Rogers three ply shells

Ken

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Is it true that rogers three plys were actually maple, birch and maple and not maple popular and maple?
 

Mcjnic

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There are some that have said that.
I recall a member elsewhere that did the cuts on some pieces and did the wood check ... that was his take.
I was not present.
I honestly have no idea, though ... beyond my pay grade.
Pretty cool conversation, for sure.
 

tommykat1

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It was Harry Cangany who made this claim from an interview with Dick Steinberg, the president of Keller shells. I documented the conversation as it unfolded on Facebook the day it happened on May 30, 2014: an important day in Rogers history!

Harry Cangany On Birch In Rogers Shells 053014 - Abbreviated Conversation.jpg
 

tommykat1

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BTW, there was also a prior member of the DFO who was a self-claimed wood specialist. He sacrificed some Rogers shells from different eras and claimed to verify the presence of birch over poplar by the grain pattern.
 

DanC

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Interesting conversation with Harry. One correction to what Harry said: The switch to grey paint did not coincide with the switch to Keller shells from Jasper shells. The black paint was used until 59, then the switch to grey paint came, then Keller shells came in in 61-2.
 

Powertone

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Good point Dan. Quick question for ya’ll. I know Jasper made 3 ply, but were the 3 ply Bvtl Powertones and kits, etc., Keller shells?

Did Keller also do 3 ply shells? I have never been clear on that.
 

tommykat1

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I believe the progression was this:

Late 1950s, 3 ply maple/gumwood/maple shells from Jasper. These were relatively thick plies with a kind of rounded bearing edge, and it was easy to see both the shell and rerings when viewing with the head off (1958 5" Spotlight snare):

Edge1.JPG


In the early 60s, Rogers switched to Keller 3 ply maple/birch/maple shells with a pronounced (and revolutionary) 45 degree bearing edge. The paint came right to the top, so one way to determine 3 ply vs the later 5 ply is in the overall thickness of plies plus rerings (1964 6.5" Powertone snare):

11 Bearing Edge & Rerings.jpg


In the late 60s, Rogers introduced 5 ply maple/birch/maple/birch/maple shells. Note the thickness (1967 12" Holiday tom):

2 - 12 Tom After.jpg
 

Cliff DeArment

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In the late 50's they also made some Jasper all maple, or at least I have one, 4 ply 2 ring (Eagle badge). It's what I would call an orchestral snare, for no better name. The rest of the set (Pirate badge) is maple/gum/maple.
 

Tama CW

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When researching the Rogers Big R drums around here a couple months back I ran into a number of older posts on this topic. Forum member Ploughman who is one of the Big R experts, started agreeing with the MBMBM notion for the Big R's somewhere in the 2012-2015 period iirc. Prior to that I ran into a few posts by them where they followed the earlier idea of MPM.
 
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lcondo123

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I seem to have an anomaly of a drum here. I have a 13" Tower rack tom that has all the signs of the Jasper made shells - the thick and long rerings, the three-ply shell with three-ply rings, BUT it has the sharp bearing edges. With beavertail lugs.

It's important to remember that Rogers was basically a boutique drum company out of a little town in Covington, OH in the early 60's. They had stuff lying around that they would use well after they "technically" moved onto something new. Like the Cleveland era tags on Fullerton era drums, with the model scribbled out and rewritten by hand next to it.

I've concluded they had this extra Jasper shell lying around, so they put the new bearing edges on it, as well as the new beavertail lugs, and sent it off with it's matching drum set - both of which have the three ply Keller shells and sharp edges. The tags date it to 1963/64, and the drums have an engraving in the shells that say "Board of Education - NYC - 1964." Also worth noting that these drums have an outer Mahogany veneer, which makes up the third, outer ply (unless the outer veneer is just a stained maple, I'm not sure.)

So yes, there is a timeline to follow, but remember that sometimes there are some anomalies out there, especially with Rogers!
 

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shuffle

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I believe it,maple and birch.
I also believe thats what gave Rogers drums a distinctive sound of its own.
 

Cliff DeArment

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I think they did a lot of R&D through the years, trying various experiments, then later selling every one of them one way or another.
 

tommykat1

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I seem to have an anomaly of a drum here. I have a 13" Tower rack tom that has all the signs of the Jasper made shells - the thick and long rerings, the three-ply shell with three-ply rings, BUT it has the sharp bearing edges. With beavertail lugs.

It's important to remember that Rogers was basically a boutique drum company out of a little town in Covington, OH in the early 60's. They had stuff lying around that they would use well after they "technically" moved onto something new. Like the Cleveland era tags on Fullerton era drums, with the model scribbled out and rewritten by hand next to it.

I've concluded they had this extra Jasper shell lying around, so they put the new bearing edges on it, as well as the new beavertail lugs, and sent it off with it's matching drum set - both of which have the three ply Keller shells and sharp edges. The tags date it to 1963/64, and the drums have an engraving in the shells that say "Board of Education - NYC - 1964." Also worth noting that these drums have an outer Mahogany veneer, which makes up the third, outer ply (unless the outer veneer is just a stained maple, I'm not sure.)

So yes, there is a timeline to follow, but remember that sometimes there are some anomalies out there, especially with Rogers!
This looks like a Keller 3 ply to me. The date range is correct for it to be.
 

tommykat1

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When researching the Rogers Big R drums around here a couple months back I ran into a number of older posts on this topic. Forum member Ploughman who is one of the Big R experts, started agreeing with the MBMBM notion for the Big R's somewhere in the 2012-2015 period iirc. Prior to that I ran into a few posts by them where they followed the earlier idea of MPM.
The revelation that Rogers Keller shells were maple/birch/maple (early 3 ply) and maple/birch/maple/birch/maple (later 5 ply) was from a conversation on Facebook with drum expert Harry Cangany on May 30, 2014. Prior to that date, most Rogers aficionados thought the inner plies were poplar.

Harry Cangany On Birch In Rogers Shells 053014 - Abbreviated Conversation.jpg
 

lcondo123

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This looks like a Keller 3 ply to me. The date range is correct for it to be.
Interesting, you're probably right. I've never seen a beavertail drum with rerings as long and flat as the ones inside that tom - they're the same length and thickness as the rerings inside of my Jasper-shelled Rogers. I'll take your word for it!
 

rhythmace

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That forum member was a long time woodworker from Canada, if I remember right. He had compelling arguments based on the grain and even the smell of cutting the woods. That was the first that I had heard about birch inner plies versus poplar. Wasn't he saying that some outer plies were maple and not mahogany also? I felt like he knew what he was talking about and really changed the thinking. Could someone dredge up that thread? Ace
 

Mcjnic

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That forum member was a long time woodworker from Canada, if I remember right. He had compelling arguments based on the grain and even the smell of cutting the woods. That was the first that I had heard about birch inner plies versus poplar. Wasn't he saying that some outer plies were maple and not mahogany also? I felt like he knew what he was talking about and really changed the thinking. Could someone dredge up that thread? Ace

Here ya go.

 

Powertone

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Interesting, you're probably right. I've never seen a beavertail drum with rerings as long and flat as the ones inside that tom - they're the same length and thickness as the rerings inside of my Jasper-shelled Rogers. I'll take your word for it!
Hi Luke. Years ago I had a red glass 14” beavertail floor Tom that had those wide rings. Don’t know the serial number as it is long gone.

I suspect that since yours is a mahogany finish, and that finish was primarily used for schools, they may have just used a mahogany shell they had available. I am sure they didn’t think or care about the make up of the shell. It was just what they had on hand.

BTW, is your 6.5 mahogany Luxor stamped for NYC Bd of Ed?
 

lcondo123

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Hi Luke. Years ago I had a red glass 14” beavertail floor Tom that had those wide rings. Don’t know the serial number as it is long gone.

I suspect that since yours is a mahogany finish, and that finish was primarily used for schools, they may have just used a mahogany shell they had available. I am sure they didn’t think or care about the make up of the shell. It was just what they had on hand.

BTW, is your 6.5 mahogany Luxor stamped for NYC Bd of Ed?
Thanks Jeff! You make a great point there.
The bass drum has the hand-engraving on it in the picture above, the snare drum did, too, but someone scratched it out before I got my hands on it. The rack tom is not engraved with that.
 

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