Is it worth the time?? How difficult. . .

Old Dog

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Specifically, I'm speaking of pulling the wrap and removing all adhesive, sanding and then staining. I was considering spending money on building a couple shells up from scratch to match a recently purchased custom bass drum. But, I'm also considering taking some old Tama orphans I purchased last year, and putting the work into matching them. I have a 12" rack and a 16" floor tom, both with the Zola coating?--that I know nothing about except that I really dig the sound of the drums.

Has anyone done this work? Were you satisfied with the results?

I also have a couple offers on Yamaha stage custom single drums (new). They match nearly perfectly in color, but they are very glossy! I'm not sure how that would look, sitting around a bass drum with a satin finish.

I have a handheld sander, Amazon cheap, but it works. I have plenty of different grits, some sanding bars, etc. I have everything I need, except the stain and some sort of pre-stain product.

I messaged the bass drum builder about how he finished the bass. Hopefully he feels like giving me the low down on what he used.

If you have pics of work you did, BY ALL MEANS POST! Pics are awesome.

Thanks
 

Old Dog

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Got some great info from the bass drum builder. He did A LOT to get to that finish and color. Wow. He used transtint dyes, vinyl sealer, and lacquer. Lotta work
 

D. B. Cooper

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I've done this with a handful of drums. The problem with doing it is that drum manufacturers usually chose the ugly shells to wrap, or, well only stained and finished the wood drums that ended up meeting quality standards high enough for such a finish job.
You could luck out and find that under that wrap lies a beautifully figured outer ply, but I would guess that would not be the case with a birch shell.
The drums I did it to had awful, beat-up and damaged wraps on them. I removed the wrap and sanded/oiled what was underneath. That way, they looked like they didn't just come out of a dumpster and then put on stage. Is the end result pro quality? No. But will they look nice enough to play in public for years to come? Yes.
Achieving an even, attractive, pro-quality finish job on a wooden drum is no small task. It requires patience and a little know how. If you attempt it, do some research on types of finishes and set your expectations accordingly.
And please, make a Work In Progress thread! It helped me a ton!
 

Old Dog

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I've done this with a handful of drums. The problem with doing it is that drum manufacturers usually chose the ugly shells to wrap, or, well only stained and finished the wood drums that ended up meeting quality standards high enough for such a finish job.
You could luck out and find that under that wrap lies a beautifully figured outer ply, but I would guess that would be the case with a birch shell.
The drums I did it to had awful, beat-up and damaged wraps on them. I removed the wrap and sanded/oiled what was underneath. That way, they looked like they didn't just come out of a dumpster and then put on stage. Is the end result pro quality? No. But will they look nice enough to play in public for years to come? Yes.
Achieving an even, attractive, lro-quality finish job on a wooden drum is no small task. It requires patience and a little know how. If you attempt it, do some research on types of finishes and set your expectations accordingly.
And please, make a Work In Progress thread! It helped me a ton!
One thing for sure, I have NOT stopped to think of what I might run into under the wrap. Huge point there, thanks. Both drums have decent wrap, one is actually in great shape for being an 80s Tama. The floor tom has typical dents, not a lot. But certainly something to think about.

I have NO clue which direction I'm going. Need to hear back from some people today, but I thank you for your suggestions. If and when, I will definitely start a work in progress thread for my work.
 

thin shell

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What series drums are they? The zola coat Tama drums were the original Imperialstars, swingstars and I think one other line which were made from Luan.

Luan is not an attractive wood but you can see it on tons of flat slab interior doors ranch houses and trailer home built in the 60's, 70's and 80's. They are still sold at home centers so I guess they are still going into new houses.

I have never seen a set of luan shelled drums that someone stripped and refinished that looked good but to each his own. To properly finish an open grained wood such a Luan for a smooth, shiny finish takes a lot of skill and time. You would be better off getting the cheapest wrap you can and rewrapping the drums.

You also may have a mixture of wood types since your drums aren't all the same. Some are made of Bass wood, some Poplar and some may be nicer woods. If they are not all the same you will never get them to match.
 

Old Dog

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What series drums are they? The zola coat Tama drums were the original Imperialstars, swingstars and I think one other line which were made from Luan.

Luan is not an attractive wood but you can see it on tons of flat slab interior doors ranch houses and trailer home built in the 60's, 70's and 80's. They are still sold at home centers so I guess they are still going into new houses.

I have never seen a set of luan shelled drums that someone stripped and refinished that looked good but to each his own. To properly finish an open grained wood such a Luan for a smooth, shiny finish takes a lot of skill and time. You would be better off getting the cheapest wrap you can and rewrapping the drums.

You also may have a mixture of wood types since your drums aren't all the same. Some are made of Bass wood, some Poplar and some may be nicer woods. If they are not all the same you will never get them to match.
Interesting. I just looked, both drums I had in mind are Japanese Swingstars. The 12" has a silver-ish almost rectangular badge with a smaller TAMA at the bottom. The floor tom has a "T" badge, I think they're called? The wraps are NOT BAD. But, they don't match the bass. That was what I was going for. But if the woods used are going to give me trouble, the re-wrap idea is a possibility.

Thanks for the reply.
 

Tama CW

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Swingstars (black T badge or silver shield badge) or early Imperialstars (black T badge) will almost certainly have nasty looking wood under that wrap. I wouldn't even think of trying to remove wrap and painting them. Won't be pretty.
 

Tommy D

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Tama luan shells look like this under the wrap:



There is no attractive grain to speak of and the color can vary considerably from piece to piece and drum to drum.
 

Old Dog

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WOW! Thanks everyone for the heads up on the Tama shells. Is this what led to the Zola?

No worries. This idea is out the door.
 

Tommy D

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Dont know about what lead to the Zola coat, but Tama generally puts in a slightly nicer looking, but still pretty inexpensive, inner veneer. My Rockstars have an inner ply of basswood. Other years used beech. The Zola coat may have been a means of saving costs, maybe for sonic characteristics, but more than likely it was a marketing tool.
 

fibes3

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Tama should revive the Fibrestar line...but I'm biased!
 

thin shell

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Dont know about what lead to the Zola coat, but Tama generally puts in a slightly nicer looking, but still pretty inexpensive, inner veneer. My Rockstars have an inner ply of basswood. Other years used beech. The Zola coat may have been a means of saving costs, maybe for sonic characteristics, but more than likely it was a marketing tool.
I don't know for sure but I have always assumed it was part of trying to distinguish themselves from the low end "stencil" kits that they used to be known for, which had luan shells. As part of their switch to making pro level drums they had the high end Superstars and lower but still pro level Imperialstars. I always assumed they didn't want people to see that they were made from the same cheap wood that the stencil kits had been made of. Zolocoat covered it all up, wasn't expensive and painting the interiors was commonplace among many of the major US brands.
 

Ghostin one

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I can believe any and all of the reasons mentioned for using zola-coat. The catalogs alluded to weather resistance, which I can vouch for. I kept mine in cases, but lived at the shore and the drums stayed in the van sometimes. Outdoor shows, etc...

This is from an '86 Swingstar catalog page: "...zola-coat... the shell is immune to any temperature or humidity changes. A quality and consistent sound is available under any conditions."

Old Dog, I tried taking wrap off some similar Tamas, and it wasn't nearly as pretty as Tommy D's job... very easy to splinter the lauan ply if you don't know what you're doing (like me)
 

Old Dog

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I can believe any and all of the reasons mentioned for using zola-coat. The catalogs alluded to weather resistance, which I can vouch for. I kept mine in cases, but lived at the shore and the drums stayed in the van sometimes. Outdoor shows, etc...

This is from an '86 Swingstar catalog page: "...zola-coat... the shell is immune to any temperature or humidity changes. A quality and consistent sound is available under any conditions."

Old Dog, I tried taking wrap off some similar Tamas, and it wasn't nearly as pretty as Tommy D's job... very easy to splinter the lauan ply if you don't know what you're doing (like me)
Oh yeah man, after I saw all the posts about the old school Tama shells, I just kicked that idea into the trash can. I wasn't planning on re-wrap because of horribly damaged wrap. I was just trying to match up some shells. I've found an easier and cheaper way.
 

Tommy D

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I can believe any and all of the reasons mentioned for using zola-coat. The catalogs alluded to weather resistance, which I can vouch for. I kept mine in cases, but lived at the shore and the drums stayed in the van sometimes. Outdoor shows, etc...

This is from an '86 Swingstar catalog page: "...zola-coat... the shell is immune to any temperature or humidity changes. A quality and consistent sound is available under any conditions."

Old Dog, I tried taking wrap off some similar Tamas, and it wasn't nearly as pretty as Tommy D's job... very easy to splinter the lauan ply if you don't know what you're doing (like me)
The key is heat. Lots of heat. Get the seam apart, then hang the drum from the wrap off something horizontal (a broom handle between chairs or whatever) and use the heat gun to soften the glue and the shell naturally rolls down peeling the wrap off without any pulling.
 

jmato

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The key is heat. Lots of heat. Get the seam apart, then hang the drum from the wrap off something horizontal (a broom handle between chairs or whatever) and use the heat gun to soften the glue and the shell naturally rolls down peeling the wrap off without any pulling.
That is genius.

I presume it is bad form to put wrap over wrap?

I have an old Yamaha kit I am thinking of re-wrapping just for fun, hence the question.
 

GeeDeeEmm

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That is genius.

I presume it is bad form to put wrap over wrap?

I have an old Yamaha kit I am thinking of re-wrapping just for fun, hence the question.
Oh, man - definitely do not install new wrap over old wrap. There are several reasons, but the primary ones are increasing the diameter of the shells, and new wrap would be exposed to any problems later experienced by the old wrap, such as warping or cracking or failing adhesives.

Have you checked on the price of new wraps? The quality wraps are by no means inexpensive. Delmar wrap (the best brand, by far) will cost at least $500 to recover a six-piece kit in a nice pearl or glitter finish. It would be disastrous and unwise to risk ruining such a fine and expensive wrap by installing it over the old wrap.

That being said, though, my advice to the OP would be to wrap the new bass drum and the two toms of choice. Matching drums are not a problem to me, but I'm strongly inclined to prefer a matched kit over an unmatched kit. That's just me.

Because of the cost and time involved in a rewrap, though, you need to be absolutely positive that the two toms you choose are the ones you are prepared to live with for a long time - unless, like a number of us, you are a flipper with a short devotion to any one particular set. My thinking would be that since you managed to snag a very nice custom bass drum for a very good price, you would be best served by a couple of toms of at least equal quality. That would make your kit one that deserved some extra effort.

(My personal inclination would be to find some orphan toms from brands known to offer exceptional build quality and tone. Those would include toms from the Yamaha Maple Custom or Recording Custom lines; Ludwig classic maple; Tama Starclassics with those wonderful Starcast hoops/mounting system; Gretsch Renown Maples; and the list goes on . . . . )

GeeDeeEmm
 

Tommy D

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That is genius.

I presume it is bad form to put wrap over wrap?

I have an old Yamaha kit I am thinking of re-wrapping just for fun, hence the question.
I wouldn't put something like Delmar or a Jammin Sam's wrap over an existing wrap, but something like Bumwraps or Walopus wrap easily installs over existing wrap. That stuff is super thin and doesn't need to be fully glued. The only issue would be if the existing wrap is cracked or bubbling up as the Bumwrap stuff will not be able to hide an imperfection like that.
 

jmato

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I wouldn't put something like Delmar or a Jammin Sam's wrap over an existing wrap, but something like Bumwraps or Walopus wrap easily installs over existing wrap. That stuff is super thin and doesn't need to be fully glued. The only issue would be if the existing wrap is cracked or bubbling up as the Bumwrap stuff will not be able to hide an imperfection like that.
Yeah, I was not contemplating putting expensive wrap over existing wrap. Rather, I have an old Yamaha DP kit that I thought about wrapping just for fun. Our singer is an artist and has a large format textile printer, so we were going to make our own and just try it out.

Sorry if I offended anyone by straying off the topic of the OP. Thank you for the input.
 

D. B. Cooper

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The key is heat. Lots of heat. Get the seam apart, then hang the drum from the wrap off something horizontal (a broom handle between chairs or whatever) and use the heat gun to soften the glue and the shell naturally rolls down peeling the wrap off without any pulling.
Yup that's what I did. Makes everything to much easier.
 

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