Restoring a "vintage" Mapex Saturn

MillerMav

Very well Known Member
Joined
Sep 22, 2015
Messages
606
Reaction score
123
Location
Michigan
Good morning all,

Over the Thanksgiving holiday I decided it was time to restore my old Mapex Saturns. I purchased these from DCP a couple years ago for a steal because they were severely beat up on the exterior but honestly still played really well and sounded good. Luckily the chrome on everything was in good shape and the original sizes were 8x8, 10x10, 10x12, 12x14(hanging) and 16x22. The only modification I made straight away was cutting the 12" down to 7" deep just because I prefer a shallower tom. I had to offset the lugs which is okay I guess just due to hole alignment on the lugs and what not.

Anyway I played it like this for the last 18 months or so and it's honestly been great. They sound great but just looked terrible, which was fine because they just sat at my band rehearsal space and that's it. A while back I purchased a few new cymbals that I really love playing and decided that I needed to offload a kit. Since my home kit is a new INDe I'm going to keep that, my other kit is one that I made about 5 years ago so I really wouldn't get much for it if I sold it so I figured I would sell this Mapex kit. But, before I did I thought I would give it some love and restore it, so-to-speak.

Long story not made any longer I have been playing it as a 12/14/20 this whole time and it really works well for that. I stripped the original "waxed" finish and since I cant find any information about how to recreate that I simply put a natural oil finish on the shells after sanding down to 220. I sanded the shells flat so that they are all square and cut new 30 degree rounded edges on everything with an inner 45. I cut down the bass shell to 15" deep (couldn't do 14 due to lug holes) but I kind of dig the 15" deep thing and it allowed me to square everything up and cut new edges. So this thing is going up for sale when its done but I thought it would be cool to document the process.

Here are the beginning shots showing condition and what not:
IMG_4172.JPG


IMG_4174.JPG


IMG_4175.JPG


IMG_4176.JPG


Here is the 12" rack in process and all finished up with hardware polished and mounted. I also took a piece of an old 12" shell and used that in place of the heavy AF steel plate that was originally on the tom mount. It lightened the whole thing up a great deal.
IMG_4177.JPG


IMG_4188.JPG


IMG_4193.JPG


IMG_4196.JPG


IMG_4197.JPG


IMG_4198.JPG
 

mlucas123

Very well Known Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2013
Messages
1,030
Reaction score
109
Nice work. Why are the 12" lugs offset? That part doesn't make any sense.
 

GeeDeeEmm

Very well Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
1,001
Reaction score
668
Location
Arkansas
Nice work. Why are the 12" lugs offset? That part doesn't make any sense.
I don't get it, either. There is plenty of room for the lugs to have been placed traditionally.

But that is a very nice job you are doing there, Mav. And I certainly like that you shortened the deep toms. I'll bet they sound much better like that.

I bought a new Saturn Pro kit as soon as they hit the market. The sound of those drums just never impressed me, and I kept them only a few months before trading them back in. Mine were finished in that strange white-washed look. I really liked the Mapex hardware that I bought for the kit, though, and ended up keeping a few pieces which I still use for my other kit. The double tom stand is especially good.

Anyway, keep us updated on your project. I love watching these sorts of undertakings, and you obviously know what you are doing.

GeeDeeEmm
 

MillerMav

Very well Known Member
Joined
Sep 22, 2015
Messages
606
Reaction score
123
Location
Michigan
Nice work. Why are the 12" lugs offset? That part doesn't make any sense.
To be completely honest it was something I thought I was going to have to do and then once I did it, realized I could have left them lined up. At the time, if I would have thought I was going to restore and sell this kit I would have put more thought into it. But at the time I just thought "I'm going to have to offset these lugs to make them fit" obviously I realized I didn't have to once I mounted them but then it was too late. It's not ideal but I can't change it now so I just made everything look as good as I could.
 

Latest posts



Top