Why does my 1990s Yamaha Recording Custom 8x8 YESS tom have a 1980s serial #?

GoRovers

Junior Member
Can anyone help me to understand why my Yamaha Recording Custom 8x8 YESS tom has a 1980s serial #? Model TT908Y, serial # NM-0961. I bought it from Guitar center new in 1997, two years after I bought my full pre-YESS YRC kit (vintage early 1980s) new from Jim's Music Center in 1995.

According to the YRC serial # decoder, this 8x8 YESS tom was made June 1987, which was way before YESS drums debuted.

Yamaha Recording Custom serial number decode.jpg
20200909_190409-w1400.jpg
20200910_081840-w1067.jpg

FYI, the other drums (10, 12, 14, 16 and BD) are correctly serial numbered as made in the early 1980s:
BD 22 Model BD922RF Serial # JJ-0640
TT 8 Model TT908Y Serial # NM-0961
TT 10 Model TT910RF Serial # JH-1769
TT 12 Model TT912RF Serial # JP-0010
TT 14 Model TT914RF Serial # IO-1128
TT 16 Model TT916RF Serial # JN-1766

(I'll shortly be selling this beloved kit, so I'm simply clarifying serial # data.)

Thanks,
Lee in SoCal
 

MntnMan62

Junior Member
Those small toms tend to be "add ons". Did the kit you bought come as a 7 piece or did you have to add the small tom onto it as an option? That might explain the different serial number series.
 

donzo74

Junior Member
Just because it has a 2 letter prefix serial number doesn't mean it's from the 80's. I have Absolute toms from '01 with a 2 digit prefix. You have to take it in the context of when the models were made, the features, the badges, etc. For your drum, "N" is the year, so that would be '97, which jives since you said you bought it new 2 years after another set that you bought new in '95. "M" is the month, which is June, so context clues point to this drum being made in June of '97.
 

GoRovers

Junior Member
Yes, the YESS 8x8 was an add-on. Like I wrote, "I bought it from Guitar center new in 1997, two years after I bought my full pre-YESS YRC kit (vintage early 1980s) new from Jim's Music Center in 1995."
Those small toms tend to be "add ons". Did the kit you bought come as a 7 piece or did you have to add the small tom onto it as an option? That might explain the different serial number series.
 

GoRovers

Junior Member
Just because it has a 2 letter prefix serial number doesn't mean it's from the 80's. I have Absolute toms from '01 with a 2 digit prefix. You have to take it in the context of when the models were made, the features, the badges, etc. For your drum, "N" is the year, so that would be '97, which jives since you said you bought it new 2 years after another set that you bought new in '95. "M" is the month, which is June, so context clues point to this drum being made in June of '97.
Thanks, Donzo, you may be correct, but I'm still confused by the YRC serial number decoder (first photo above) that shows drums made after 1990 will have a 3-letter (not a 2-letter) prefix. Perhaps your Absolutes have a different decode?
 

GoRovers

Junior Member
Perhaps confirming Donzo's point, I just found this post from last year in which member AMcD writes:

"1960 - Q3 1999
These drums bear a two digit date code where the first letter represents the last digit of the year and the last letter the months, there is one exception to this equation and that is the year identified by an X ... some date codes in this sequence do overlap

Q4 1999 - Present
Drums built from late 1999 to present, all bear a three digit date code, where the first two letters represent the last two numbers of the year and the final number the month, using the coding system above."

So maybe the "three digit date code after 1990" graphic from the top of this post is incorrect...
 

GoRovers

Junior Member
Nope, no "new old stock" or anything like that. The mystery has been solved! 2-digit serial #s lasted THROUGH the 1990s, meaning the graphic above is incorrect. Here is the correct date manufactured/purchased info for my piano black YRC kit:

22" Power Bass Drum, model BD922RF, serial # JJ-0640 (mfr Mar. 1993, I bought new Feb. 1995)
8" Power Tom, model TT908Y, serial # NM-0961 (mfr June 1997, I bought new Aug. 1997)
10" Power Tom, model TT910RF, Serial # JH-1769 (mfr Jan. 1993, I bought new Feb. 1995)
12" Power Tom, model TT912RF, Serial # JP-0010 (mfr Sep. 1993, I bought new Feb. 1995)
14" Power Tom, model TT914RF, Serial # IO-1128 (mfr Aug. 1992, I bought new Feb. 1995)
16" Power Tom, model TT916RF, Serial # JN-1766 (mfr July 1993, I bought new Feb. 1995)

Wish me luck selling them! (Not sure if it'll go as a complete set, or if I'll split it into BD/Toms, Pearl Maple Free Floater deep snare, Paiste Signature cymbals, DW9000 pedals and HH, etc.)
20200910_074605-w1132x900.jpg
 

johnwesley

Silver Member
More than likely it was sitting on a shelf in the warehouse for a few years and guy who pulled the order thought "yep, this is what he ordered." Here's what I'll tell you. If the dang thing sounds right, quit getting all weirded out over a Twilight Zone 8x8. Play it and enjoy.
BTW.....nice shool ma'rm "ATTENTION CLASS!" bell. What do you use that for? Calling your tech to fetch you some water?
 
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donzo74

Junior Member
Perhaps your Absolutes have a different decode?
I've had Tour Customs, Recording Customs, MCA, BCA and RTC sets and lots of snares from the mid-80's through mid-2000's and I have found that the Yamaha serial number code works for dating all of those lines.
 

donzo74

Junior Member
With this drum, the badges and YESS mount are the dead giveaway that this is a late 90's drum. An 80's drum would have the mount bolted flush to the shell and a hole going all the way through the shell. Plus, the vent would be in one badge and the other badge would have a cutout for the vent, but no hole through the drum. Although I can't see in the pics, the vent is probably under the YESS mount on your drum. This drum was brand new from the factory when you bought it from Guitar Center in '97.

Nice kit, BTW! I have the matching 14x8 snare from Oct of '91 and oh, how I love that drum!
 
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Quai34

Junior Member
Why do you sell it? It's a beautiful kit!!! Besides maybe the new Tama Star kits, that would be my dream kit, it has been my dream kit for years...
 
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