Drum hacks

drummer5359

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Simple Stick Saver Hack
I very rarely break sticks, but I wear them out in the "rim shot zone" pretty quickly. Once the integrity/feel of the stick is noticeably affected by wear in the rim shot area, I toss them into the "emergency only" pocket on my stick bag. I've found that once I breach the surface of the stick, and see the first chip or splinter, the middle of the stick gets chewed away fairly rapidly, and the countdown to kindling is on. Being a cheapskate, on a musician's income, I thought that if I could protect that area, without affecting the weight and feel of the sticks, I could significantly extend the life of my sticks.

My solution was a single wrap of clear packing tape, wrapped tightly around the rim shot zone of the stick. The thin layer of tape doesn't noticeably increase the weight or affect the feel of the sticks, and doesn't affect the sound of rimshots, but does a pretty good job of extending the life of a stick considerably; such a good job, that now the wood tips are consistently the point of failure for me. If you use nylon tips (as I do on rock gigs), the life extension is even more significant. Yes, sticks still eventually start to get chewed up, but in my experience, the tape wrap can at least double their useful life. I haven't tried two wraps of tape, but it may be worth trying.

Zipper Pull Repair
I'm sure we've all had zipper pulls snap on us, at some point. My Roadrunner wheeled hardware bag has been amazingly durable, aside from the zipper pulls, of which every single one eventually snapped. I used to use paper clips as a quick fix, but now I use split key rings. They're around $1 each, and they won't break. I like the 2" split rings, but they come in various sizes.


Drumstick Sleeves as Bass Drum Hoop Protectors
No adhesive necessary, free, and self-explanatory.

A-Frame Guitar Stands for Storing Cymbals
Got this idea from Alto Music in Middletown, NY.

My other drum hacks have been mentioned:
  • Cut old heads to make bass drum impact pads/quick patches, and DIY ZeroRings. Nothing too inventive, but definitely useful.
  • Dollar store gel window clings. Years ago, I bought a couple of bags with a sea theme, and now I have a lifetime supply of fishies and sailboats at my disposal. I don't generally muffle my drums, but sometimes (especially on backline kits, or when recording) it's good to have some on hand.
Great thread! I'm interested in hearing more useful drum hacks. Keep 'em coming!
"Zipper Pull Repair
I'm sure we've all had zipper pulls snap on us, at some point. My Roadrunner wheeled hardware bag has been amazingly durable, aside from the zipper pulls, of which every single one eventually snapped. I used to use paper clips as a quick fix, but now I use split key rings. They're around $1 each, and they won't break. I like the 2" split rings, but they come in various sizes."

I'll add to this, use a split key ring with a drum key on it. It gives you something easier to grab, and you'll have an extra drum key for emergencies.

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ludwig402

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When the floor sucks the life out of a floor tom, I find that putting pieces of foam between the legs and the floor opens the drum right up. Amazing really.
I'll also cut pieces of foam to fit on the snare basket arms when mounting a tom on a snare stand. Maybe not the prettiest or most practical hack for the gigging drummer, but for a stay at home kit, why not?

foam (1).JPG
 

Rock Salad

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Oh! Duh, this is a good one.
They sell keyboard cases made from sturdy rip stop nylon for cheap tha hold stands very well. Mine fits all my hardware including throne easily without having to completely collapse the stands, it's a few inches longer than my hi hat stand for reference
 

drums1225

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I'll add to this, use a split key ring with a drum key on it. It gives you something easier to grab, and you'll have an extra drum key for emergencies.
Before I started using Beato Pro 1 bags, which have high quality zippers, I replaced the zipper pull on my Warwick bass drum bag with a bottle opener. I mean, a drum key is important, but it's not very efficient for opening a beer!

Ironically, I've had a leather drum key holder like the Pro Mark in the picture for well over 20 years, and it just tore last week.
 

Browny

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Got this from another forum member. I only do it on my Tama classic snare stand, but you could do it on any stand.
Put a hose clamp under where the wing screw is, so every time you open the legs, it stops in the same place.
I also keep a hose clamp with a thumb screw to use as a memory lock / fast fix if something fails. I've used it once or twice. It's much easier to deal with the thumb screw than having to use a screwdriver.
View attachment 486079
I use small hose clamps as memory locks on the straight legs of my 40s Radio King floor tom. Without them the brackets slip really frequently, so the hose clamps are kind of doing the load bearing and the bracket wing nuts just stop any lateral movement/wobbles/rattling. Then there's the added benefit of always having my floor tom set up at exactly the right height.

I cut some foam squares and glued them to the inside faces of an old 60s Pearl hihat stand that I use for my 13" tom. Pretty much the cheap/DIY version of those little booty shakers. Works really well, the difference in sustain, tone and low end is night and day. Pearl ISO feet on the legs was a massive improvement on my floor tom too, more substantial than the 13" with foam isolation.

Pretty much all my snare and tom muffling now is with tea towels and bulldog clips (coated amb heads). It's easily and instantly changeable from nothing to mild overtone control to full Don Henley/Mick Fleetwood thud. Can have it in a single layer, loosely fastened so it lifts after the strike, and only touching a small area of the head. Can fold it 2 or three layers thick and really stretch it across the head, fastened with 2 or 3 clips across the span of maybe 1/3rd of the drum, which is getting really thuddy and dry.
 

CherryClassic

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My cymbal bag has no dividers; I used a roll of sleeping bag insulator/ground foam cut into circles for cymbal dividers no weight added. I also use pieces of cut into small triangles under the floor tom legs, adds good amount of resonance to the drums.

sherm
 

TonyVazquez

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Stress balls... those solid spongy rubber balls that you can easily squish n squash
in your bare hands. Yes, Those balls...

...buy three Stress balls from the Dollar Store... drill a small diameter hole into them,
about an inch deep or less... attach them to the bottom tips of your exposed floor tom legs
instead of the floor tom leg's original black rubber feet
(store the black rubber feet, in case you plan to sell your drum kit later on).

The stress balls are so spongy they will absorb shock and your floor tom will resonate
loudly as it was meant to do.
The added spongy Bounce will assist the drum to resonate freely,
whereas a floor tom in direct contact with the floor will feel rigid and choke the volume.

----------------

Wanna make that floor tom resonate Louder? Place a flat smooth surface such as a
laminated cardboard, a cut out smooth drum head, or a sheet of plexiglass, on the floor
beneath the reso head of your floor tom... the smooth flat surface will reflect the
sound waves back to the tom, whether your floor tom is on legs or mounted to holder
that is extended outward from a cymbal stand.

In case you haven't noticed, floor carpeting such as drum rugs will absorb the volume
of your floor tom... whether you have a drum rug at home, or on stage at a venue
that has carpet installed on stage, or even outdoors on the sidewalk;
that carpet or textured concrete surface literally eats Volume.
So, keep a laminated cardboard (cut to the shape and size of your Crash cymbal)
or an old 14" or 16" cut-out drum head packed inside your cymbal bag,
and use it beneath your floor tom at your next venue gig.

If your drum kit has two floor toms, and even a bass sized pancake drum,
you can use several of these cut smooth surface hacks on the floor to reflect
and project the sound and volume of your floor drums.

---------------------

Go to YouTube and look up rdavidr's channel, that guy has tons of drum hacks!
 

supershifter2

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Got this from another forum member. I only do it on my Tama classic snare stand, but you could do it on any stand.
Put a hose clamp under where the wing screw is, so every time you open the legs, it stops in the same place.
I also keep a hose clamp with a thumb screw to use as a memory lock / fast fix if something fails. I've used it once or twice. It's much easier to deal with the thumb screw than having to use a screwdriver.
View attachment 486079
I started using hose clamps on the base in the 70's. I was also hot rodding mustangs back then and had extra hose clamps.
 

sixplymaple

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This is a specific hack, but may be helpful. This applies to my DW hi-hat stands. They have drum key screws sticking out the side of the hi-hat stand base that can make it difficult to position the hi-hat stand right next to certain slave pedals. Just buy a 1/2” countersink drill bit from the hardware store, drill/countersink the screw holes, and replace the drum key screws with the appropriate countersink screws. Problem solved...

Before


After
 

amosguy

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Wanna make that floor tom resonate Louder? Place a flat smooth surface such as a
laminated cardboard, a cut out smooth drum head, or a sheet of plexiglass, on the floor
beneath the reso head of your floor tom... the smooth flat surface will reflect the
sound waves back to the tom, whether your floor tom is on legs or mounted to holder
that is extended outward from a cymbal stand.
Why not just put a spare drum head, upside down, with smaller diameter then the legs under the floor tom? I usually carry spares anyway as many of us do.
 

TonyVazquez

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Why not just put a spare drum head, upside down, with smaller diameter then the legs under the floor tom? I usually carry spares anyway as many of us do.
That works as well.

I work with whatever I have... the reason for my cutting the head away from its aluminum rim
is because I can stash the cut drum head in between my cymbals inside their bag without
without worrying about any drum head rims scratching my cymbals.
And, a cut-out flat clear drum head on the floor is a lower profile that is hardly noticeable
from the audience perspective;
whereas a drum head with its rim still attached, upside-down, on the floor, looks too obvious....
...it's no big deal, but I'm OCD about keeping my floor space tidy - - even during a live show.

...and if the floor tom creeps around for a bit during play, chances are the floor tom legs will
touch and vibrate against that upside-down drum head rim which can get picked up by any
sensitive floor tom mics positioned near that area.
My 14" floor tom is leg-less, and suspended on a mount extended a foot away from
my Ride cymbal stand. So I can easily place a flat surface beneath my floor tom in an instant,
and my floor tom is not touching anything on the floor.
But someday I might wanna add a 16" -legged- floor tom to my kit, and so I think
about these things well ahead in advance.
 


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