Gretsch Round Badge Project

Discussion in 'Vintage Venue' started by RogersLudwig, May 31, 2018.

  1. RogersLudwig

    RogersLudwig Well-Known Member

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    About three weeks about I posted about a Gretsch burgundy sparkle Progressive Jazz set I ended up purchasing from a pawn shop here in Alamogordo, NM. It was dirty and the snare had a broken strainer, butt plate, and muffler. There was a coated head on the snare side. I am convinced the second or third owners really did not respect this as a fine musical instrument.

    So, it cleaned up incredibly well. There is some minor pitting on the snare drum lugs and the hoops on the 12
    tom are a bit pitted.

    I replaced the spurs (kept the originals), replaced the floor tom legs (I have two of the originals), replaced a diamond plate on the bass drum (kept the original one) and bought a new L-arm cymbal holder, installed new heads, repaired the butt plate with parts from another vintage butt plate, installed a new strainer (kept the original one), muffler (kept the broken one), and Gretsch snare wires (20-strand). The set is now up and being played in the living room. I will be sending out the BD hoops to Steve Maxwell to have Willie Martinez refinish the hoops and install a merlot sparkle inlay to them.

    So, my questions to the readers are:

    1. What do I do with the wrap? it is lifting along the seams, but only slightly. There are two corners broken off, one on the BD and one on the TT.

    2. Would it be worth re-chroming the tom and snare hoops if they are scratched and pitted?

    3. Will the replacements parts already installed hurt the market value? I am keeping all original parts to pass on to a future buyer. the only original parts missing are one FT leg and the original L-arm. Should I worry about replacing them with originals?

    4. There are several places that the bearing edges have split, but just slightly. Other than revealing this to a potential buyer, is it going to affect the kits playability or value? Should they be repaired? If so, who could do such a thing?

    5. Finally, there is a small, 1/16" hole in the bass drum next to the badge that was repaired, perhaps at the factory because the repair looks really good and the interior was spot painted with silver sealer. Does it look like a factory thing? What does it mean?

    Anxious to hear from anyone with ideas.

    I am really stoked that I have a Gretsch round badge set, but never expected to own one. Thanks to Joe at Alamo Pawn, it is mine!
     

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  2. RogersLudwig

    RogersLudwig Well-Known Member

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    here is the other edge damage
     

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  3. Rik_Everglade

    Rik_Everglade Well-Known Member

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    Players kit. Cool! Number one should be to fix those splits: wood glue and clamp. It's really an easy job. The other stuff won't matter, play this kit everywhere you can. Don't sit there thinking about selling. If you replace or re-chrome everything, you'll have more money into it than what it's worth.
     
  4. Osahead2

    Osahead2 New Member

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    Nice vintage RB kit... excellent sizes... love the color! Actually that color is kinda rare.

    I noticed your RB badge on your bass drum doesn't look 100% correct. That particular type of RB badge is typically found on all snare drums. A much different RB badge but nearly similar to that one you have but with a much larger size chrome grommet is for bass drums.

    You can post better pictures if you wish but my guess is your bass drum has been altered at some time in it's past.
     
  5. RogersLudwig

    RogersLudwig Well-Known Member

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    Osahead2, do you think that may account for the repaired hole in the BD?
     
  6. Osahead2

    Osahead2 New Member

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    Hmm that's possible but without seeing more specific photographs showing that area etc in particular it's hard to say. Can you show us?

    Question: in the rest of the drums do they have paper tags & serial numbers?
     
  7. RogersLudwig

    RogersLudwig Well-Known Member

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    All of the drums have paper tags. I am posting pictures of three of them. I'll take some better pictures this weekend and post them
     

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  8. RogersLudwig

    RogersLudwig Well-Known Member

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    The exterior shot shows the small hole just to the right of the badge. The other picture shows the interior where they spot painted the repair.
     

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  9. JazzDrumGuy

    JazzDrumGuy Platinum

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    The bass grommet doesn't look right nor does it go thru like it should in your last few posts from the inside. The small hole repair looks well done from both the top and bottom. Can't say I've seen a Gretsch set with a factory error that was fixed like that.

    I would not waste money chroming stuff. I'd glue and clamp the edges as best you could. Also, you can try to put some glue under the wrap and clamp it, too (I use Titebond II from Home Depot). As for the newer parts, no big deal especially if you give the original/old parts away to the seller. As for the missing parts, you can try to track them down but they won't be a deal breaker for most people in the vintage players' kit market.

    Nice kit and I love this color.........good luck.
     
  10. 1966bmx

    1966bmx Well-Known Member

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    Great set of drums ! Congrats I have to admit I am jealous I wish I had em .
     
  11. K.O.

    K.O. Well-Known Member

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    Bass Drum badges had a larger hole and a nickel plated grommet that was just friction fit into the hole in the shell. It wasn't crimped over inside the drum so over the years a lot of badges/grommets have gone missing because the grommets simply fall out of the hole and there goes the badge. The badges are the same as the tom and snare drum badge but have a larger hole punched into the center. My guess is the original badge fell off at some point and a previous owner replaced it with a snare badge. If it's crimped in place I'd just leave it be, only one person in 1000 (probably less) would actually know the difference. For a proper replacement you'd have to track down an original with the grommet, and then worry about it falling out again. That can be done but it's a pricey endeavor. Not sure on that repaired hole by the badge. Even if it were "factory" it wouldn't matter in the grand scheme of things. Looks like it was nicely repaired and I'd leave it at that.

    I wouldn't bother re-chroming anything, also an expensive proposition. If the chrome on the hoops looks that bad then buy some Gibraltar Die Cast hoops to replace them with (saving the originals). This would probably be cheaper than re-chroming, look better anyhow, and the ones that Gibraltar sells are the same die-casts that current Gretsch uses on their modern drums. They are close to the originals in appearance and will work just as well. As long as you still have the originals you should be good down the road (this applies to any parts you replace).

    These are desirable drums in a cool, and not common, wrap. For every pristine original set that is worth super high dollars there are 50 that have been stripped, rewrapped, painted, drilled or whatever. Compared to most of those your new set is quite stunning despite the few knocks it's taken through the decades. Don't do anything crazy, but make do them look nice and also playable and enjoy the heck out of them. I know I would. I have a Silver Sparkle RB set in those sizes and also a Tangerine Sparkle SSB set and both have their little quirks from being used by actual drummers for a few decades. The nice thing about a "players" set is exactly that...you can play them. Pristine museum pieces are cool to some but treating drums like works of art or an investment portfolio sort of defeats the whole point of a musical instrument.
     
  12. crash

    crash Well-Known Member

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    Nice drums in an interesting wrap. You're gonna like them! Gretsch's are a little different to tune and tweak, but once you figure what they want, you'll bond! The "player's set" thing had always thrown me. Aren't they all meant to be played? That said, I've always been on the side of sets that work well, but not OCD about the little stuff. I've had a lot of Gretsch, and my latest project set is working as well as any set I've ever owned. Awesome sound, particularly the bass. Looks good, a couple of wrap cracks, but nothing that of Elephant Man disfiguring status. Bought them as a project here from a bro. Already loaded up for the weekend's gig's....... IMG_1558.jpg 26230080_10156098957368658_8802861475480878350_n.jpg
     
  13. studrum

    studrum Well-Known Member

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    Well-said, K.O. Covers the ideas about vintage/perfect quite completely.
     
  14. RogersLudwig

    RogersLudwig Well-Known Member

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    Hi guys. The hoops arrived in New York at Steve Maxwell's and Willie Hernandez is going to refinish them and use merlot sparkle for the inlays. Otherwise, the set is almost ready to go. I'll post some more pictures when the hoops are on. Meanwhile, I still wonder about the value of the set when it does come time to sell them (don't panic, I may keep them for life). The snare is now dialed in and sounds great. So does the floor tom. Still working on the tom tom.

    Here is a picture of three of the drums taken over the weekend. NOt a great photo, but it gives you an idea just how good they now look.

    K.O. provided some sage advise and I plan on taking it.
     

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  15. RogersLudwig

    RogersLudwig Well-Known Member

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    Another of the snare all clean and sparkling
     

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  16. JazzDrumGuy

    JazzDrumGuy Platinum

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    Wow - how did you make the snare so sparkly and clean?
     
  17. RogersLudwig

    RogersLudwig Well-Known Member

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    JazzDrumGuy, I used Blue Magic for the chrome, Brasso for the brass, and Mcguires automobile Cleaner Wax for the wrap. Lots of elbow grease, too!

    I removed all of the metal parts from the shell before cleaning.

    Check out the horizontal photo of the toms and snare in post #14 and you can see how well the Mcquires worked on all of the shells. They really turned out nicely.

    JazzDrumGuy, I have not glued the wrap yet, but may send you a PM about your technique when I get around to it.
     
  18. JazzDrumGuy

    JazzDrumGuy Platinum

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    Good to know......please PM if needed..... :hello2:
     
  19. SKSMITH

    SKSMITH New Member

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  20. Osahead2

    Osahead2 New Member

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    Gee those isolation feet might work pretty good but boy talk about UGLY... in fact those are extremely UGLY and talk about how to ruin the beautiful retro look of a vintage kit... just add them.
     

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