Gretsch Serial Number Dating Guide

hburgart

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I think I have the square badge #1. Drums were purchased used in Miami in 1987. Paper labels inside are silver and white. 12X8 tom Model #4415, 13X9 tom Model #4416, 16X16 floor tom Model #4418, 22X13 bass Model #4247.
 

kona1984

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If you're also collecting serial numbers for the newer drums I have a 125th Anniversary snare (4.4x14 - RB) and DropG badged drums bought this year to match the finish.
I can either post them here or you can PM or Email me and I'll send the serial numbers and other info. to you.
I think it's fun to keep a record of the serial numbers, when they were bought and where they are or have been. Who knows......in years/decades to come some people may really appreciate that. I know I would.

Gary
 

KCDrumDad

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Just a quick update regarding the paper. I wanted to offer a sincere thank you to everyone who has read it and sent me a message or email about it. The comments have been great.

I am aware of a few typos, which I will address before the second printing of the paper. If you see any, please drop me a message so that I catch every one. This was self-editted, so all mistakes are mine.

There is one inconsistency that someone pointed out to me. Table 7 and Table 13 provide different information regarding the introduction of the center-arm version of the Lightning throw-off. Table 7 and the text in the corresponding section correctly report my observations regarding the serial number range for the introduction for that throw. However, I did not correctly reflect the timing of that introduction in Table 13. The last column in Table 13 should show both the L1 and L2 in 1973 and the L2 for each year afterwards. Please make this alteration in Table 13.

Also, as my paper is very data-driven and I continue to collect more reports of vintage Gretsch drums, I anticipate that there will be additional refinements to the paper. I may set up a place where people can go to get updates. Until then, provide me with a dfo member name or an email address and I will send out emails/PMs when updates are available.

Rick
 

JOE COOL

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thanks for the update.i made note of the change.
a couple of questions about round badge grommets and tom tacks.

regarding bass drum grommets.most are nickel yet some are brass.
ive read that gretsch didnt flange the bottom of the grommet on the bass drum so the badge sometimes came loose.was there a specific time period that determined grommet choice?

what about the brass tacks securing the badges to the toms?
almost all are brass,yet i have seen a few that were nickel.always on silver sparkle wrap.
was there a specific drum finish,or time that determined tack choice?
 

thebeebe5

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thanks for the update.i made note of the change.
a couple of questions about round badge grommets and tom tacks.

regarding bass drum grommets.most are nickel yet some are brass.
ive read that gretsch didnt flange the bottom of the grommet on the bass drum so the badge sometimes came loose.was there a specific time period that determined grommet choice?

what about the brass tacks securing the badges to the toms?
almost all are brass,yet i have seen a few that were nickel.always on silver sparkle wrap.
was there a specific drum finish,or time that determined tack choice?
I have seen both silver colored and brass grommets on both BD and snares. There may have been a time period influencing their appearances. Mid 50's saw silver colored on Snares but I can't recall having ever seen anything other than brass on a snare after silver sealer started and probably even before. It may have been reserved for the lower liine drums like the Dixieland drums I like to collect.

Some point in the mid to late 60's (I think) the silver colored upholstery nails appeared but I don't believe it was for an extended period of time. Might just have been a lack of supply for the brass colored ones.
 

KCDrumDad

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Also, as my paper is very data-driven and I continue to collect more reports of vintage Gretsch drums, I anticipate that there will be additional refinements to the paper. I may set up a place where people can go to get updates. Until then, provide me with a dfo member name or an email address and I will send out emails/PMs when updates are available.
Pretty weird to quote myself in a post, but I have an update.

I set up a website (www.GretschDrumDatingGuide.com) to discuss the paper, collect information and provide updates and revisions to the paper. I welcome any additional reports, comments, editing, etc...

Rick
 

halldorl

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Also, as my paper is very data-driven and I continue to collect more reports of vintage Gretsch drums, I anticipate that there will be additional refinements to the paper. I may set up a place where people can go to get updates. Until then, provide me with a dfo member name or an email address and I will send out emails/PMs when updates are available.
Pretty weird to quote myself in a post, but I have an update.

I set up a website (www.GretschDrumDatingGuide.com) to discuss the paper, collect information and provide updates and revisions to the paper. I welcome any additional reports, comments, editing, etc...

Rick
You Sir, are the head-NERD of all Gretsch nerds! Glad there are folks like you in this world. :)
 

pan60

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Also, as my paper is very data-driven and I continue to collect more reports of vintage Gretsch drums, I anticipate that there will be additional refinements to the paper. I may set up a place where people can go to get updates. Until then, provide me with a dfo member name or an email address and I will send out emails/PMs when updates are available.
Pretty weird to quote myself in a post, but I have an update.

I set up a website (www.GretschDrumDatingGuide.com) to discuss the paper, collect information and provide updates and revisions to the paper. I welcome any additional reports, comments, editing, etc...

Rick
i tried to enter some info but could not.
 

KCDrumDad

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You Sir, are the head-NERD of all Gretsch nerds! Glad there are folks like you in this world. :)
Thanks, I think. ;)

i tried to enter some info but could not.
The "Report Your Drums" page is not interactive or a fill-in-the-field type of thing. Please use the list of information on that page as a guide or copy it into an email to provide your information. I am not that high tech that I can populate my database directly from your entry of data. I was actually advised against that approach by a guy who collects information on Gretsch guitars.
You could also just PM me here with info.

Rick
 

KCDrumDad

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I thought a quick update was in order. The Gretsch drum log recently passed the 5,000 mark for entries. Of these, more than 2,375 are from Round Badge drums. That represents more than two percent of all RB drums with serial numbers. The basic conclusions that I presented in my paper and earlier in this and other threads all still hold true, with some minor tweaking to accommodate the additional reports.

In January I started two new projects. They both involve vintage Ludwig drums with serial numbers. The first addresses Ludwig Standards from the late 60s through early 70s period. Up until now, no one has published a guide for these models. Thus far I have gathered information on 250 drums, 46 of which have both date stamps and serial numbers. I have a working draft paper which sumarizes date stamp / serial number combinations as well as other characteristics such as interior finish. There is a fairly strong correlation between date stamp and serial number. Of course, there are exceptions and outliers which cannot be ignored. Like other dating guides, any estimate produced is only a best guess, not a precise or guaranteed answer. Like the Gretsch project, I view this as a pretty good step in the right direction for Ludwig Standards.

The second Ludwig project is designed to refine the current dating guides for the Keystone badge and early Blue/Olive badge drums. Most people familiar with these guides are aware of their limitations, yet they are often misinterpreted and credited with more precision and accuracy than they perhaps warrant. I have collected information from over 800 drums which had both date stamps and serial numbers. I have another 750 or so that had one but not the other. In addition to the basic date/serial number relationship, I am attempting to pinpoint serial number points or dates where certain other changes occurred. Based upon the data I have so far, I think that the current guides can be improved. More to come on this project.

With the Ludwig projects I have encountered about 50 drums with paper labels and date codes rather than date stamps. I am working to try to decipher the logic in the date codes. I have a separate thread going on that question. It is an interesting if obscure question.

As always, if you have any drums you can report, I will add them to my databases.

Rick
 

Anton Silver

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Hello! I am sorry, my English is bad. What is the year of production? Thank you!
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7AEB0374-1C3E-4191-ABAA-738B5E9F2E54.jpeg
 

KCDrumDad

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The Orange/White label with serial number 05765 is from the 1971 +/- time period. It should have a Stop Sign badge. I did not see a stop sign badge drum in your picture. Is this from the snare?
The other two are on the second version of the Gray/White label and are from the 1980s.
 

CaptainCrunch

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Where Black is the color, where None is the number
The Orange/White label with serial number 05765 is from the 1971 +/- time period. It should have a Stop Sign badge. I did not see a stop sign badge drum in your picture. Is this from the snare?
The other two are on the second version of the Gray/White label and are from the 1980s.
Looks like a 4160 baaaaarely peeking out past the rack tom.
 

Anton Silver

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Thank you very much for answer!

10” rack - 45908
12” rack - 45573
14” rack (another color) 136198
16” rack floor tom - 45936
22” BD 45954
14” Snare Drum 05765
 

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