Rogers Drum Resto From Scratch

Sticks and Brass

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Hi All,

Been away from the forum for a while. Feels good to be back.

Anyway, I came across a 4 piece Dayton era Holiday shell pack that's been stripped of all hardware and wrap. 12,13,16 and 20. I've been obtaining the needed hardware, and believe I have just about all I need and in the proper era. The one thing I don't have are inserts for the vent holes.

My questions: Are vent hole inserts really that important for sound? What is the vent hole diameter? (I don't have the shells in my posession yet). Has anybody seen these for sale before?

About the wrap, I've tossed the idea around of finishing in a lacquer instead of a re-wrap. Thoughts?

Thanks
 

EvEnStEvEn

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S&B, I'm in the middle of a Rogers Big-R "resto" of sorts myself, wishing you the best of luck with yours!
Our resident Rogers Gurus have helped immensely with my questions and I'm sure one one them will be along any minute now with advice for you! Show 'em off when you're all done, please!
 

tommykat1

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Grommets are avialable. I got mine on eBay a few years ago. Installing them is a pain, but there are some YouTube instructions, as I remember.

You are in a great position to decide how you want to go, whether wrapping or lacquering, since you're starting from scratch. Note that the actual wood wraps offered back then were mahogany and "Wildwood," the latter being a beech wrap that was stained in nature by injecting colored dye in stakes placed in the ground around the beech tree. The dye was absorbed by the roots, which gave the wood an orange and green tint. Rare drums, those, and you can't buy the wrap anywhere today. I'm guessing you can't get mahogany for a reasonable price today, either, and that would have been a special order from the factory anyway.

A forum member, JCCabinets (if I remember correctly), wrapped his drums in a true wood Koa veneer, as opposed to the plastic wrap offered back in the day. You can tell by his name that he was a pro wood worker, so I don't know how difficult or expensive this option would be.

The outer layer of wood on your drums is maple, before wrap was applied. (Cleveland 3 ply: maple/birch/maple; Dayton 5 ply: maple/birch/maple/birch/maple.) That's the good news. The bad news is that this will likely be strips of veneer that will show numerous seams, as opposed to a single layer of quality veneer. Though the drums would look decent with a glossy lacquer, the effort will be an obvious makeover.

If you choose an aftermarket wrap from a known seller like Precision Drum, many of the offerings are close to original--but not perfect--in color and pattern. Or you can choose whatever floats your boat, since this will be a recovering any way you look at it.

Good luck!
 

GeeDeeEmm

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Sticks, rewrapping your vintage kit is by far the easiest way to go. As Tommie pointed out, the outer veneer of those shells is not likely to make a good basis on which to do a wood finish. If you want a wood look, there are numerous wraps that will give you that look, as well.

If you are set on doing a real wood finish, though, there is a way to do that and that will look great - applying a new outer layer veneer. It's a simple matter of choosing the wood veneer you like and then applying it to the shells. Then, the process will be like any other wood finishing procedure. Check YouTube for lots of wood finishing videos.

Keep us up to date on your progress.

geeDeeEmm
 

Sticks and Brass

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Great info guys. I really appreciate it. It's been a long road to get to this point. I ordered threaded .5" eyelets for the vent holes. If too big, I'll carefully ream the shells to accommodate.

Deciding in finish will be the next step. I've wrapped only a handful of drums over the years. I've done both adhesive technique and tape. I prefer adhesive even though it's more involved and technique sensitive. I'm itching to try a clear lacquer on these clean maple shells. It'll be my 1st attempt this route, so I hope it goes well. Doesn't appear to be any more involved as adhesive for a wrap. Just more layers and some good sanding.

This will no doubt be a player kit, and I won't hope for anything more. That being said, I'm still gonna give my best effort.

I'll post some picks along the way.
 

JazzDrumGuy

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I have done a gunstock oak over 70's 5 ply Slingys that had an outer layer of mahogany. Satin poly outside - all by hand - going of a relic/player look. It was a nice orangy color.

Earlier this year, I did a mahogany stain over 60's Ludwigs on a 3 ply mahogany kit - turned out very nice. Satin poly, 3 coats stain, 6 coats satin poly by hand with 400 grit in between.

Currently working on a vintage Gretsch RB/SSB tribute to Charlie Watts. I could not find the right color to make an antique yellow but someone here turned me onto amber shellac (like $15/quart @ H.Depot). It's premixed, a real pain to apply, it runs and dries fast, but man oh man, it's definitely the color I wanted on a maple shell.....it has a nice glossy finish after 3 coats but I will probably go another 3 because it's supposedly softer than poly and thus less durable......but it feels good after 3X. Pre & post pic below - it doesn't look that yellow in person. Almost done with that kit! You can see the wood is not great for a veneer as it was wrapped. I wonder how your wood looks?

I'd have a field day with your project. My next project is a 12/16/20/14 Rogers, but the 12/20 have original silver sparkle wrap in good condition. I have to figure out how to wrap the others (last resort is the great people at Precision) as I've only done wrap once, on a beater Gretsch, using wood glue (not the real 3M stuff) but it turned out great. I don't have the glue or patience to do it right....so I think......

Set 12.jpg

Final2 20180416_234707.jpg
Kit08.jpg
20181013_094647.jpg
 

JazzDrumGuy

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Thanks, Sticks - I'm not a cabinet maker, woodworker, construction guy at all......just watched a lot of YT videos and I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express for about 6 weeks! :)

 

lcondo123

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That Ludwig kit turned out beautifully! I'd love to try that on a project kit myself. Got any before pictures of that kit to share?
 

lcondo123

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franke

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Premier Projector - B & A Collage.jpg 58 TD 6 c.jpg Slingerland Walnut B&A Montage_2.jpg I've done three restoration projects where instead of re-wrapping or trying to get an attractive finish from the outer ply, I re-veneered. The outer ply on most US-made kits is mahogany, chosen not for its sonic properties but rather for its suitability as a substrate between the wrap and the shell (which, being a very open grained wood means it can hold more glue). That said, Rogers and Gretsch usually had a maple outer ply that wasn't finish grade, though some have gotten good results from sanding and refinishing (e.g., Charlie Watts' old Gretsch natural maple peel-off).

Veneer - depending on wood species - can cost as much (i.e. rosewood, or mapa burl) or about one-quarter (i.e. maple, birch, cherry, mahogany) as the cost of the three 24x54" sheets of wrap required to do the average drum kit. You can buy veneer at most hardwood dealers, as well as on eBay and Amazon. One can apply veneer with contact cement or PVA glue (which has a longer open time). If you opt for the latter, do consider Heat Lock adhesive (https://www.veneersupplies.com/products/Better-Bond-Heat-Lock-Veneer-Glue.html).

If you do decide to go this route, below are some of the results I have obtained using veneer: a mid-sixties Slingerland with mixed 60's-70's hardware (walnut stain over maple veneer), an eighties Premier Projector (satin maple), and a Sonor teardrop kit (fifties 3-ply shells with sixties hardware) that I finished in Karelian birch (and not the engineered stuff that Sonor uses, but the real deal that required weeks of flattening, yikes!).

Slingerland Walnut B&A Montage_2.jpg


Premier Projector - B & A Collage.jpg

58 TD 6 c.jpg


If you have a bit of time on your hands, you can read about all three below:
http://www.drumforum.org/threads/slingerland-restoration-project-from-start-to-finish.48995/

http://www.drumforum.org/threads/premier-projector-restoration-project.65253/

http://www.drumforum.org/threads/sonor-late-50s-kit-restoration.125623/.
 
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