- Sep 6, 2005
- Reaction score
Here's a cool video about how the current BB shells are made. I'd be curious if an A/B test against the spinning method would yield any discernible difference in the way they sound.
This video was passed onto me by someone who would know.It's a brass snare drum shell, but I didn't see anything in the video or its description on YouTube that said it was a Ludwig snare drum. Did I miss that part, Eric, or do you just know that from being in the industry?
I'm having the same problem. My 80s drums don't have them, but those shells were made for drums of that era, so no gaskets is what I'd expect. My modern BB, with the hydroformed and laser-cut shell and Aldridge-proof plating, came with gaskets. Who am I to decide that they were wrong to build them that way?It’s getting real up in here, and I’m still flummoxed over what to do about my gaskets.
Who am I to decide that they were wrong to build them that way?
When did they stop using spun shell and switch to hydro forming for the shells ?
There is a company in China that I just posted about in the Builder’s section, that looks to be offering spun alloy shells for around $60 each (although shipping to the US is quite high). I know things are cheaper to produce in China, but the company in question doesn’t look like a sweatshop. It makes me wonder how much a spun shell truly should cost.Adding this question here from carl1969....
As Eric pointed out in post #10, the Jones video was uploaded to YouTube in 2012, so it's clear the hydroforming process was in full swing by then, but we don't know how much earlier they adopted it (prior to that video publication date).
I don't think there is any ready or common knowledge floating around on which and how long the processes were involved at Ludwig. Even in the podcast Uli doesn't provide definitive information, just that three different process, over time, were used. I'm under the impression that Ludwig didn't do this type of metal work in their factory. However I have no definitive proof as I never worked or toured the factory in the 60's or 70's (although I did tour in the 80's and don't recall this type of machinery).
Also, I wonder if the shells were ever spun in the manufacturing process. Two disadvantages for spinning is that it requires more physical labor and time to get blanks into the same shape compared to a press and the potential for machine marks, so over the long haul it seems an advantage to make them by press forming from the get go. Also consider that the resources required for manufacturing would be significant and require many steps (machinery & maintenance, personnel wages & training costs) compared to outsourcing the task to a nearby specialized company or companies, like they did for the shell chrome plating (i.e. to "Reliable Plating Corp."). There were/are plenty of these manufacturing companies in the Chicagoland area. So then it raises the question whether spinning or forming was more economical in the 60-70's (more lathe & operators than presses & operators). Lastly, if they were spinning the shells, I'd have to imagine they needed to transition to pressing them fairly early on as demand went up for Ludwig metal snare drums in the '60's.