New 14x6 Stainless Keplinger

Ptrick

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I recently grabbed a 14x6.5 Copper Keplinger that just KILLS, and wanted another flavor. The copper has the low end and fatness in spades.

I wanted something a little higher pitched and snappy, but still open. Just grabbed this 14x6 8 lug Stainless Steel Keplinger from Drum Center of Portsmouth.

Only had about an hour on it today before heading to work. Enough time to put die cast hoops on it (my preference for thick snares) and change out the top head to an Evans Power Center Reverse Dot (also my go to head).

Man, what a sound! It’s actually a bit more open than the Copper, snappier, but still very fat for its size (8 lugs I think helps).

I have a decent stable of thick and cast shells, and these last two Keplingers really round it out. They have an openness and a little bit of dissonance (that you can hear on the Soundgarden album Superunknown) that isn’t present with cast shells. Cast shells tend to be breathy and very clean in the ring, ringing in a major key, whereas these 3mm rolled and welded Keplingers seem to ring on a minor key. Very fun. Here are some pics of both. The stainless was shipped in a box with packing peanuts, and left a polka dot pattern on the shell (haven’t decided if I’m going to wipe it off or not).

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Steech

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I recently grabbed a 14x6.5 Copper Keplinger that just KILLS, and wanted another flavor. The copper has the low end and fatness in spades.

I wanted something a little higher pitched and snappy, but still open. Just grabbed this 14x6 8 lug Stainless Steel Keplinger from Drum Center of Portsmouth.

Only had about an hour on it today before heading to work. Enough time to put die cast hoops on it (my preference for thick snares) and change out the top head to an Evans Power Center Reverse Dot (also my go to head).

Man, what a sound! It’s actually a bit more open than the Copper, snappier, but still very fat for its size (8 lugs I think helps).

I have a decent stable of thick and cast shells, and these last two Keplingers really round it out. They have an openness and a little bit of dissonance (that you can hear on the Soundgarden album Superunknown) that isn’t present with cast shells. Cast shells tend to be breathy and very clean in the ring, ringing in a major key, whereas these 3mm rolled and welded Keplingers seem to ring on a minor key. Very fun. Here are some pics of both. The stainless was shipped in a box with packing peanuts, and left a polka dot pattern on the shell (haven’t decided if I’m going to wipe it off or not).

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Nice! How heavy are they?
 

Treviso1

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How different are these Keplinger drums from your Trick drum? I've got a bunch of cast drums but I will say that my Trick Titanium, Copper, and Brass 3mm drums with rolled and welded seams really do kill too. They sing a little differently, but they definitely still sing.
 

Ptrick

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Nice! How heavy are they?
I haven’t weighed this one yet, I had a 14x7 Black Iron that was 16.5 lbs. This one is a little lighter, maybe 15-16. My cast 3mm bronze shells are a bit heavier at 18-20 lbs.
 

Ptrick

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How different are these Keplinger drums from your Trick drum? I've got a bunch of cast drums but I will say that my Trick Titanium, Copper, and Brass 3mm drums with rolled and welded seams really do kill too. They sing a little differently, but they definitely still sing.
So, the Keplingers are definitely different. I have a Trick Copper 14x6.5 that I have tuned identical to the Keplinger Copper (also 14x6.5 3mm rolled/welded), same heads, wires, tuning, and the Trick is more contained. The copper Kep is every bit as fat, loud, but has an openness that the Trick does not.

The paradoxical part is the Keplingers have fairly rounded edges. I would not expect the openness they have based on my experience with other metal shells.

They have a unique voice compared to all the other thick and cast shells I own or have played. Definitely worth owning one (or three ;)

In contrast, I was NOT a fan of the wood hoop Ayotte Keplingers. They were harsh, contained, thin sounding to my ears.
 

Steech

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I haven’t weighed this one yet, I had a 14x7 Black Iron that was 16.5 lbs. This one is a little lighter, maybe 15-16. My cast 3mm bronze shells are a bit heavier at 18-20 lbs.
Cool, thank you.
I’ve been looking at a Black Iron but am not sure if it would give me anything that couldn’t already get out of my Gretsch Bell Brass or my Oriollo Cast Steel. I also have a copperphonic a Ferromang, a Nickel over Brass, an aluminum and a titanium.

I went a bit mental on metal this year and it’s not looking like it’s gonna stop anytime soon. I may end up thinning the herd at some point but…

How different is the black iron compared to other metal snares that you’ve played?
 

Ptrick

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Cool, thank you.
I’ve been looking at a Black Iron but am not sure if it would give me anything that couldn’t already get out of my Gretsch Bell Brass or my Oriollo Cast Steel. I also have a copperphonic a Ferromang, a Nickel over Brass, an aluminum and a titanium.

I went a bit mental on metal this year and it’s not looking like it’s gonna stop anytime soon. I may end up thinning the herd at some point but…

How different is the black iron compared to other metal snares that you’ve played?
Keplingers all have their own “thing”. I have multiple cast bronzes, a cast brass, cast steel, cast aluminum, thick rolled aluminum, copper, brass, and bronze, and the Keplingers have a unique voice to them all.
 

Treviso1

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So, the Keplingers are definitely different. I have a Trick Copper 14x6.5 that I have tuned identical to the Keplinger Copper (also 14x6.5 3mm rolled/welded), same heads, wires, tuning, and the Trick is more contained. The copper Kep is every bit as fat, loud, but has an openness that the Trick does not.

The paradoxical part is the Keplingers have fairly rounded edges. I would not expect the openness they have based on my experience with other metal shells.

They have a unique voice compared to all the other thick and cast shells I own or have played. Definitely worth owning one (or three ;)

In contrast, I was NOT a fan of the wood hoop Ayotte Keplingers. They were harsh, contained, thin sounding to my ears.
Thank you, brother. It's funny because I was thinking the same thing about the Ayotte Keplingers and that is what has held me back from buying a bonafide Keplinger (Non-Ayotte). I am wondering if the Keplinger's are more undersized and that is the reason for their openness? Do the heads really float easily on the drum or are they a little tight fitting?
 

Ptrick

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Thank you, brother. It's funny because I was thinking the same thing about the Ayotte Keplingers and that is what has held me back from buying a bonafide Keplinger (Non-Ayotte). I am wondering if the Keplinger's are more undersized and that is the reason for their openness? Do the heads really float easily on the drum or are they a little tight fitting?
They are actually right on with the standard size. The heads fit like a Duluth cast shell. I wish I knew where the openness came from. Many people assume it’s the triple flanged hoops they come with, but I have die cast on both of mine and they SING!
 

JazzDrumGuy

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I didn't realize G.K. was still making snares. Are they new? The copper looks killer! I could not deal with the polka look.
 

Ptrick

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First gig tonight with the Keplinger Stainless, and it performed flawlessly! It was a louder outdoor gig, mic’d snare and kick.

I brought the Kep Copper and Stainless, and ended up using the Stainless most of the night. It is a perfect live snare. Cuts through the mix, but is very balanced with a lot of low end. The copper sounded great as well, but was getting a little lost at times.
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Is that teflon tape on the batter side tension rods?
 

Treviso1

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That case with both of those drums must be on wheels or it will break your back! So awesome! Congrats on your new drum. What a pair of brothers in one lovely case.
 

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Great to hear how the Steel Keplinger worked out on the gig - IME these drums sound good in any environment. I think it's the low end these drums produce, they never sound thin or harsh. Hopefully at some point you'll have a chance to record with your Steel Kep, they work beautifully in the studio.
 

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love keplingers. i had 5 at one point. sold them when i got sick about ten years ago.

but, been slowly building back the arsenal. they are some of my favorite recording drums ever.

i now have a 7x14 steel and 6x13 ayotte/keplinger.

i'd love to get a 6x14 or 6x13 with 6 lugs.

not sure if gregg is doing anything custom like that anymore.

they just have the right amount of crack, low end, mid range, and the ring even when wide open sounds so musical and fits in a mix so well. they also can sound amazing totally dead and pitched super low.

if i could only have a few drums in my rig, i'd have a 14 and 13 keplinger and my ayotte wood hoop maple. that would cover pretty much any sound i would need to get fairly well.

plus gregg is such a great dude and i love supporting small companies and good peeps.
 

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Ptrick

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Is that teflon tape on the batter side tension rods?




They are Nylok tension rods. Nylon over the threads, helps hold tuning.

I normally use tightscrew tension rods, but had these around and gave them a shot. So far, they seem to be holding just as well as the tightscrews.
 


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