Wood color theories

paradiddle pete

Platinum Member
Just an Idea, revered in old Gibsons. Kind of like Mahogany is all I know. Terminalia Superba is a good name for a Woman though.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Just an Idea, revered in old Gibsons. Kind of like Mahogany is all I know. Terminalia Superba is a good name for a Woman though.
Terminalia Surperba sounds like a female Disney villain that would take on Cruella DeVille.

I need to hear pure mahogany drums now. Your assessment of the darker woods is interesting
 

paradiddle pete

Platinum Member
[QUOTE="larryace, post: 1690772, member: 190

I need to hear pure mahogany drums now. Your assessment of the darker woods is interesting
[/QUOTE] When I describe the tonal aspects of a set I do it from the throne, in that it is where you can hear it's true value as a drummer, not miced or EQ'd or in a bar room. Looking at Gruntersdad's chart I would say the colours pretty well indicate the tonal qualities as well. Walnut is Dark Smooth Sharp and Reflective, Mahogany sits Warm and Fuzzy in the Middle in a Surround Sound kind of Space. Maple is probably the ultimate in that it mixes the Qualities of both Walnut and Mahogany together.
 
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Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Larry, I can't find any correlation of colour to physical properties except, at the extremes, more softer woods tend to gravitate to the lighter spectrum, & the converse too. I think any colour relationship is likely mostly coincidental in terms of physical properties leading to tonal influence, but there is certainly a general trend of colour to latitude. Not in all cases, but darker woods more typically thrive in warmer climates, & lighter woods in colder climates, although again there are exceptions. Colder climates tend to produce slower growth in species that are otherwise faster growing in more temperate environments, but species & access to light are much bigger influences overall.

Bottom line, species, quality, & especially how the wood is cut / processed are far bigger tonal influencers, then overall instrument construction being the biggest influence of all.
 

paradiddle pete

Platinum Member
Andy I'm talking Solid, I can hear the difference in my drums all constructed the same way.. Sometimes when I read your posts I envisage you in a Lab Coat no insult intended..I'm adding an edit as I just went and played each species, each 3 sets has the same sizes , heads and even same sticks. I can hear a difference if only as you say physical properties leading to tonal influence and construction being the biggest influence, I can't disagree with you there although my musical ear tells me otherwise.. Walnut? bright focused and clear with medium warmth. Mahogany? solid warm tone with spread or reach in it's speech. Maple? musically focused in the mid range with an even spread of warmth and clarity. Happy to be completely wrong in my assessment..
 
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Benthedrummer

Junior Member
What about Beech in terms of colour/sound?

Didn't Yamaha come out with a beech series of drums?

Hey..... hypothetically, I wonder what pine would sound like in terms of colour/sound!

Has anyone played a pine ply kit???

If they sound like crud, you've got some interesting shaped shelving at least.
 
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Push pull stroke

Platinum Member
What about Beech in terms of colour/sound?

Didn't Yamaha come out with a beech series of drums?

Hey..... hypothetically, I wonder what pine would sound like in terms of colour/sound!

Has anyone played a pine ply kit???

If they sound like crud, you've got some interesting shaped shelving at least.
Pine is usually softer, so it’s going to be on the darker/drier end. In most cases, probably too much. But if you find a pretty dense piece of pine that’s of a denser species or subspecies of pine, and/or it grew someplace cold/dry so it grew very slowly, you could probably make a decent-sounding shell with it.
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Andy I'm talking Solid, I can hear the difference in my drums all constructed the same way.. Sometimes when I read your posts I envisage you in a Lab Coat no insult intended..I'm adding an edit as I just went and played each species, each 3 sets has the same sizes , heads and even same sticks. I can hear a difference if only as you say physical properties leading to tonal influence and construction being the biggest influence, I can't disagree with you there although my musical ear tells me otherwise.. Walnut? bright focused and clear with medium warmth. Mahogany? solid warm tone with spread or reach in it's speech. Maple? musically focused in the mid range with an even spread of warmth and clarity. Happy to be completely wrong in my assessment..
Pete - not disagreeing at all. I've done many species "all other things being equal" comparisons - I can absolutely hear the differences, and those differences are brought to the fore in solid shell types, but species differentiation is still overtaken in terms of tonal result by a number of more common variables.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Pine is usually softer, so it’s going to be on the darker/drier end. In most cases, probably too much. But if you find a pretty dense piece of pine that’s of a denser species or subspecies of pine, and/or it grew someplace cold/dry so it grew very slowly, you could probably make a decent-sounding shell with it.
Yeah you would need super old Alaskan pine or something like that. Super dense and slow growing.

I bet if the pine was too soft the bearing edges would flatten over time.
 

steadypocket

Gold Member
Pine is usually softer, so it’s going to be on the darker/drier end. In most cases, probably too much. But if you find a pretty dense piece of pine that’s of a denser species or subspecies of pine, and/or it grew someplace cold/dry so it grew very slowly, you could probably make a decent-sounding shell with it.
Outlaw Drums makes drums out of old growth heartwood pine. The wood is supposed to be much harder than most pine available today.
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