Head suggestions for Gretsch Round Badge kit in glass glitter

ConvertedLudwigPlayer

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I just picked up a 60's Gretsch Round Badge kit in Red Glass Glitter and need to source some heads for it. 20, 12, 14 with matching 14x5 snare.

What are you guys using on your 60's era Round Badge kits with glitter wraps? Where do you buy your heads?

I prefer Remo coated single ply heads. I know they have a series that is supposed to fit, but I have read some mixed comments about the fit.

Can you purchase Gretsch Permatone heads and if I find them will they even fit an old 60's kit? Where would I find them?

I don't want to force a head on the drum and risk messing up the wrap. The wrap overlays on itself by about an inch. I assume I could cut out the overlaid wrap a bit, but am not sure it would be enough of a difference to make heads fit better.

The heads on the 12" rack are newer Remo heads that were very very difficult to remove. The 14" floor tom had the original Gretsch Permatone head on the batter and nothing on the reso. The snare needs new heads on top and bottom.

I have a coated single ply Attack bass drum head I can use that spun freely when I put it on both sides so I am excited about that. I may have a 2nd one, but am not sure if it is the same size. I want to try and use the original Gretsch reso head, but it needs some cleaning up still. I may end up picking a new Gretsch head or another head with a Gretsch sticker if I can't get the original clean to my desired look.
 

RIDDIM

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That is my impression as well, but I haven't seen them sold anywhere. Will they fit a 60's kit?
I don't know if your drums are in round or not. I'd take your drums to a music store and see if the ones in stock fit. If not, buy something more tolerant of vintage drums; I believe Aquarian has a Vintage series with that in mind.
 

ConvertedLudwigPlayer

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I don't know if your drums are in round or not. I'd take your drums to a music store and see if the ones in stock fit. If not, buy something more tolerant of vintage drums; I believe Aquarian has a Vintage series with that in mind.
Thanks Riddim, the local music store carries very few heads and the GC I normally go to usually is hit and miss with their inventory and seems to be worse since they remodeled.

I was looking at the Remo American Vintage, but am condused if the Classic fit would be better fit on the drums or vice versa.
 

bongomania

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I had better luck fitting the Remo Classic Fit on my RB drums than the Aquarian American Vintage ones.

The bulky square collar of the Aquarian digs into the wrap, while the narrow rounded collar of the Remo slides over the wrap.
 

ARGuy

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I had a RB kit in Black Diamond Pearl, and the heads that fit it best were Evans - I ended up using the UV 1's. The Remo Classic Fit heads were big enough, but the collar didn't sit on the edges as well as the Evans did.
 

VintageUSA

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I've got a set of SSB 1977 USA Customs and I've had the best luck with REMO.
 

K.O.

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I'm fairly certain that the whole point of the Remo Classic Fit heads is to fit round badge drums so one would expect that they should fit. Most other vintage drums don't exhibit this problem unless they've gone slightly out of round.
 

bellbrass

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Gretsch Permatone are next to impossible to find new, unless you buy a kit. They are oversized heads, though, and will fit most vintage Gretsch drums.

Remo Classic Fit heads have worked on the few vintage Gretsch drums I've had. I have a late 70s Gretsch kit in Tangerine Glitter, and Remo Classic Fit heads work fine on those. I actually swear by them and use them on all my drums now, vintage or not.
 
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Rich K.

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Gretsch Permatone are next to impossible to find new, unless you buy a kit. The are oversized heads, though, and will fit most vintage Gretsch drums.

Remo Classic Fit heads have worked on the few vintage Gretsch drums I've had. I have a late 70s Gretsch kit in Tangerine Glitter, and Remo Classic Fit heads work fine on those. I actually swear by them and use them on all my drums now, vintage or not.
Pretty sure the Gretsch logo headed Remos are exactly the same diameter as non Gretsch logo Remos. That's why they used to have their wraps not go to the edge of the drums
 

Paradiddle

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I have had great luck with the American Vintage Aquarian heads on my 50's 3 ply. I haven't tried the "classic fit" remo's yet - but I normally play Remo heads (they fit on my new Broadkaster set just fine)
 

Rich K.

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Ok... just to be sure... I have a stash of Gretsch Permatones. I tried coated Ambassadors, clear, and a snare side. Just tried the 12s and 14s that I had, though I think I have some others. Compared them to the same size Remos that I have on my shelf.
Exactly the same. On both the "Permatones" and regular Remos, the inside diameter was exactly 12" and 14". Permatone is just a stamp.
(But if anyone here HAS to have some Permatones, I'd be happy to sell your some that I have...
perma1.JPG
 

charlesm

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I've had good luck with just about anything standard Remo that I've tried on my late-'60s kit. Coated batters/clear resos. Regular Ambs on the 12, Amb or Emp on the 14 and Emp on the 20 with the original reso head.

Although the heads are fairly snug, they will go on. Far from impossible-tight.

On a couple of heads, I felt compelled to try the old trick of cutting the collars a bit, and that allowed the heads to fit much easier. Recommended for standard Remos.

Despite the snug fit, I find no issues with choking or resonance. Once the heads stretch/seat, they sound very lively and I can tune them for a lot of sustain if that's what I'm going for.

I personally couldn't care less about whether the collars on Remos are seating perfectly or not out of the box. I'm 35 years into using Remos and, once they seat and stretch for a day or so, they are 100% fine and sound great for a LONG time.
 

Rich K.

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Hmmmm.. I was told by 2 different Gretsch USA dealers that the Permatone heads were oversized. Maybe I was misinformed.
If the heads were oversized then why would Gretsch have had to not wrap the last inch on both sides of the shell?
 

bongomania

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Seems like there's a lot of confusion out there -including among dealers- about exactly which Gretsch drums would require oversized heads, and why.
 


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