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Info on my Ludwig Super Classic?

Josh G.

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I purchased this "1959 Super Classic" on Reverb not too long ago (I won't name the seller before giving them a chance to correct their mistakes). I've owned it for a couple of months and have FINALLY gotten the time to inspect it more thoroughly. My main source of confusion is the bass drum. Obviously not from 1959, but I can't read the stamp. I think it says 1962, but that badge is supposed to be from 1959-1960 and I am unaware of an unfinished 22x14 maple interior bass drum from 1962. Is that what this bass drum is? I know this kit was re-wrapped at some point. Do you folks suspect a transition badge was thrown on the bass drum in the process, or is this drum an oddity? Also wondering what the letter 'S' inside of the rack tom shell means. I appreciate any knowledge. The seller left out a whole bunch of details regarding the state of these drums .Bent tension rods, bent rail consollette (had that refunded already), all but one bent/out of round tom hoops, bent AND cracked rack tom hoop, tom bearing edges described as "good" despite being slightly chewed up and being uneven. Ill cut some slack on the wavy bearing edges since they probably came out of the factory like that.
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JazzDrumGuy

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Date isn't 1952 so gotta be 1962. Yes, wrong badge but that's nothing new with Ludwig, especially vintage ones! Also, the transition badge drums I've had were mahogany inside (1958 and 1960 snares).
 

wflkurt

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Clear maple interior on a 1962 bass drum is totally legit. Ludwig was painting the insides of toms by late 1960 or so. I had a silver sparkle super classic once that was dated April of 1963 and the toms were white inside and the bass drum was clear maple. I have not, however seen a transition badge on a drum as late as 1962. Did the seller tell you that the set was re-wrapped? WFL offered the option to do a black wrap in the 50's and for years I was always confused by it as I never saw it on a catalog and wondered why they would just randomly offer black wrap. Several years ago someone on one of these forums posted an old letter from Ludwig that explained that in order to do black wrap, they would flip over the black pearl wrap as it had a black backing on it.

That rail on your set is definitely a 1962 style rail and it is positioned in the spot where a rail would be from 1962. WFL rails and Transition badge drums used a two bolt rail much like what Gretsch used. The four hole rail appeared possibly 59 early 60. It's a nice looking set but it sounds like some trickery might have been put on you. It's impossible for me to say that though as I don't know how the original ad was worded.
 

JimmyM

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Funny how many old companies had no clue about keeping things consistent in different eras. They used up parts as they found them, and would likely be flabbergasted that people make so much fuss over the little tiny details. But when money gets involved, darn right you sweat them! Could mean the difference between getting a decent deal or a swindle.
 

mlayton

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Good points from all above. Nothing fishy about the clear interior on the bass at all. My good friend Allen Lewis has a serious focus on trans badge Ludwig's. You can hit him up on Facebook. He has tons of details.

Mike
 

happyshump

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I would have thought on a 62' era kit the rail would have the two mounting screws on the top.
 

Rich K.

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As mentioned earlier, I've never seen a transition badge bass drum with anything but a mahogany interior.
 

wflkurt

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I would have thought on a 62' era kit the rail would have the two mounting screws on the top.

The four bolt rail was in place by 1961 but I have never seen a transition badge on a bass drum that late. Certainly anything is possible but that badge on a bass drum that seems otherwise correct for 1962 is also throwing me off. Truth be told I'm not sure I have seen black wrap on an early 60's bass drum either. As I mentioned earlier I know that WFL was able to flip over the BDP wrap to get black but I think the wrap changed in the 60's and there was no black on the reverse side. Something is very confusing to me. Maybe it's possible that if the drum is not a re-wrap, a black bass drum was made up with that badge, held until 1962 and then drilled and date stamped in 1962? That could explain a late 50's looking drum with a 1962 date and the later rail? Does the wrap go into the shell plies?
 

levelpebble

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As mentioned earlier, I've never seen a transition badge bass drum with anything but a mahogany interior.
My blue sparkle super classic kit with August '59 date stamps has a maple 22, with the rest of the drums mahogany inner ply. Don't have a pic handy, but will try to remember to get one soon.
 

jmetatual

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In the first post it says the drums are re-wrapped. Badges on re-wrapped drums (or any badge that has been removed and replaced) are not reliable sources for dating or proving a drums originality.
 
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Josh G.

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Clear maple interior on a 1962 bass drum is totally legit. Ludwig was painting the insides of toms by late 1960 or so. I had a silver sparkle super classic once that was dated April of 1963 and the toms were white inside and the bass drum was clear maple. I have not, however seen a transition badge on a drum as late as 1962. Did the seller tell you that the set was re-wrapped? WFL offered the option to do a black wrap in the 50's and for years I was always confused by it as I never saw it on a catalog and wondered why they would just randomly offer black wrap. Several years ago someone on one of these forums posted an old letter from Ludwig that explained that in order to do black wrap, they would flip over the black pearl wrap as it had a black backing on it.

That rail on your set is definitely a 1962 style rail and it is positioned in the spot where a rail would be from 1962. WFL rails and Transition badge drums used a two bolt rail much like what Gretsch used. The four hole rail appeared possibly 59 early 60. It's a nice looking set but it sounds like some trickery might have been put on you. It's impossible for me to say that though as I don't know how the original ad was worded.
The seller did specify that the drums were re-wrapped and you can tell that they were in person. When you take off the heads the remanence of the original wrap is visible inside of the shell seams. The re-wrap job is not the best, but not terrible.
 

Josh G.

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I have a 62 set, tom is painted white inside, bass drum has clear maple.

Bass drum badge grommet looks mighty shiny.
You are one of two people to mention the grommet. I would not have thought to look for that, but definitely makes sense.
 

Josh G.

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The four bolt rail was in place by 1961 but I have never seen a transition badge on a bass drum that late. Certainly anything is possible but that badge on a bass drum that seems otherwise correct for 1962 is also throwing me off. Truth be told I'm not sure I have seen black wrap on an early 60's bass drum either. As I mentioned earlier I know that WFL was able to flip over the BDP wrap to get black but I think the wrap changed in the 60's and there was no black on the reverse side. Something is very confusing to me. Maybe it's possible that if the drum is not a re-wrap, a black bass drum was made up with that badge, held until 1962 and then drilled and date stamped in 1962? That could explain a late 50's looking drum with a 1962 date and the later rail? Does the wrap go into the shell plies?
The wrap does not go inside of the plies. When I take the heads off of all of the drums, they all have remanence or the original wrap inside of the shell seam.
 


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