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Pedals-strap, chain, direct drive

bpaluzzi

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In order of preference:
Direct
Strap
Chain

I've played all 3 for long periods of time (years). Currently using the Speed Cobra (single and double) with the direct link conversion kit from ACD Unlimited and love it.
Same. My only chain is a DW9000 with a HEAVY beater and two of the DW weights pushed all the way up. For that combination, it's super smooth and reacts the way I want.

For everything else, it's direct or strap (3 of each, including my only double pedal)
 

xtranoise

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In order of preference:
Direct
Strap
Chain

I've played all 3 for long periods of time (years). Currently using the Speed Cobra (single and double) with the direct link conversion kit from ACD Unlimited and love it.
I saw that conversion in another thread and it is one of the things that made me consider the 910 Speed Cobra. I bought the 310 double last year when I was starting over and trying to keep expenses down. Then sprang for the Yamaha FP9D when it was available for a good deal. I do like the Yamaha pedal but that 910 stays in the back of my mind.
 

xtranoise

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Sonor Perfect Balance with the strap, it’s the best pedal I’ve ever used. The fact it has a perfectly round cam is a logical thing for me, why would you want an offset cam? It’s like having an asymmetrical drill bit to my mind. That’s not your question though. I’ve used Speedkings/Ghost/Camco/Swivomatic/Premier 252/DW5000/9000/6000 and now I’m on Sonor now. For me there’s something very intuitive about a strap on a round cam.
Have read so many positive comments about that Sonor pedal here on the Forum. Seems everyone that has one absolutely loves it.
 

scooter540

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a
Have read so many positive comments about that Sonor pedal here on the Forum. Seems everyone that has one absolutely loves it.

I can attest that it’s an incredible pedal. I’ve been using it as my main pedal for a few years now and it’s got the smoothest, lightest, most effortless action of any pedal I’ve ever played.
 

michaelg

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Have read so many positive comments about that Sonor pedal here on the Forum. Seems everyone that has one absolutely loves it.
Had one a few years back and yes I can see a lot of guys loving it but for me it played too light and I sold it on. Also the folding mechanism I didn't like .
 

Wolfman

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I like a very light feel and some "flex" to the pedal, so I prefer a strap. I use a '60s Camco pedal with a nylon strap (I also replaced the spring with rubber bands, a trick I got from the great Jake Hanna).
 

egw

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I don't really notice a huge difference in the various styles, as long as they're set up and adjusted properly.

The beater seems to have more of an effect on how a pedal feels to me. I'm not really a fan of the heavy multi-surfaced beaters.
 

Fat Drummer

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I have enjoyed this thread and the different opinions and thoughts. I dont dislike straps but they are just not a go to for me as I prefer chains. I am currently playing around with a direct drive and like it but have not found a sweet spot. Overall I think I'm just stuck on chain drives.

BUT, (I'm sure Rich K will have a rule about starting a sentience with the word but) I'm still not 100% settled on the topic myself.... after playing different pedals for 50 years I still have not found my "perfect" pedal.
 

rwp42

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I've used a DW 5000 turbo chain drive pedal for years and still prefer it for rock. I recently bought a Sonor Perfect Balance Sig. pedal (strap-drive) and it is the smoothest, best feel I've ever experienced. I use it exclusively for jazz/blues now.
 

hsosdrum

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When I started playing in the mid-'60s there were no chain drives, and I absolutely hated how the favorite direct-drive pedal of the day (Speed King) felt and played. So I was a strap-drive guy by default (Camco/Gretsch Floating Action and Slingerland Tempo-King). The trouble with straps back then (leather and later, nylon) was that they broke, and if they didn't break they stretched until the bottom of the footboard started clicking against the hoop clamp bolt. PITA.*

In 1984 I got one of the last pairs of original Rogers Swiv-o-Matic pedals, and they were the only strap-drive pedals I've ever used that had no strap-stretching problems. In 1990 I got a pair of DW5000s (single-chains) and used them for 23 years. OK pedals, but I should've kept my Swiv-o-Matics.

In 2013 I got a pair of DW9000s (double-chains) and they're the perfect pedals for me. (And I still can't stand the feel of the Speed King.)

*Out of curiosity, is there a modern strap material that doesn't stretch after it's used for a long period of time? Back in the '70s when I was playing 1,000 sets a year I had to change my nylon pedal straps every few months.
 

bpaluzzi

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*Out of curiosity, is there a modern strap material that doesn't stretch after it's used for a long period of time? Back in the '70s when I was playing 1,000 sets a year I had to change my nylon pedal straps every few months.

I haven't had a problem with the kevlar straps on the Iron Cobras -- have had one of those for 22 years with no stretching.

Same with the green plastic belts (it feels like it's some kind of plastic / resin with fabric / cord inside?) on the 80s Pearl pedals - no issues with them.

The nylon on the DW 9000 pedals is THE. WORST. I've ever used. I get <1 week with them, anytime I try it. The holes tear out, or the whole thing tears, or it stretches beyond belief (I've ordered multiple replacements, because I am a very slow learner) :D
 

hsosdrum

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... The nylon on the DW 9000 pedals is THE. WORST. I've ever used. I get <1 week with them, anytime I try it. The holes tear out, or the whole thing tears, or it stretches beyond belief (I've ordered multiple replacements, because I am a very slow learner) :D
Yep, that's exactly what happened when I used nylon straps in my Camco and Slingerland pedals back in the '70s — they were even worse than leather. Have you tried chains in your 9000s?
 

bpaluzzi

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Yep, that's exactly what happened when I used nylon straps in my Camco and Slingerland pedals back in the '70s — they were even worse than leather. Have you tried chains in your 9000s?
Yup. I ended up biting the bullet and putting the double chain on it. It’s the only chain drive I have these days, and I really didn’t like it (hence my efforts at trying to force the strap to work) until I got a 26”. The HEAVY DW felt beater with two of the dw shaft weights all the way up with the chain is DIVINE on big drums. The mass of the beater combination offsets both the sluggish end-of-travel I hate on chains AND the “this is almost too smooth” feeling I have on the 9000 with a lighter beater. I don’t have a 26 anymore, but I use it on my 24” and it absolutely rules on that drum, too.
 

hsosdrum

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Yup. I ended up biting the bullet and putting the double chain on it. It’s the only chain drive I have these days, and I really didn’t like it (hence my efforts at trying to force the strap to work) until I got a 26”. The HEAVY DW felt beater with two of the dw shaft weights all the way up with the chain is DIVINE on big drums. The mass of the beater combination offsets both the sluggish end-of-travel I hate on chains AND the “this is almost too smooth” feeling I have on the 9000 with a lighter beater. I don’t have a 26 anymore, but I use it on my 24” and it absolutely rules on that drum, too.
Their smoothness is exactly why I love my 9000s. They're the only pedals I've ever used that make me feel like my feet are playing my bass drums with no intervening mechanical device. (To each their own.) Glad you were able to get your 9000 to work for you!
 

vintagedrummersweden

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I've used Tama Camco pedals more than anything else, and still do.
But my sons Trick pedals, direct drive, are awesome! I may change my preferences... if my hardware box is big enough.
 

Elvis

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What is your preference and why? I believe pedals are very personal and subjective and I'm still searching for "mine".
I've been using the Camco by Tama chain drive since 1987 because it works for me. I gigged with it, I've recorded with it, I've put in who knows how many hours of 'shedding with that pedal and it always works.
Owned my current version since 1990.
The drive wasn't such a "decider" for me getting the pedal. I was offered a deal on my first one and it allowed me to ditch the pedal I was using at the time (Ghost), as part of the deal.
I already knew the pedal had a good rep, so it seemed like a good deal to me.
...and it was.
Since then, I've run across a number of pedals I also liked, but I've already got the Tama, so that's my pedal.





tama-camco-hp35-13521.jpg
 

GMFrancis

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Have read so many positive comments about that Sonor pedal here on the Forum. Seems everyone that has one absolutely loves it.
I have both of the Perfect Balance pedals, the cheaper non folding model is my gigging pedal. I use the more expensive folding one as a spare on the gig. There’s no difference in the action or playability, its just the folding one collapsed in the middle of a number. I probably hadn’t pushed the cam up to it full height and locked it properly. I’ve had no issues with it since but I bought the basic model and fitted it with a Low Boy lightweight beater. It is an absolutely killer pedal, it’s like there’s nothing there, it’s effortless.
 


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