Drum companies that don't make their own shells

SpinaDude

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Hi everyone. Another thread we've been posting on had some of us labeling some drum companies as "vanilla". It got me thinking: how many of these companies don;t make their own shells? I'm talking strictly intermediate and pro level gear hear, big houses and the boutique shops included. Is it public knowledge who is making them from scratch and who os finishing shells?
 

Bri6366

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Any wood working or furniture manufacturer with the molds or equipment to make wood cylinders can make a drum shell. It's not a drum until a drum manufacturer turns it into a drum. No one makes everything in-house anymore. When was the last time Ludwig made metal shells? Even Pearl, which likes to do everything in house now has a line of solid shell snares that I assume are sourced from an American supplier. Back in the 80s they used Keller shells for a time, but they are still Pearl drums. Rogers never made their own shells, but they were better shells than Ludwig or Slingerland. Gretsch hasn't made their own shells for decades. The list goes on and on.
 

Tornado

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We've had this thread before, which is, what makes a drum company a real drum company? Do they have to make anything at all? Is in-house design and outsourced manufacturing enough? Shells aren't the deciding factor since even Gretsch doesn't make their own. Who besides Yamaha, Pearl, Tama, and DW are making hardware themselves? And to what degree are they even physically making stuff? Yamaha has the advantage over everyone as far as being able to do every single part of the process in house.

In house edge cutting, hole drilling, finishing, and assembly I think have to be the starting point. Innovations on top of that are likely required to be a "real" drum company. INDe is innovating with hardware and finishes, I would call them a real drum company.
 

SpinaDude

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Watching videos on the INDe website was another factor that got my gears turning on this originally last week.

I'm not looking for merit, or what makes a drum company a drum company, I'm looking to see if anyone else is standing apart from the pack in the way INDe seems to be doing. Just trying to learn and understand, not pass judgement or build echelons.
 

JDA

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Shells aren't the deciding factor since even Gretsch doesn't make their own
built by outside to Gretsch spec VHVHHV vertical/horizontal mggggm maple/gum ; it's not like any Sam Dick or harry can go out and buy that spec. So even if someone else "makes" them...if the someone is making them, exclusively for one company what's the difference..
It's the spec in all companies- not where or who - and how exclusive the "formula' is.
 

Tornado

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built by outside to Gretsch spec VHVHHV vertical/horizontal mggggm maple/gum ; it's not like any Sam Dick or harry can go out and buy that spec. So even if someone else "makes" them...if the someone is making exclusively for you..
If Sam, Dick, or Harry have the money, they can start a drum company and have their own outside manufacturer make them to that spec..or any spec they wish.
 

JDA

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If Sam, Dick, or Harry have the money, they can start a drum company and have their own outside manufacturer make them to that spec..or any spec they wish.
and that never happens;
I'm not sure Gretsch wouldn't raise some fuss with the supplier; we don't know what's in or if there is, a contract or some agreement.
Can think of few where the same shell got used (Corder etc.

it doesn't matter if the parts are built elsewhere it's the design that's exclusive (hopefully) exclusive
 

Tornado

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it doesn't matter if the parts are built elsewhere it's the design that's exclusive (hopefully) exclusive
That was my point, since Gretsch does that and they are clearly one of the best known drum makers.
 

BlackPearl

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In house edge cutting, hole drilling, finishing, and assembly I think have to be the starting point. Innovations on top of that are likely required to be a "real" drum company. INDe is innovating with hardware and finishes, I would call them a real drum company.
Even if the hardware manufacture is outsourced, I think it makes a difference if the design is in-house, as opposed to using generic parts that can be ordered from Drum Factory Direct. I think a proprietary hardware design builds a brand, and helps make a real drum company. You can recogonize a Ludwig or DW drum on stage just from the lugs.
 

Fat Drummer

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yea long as specified, it's exclusive;
But it would only be specific to that one (the orgional) shell manufacture. If I wanted to replicate the Gretsch formula, whats to keep me from going to another shell manufacture and recreating it with them? There seems to be more of those around these days.
 

"poppies"

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I personally think the skills involved in having a physics- and aesthetics-informed vision for drum design and working out the logistics to bring the pieces together are a very different skill set than designing a dependable chrome plating workflow, properly setting up moulds for shells, etc.

I'm fine with any company efficiently outsourcing any element of their production as long as they have a strong vision and formula for all the details of the end result.
 

Fat Drummer

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I think it would be easier to just call out the few that are actually making their own shells.
So lets try that as well, here are the ones that come to my mind that DO produce their own WOOD shells in a facility that they actually own... (I'm not counting stave or segment wood shells)

Ludwig
Sonor
Tama
Yamaha
DW
Pearl
C&C
British
Cadeson
Craviotto
Cask
Stone
Chicago
Eames
Noble & Cooley
Dixon (so Rogers?)
A&F
Mapex
Salt
BSP / Dynamicx
Evetts

Many others actually do produce their own metal snare drum shells from Dunnett & Oriollo to AK and Q. but I was trying to think of all I could that was producing their own wood shells. I'm sure I am missing a ton... fill in the gaps for me...
 
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712drummer

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We've had this thread before, which is, what makes a drum company a real drum company? Do they have to make anything at all? Is in-house design and outsourced manufacturing enough? Shells aren't the deciding factor since even Gretsch doesn't make their own. Who besides Yamaha, Pearl, Tama, and DW are making hardware themselves? And to what degree are they even physically making stuff? Yamaha has the advantage over everyone as far as being able to do every single part of the process in house.

In house edge cutting, hole drilling, finishing, and assembly I think have to be the starting point. Innovations on top of that are likely required to be a "real" drum company. INDe is innovating with hardware and finishes, I would call them a real drum company.
I thought DW hardware was made in China or Taiwan like almost everyone else.
 

OutlawX

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Any wood working or furniture manufacturer with the molds or equipment to make wood cylinders can make a drum shell. It's not a drum until a drum manufacturer turns it into a drum. No one makes everything in-house anymore. When was the last time Ludwig made metal shells? Even Pearl, which likes to do everything in house now has a line of solid shell snares that I assume are sourced from an American supplier. Back in the 80s they used Keller shells for a time, but they are still Pearl drums. Rogers never made their own shells, but they were better shells than Ludwig or Slingerland. Gretsch hasn't made their own shells for decades. The list goes on and on.
Even if the hardware manufacture is outsourced, I think it makes a difference if the design is in-house, as opposed to using generic parts that can be ordered from Drum Factory Direct. I think a proprietary hardware design builds a brand, and helps make a real drum company. You can recogonize a Ludwig or DW drum on stage just from the lugs.
What about this looking as good as a DW ?
 

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K.O.

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I thought DW hardware was made in China or Taiwan like almost everyone else.
It is, not sure on the pedals but the stands are made in Taiwan. Says so right on the boxes.

There is a group of companies that all use the same size ball in their holders. I suspect that is because they all come from the same plant. Gretsch, Ludwig, Gibraltar, and DW. There might be more.
 

Tornado

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I thought DW hardware was made in China or Taiwan like almost everyone else.
Yeah, probably. Not sure if they have any of their own facilities there or not. But they definitely have their own proprietary designs made.
 

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