Single flange hoops and tuning

TSDrums

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Hello.

I recently picked up a 110 year anniversary Ludwig Emerald Pearl kit. I have mostly vintage drums, and mostly Ludwigs, and I love the wrap and vintage aesthetic of these kits.

I recently played my first show with it and had spent a fair amount of time tuning the kit, so it would sound good on stage. When I got to the venue, I found that the rack tom was making some very bad "wow" sounds that I really struggled to get rid of. I ended up tuning the top and bottom heads much higher than I usually do, and ultimately used a moon gel on both top and bottom of the rack tom, in order to get rid of the weird noise.When I'd tuned these drums at my rehearsal space, I didn't hear this weird sound at all.

The toms (and snare) use vintage style single flange "stick choppers" for hoops. As the snare has a very unique sound, I'd opted to use my bronze supraphonic for this gig.

The toms have the stock single ply coated Remo heads on the bottoms and on top I've put coated Evans G2's. That is my usual choice for heads, and it works on all of my vintage kits, all with the same sized toms, 13" and 16". My other kits have triple flange rims, however.

I like to tune my toms on the lower end of the scale, in order to get some warm round tones. I'm concerned now about using this kit. I don't want to have to buy brass plated triple flange hoops for the toms in order to get a good sound that I like, but I also don't want to have to tune the toms up to super high jazz pitches, since that's not the sound profile I'm going for.

I'm reaching out to the forums to see if anyone has any tips for tuning single flange drums. I'd rather not have to completely dampen them, but it seems like that might be my only recourse, besides replacing the hoops.

Any suggestions are welcome, thanks!


January-23-2020-Tom-422SM.jpg
 

pwc1141

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Hard to know just what a "wow" sound might be but if moon gel fixed it then it could be a number of things like heads being out of phase with each other, a defective head, one hoop being a little short of round. Or it could be some strange feed back in the venue you played at.
 

Browny

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My Radio King toms have single flange hoops. I’m not sure they’re much more susceptible to tuning ‘wonky-ness’ more than normal triple flange hoops.
I’m don’t know how similar the Ludwig hoops are to the old Slingerland ones. I think maybe they’re a little more flexible/open than triples, but there’s also a bit of weight in them.
It’s also hard to judge in terms of heads, G2s just don’t seat properly on my drums and Emperors are better but still really tight, Classic Fit Ambassadors are the only heads that fit and have a large tuning range.
It might be your rehearsal room has acoustics that lend itself to tuning in a way that isn’t ideal in larger spaces?
Personally I’d try taking the heads back to zero tension, re-seating them and tuning back up. Go in slow increments, alternating between top and bottom, and listen carefully for any hints of those ‘wow’ tones so you can tune to avoid those ranges/intervals.
Of course if that ‘wow’ is a pulsing/oscillating sound then it’s almost certainly the heads fighting each other and you need to change the interval between the heads to eliminate that dissonance.
 

Seb77

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Maybe they just de-tuned on the way?
Lower tunings like thicker heads?

Re: tuning - I have tuned top and bottom heads the same, very close, minor seconds, major secods, thirds you name it, never encountered any wobble like two out-of-tune pitches. A drum is physically a coupled system, you get more or less resonance, but the fundamental is always one resultant frequency of the whole system, a straight pitch. Strange sounds usually come from the batter head overtones.
 

SteveB

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That is a very common occurrence if you tune loosely and all of a sudden you get massive pitch bend on a big stage or different room, even. YES, tension them up a little, preferably with both heads at roughly the same pitch and the pitch bend will go away. This is why I tension all my drums that way for shows. My basement is very different with rugs and all. The hoops have nothing to do with it.
 

thin shell

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I also don't think the problem has anything to do with the single flange hoops unless they are bent or otherwise misshapen.

I find that if I am going to tune low then I need to tension the head much tighter and then back the tension down to where I want it. This seats the head better which is necessary on low tensions. Low tunings are far less forgiving than higher tunings.

You should also take the heads off and place the shell on a perfectly flat surface and make sure your bearing edge is perfectly flat. Again, lower tunings are less forgiving for anything going on with the bearing edge. The head will stretch more at a higher tuning and compensate for a slightly out of flat bearing edge. At lower tunings the head won't stretch enough to conform to the edges and you will get funky problems with the head.
 

JDA

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I would have stuck with the Original heads.
Should have been able to get a Gene Krupa 9 x 13 with calf head type of sound from that 13".
 
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bongomania

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Agreed that while (any kind of) hoops do contribute to the overall sound, they are not likely to have anything to do with the problem OP described.
 

FloydZKing

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Different take based on my experiences with these hoops, in my case a pair of 12" and 14" WorldMax single flange hoops and claws on 4 different sets. Maybe because the claws are separate pieces to the hoops, there is potential for brief decoupling upon striking, particularly at lower tunings. In each case I tried these hoops/clip sets on toms that previously had tri-flange hoops. The lower tuning range was bigger and stronger with the tri-flange hoops each time. With these single-flanged hoops, the drums in question wanted higher tunings as a result.
 

Browny

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Different take based on my experiences with these hoops, in my case a pair of 12" and 14" WorldMax single flange hoops and claws on 4 different sets. Maybe because the claws are separate pieces to the hoops, there is potential for brief decoupling upon striking, particularly at lower tunings. In each case I tried these hoops/clip sets on toms that previously had tri-flange hoops. The lower tuning range was bigger and stronger with the tri-flange hoops each time. With these single-flanged hoops, the drums in question wanted higher tunings as a result.
Maybe if there's uneven tension at the rods? Or if you're rimshotting the toms? I can get my 16" RK tom down bloody low, just a coated amb on it, to the point where there's hardly any resistance at all on the rods, pretty much finger tight, and they'll still tune clearly and resonate. Then again, the heads are sitting on baseball bat edges and even classic fit heads are snug so that might neutralise any post-strike movement of the head & hoop
 


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