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Saturday, August 2, 2008

Drum kit '08 - With pictures!

Here’s my redesign, after a short intro of the old builds. I did it over the last few weeks, but most of the re-build was done in one weekend. My plan was to remove the top row of pads, and generally sizing down the kit. It still has the ‘industrial’ look and feel I find that I want for this kit. I still love the SuperStrut cage / rack. It’s a long post (but what’s new? My posts tend to ramble.) and this one has lots of pictures.

This was the “Original”. I built this for the stage and gigging with the band. It was BIG. I have long arms, so it wasn’t a big deal. Anyway, I realized I didn’t have any pictures, and I took these as I was disassembling this kit to make a smaller build.

Here’s another picture of it actually in use, it was an outside show, but you can see that I used acoustic cymbals. And look, my EMAX! (My original keyboard sound source)

Here’s the first rebuild - this was in like ‘96. I had three rows of pads, and all acoustic cymbals. E-Cymbal technology was pretty poor in the ‘90’s.

So now that you have a little history, here’s the rebuild, 12 years later. In loving, excruciating detail.

Parts after the disassembly. Main sides of the rack. I decided to reverse the rack sides, and have the channel on the interior rather than the exterior. And, no, I am not ruining nice Marble tile with the metal of the strut. They're cheap vinyl press-on tiles.

Drums, on the cross bars, no need to pull the pads off of the bar. And the bass pads.

Cable Spaghetti! The IO, the mounting bracket and my iPod, with a lot of cables. Lots of cables.

Extra pads, I am going from 14 to 10, so now I have 4 extras. and the new PinTech dual zone ride cymbal (we're seeing the bottom).

The two new Pintech choke-able crashes.

The infamous KORG 01/W keyboard I use via MIDI as a sound source. I got it from a friend for free. Can you see why? I wrote the MIDI note numbers on the keys for easy reference.

The start of the actual build, I adjusted the middle vertical bar slightly more to the rear.

Close up of the strut channel connections...

Adding the ‘snare’ cross bar of pads. Usually, I map the two middle drums to snare-ish sounds, the left (on the right in the photo) as an effect sound, and the right (left in the photo) one is usually a floor tom.

Here's a close up of the pad bar to the side rack connection. Using the channel gives lots versatility for height and the connection allows for 360 degrees of spin for angle adjustment.

Close up of the pad mounting bracket ‘saddle’. it allows for a lot of adjustability for the pad’s angle to the strut. The bottom of the strut channel is lined with 1/2" thick rubber. The pad's mounting bolt screws down, and the bottom of the strut is used to jam it in place. I put the rubber in there to minimize the harshness of the metal-on-metal rubbing.

The opposite of the saddle, this is the piece that goes into the saddle. I call this a knuckle. It's threaded so I can 'screw' the pad in, and the knuckle fits against the saddle while the bolt jaams against the opposite side of the strut (where the rubber is).

Close up of the pad in the strut using the saddle and bracket. Here you can see the angle that can be adjusted in. if you could see through the strut, the knuckle would be all the way at the top, against the saddle, and the bolt is screwed to touch the strut. This picture is slightly confusing, because the bottom of the pad is so reflective, we are getting a mirror image of the bolt coming out of the pad.

Adding the second tier of pads - the tom tom pads. Amber, the cat, got in on the action. Stinkbutt! (a prize goes to someone who gets the reference).

Adding the bottom bar for the bass pads. and the two sides of the keyboard rack mount pieces.

Close up of the rack that the keyboard will go on.

Keyboard sitting on the rack.

The rack tended to rock a bit (no pun intended, it literally rocked back and forth), so I added a big cross brace to limit rocking. Boy did that work! This thing is rock solid. The top bar was used for another set of 4 pads, but I decided that I wanted to be able to have my laptop in a good viewable position, so I changed the top rack from drums to components.

Eight pads, and the new e-cymbals, I’m still adjusting some of the distances and angles, but the pads are in good position. It took a bit to get the height of the snare pad rack, but it’s good now.

Lower angle showing the I/O mounted on a piece of copper pipe I had kicking around. I mean, who doesn’t have extra lengths of pipe laying around?

The right hand side of the kit, with the crash and the dual-zone ride.

Full kit!! I had the riser from the original build, and this one is smaller, so I trimmed it a foot from left to right, but kept the depth for the drum throne. This is also showing the final placements for the hi-hat stand and the bass pedals. Bass pads in place, throne, and all the pedals (including hi-hat stand) are screwed down to the platform. My laptop is also shown, top middle of the top bar. All that’s missing is me. The hi-hat placement; it kind of covers up the far left pad I use for effect sounds; I may adjust it later on.

From the right side.

Well, that's it!! Thanks for reading all the way to the end.