Favorite China Cymbals

trashman

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The one and only. View attachment 561784 Paiste 18” rude. When I think of a China that’s the sound I want to hear. A very good friend of mine turned me on to them years ago. Been hooked since.
Do the Rudes tend to run on the light or heavy side? I've heard them on a bunch of metal records (and they sound great on those), but don't think I've ever really checked one out in person.
 

nitro bengal

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Out of the 7 Chinas I have, my favorites are a 16 and 18 Zildjian China trash, a 17 inch Sabian holy china and a 21 inch Zildjian ultra hammered china.
 
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mattr

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When I designed the Zildjian Ultrahammereds Chinas, I was trying to emulate a Wuhan as best I could with the Zildjian processes.

What makes a Wuhan a Wuhan is that is they are so “f-ed up” from a manufacturing standpoint, and that’s what makes them a great, quick decaying, and the benchmark in ultimate trashy.

But, trying to recreate that from an established and process controlled manufacturing system that Z had/has, we could only introduce so much inconsistency. Paul F. Came up with little “cheats”, like the two bumped up rows in the mid-body, and that added a fair amount of trash… I got closer to the Wuhan sound, but wasn’t 100% I wanted. But they can be exceptional chinas, when they are “on”…

With the recent death of Taylor Hawkings, it got me thinking of how i didn’t put two-two together at the time: I was making Taylor’s custom EFX Chinas with the holes in it, from 20 A China Highs, with electrician knockout punches at my desk… I just never explored that concept further to drying out the Chinas (and we were silly in not seeing a signature model with Him).

The Sabian Holy China and the Z3s Ultrahammereds were released at the same NAMM, in a 19in. and 21in. (I swear that Z had a mole in its ranks!!). But, I have to say: Sabian got closer to what I was after in the Holy China than I did in the Ultrahammereds. Paiste Traditional Swishes are fantastic as well.

I have a 20in. Classic Oriental that’s my favorite China, and a 19in. K Custom Hybrid with a “weak lip”, cymbalmaker parlance for thin/weak spot in the flange, that was a factory reject… gave it some extra trash.
 

trashman

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When I designed the Zildjian Ultrahammereds Chinas, I was trying to emulate a Wuhan as best I could with the Zildjian processes.

What makes a Wuhan a Wuhan is that is they are so “f-ed up” from a manufacturing standpoint, and that’s what makes them a great, quick decaying, and the benchmark in ultimate trashy.

But, trying to recreate that from an established and process controlled manufacturing system that Z had/has, we could only introduce so much inconsistency. Paul F. Came up with little “cheats”, like the two bumped up rows in the mid-body, and that added a fair amount of trash… I got closer to the Wuhan sound, but wasn’t 100% I wanted. But they can be exceptional chinas, when they are “on”…

With the recent death of Taylor Hawkings, it got me thinking of how i didn’t put two-two together at the time: I was making Taylor’s custom EFX Chinas with the holes in it, from 20 A China Highs, with electrician knockout punches at my desk… I just never explored that concept further to drying out the Chinas (and we were silly in not seeing a signature model with Him).

The Sabian Holy China and the Z3s Ultrahammereds were released at the same NAMM, in a 19in. and 21in. (I swear that Z had a mole in its ranks!!). But, I have to say: Sabian got closer to what I was after in the Holy China than I did in the Ultrahammereds. Paiste Traditional Swishes are fantastic as well.

I have a 20in. Classic Oriental that’s my favorite China, and a 19in. K Custom Hybrid with a “weak lip”, cymbalmaker parlance for thin/weak spot in the flange, that was a factory reject… gave it some extra trash.
Really appreciate you sharing your insight, Matt. Candid and humble. I dig that.

I couldn't agree more; when Wuhans are on, they're untouchable. I imagine that disjointed bell design adds quite a bit to their quickness in decay, but all that insane hammering is where the white-noise trash comes from, yeah? (in addition to the profile, of course). I've got a couple thin 22"s and a 24" Wuhan, and I bought one of them new from a shop only about 5 years ago, and it's the best I've had, so they're still making some great ones.

Paul F. was going to share a story with me about designing the Oriental Classic Chinas, but he never got around to it.
I still have the 22" Classic that I special ordered from Guitar Center in 1997 (including the box it was shipped in from Zildjian). I've got another one with a serial number that dates it to 1996. Paul F. confirmed that it must've been a model that was made to show at NAMM in Winter 1996, since the line wasn't commercially available until 1997.
Pardon my nerdiness.

I'll have to check out a Sabian Holy China. I've seen them around, but never bothered to make the effort to play one.
 

mattr

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Wuhans have a very different and centuries-old tradition of cymbal and gong making. Firstly, they traditionally hammer blanks flat, making that crazy, flaking material appearance… very different forming method compared to Turkish method of rolling blank (which can make a consistent thickness). This hammering method imparts inherent trashiness, that’s even present when they attempt more traditional cymbal types (crashes and rides, etc.). The inverting trapezoidal cup absolutely promotes a fast decay, but that shape has a functional purpose: they are hand grips for marching pairs. Apparently in China and Turkey, crashing cymbals used to scare the bejeezus out of your military adversaries (…simpler times I guess!).

But the body shapes and the flanges are typically all over the place, and then there’s not a very consistent thickness… it’s all the things you don’t want in cymbal making, but it’s all the right ingredients for trashy China-types.

Zildjian had a lovely set of LP Rancans from the 80s (rebadged Wuhans), they were a source comparison in my Ultrahammered development.

When the Z Oriental line (not the Classics then) was first launch (1994?), they were overhammered with the manual-operated power hammers that were still in use then. The line was different than what it morphed into several years later. I still have a 22” Oriental from 1995-ish… very flat shape, nice cymbal.
 

bassanddrum84

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Do the Rudes tend to run on the light or heavy side? I've heard them on a bunch of metal records (and they sound great on those), but don't think I've ever really checked one out in person.
Not sure I’ve never weighed mine but I’d assume in between? Maybe someone here can add some info. I just know everyone I’ve had all sound relatively close to each other. They sound so good live. Perfect China sound imo. I’ll try and get video of mine this weekend.
 

james_c_marks

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Paiste traditional swish 22” 2099g
6 small bos rivets
I’m slowly flattening the edge
One dark expressive goosh at a time
68A19D4E-2C0F-4226-82E1-842F6F3D78D3.jpeg
 
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Tilter

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Whatever Jonathan Mover used on the old MD sound supplement track "Put Up or Shut Up" has always been my favorite recorded china. I have no hard evidence to back it up, but I've always thought it to be an 18" A. China Boy High. And this track is still so freaking killer!

 

charlesm

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I remember seeing George Hurley (Minutemen/fIREHOSE) play his 19" K China a bunch of times, and that thing sounded so damned good with the band!
It's kind've interesting that Zildjian stuck to the 19" size being the largest China they offered in their K lines, from the EAK period on up to the current K Customs etc. (or, at least, I think that's still the case. Maybe I'm wrong).
It's one of the many Zildjian head-scratchers, IMO. There are 17 and 19 KCD chinas...why not just fill out that line with a 21? It would be great.
 

Dzdrum

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I like China cymbals in my setup. I use two Wuhan 16 inch set up on either side - Bozzio style set up for use via double bass hits. I have another Zildjian 14 Oriental for quick accents. I am looking for an 18 Oriental since I like how thin these cymbals are! I owned a Paiste 20 Rude China - hated it! (Sorry to the previous member that loves his 18 Rude). I just thought it was too gongy sounding but maybe that is what someone is looking for. I sold to a guy who was so happy to buy it from me. Paiste stopped making the 20 inch version many years ago. I had it sitting in a cymbal case for over 25 years!
 

cornelius

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Probably the best one I ever had was a 19" K. from the late 80's. I also had a 16" Oriental China Trash when they first came out, early 90's. That was a cool sounding one, too - very different.

The only China I still have, which was the first one I ever owned - a 1981 18" 2002 "China Type".
 

ThomasL

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My favorite china is not a china - it's a Bettis Stinkeye!


If I still were playing big band regularly, I'd be looking for a nice swish, but for my current small-group playing, usually quite low volume, I prefer using three normal cymbals.
 

Bri6366

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18" Paiste Signature Heavy China - A brighter, more crash like China that cuts through everything.

18" Paiste RUDE China- Flatter sounding than the Sig. I really like how it sounds in the mix.

20" Paiste 2002- My latest cymbal purchase. I just love the 2002 series in general and purchased this to complete my collection.

20" Paiste 2002 Novo- Another brighter China. While I purchased the classic, this is probably the better China for continuous crash patterns.

K Zildjian 17" or 19"- Just a nasty, in your face China.

Sabian- I was never a Sabian fan, but I've also never played a Sabian China that wasn't awesome.

Wuhan- We can't talk about Chinas without the authentic Wuhan China. You might have to go through a dozen to find a keeper. This should be the first mentioned, but since I don't own one, I'll put it here.
 

Seb77

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I should take them out more often, but with small group jazz with just two or three cymbal stands supplied, normally other cymbals have priority. I have used them in big band settings mostly, so ride definition is important.
I have three:
18" Meinl Amun - B8, heavily hammered, surprisingly low sounding and rideable.
20" AZ China low, nice honking sound up the bow, like a miniature Mel Lewis Swish.
22" Stagg traditional Lion - quite trashy, with a longer decay than other Wuhans, might be a bit thin to use as a ride.
 

JDA

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So the Bosphorus 20" and here, my Four Others..

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and Back.

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every dog has it's day this is theirs

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18" Paiste
18" Pearl
16" A swish
20" older A swish
 


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