Help with vintage Gretsch drums

Tylerfrey

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Hey All,

My knowledge on vintage Gretsch sets is limited so I am hoping some experts can help me get a little bit more info about a kit I just bought. It was listed as a "Progressive Jazz Kit" but is from the SS badge era. Everything seems to be original and the only modifications I have found were a missing label in the BD and a few extra holes that have been plugged and filled (doesn't seem professional).

The sizes are 20x14, 14x14, and 12x8. From my google research these are inline with the sizes used on Progressive Jazz kits from the 50s and 60s but there was no note of that model continuing in the 70s with the SS badge.

The labels are intact on the both floor toms but neither has any markings in the "model" area. All the bearing edges look decent for their age and all seem to match each other. All the chrome on the hardware is clean and has minimal wear as well. The wrap is in good shape but has darkened in color quite a bit and is lifting on each of the seams just slightly. The hoops are in good shape and both has a small piece of wrap missing.

Ill add a bunch of photos. I would love some help with an idea of the age. Thanks!
 

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JDA

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I'd call them late 1969 likely (but not positive) Arkansas (factory) era...
and your catalog is.. between the 64 and 77 (so have to imagine) Close

catalogs 66,70,71 here..
 

Tama CW

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Very presentable and worthy progressive jazz kit. Looks pretty consistent as an original SSB kit. Built the same as the 60's Round Badge drums....only with a different badge.
Very early in the SSB era as JDA mentioned. Not unusual for the model number to be missing from the tag. And the drum can speak for itself as to its size. All toms should have the die cast hoops.
The 14 is the money drum so having a tag on that one is a plus. If a tag falls off a shadow remains. Your bearing edges look pretty good. Sometimes the bottom edges get ratty from having reso heads off for years.

Gretsch parts can be pretty expensive if the originals were swapped out. Original mounts, legs, badges, etc. all a plus. They make some decent repro's of those things today. I don't think your floor tom legs
are the originals. They will work better though. The missing cymbal mount on your bass drum runs about $25-$30 with the "T" wing bolt. Easy to find. It should match the same diamond
mount on your floor tom leg mounts. All you have to do is clean up the chrome, wipe down the wraps, and then play them. Quite a few examples of these kits on Reverb and Ebay to get a pretty accurate value.
.
 
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JDA

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model no. on tag is of the individual drum (4244 etc)
it wouldn't be "the outfit" number anyway
 
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Tylerfrey

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Very presentable and worthy progressive jazz kit. Looks pretty consistent as an original SSB kit. Built the same as the 60's Round Badge drums....only with a different badge.
Very early in the SSB era as JDA mentioned. Not unusual for the model number to be missing from the tag. And the drum can speak for itself as to its size. All toms should have the die cast hoops.
The 14 is the money drum so having a tag on that one is a plus. If a tag falls off a shadow remains. Your bearing edges look pretty good. Sometimes the bottom edges get ratty from having reso heads off for years.

Gretsch parts can be pretty expensive if the originals were swapped out. Original mounts, legs, badges, etc. all a plus. They make some decent repro's of those things today. I don't think your floor tom legs
are the originals. They will work better though. The missing cymbal mount on your bass drum runs about $25-$30 with the "T" wing bolt. Easy to find. It should match the same diamond
mount on your floor tom leg mounts. All you have to do is clean up the chrome, wipe down the wraps, and then play them. Quite a few examples of these kits on Reverb and Ebay to get a pretty accurate value.
.
Amazing! Thanks for all of the info!!! I should have mentioned I have the cymbal mount the previous owners just had it off for some reason.

I just cleaned them up and threw some new heads on and they sound great!
 

studrum

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You have hit a home run. These drums are great for most kinds of music - nothing too loud, though - but if you are a jazz player, you will be in heaven.
 

studrum

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I sense that the op is a youngster.
With all respect, I gotta say, that could be a "lifetime" kit for you.
 

Tylerfrey

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I sense that the op is a youngster.
With all respect, I gotta say, that could be a "lifetime" kit for you.
Aw man I wish I was a bit younger haha. They will be laying down mostly jazz/blues tracks so it should be a perfect fit. Thanks for sharing your insights!
 

jb111

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Dang, that's a definite score. Congrats!
 

VintageUSA

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Tyler.....…..

I ordered my SSB shells in 1977..........and I also kept the Gretsch catalog from that year.
Your SSB Progressive Jazz set is reflected in my old catalog.
These are Jasper shells assembled in Arkansas.

Model numbers are as follows:

14X20 bass drum = 4249
8X12 rack tom = 4415
14X14 FT = 4417
5X14 snare (8-lugger) = 4180

Plus all necessary hardware and bass pedal.

Your shells might be older but we KNOW the set was still offered by Gretsch as late as '77.
The model number for the entire package = 4026.

Enjoy !
 

retrosonic

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Thats some beautiful set!! what size cymbals are those? 26?
 

K.O.

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Just to make sure you know. All Gretsch drums at the time were the same. They only made one kind of drum. The names, like "Progressive Jazz" refer to a particular combination of those drums when put together as catalog outfits but an 8x12 in a Progressive Jazz set was identical to one in a Rock and Roll outfit or whatever.

Not trying to state the obvious if you were aware of that, but it is surprising how many folks think that the names represented different lines of drums.
 


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