What's wrong with metal to metal contact between the lug and the shell? I have a number of older Ludwig Supraphonics that sound fantastic without the rubber gaskets! The whole drum resonates beautifully, shell, lugs and all, like it's supposed to do!I'm obviously years late on this post but came across it and felt compelled to chime in. If you look at any vintage Supra (in person or on Google) there are varying degrees of lug splay, some more pronounced than others, on almost all examples. I own and/or have owned a wide range of Ludwig snares, ranging in time period from the 20's to the current era and I've seen it first hand. So regardless of changes in actual shell diameter, hoop diameter, alloy composition or weight of both shell and hoops from vintage to new, lug splay has been around on Ludwig snares for a very, very long time, and clearly without detrimentally affecting the sound. What does negatively impact the sound of new Ludwig snares (inarguably imho) are the ludicrous rubber gaskets which I know many people have touched on already, including earlier in this thread. I turned a first gen, rubber gasket 6.5 Supra into a vintage Supra killer (or at the vary least an equal peer) just by removing the lug gaskets, replacing the plastic tension rod washers with metal ones, and putting on a 20 strand set of "German" wire snares. I'm not saying doing these things as a formula will turn any new Ludwig snare into the best of the vintage ones (I got very, and happily lucky on that particular drum), but I will say it will make any modern Ludwig snare sound instantly and substantially better, lug splay be damned!
I recently got inspired by Udo Masshoff's beautiful drum designs and drum making craftsmanship and decided to replace the rubber gaskets on my new 6.5 hammered shell Acrophonic with red felt, hand cut replacements. This picture is from my first run, before I cleaned up the cuts more, but it shows the idea. Aside from personally loving the way it looks aesthetically, it removes metal on metal contact between the lug and shell without choking the resonance of the shell.
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The truth, in my opinion, is that there's probably as much difference as there is between any two new ones you pick off the production line. All this talk about rubber gaskets and tone, etc. seems reasonable, but how many of you think you could really hear a difference with a blindfold once the guitar amps started up? I'm as much of a gear-hound as anyone, but time and experienced have compelled me to admit this conclusion.
i WILL say that the 20's black beauties all seem to have something different going on, that is either to your liking or not, but definitely different.
I agree with you! Way too much over thinking of this stuff!
The gaskets aren't there to eliminate metal-to-metal contact, they're there because the tension rod holes on the hoops Ludwig uses are too far away from the shell, which puts the tension rods at a significant outward angle. This places most of the tension on the outer portion of the tension rod holes, which reduces tuning accuracy and can cause the holes in the hoops to enlarge, eventually to the point where the rod can slip through.What's wrong with metal to metal contact between the lug and the shell? I have a number of older Ludwig Supraphonics that sound fantastic without the rubber gaskets! The whole drum resonates beautifully, shell, lugs and all, like it's supposed to do!