Setup - Ease and Tricks?

paul

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Nobody wants to hear this, but my Gibraltar rack saves me a lot of time, even though I remove everything but memory locks and tube clamps when I pack.
Everything is memory locked, and there are toppers on all 5 cymbals. Cymbal and tom mounts are numbered and marked with id numbers and pointers to each one's mem loc. I can get my entire six piece with rug and music stand on my RnR cart in one trip if I need to, but usually take two.

Generally, don't break anything down if you don't have to. I do so because it all packs better, and I don't mind the extra time. I calculated recently that I've setup this kit more than a thousand times over 20 years, and I'm always looking for ways big and small to save time and effort. You will do the same, I'm sure.
 

backtodrum

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I have set my kit up the same way for the last eight years or so. We have gone to all digital mixer and sound and in ear monitors. I mic my kit the same way each time, so for ease of operation I have created a drum snake that has my mic cords all ran accordingly and my effects drum pad and monitor cords all ran in a neat snake that is shrink wrapped and custom fit for my kit. I just pull it out, plug in and play. It has saved considerable time in set up and tear down and it works like a dream. I purchased all high quality XLR cords and cut them down to custom fit. It has been really reliable and easy to set up as well as tidy because everything is custom fitted. I don't know why I didn't do this years ago.
 

cribbon

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I have set my kit up the same way for the last eight years or so. We have gone to all digital mixer and sound and in ear monitors. I mic my kit the same way each time, so for ease of operation I have created a drum snake that has my mic cords all ran accordingly and my effects drum pad and monitor cords all ran in a neat snake that is shrink wrapped and custom fit for my kit. I just pull it out, plug in and play. It has saved considerable time in set up and tear down and it works like a dream. I purchased all high quality XLR cords and cut them down to custom fit. It has been really reliable and easy to set up as well as tidy because everything is custom fitted. I don't know why I didn't do this years ago.
Sounds interesting. Pix?
 

bigbeat

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In addition to a Rock-n-Roller cart, I use a tall upright trap bag that allows me to keep all my stands intact and at the correct heights. Huge timesaver. I have a Gator GP-DRUMCART (two of them, actually), so no more bending over to pull out stands. The wheels are a godsend. One trip for the R&R cart; one more for the hardware bag.
I use the same Gator hardware cart as you, for the same reason. These have been around for many years. I clicked on your Sweetwater link, and was shocked that these were $279.99! They are essentially a soft bag fastened to an upright lightweight 2 wheeled hand truck. Nothing in their construction, materials, or design warrants that price.
 

cruddola

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Almost every gigging drummer I know are cheapskates and tightwads when it comes to protective gear. A 500 dollar snare drum in a stinking pillowcase is a one-dollar drum. Get your kit in road-cases! Everything in the exact place every time. Get a Magliner instead of a POS Rock 'n Roller Chinese junk. A 4-piece kit, a ride, a crash, hats is all you really need. So much can be done with just this setup. If Buddy can do it so can you. When you become a Buddy you can add a second floor tom to hold your towel and drink. Your largest road-case should have at least 3-inch casters or bigger. Two hand-grips on each side of the biggest cases. Hinged lids on all cases. Can't lose a lid that way. The bigger the casters the easier they'll roll on asphalt. My bass drum case has a divider for my cymbals and spare batter heads on opposite sides that balance the whole case. My snare and rack tom share the same case. My floor tom shares a cymbal stand in each of four triangular corner dividers. It too is on casters as it's the same size of the bass drum case. My throne, pedals, sticks. etc. are in a case the same size as my snare and rack tom case. Both of those cases have two hand grips on opposite sides. Another case the same size as the snare and rack tom case had spare batter heads for every drum, spare pedals, spare bottom of my hat stand and spare snare drum. No top handles on anything. I can set the above up in less than five minutes. Did so for decades. Then when you are rolling in the dough you can get a roadie. Just like a NASCAR crew member, practice setting up and striking down your kit. Remember, drummers acknowledge that their instrument of choice comes in a lotta pieces, so embrace the suck!
 

Radio King

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I use the same Gator hardware cart as you, for the same reason. These have been around for many years. I clicked on your Sweetwater link, and was shocked that these were $279.99! They are essentially a soft bag fastened to an upright lightweight 2 wheeled hand truck. Nothing in their construction, materials, or design warrants that price.
I was too! I bought my first one for $100 used, and got a new one soon after for around $200. They're great, but $280 + tax is stretching it.

There's a used one on my local CL for $80. It's a RockBag by Warwick, but looks to be the same as the Gator. Maybe I should grab it..?
 

cruddola

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Nobody wants to hear this, but my Gibraltar rack saves me a lot of time, even though I remove everything but memory locks and tube clamps when I pack.
Everything is memory locked, and there are toppers on all 5 cymbals. Cymbal and tom mounts are numbered and marked with id numbers and pointers to each one's mem loc. I can get my entire six piece with rug and music stand on my RnR cart in one trip if I need to, but usually take two.

Generally, don't break anything down if you don't have to. I do so because it all packs better, and I don't mind the extra time. I calculated recently that I've setup this kit more than a thousand times over 20 years, and I'm always looking for ways big and small to save time and effort. You will do the same, I'm sure.
This was my Recording Custom toms with Acro snare and 1982 Imperialstar bass drum then setup on the last band I toured Europe with. 42 dates over 118 days. Mexico, Central and South America was 112 dates over 322 days. America and Canada 23 dates over 54 days. My sister was my roadie and she could put this up in less than 30 minutes from case to stage. Not a single tweak had to be made. Perfection every time. Stage to case in less than 15 minutes. Took me an hour the last time. Everything in six road cases. She was my roadie and drum tech for almost 22 years. She got half my pay and was worth every penny. It is the exact setup but with YMCA's I'll be putting up in my living room once this CoVid-delayed home re-hab is completed.
 

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Hemant

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I don't gig regularly anymore - but by the time I stopped in my 40s -- I had it down to a science. My profile pic was my last regular gig kit. 20/12/14 + 14 snare --Gretsch USA Custom. 20" in Beato Bass Drum Bag (which has an exterior pocket that can hold a full set of extra heads), 12/14/snare in a Beato triple tom bag. (3) Gibraltar lightweight boom/straight cymbal stands, Heavy duty snare stand, Tama Iron Cobra pedal, Matching Hi-Hat & 1st chair throne, drum rug, stick bag in rolling Gator Hardware bag - no height breakdown - just folded the bases. I can't use the light weight snare and hi-hat stands - wobble too much for my liking. Cymbal Bag. Rock-n-Roller cart. In my truck under the crew cab back-seat - extra BD pedal and emergency parts kit. Rarely brought my mic kit as those gigs that required one had sound company. I could go from truck to set up in 20 minutes.

I used to do the full rack and multiple tom thing - but as I got older -- the gig kit became smaller and lighter.

If I could go back in time, I think the perfect gig rig for me would have been a Blaemire thicker shelled fiberglass shelled kit drilled for the old MayEA micing system 22/12/14 + snare standard sizes. The idea of simply running an XLR right into the drums is so cool. That could cover just about every gig I ever played and I could leave it in the garage all year round. I had a Tempus kit in those sizes but were so thin and light -- I don't think they could have supported a MayEA system -- but the upside was that I could just chuck them in the garage in all seasons, and they were element proof for outdoor gigs.
 

slcdrummer

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One thing that helps me move quicker is the order. I use a rock n roller and get my four piece bop kit in the door in one trip and the first thing I set up is my throne. Second I put the bass drum down on the rug and then third set up all the hardware at once, from the chair without standing up. The key for me is not having to move around or make trips back and forth (not always possible depending on venue.) Toms and snare go up and then cymbals. I think it all takes about 10 minutes if you hustle.
 

jmato

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You folks with your 10-15 mins setup amaze me. A ton of good suggestions here. I will try to implement and report back, after I have a free weekend day to do the necessary work to shorten future setups.

Thank you all, and please do keep the suggestions coming.
 

Carlos McSnurf

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One thing that helps me move quicker is the order. I use a rock n roller and get my four piece bop kit in the door in one trip and the first thing I set up is my throne. Second I put the bass drum down on the rug and then third set up all the hardware at once, from the chair without standing up. The key for me is not having to move around or make trips back and forth (not always possible depending on venue.) Toms and snare go up and then cymbals. I think it all takes about 10 minutes if you hustle.
Very Good point on ergonomics. I unload the bass from its case first and then the case is used as assembly table for everything else. Same in reverse after gig. Bass goes back last.
 

bassanddrum84

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Memory locks, flight case. I load in two cases that’s everything. Rug, cables, drums, fan etc two cases. All
My stands stay together and just fold up and in to the case not thing I have to do is yank them out and set them up. I could get down to one case but it would be insanely heavy.
 

karlcrafton

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I've tried to make everything as easy and hassle free as possible.
I have all my stands set to where I only need to fold up the legs & put them in the hardware case.
All stands are memory locked for height, & the hardware case is long enough to fit the tallest stand.
The legs on the floor toms are memory locked.
My rug fits my whole kit, and it is marked for all drum and stand legs.
The bass drum spurs have small rubber notched pieces attached to the rug, so they are always in the same spot and never move.
 

stick2it

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Can anyone tell me which model Rock N Roller you use for a bop kit? Is it the R2RT? How do you load/stack the card (I have 18/12/14/sn + hardware bag with DW Ultralight + cymbal bag). Are you able to use if for most of your gigs, or does it just complicate things if you hit stairs or tight spaces? Guidance welcomed,
 

slcdrummer

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Can anyone tell me which model Rock N Roller you use for a bop kit? Is it the R2RT? How do you load/stack the card (I have 18/12/14/sn + hardware bag with DW Ultralight + cymbal bag). Are you able to use if for most of your gigs, or does it just complicate things if you hit stairs or tight spaces? Guidance welcomed,

Hey Stick2it,

I use the rock n roller RT-6 and all protection racket soft cases. I put the hardware bag perpendicular to the cart over the back wheels, bass drum in front of that, and cymbal bag squeezed between bass drum and front handle. Stack floor Tom on the hardware bag and snare then rack Tom on the bass drum. Maybe throw a music stand or throne on top. Where I live I have never had the drums fall off even in the maybe thousand times I’ve used the cart but if you have cobblestone streets or a lot of uneven sidewalks you might need to use bungies so it doesn’t fall off. Stairs are a deal breaker. I just move it all up or down and re-load the cart but if your back is ok you can maybe lift it over curbs, 1-2 steps, etc. Just my two cents!
 

stick2it

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Thanks slcdrummer -- very helpful. I've drawn a section replicating your set-up so I can visualize it. Did you consider the lighter R2 or did you think the more robust R6 was necessary (for a bop kit with lightweight hardware)? Don't want to overbuy the heavier R6 if I don't need it.
 

bigbeat

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I was too! I bought my first one for $100 used, and got a new one soon after for around $200. They're great, but $280 + tax is stretching it.

There's a used one on my local CL for $80. It's a RockBag by Warwick, but looks to be the same as the Gator. Maybe I should grab it..?
The Warwick is the same thing. Get it!
 

slcdrummer

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Thanks slcdrummer -- very helpful. I've drawn a section replicating your set-up so I can visualize it. Did you consider the lighter R2 or did you think the more robust R6 was necessary (for a bop kit with lightweight hardware)? Don't want to overbuy the heavier R6 if I don't need it.

I’m not sure really! A friend of mine had the RT6 and I bought it based on seeing theirs. It handles my bop setup and heavier setups great, but my bop set up as I described it maxes out the space. I’m not sure if the R2 is smaller or just lighter. If it’s the same size it might work great!
 


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