screwed down the rubber parts over the spike or I’d stab myself. Didn’t seem to matter how I carried the BD. I’d eventually make contact with them. Best to wear your rubber for safety with those things. Others, great and light weight design.
 

jda

Gold Member
Exactly the spurs I had on my old Tamas. I still think they are the best and simplest design. Only grip I had was making sure I screwed down the rubber parts over the spike
Swingstar spurs evidently don't have the Spike feature
You had to pay up

I never saw one of those Swingstar sets back in the day anywhere.
The Superstar 18" of that era had it's (spike retractable) spurs in that panel position

Page 31

 
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harryconway

Platinum Member
Swingstar spurs evidently don't have the Spike feature
You had to pay up
Yup. Had to at least get into the Royalstar, for anything sharp;)
Yes it does. With ten lugs the bracket gets placed in a better spot to facilitate a wider spur stance. If you take the same bracket on a 8-lug bass drum, the brackets get placed too high and the legs have to be really long to reach the floor - which is why Tama put them where they are, under the lug making the leg really short. When the makers got into the latest spur design, did it work on an 8-lug bass drum.
Here's an 8-lug 20 Royalstar, "modern jazz4" outfit 7904 ..... that has the spur mount location where in needs to be (or where I think it should be:LOL:).
http://www.drumarchive.com/Tama/Tama1975RoyalStar.pdf
 
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