Favorite way to muffle a snare

Ptrick

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I’m going to share my favorite way to shorten sustain on a snare, that keeps the same basic sound of your snare intact.

I’ve used and tried just about everything. Rings, gaffer tape, wallet, moongel. Problem with them all is they change the pitch and sometimes feel of your snare.

I got this from Paul Leim and Akira Jimbo. It’s basically creating a built in gate.

The simplest way I’ve found is using two pieces of gaffers tape. The first is 5-6” in length. 050D7F77-DF2F-4E0D-A7E3-5C118A8611CB.jpeg

Next, tear another piece around half as long as the first and stack it together with the first.

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Then you drape the sticky part over your rim.

BC2C1A41-BC47-4653-8882-AE4909C94895.jpegFC30D84F-A49F-4020-903F-9AE7D668DFCD.jpeg

This creates a hinge, and when you hit the snare, the tape pops up, then back down, gating the sustain, but leaving the tone intact.

You can adjust the length of the sustain by how you attach the tape to the rim. Just over the top allows the most sustain, and taping it tightly makes a quicker gate.02284F75-B036-498F-A42D-7E7E31280379.jpeg9BF40061-EFA6-49CB-8BCB-B744E8A44617.jpeg


The setup takes about a minute. I’ve used this live and in recording sessions with great effect. If you love the tone and feel of your snare, but find yourself in a reflective room or other environment where you need some control, try it out!

If you don’t want to use it for a particular song, just flip it all the way over the rim so it hangs off the other side.

I’ve gotten several weeks on the same pieces of tape. Eventually the sticky part will lose its stickiness and you’ll have to make another. Super fast and cheap!

I’ve also seen guys put felts in between the tape for a more drastic effect, and I think Paul uses silver dollars.

Let me know what you think.
 

rondrums51

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Good idea. I might try it.

I don't usually muffle my drums, but sometimes in a really ringy room, I do.

I've been using Drum Clips. They slip on and off easy, and they come in a couple different sizes for snare, toms, etc.

http://www.thedrumclip.com/
 

Seb77

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The method shown by the OP looks nifty, , very light muffling if you want, or heavier with more weight.
I've used tape to mount a piece of mylar, like a very small part of an o-ring, that I could flip on and off, over the rim.
These days, I sometimes use a snare weight M1 which sounds good and is flexible, but I'm not a 100%happy about how it mounts to a die-cast hoop.
 

damespointkid

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I've been into the snareweight m80's lately. I like that i can flip it up and down during a song. No mess on rims. Pretty cool thing to have in a cymbal/stick bag. Admittedly little more pricey than gaff tape.
 

agogobil

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I used to use the tape like that (I saw the Paul Leim video).

Recently I've been using this coated spring clamp since it's quick and easy on and off and I can change out a variety of material as a damper. Same principle, less sticky. I found them in the grocery store in the snack aisle, pkg of 8 for like $2.

spring clampED.jpg
 

thejohnlec

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Cool tip, and super easy! I've been using DrumDots on all my snares and they work really well for controlling the ring while not compromising the tone.
 

jtpaistegeist

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Aquarian studio rings, or a Moon Gel depending on the amount.
 

Rick

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I use half a piece of moongel at the outer edge for small rooms and find that it doesn’t substantially affect the sound... at least on my two snares (Tama Starphonic Bubinga and SLP Classic Maple).
 

polycrescendo

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IMAG0878.jpgIMAG0877.jpg
I really like the results I get with this insert for the Snareweight. There are longer leather strips that can be attached for a similar "gated" effect as the taped leather method.
IMAG0881.jpg
 

Maggot

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Wallet! Yes it kills the whole damn thing, but it's always convenient (unless you forget your wallet on your snare), has that special historical accuracy and frequently sounds great.
 

bob

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i use a hi-hat cymbal stand felt and gaffer tape ....
for more dampening you could tape a quarter on the felt . for me 2 pieces of tape is enough weight ....
 

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backtodrum

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I have ordered Ludwig snare dampers that came on older ludwig snare drums and have installed them on all my snares regardless of brand. I don't understand why they stopped putting them on snare drums to begin with, other than the almighty profit margin!
 
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TheBeachBoy

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I have an 8.5"x11" piece of felt from a craft store that I fold and attach with a binder clip. It's easy to put as little or as much as I want on the head.

I really only use it in one particular place, which has a new owner and theme and we haven't been back since. Other than that I use the built-in baseball bat muffler, but even that's infrequent.
 

rondrums51

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I have ordered Ludwig snare dampers that came on older ludwig snare drums and have installed them on all my snares regardless of brand. I don't understand why they stopped putting them on snare drums to begin with, other than the almighty profit margin!
I miss the old tone controls. I used them all the time. I haven't installed any on my current drums because I don't want to drill the shells....But I'm tempted sometimes.
 

Seb77

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I like the non-glue-y, non-sticky methods, like clamps and cloth.
Internal mufflers, not so much - they muffle the fundamental frequency, which is usually not my goal. If you want that shorter tone, they're right for you.

The following video offers some more ideas, one being using a drumkey on a-t-rod to keep a thin piece of cloth in position:
 

Drumceet

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This is all my hammered Supraphonic needs, small piece of gaffer tape, finned in the middle. Still get incredible crack and just enough ring that’s controlled. I love my 1984 Supra.

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