I'm in love!!!

edge

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I almost bought that kit or one just like it, I have those drums in 14x18, 8x8, 8x10, 8x12, 14x14. Paid $300 for them, had a Tama Star Maple at the time, These drums destroy those Star maples, I sold the Tama kit. they are just unbelievable drums. and they feel great.

congratulations x 3
 

AustinFitz

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Yeah to say I really like it is a huge understatement lol. I haven't been this excited about something in a long time!
 

AustinFitz

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To the guys who have the same, or similar kits to mine what kind of tuning range do find works best for them? I've been playing mine fairly low, but I'm interested to do some experimenting and see what else they can do!
 

AustinFitz

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As I've said before, I'd like to add a few more cymbals and stands to this kit. Originally it would have come with two 903D straight stands. One of which was still with the kit when I found it, and I really like it! I like things to match, and I like heavy duty stands, so I decided I'd try to find another 903D straight stand or two, and maybe a couple of boom stands from the same series as well. Haven't come across any of the straight stands yet, but I did snag this 903BST boom stand off of Reverb the other day. I haven't received it yet, but it looks to be in great shape! I know it's going to weigh a ton lol. My 903D probably weighs 10 or 15 lbs. No ultra lightweight hardware here! I think it will be really cool to have all of the period correct matching hardware for this kit. I dig the sandblast finished bits on them. Matches my tom arms and memory locks!

 

mandrum

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I had a 6 piece same color less the snare , sold them in the late 90's and was actually just thinking about them recently. They definitely were the best sounding drums I ever had but didn't know it at the time.
Nice score!
 

Bri6366

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AustinFitz said:
Thanks! Yeah these things are definitely no Exports haha! The high gloss lacquer finished G-series shells were Pearl's top of the line at that time. This kit actually retailed for just under $2k back in the early '80s!!! I've had them for a little over a month now and I still can't walk past them without grinning from ear to ear, and to play them makes me giggle like a little school boy lol. I know I keep repeating myself, but I just love the way they play!

I know a lot of people hate on the lugs and the tom mounts, but I honestly don't have a complaint on either one. As you said the actual Pearl lugs are very well made, and personally I happen to like the way they look. As far as the toms arms they're solid, extremely adjustable, and with a little tuning I easily got both the rack toms sing beautifully even with Pinstripes on them! I was considering converting them to some type of suspension mounts at first, but after playing them for a little while I think I'm more than happy with the shell mounts. I don't really mind that they're underrated either. I've always liked an underdog lol.

Your kit is beautiful, and if it were me I'd be keeping them, but I wish you the best of luck with the sale! They're worth every bit of what you're asking and then some in my opinion! I'm now a HUGE fan of high end '80s Pearl stuff, and would recommend anyone who doubts them to find some and play them for yourself! Being high end drums from a major manufacturer I expected them to sound good, but I was totally blown away by mine!!!
This was the money kit for Pearl and the time when artists started gravitating from Ludwig, Slingerland and Rogers to Pearl, Tama and Yamaha in large numbers. When you look at this kit (or Tama Superstars an Yamaha 9000's) you can see why. I never thought much of Pearl and then I saw this catalog. I didn't know how they sounded and was on the fence about the tom arms, but it was clearly a kit built to tour on with a finish that rivals the best in the business. Pearl had arrived in a big way.
 

AustinFitz

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Yeah I've noticed that the big 3 Japanese companies (Pearl, Tama, Yamaha) really stepped up their game through the late '70s and early '80s focusing more on innovation, and actually competing with the high end American stuff instead of just copying them with cheaply made "stencil" kits like they had been doing previously. I think the fact that they were out to prove themselves as serious competitors really made for some amazing instruments during those times!

I've been doing tons of research on drums lately both old and new, and I have to say almost everything I like seems to be 1980s and Japanese! Still haven't seen a single kit I would trade my Pearls for though lol!
 

AustinFitz

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4 months later and I'm still giddy about this kit lol! I've mostly been playing around with tuning lately, and I'm happy to report that for the first time in my life I've managed to get a killer bass drum sound with no muffling. I've always hated having stuff in my kick, but never had one that I could get to sound good wide open, and usually ended up using a pillow. This 14x24 nails it though! It's the perfect balance of attack and boom with a beautiful tone!
 

jskdrums

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1 of my teachers had a set of these & they sounded fantastic! Those snares are killer too! I heard Stewart Copeland loved & played them back in the day..
 

AustinFitz

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I really have no business playing drums this nice. I'm loving every minute of it though lol! The snare is definitely a killer, and a heavy one at that. Just threw it on a scale out of curiosity, and she comes in just an ounce shy of 11 lbs.
 

AustinFitz

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Interestingly the combination of clear Pinstripe batters over coated Ambassador resonant heads on the toms sounds really, really good!!! They have the attack from the clear batters, but yet also that fat, round warmth from the coated resos. Kind of the best of both worlds! I think I'm going to leave them that way for a while. Anyone else ever play clear over coated like that?
 

AustinFitz

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Well these old Pearls dropped the jaw of yet another vintage Rogers guy at my Halloween party gig the other night! It was a friend of mine's father who has been playing his '70s Rogers kit exclusively for decades now. There were 5 bands each playing a few songs that night. Mine went on first, and my friend's dad was playing next. While I was setting up my kit he came over to check them out and was really digging them. After hearing us play he came up to tell me that the kit sounded AWESOME, and basically begged me to let him use it for their set so he could try them out. I was very reluctant as I normally don't like letting people use my stuff, but being an old friend I told him to go for it. It was nice being able to hear them from out front for a change, and they sound even better than I thought! The bass drum was like being punched in the chest! I could tell he had an absolute blast playing them too.

Afterwards he thanked me like a million times, and for the rest of the night he couldn't stop talking about how great my kit was. He even made a note of exactly what heads I was using on everything, and said he planned to change out the heads on his Rogers to match what I have. He also said that it made him want to break out his other toms and set up a bigger kit like mine as he usually just plays 1 up and 1 down. Like me, I really don't think he was expecting them to sound as good as they do. He wasn't the only one either. I must have gotten at least 10 different compliments on the Pearls over the course of the night. I don't know what it is, but there's magic in these drums, and as the thread title states, I'M IN LOVE!!! :love4:
 

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That's an awesome story. Those truly are amazing drums.
As for your question about heads, I use coated ambassadors resos with pinstripe batters on my DrumCraft birch kit (8,10,12 racks, 14,16 floors and 22 kick)
I do like that combo. Big,bold,warm,clean and powerful
 

AustinFitz

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That's an awesome story. Those truly are amazing drums.
As for your question about heads, I use coated ambassadors resos with pinstripe batters on my DrumCraft birch kit (8,10,12 racks, 14,16 floors and 22 kick)
I do like that combo. Big,bold,warm,clean and powerful
Thanks! Those are all definitely words that accurately describe this head combination. This kit with this head combo just gives me the kind of tom sounds I've always had in my head, but have never been able to get before now. I'm so happy I found them!
 

AustinFitz

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Man, what a difference a turn makes!!!

When I got this kit months ago I thought the 24" kick sounded killer, and since I haven't gotten around to deep cleaning it yet I haven't really messed with the tuning at all. It sounded good, and if it ain't broke don't fix it, right? Well I've been experimenting with the tuning of everything else lately in an attempt to get to know the kit better, so I finally decided to play with the kick. I first tried tuning it lower, and found a really killer modern kick sound. Kind of a deep thud with a good slap to it. I was pretty happy, and thought it to be an improvement over what I had before.

Then I tried the opposite and went higher than it had been. One full turn up on the batter side, and a half turn up on the reso... My brother was over, and standing out in front of the kit to help me tune. When I kicked it for the first time after the adjustment both of our jaws just dropped! This thing suddenly sounded HUGE!!! I swear it sounded like someone suddenly put a really nice mic on it with a massive PA behind it! We were both in awe! I don't even know how to describe how much of a difference it made. I'm talking night and day. It didn't just throw the sound out front either. It seemed to bloom in all directions. Sitting behind the kit I was feeling the wallop in my chest as if I were out front, and then out front it's even more intense! I guess I brought the heads up enough to really interact with, and excite the shell. This is the kind of kick drum sound I've always dreamed of! The first thing my brother said once he regained his composure was "Well I guess we won't need to mic your kick anymore!".

I'm so happy with it I don't know what to do with myself! I've been playing almost nonstop since I found this tuning. This kit seriously just keeps on giving! The more I get to know it, the more I love it! Hands down the best sounding kit I've ever heard. I've never been so excited about my drums before!
 

AustinFitz

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Great story. Like reading a suspense novel. Keep the love coming AustinFitz.
Haha thanks! I figured I'd just continue to update this thread rather than creating a bunch of separate ones all about this same kit. I know most of the guys on here aren't too interested in '80s Japanese kits like I am, so I didn't want to clutter up the Vintage Venue with a bunch of threads on them.
 

AustinFitz

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So I'm thinking I want to add some sort of suspension/isolation mounts to the 13" and 14" rack toms in the near future. The shell mounts are a little too finicky as far as getting the most resonance and tone out of the drums. When I first set them up it took me a while to get them positioned to where the 14" didn't choke too much, but I recently moved the kit to the other side of the room, and it seems to be choking again now. I played with the positioning again for a while today, but couldn't find a sweet spot this time...

I'm not really up on all of the current suspension mount offerings, but so far I'm thinking maybe RIMS? I've seen some chrome Pearl Optimounts that looked nice too, but I don't like the ones with the black bits. Really just wanting something clean and simple that doesn't stand out too much on these older drums, and doesn't cost a fortune. Anyone have any input, or suggestions on the best way to go?

I looked around on eBay at some used RIMS and found several 13s, but all of the 14" ones I saw were for 8 lug drums, and my 14" is a 6 lug... Do they make RIMS for 6 lug 14s??
 

AustinFitz

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Scratch that! After doing lots of online research regarding choking rack toms, and then experimenting with the kit some more, I have come to the conclusion that it's not actually the shell mount causing the drum to choke. Suspension mounts like RIMS do indeed work, but a lot of people seem to misunderstand how/why they work. It's all about decoupling the drum from the floor!

The problem isn't that there's a big metal tom mount attached directly to the shell with the weight of the drum hanging off of it. The problem is that the big metal tom mount transfers the shell's vibrations down through the metal tom arm, through the mount on the bass drum, down through the bass drum shell into the spurs, and then finally to the floor... Simply decoupling the bass drum spurs from the floor totally eliminated any choking from the 2 rack toms!

Putting the spikes on my bass drum spurs all the way out helped a good bit as it reduced the amount of surface area touching the floor, but even better than that was putting a little square of some dense foam on the floor underneath each bass drum spur. Once I did that the 2 rack toms both COMPLETELY opened up!!! Both toms now sound exactly the same mounted on the bass drum as they do when I hold them up by the rim with my fingers!

I'm soooo happy I figured all of this out before dumping a bunch of cash on suspension mounts. I really wasn't looking forward to having to put RIMS on this beautiful old kit. I much prefer the clean, simple, old school look of shell mounted toms! :-D
 
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