I don't get 17-18" depth bass drums?

sixplymaple

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporting Member
Joined
Sep 6, 2020
Messages
174
Reaction score
159
I have no idea, but I’m ok with it. I love the standard 18”x22” bass drums on most kits. I would go shallower on 18” or 20” bass drums though.

I especially love my 20”x22”dw vlt.
 

5 Style

DFO Star
Joined
Aug 6, 2005
Messages
6,701
Reaction score
284
Location
SE Portland, Oregon
I don't really like the look, the sound, ergonomics or portability of deep toms or deep bass drums... I know that they probably have their place sonically, but I think that their popularity probably has more to do with fashion than sound or anything else...
 

davidh

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 11, 2006
Messages
402
Reaction score
155
Location
UK
Size and depth of bass drums began with 28" x 12" marching drums that were used in trap sets.. why?
Well 28" is what you can get from a reasonable sized cow and 12" is a comfortable width if you are marching along hitting both sides..
probably settled at 14" as that meant it could be stable when loaded with toms and cymbals and like..
I bought a 22 x 16 Gretsch in the 80s that was labelled as "power size" and at the time it did look deeper than usual..
My 68 Premier bop set has 18x12.
 

dingaling

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 27, 2018
Messages
232
Reaction score
200
Location
NYC
Vinnie has a 3 piece kit with his usually 22x18 kick and it seems to fit on stage fine.
 

patrickwitherow

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2013
Messages
382
Reaction score
119
Location
Coastal Georgia
My 12x22 or 14x22. I've got an 18x22 dw and dang, the thing is such a beast to carry around compared to my 12 and 14 depths. It has it's place like all the other sizes out there - but the 12 and 14 depths have worked great for me.
 

MrYikes

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 5, 2014
Messages
349
Reaction score
319
Location
Gnaw Bone, Indiana
I think the rise in popularity came along at the same time as the rise of the SUV. And I wish to heaven that you people would post the diameter first. I'm old. I get confused easily.
 

Jazz Drummer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2011
Messages
84
Reaction score
14
Location
Hamburg, Germany
For me they lack the punch of my other bass drums and I think the sound is too sluggish; it seams to me that the sound takes a lot of time to travel from the batter head to the reso head!
I can only confirm that, I have played 22x12 (Ludwig and Slingerland RK) for 30 years, now I prefer my 20x12 over 18x14. The short BD's have a really nice punch. Besides, the depth of the BD to a large degree determines the space needed on stage and in transportation. If car space is a little tight you can fit a 22x12 in the trunk but no 18x14. To me it is just something "new" to get people to buy new equipment.
 

T-Dub

Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2015
Messages
22
Reaction score
26
Location
Indy
Most of the big manufacturers jumped on the 17-18" depth kick drum wagon. Why is this a trend know? What happened to the 14" and 16" depths that were standard troughout the 60's to 80's and then the 90's, respectively? Is there any substancial benefits to be added?

I mean, I have being eyeing a stage custom birch kit for my nephew but that 22x17" bass drum makes me cringe every time!
Trends definitely come and go. Over the last 35-plus years I have played 22x14, 22x18, 22x20 (forgive me for that one please) and most recently 24x14. I LOVE 24x14! If 22 is more your style then 16 or 18 depth definitely seems to work well. For some reason 14" depth works very well with 24's and 20's. Go figure! Just my 2 cents.
 

karlcrafton

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2011
Messages
80
Reaction score
80
Location
Detroit, MI
I've used 16-18-20" depths on 26" diam, for the last 20+ years.
SOUND-wise, LIVE AND RECORDED, the 16 and 20" depths were the best for me.
My 18x24 and 18x26 are my least favorite bass drums. The 18" depth seems to have something in the tone that gets lost for me.
For overall "bigness" the 16" has been the best all around, and the feel on stage pumping through a big PA where you can feel it.

I have to say, my 20x26 is just a magic sounding drum. Never failed to sound awesome in every situation.
It could be that the heads are so far apart, PLUS the large diam, that it's almost like a single headed bass drum. That drum is just great, but, it IS kind of a pain to haul now that I'm not using the mini-van. The kit WILL fit in my Kia Soul with the 20x26 though. Crazy, but true! I'm not using any cases though haha!
After 30 years, I am getting back into a 14" depth (26) bass drum for my main gigging kit.
I have a 16x26 on another kit, so the size is still available. I'm just feeling/hearing something different after all this time.
 

Rufus T Firefly

Very well Known Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2008
Messages
626
Reaction score
465
Location
Winamac, Indiana
I generally prefer the 14" depth. My 70's Slingerland is a 14 x 24" and it kicks a$$. My Brady kit has a 18 x 22". I bought the kit used so I had no say in the matter, but I don't have any issues with it other than lugging it around.
 

Ottomatic

Member
Joined
May 6, 2018
Messages
7
Reaction score
5
Location
Redwood City, California
I started out with a Ludwig Downbeat set, 20" Bass and the best snare drum in the business.
Always wanted a Rogers set, came with 22" Bass, it became a monster 6 piece set with an 18" Floor Tom.
All had standard width bass drums. Fast forward to 2008, purchased a DW set with a 20"x20" Bass drum.
The hardest part of the transition was tuning! Mosey ahead a year or two and after experimenting with a lot of different tuning I found it! Sometimes Patience is a virtue. First lesson of the 20"x20" tuning is, remove the $200.00 pillow stuck to the inside of the drum! The sound is SCARY and RAW! Add 3 weeks of laundry and Walaa, perfect Bass Drum sound... actually,One bath towel and it's a Bass drum sound I like and enjoy,
Butt, if you want projection, a little heavier foot and your there! 2 words, Just Experiment!
 

Slingwig26

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 17, 2015
Messages
229
Reaction score
128
Location
massachusetts
Most of the big manufacturers jumped on the 17-18" depth kick drum wagon. Why is this a trend know? What happened to the 14" and 16" depths that were standard troughout the 60's to 80's and then the 90's, respectively? Is there any substancial benefits to be added?

I mean, I have being eyeing a stage custom birch kit for my nephew but that 22x17" bass drum makes me cringe every time!
I don’t get them either! And I certainly don’t buy them.
 

BennyK

DFO Star
Platinum Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 6, 2008
Messages
15,321
Reaction score
2,440
24 x 14 really puts the wind in my sails . 22x14 can get you there , but the 24 is already there .

Deeper bass drums work for others and that's just fine but they don't attract me .
 

bolweevil

DFO Master
Joined
Jun 27, 2011
Messages
3,848
Reaction score
236
Location
Eau Claire, WI
My PDP CX kick is 17 or 18" deep. Not a fan, and I have enjoyed the response and sound while playing shallower kick drums--but I got what I got.
 

michaelocalypse

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 14, 2018
Messages
125
Reaction score
54
Location
South Florida
Sound wise, a lot of people use enough dampening that it doesn't make a difference out side of looks, and that a shallower drum is easier to carry around for gigs. (Yes, it would also move the toms closer to you if you have a mount.)

I got a spare bass drum that matched my 22x18 (actually 17.5) drums and cut it down to 22x14. I normally use a small Harbor Freight moving blanket (never unfold it from how it's sold) as dampening... strictly because you can occasionally get one for free or a few dollars during sales, so I had a few to use... but I took that out and did some a/b comparisons. The stock heads had a 5" port, because I didn't have two un-ported heads, and it doesn't change the sound that much, just the playing feel and mic placement. The deeper drum had a slight bit more of a resonance/ring to it that wasn't noticeable with a full band playing. I put the blankets back in and there was no difference.

I ended up wrapping the shortened bass drum, along with some other mismatched orphan toms that I was sound comparing to my set, and selling it. I bought a matching color 22x18 in birch (my set is maple) but haven't done a comparison with those yet. No, none of it is recorded as I don't have those capabilities and don't have the money to put into it. Already wasted enough having the drum cut down. Same as with that one, my initial findings on the birch drum is that it sounds the same as the maple ones.

This might change if you prefer your heads un-cut and tune higher. I tune about as low as the drums will go. Even then, I doubt you'll notice much difference at all. I thought the 18" depth was gimmicky when it came out, and still do, kind of, but I prefer it over 16" depth. It's easier to tune, as is 14". For some reason 16" drums seem to fight harder. I did have one 24" bass drum, and found set up to be uncomfortable. I also had a couple 20x18 bass drums and preferred that size over any 22".

TLDR: The biggest difference in the various depth drums that I've seen is comments on the internet. ;)
 


Top