Qsn about the history of Ochletree Tree Bronze drums

DaveB

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I know the negative side of these re his not delivering etc, but does anyone know details like how many were made, sizes available etc?

Were they ever reviewed in Modern Drummer at all? I heard about them many years ago - mainly because of the bad press, I guess - but I cant for the life of me recall how I heard about them to begin with.

cheers

Dave
 

kevinyarger

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I know the paiste spirit of 2002 snares were reviewed in MD(don't know which issue) which were made in conjunction with Ochletree. From there I remember he had a carbon steel snare that the likes of Steve Smith were using occasionally. That snare was referred to as the phantom steel snare. Which I believe then led to tree bronze series. I think they were reviewed in MD cause that would have been how I became aware of them.
 

Nacci

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First time I heard about Ocheltree was when a fella who was a real heavy hitter in the Vintage Sonor world sent me a link to a thread here which detailed an expose from a member who got burned by Ocheltree.

I had been kicking the weeds in Vintage Sonor land trying to flush the foundry that cast their Bronze shells and was having very little luck. To this day I don’t know who cast those amazing shells for Sonor.

This Vintage Sonor heavy hitter said; I don’t know who cast Sonor shells but this link has some good hints who cast the shells for Ocheltree.

That sent me down a little investigative Ocheltree rabbit hole. I recall that one of the first things I read was an interview with Jason Bonham who was very adamant that if Ocheltree did have any involvement with his father it was unknown to him and minimal and openly implied the Ocheltree was riding his fathers coattails. Sometime later I tried to find that Jason Bonham interview again but never could.

I would love for someone to find that interview and post it. To this day I have yet to find a photo of Bonham and Ocheltree together or an interview where Bonham even mentions him. If anybody has either I would very much like to see it.

I would also love to know who did the tree engraving on those TreeBronze shells. Absolutely beautiful, iconic work.
 
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Ptrick

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There is some info to be gleaned from Jeff’s Facebook page. In one response, somebody asks how many treebronze drums were made, and he responds “somewhere around 100.”

All the Ocheltree drums, regardless of whether the Paiste 2002 or S Bronze or treebronze were made by Duluth Brass Manufacturing. Duluth still makes shells using “treebronze “, which is copper/tin bronze, approximately B11/12. They also use an aluminum bronze where the tin is substituted with aluminum. The cast hoops have always been the aluminum bronze.

A bunch of info can be found in this article:

And info about how to get a current Duluth cast bronze shell is in a thread on this forum:https://www.drumforum.org/threads/duluth-brass-manufacturing-redux.133911/

Following pictures and auctions of Treebronze drums, I’ve seen a lot of 13x7’s and 14x6.5’s, a few 14x8, and a couple 14x5.5’s.
 

Nacci

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What always stumped me about Ocheltree is the margins. Any of us who have had experience with Duluth know what a drilled shell and hoops cost shipped. My understating is that his iconic lugs were machined by a friend that has passed but my guess is that his end cost on those were $250-300 a set. That leaves, throw, butt wires, rods, heads and engraving. Engraving is the wild card. I can’t guess what that cost.

....but, I’m going to guess that his end cost was about $1,200 to $1,400 per finished snare. Though I am happy to be dialed in on that.

His profit margin is about 300%. He has the pipeline in place clearly, why was he not fulfilling his orders?
 


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