Ludwig Rocker II restoration

pjmariner

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So thanks to this sight and a couple others I finally restored my drums, and created a proper space for them.

This is my first and only drum set. I got them in 1986 when I was 12 and they have been used and played out in HS and college bands, and moved with me more times then I can count.

they haven’t been setup in 3 years since I moved to my new house and I finally took time to restore them and create a place to play them.

first the drums, here they are before, dusty and a bit rusty from a couple years in an unheated storage unit.....
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all the chrome hardware, hoops, and cymbal stands went into a oxcilic acid bath. I used my large outdoor garbage can and did everything at once, chrome came out good as new for the most part. A few lugs are spotty, overall 100% improvement with no scrubbing or polishing. Just a backing soda rinse and air Compressor dry
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varatrodder

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Love this! Ca't wait to see them finished up.

I had the same set, but in black. I'm still kicking myself for getting rid of them. They are such good sounding drums.
 

pjmariner

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Next I cleaned all the shells with simple green and a magic eraser, then polished with Meguires scratchX followed by their Carnuba wax.
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I decided to keep the “cream” color as they have earned it, and just clean and polish them as is.

I also bought some maple hoops from drum factory direct for bass drum, and finished them with about 7 coats of oil based wipe on poly.
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Here they are resembled, new evans heads top and bottom, new logo head on bass drum, with Gibraltar chrome port. the pearl snare I got in college, this one is about 26 years old. Looks and sound great

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pjmariner

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i also added stainless washer to all heads and hardware, as well as stainless acorn nuts from Amazon on Tom mounts and floor toms. Looks much better, and has more threads and hold much better.

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I also solved the less than robust bass drum spur attachment. I added a stainless 3/8 collar, and then some 3/8 nylon sleeves to get collar flush to spur holder. Once set these Spurs are not going anywhere
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so now drums are clean I needed a place to play them lol. So I created a space in laundry room. I added play mats a carpet, and double layers of 6lb moving blankets on all walls and ceiling. I got dozen blankets from Amazon for $70. I made the front like a giant double layer shower curtain.
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pjmariner

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Love this! Ca't wait to see them finished up.

I had the same set, but in black. I'm still kicking myself for getting rid of them. They are such good sounding drums.
Funny enough, I was gonna just buy a new set, or a new used set as i was more itching to play then itiching to restore.... but my daughter said you've had them so long, you can fix them.... I knew it was going to be a rabbit hole they way I do things, but all in with heads, and new hardware I think I spent 300 on the set itself. I also bought a new snare stand and the pieces to eliminate my junky cymbal stands, and hang everything off my 2 best cymbal stands
 

lossforgain

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@pjmariner this is excellent work, and I can tell it was a real labor of love. I have done a complete restoration on several sets, but none with the sentimental value of yours. My current Slingerland set was an entire weekend project. Congrats on giving your drums new life!
 

jccabinets

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Wonderful job, I too had a rocker set and sold it. But I do have another one that restored also. Nice work you did an A+ job! This is why we listen to our daughters.
 

pjmariner

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@pjmariner this is excellent work, and I can tell it was a real labor of love. I have done a complete restoration on several sets, but none with the sentimental value of yours. My current Slingerland set was an entire weekend project. Congrats on giving your drums new life!
Thanks, it was definitely worth the effort, and was quite an enjoyable project!
 

pjmariner

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Wonderful job, I too had a rocker set and sold it. But I do have another one that restored also. Nice work you did an A+ job! This is why we listen to our daughters.
Indeed, my daughter sees the world so differently from me, her perspective is always enlightening.
 

studrum

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Dang, bro, you do nothing by half-measures! It's inspiring to see others who also have such love and respect for our instrument. Those will easily last the rest of your life! Plus, "...and a child will lead them."
 

dharma bum

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Great work! I have restored and rewrapped two Rocker II sets over the past 5 or 6 years. I've gigged each of them at least 50 times. They really are solid kits. Thanks for sharing this, it makes we want to go and work on a kit again...
 

pjmariner

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Great work! I have restored and rewrapped two Rocker II sets over the past 5 or 6 years. I've gigged each of them at least 50 times. They really are solid kits. Thanks for sharing this, it makes we want to go and work on a kit again...
Thanks. Your two kits were some of the ones I was inspired by, I was pretty sure I would end up re-wrapping mine in a red or silver sparkle. When I got the kit as kid I wanted red sparkle but back then you got what local music store had on the floor, which was bright white. Once I had these apart and clean they loooked pretty good so I waxed them and mocked up a shell with the refreshed hardware and at that point I decide the “cream” wrap stays.
 

dharma bum

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I really like the "cream" wrap with the new hoops - and especially because that's your history with the kit. Do you have any pics of them back in the day?
 

Dshamgar

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I have my original Rocker II set that I bought in high school as well. The original wrap cracked up, so I pulled that off and stained them. But now I want to go with something that has more of the original look, and I plan to rewrap them with white. You did an outstanding job with yours!
 

pjmariner

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I have my original Rocker II set that I bought in high school as well. The original wrap cracked up, so I pulled that off and stained them. But now I want to go with something that has more of the original look, and I plan to rewrap them with white. You did an outstanding job with yours!
That’s great u kept them. I also have (my nephew is using it now) my Acrolite snare I had in 4th-7th grade band before I got the full kit.

I really think a quality wrap is ideal, especially if you play out a lot. When I was in college my set was crammed into every vehicle imaginable, along with all my hardware and all our amps and miscellaneous equipment. I never had cases for any of them, and they were not given any special treatment by any of my band mates. All the war paint came off with relative ease, and all though there are a few dings and such, there is no tears or holes anywhere. A little buffing with scratch-x and some wax and they look almost like new. That old cortex was some durable stuff.
 


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