those crazy cats from A&F are at it again

owr

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I’ll chime in, just cause for some reason I read this whole thread.

I like what they are doing and would love a field kit. I’ve been deep in a Levon phase these last few years, and appreciate that they’ve gone all the way with it - rather than manyother companies approach of using the same modern shells/hardware + “look ma, wood hoops! We’re vintage!”. The irony of reproducing Levons cheap student model pawn shop drums with something ultra boutique is not lost in me though...

Genuine question - I picked up a few years back a very old single tension ludwig marcher and converted it to a small bass drum. I was shocked how thin the shell was when I got it and how light the whole drum is, and what this did to the tone. My understanding is that the A&F field kits have reproduced this to an extent. Who else is creating a shell this thin these days? This is an honest question, I don’t know.

Lastly, while I like the company/drums and will probably buy a kit once some used ones start hitting the market in the sizes I want, I will give the detractors this. A&F has been marketing themselves as a “luxury drum builder”. That seems to be a first, and they do seem to be owning their high prices and aesthetic as a feature. You can’t really fault folks who that doesn’t sit well with.
 

Carlos McSnurf

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A&F drums are priced to remain in niche. Although I wish all the best to every company which tries to shake the market, I think those guys are taking it wrong way. Their marketing budget, sooner or later, will run out, and we see second hand bargains. But is their sound worth it?
 

Carlos McSnurf

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I like what they are doing and would love a field kit. I’ve been deep in a Levon phase these last few years, and appreciate that they’ve gone all the way with it
Irony is that you can build such kit for a 1/3 price of A&F bass drum.
And it, even with bearing edges modified, will sound better than A&F
 

owr

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Carlos,

please elaborate, and this is a genuine question - how would you go about building your version of a field kit for that price?

I’ve spent years building up a nice matching set of vintage cymbals, buying, selling, trying different combinations. For some reason I still check ebay/reverb everyday for a 24” Rogers bass drum in the finish that matches my kit. All of these things take so much time, which I don’t have slot of anymore, and is more valuable than $.

My point is that piecing together individual vintage drums is not n option for me - when measured in time and $, far more expensive than a new A&F kit.

maybe you had something else in mind? Please share, school me!

Irony is that you can build such kit for a 1/3 price of A&F bass drum.
And it, even with bearing edges modified, will sound better than A&F
 

owr

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That’s a beauty, so you were talking vintage. What size is that bass drum? Did you refinish to match, or just get lucky, or look a long time...

My 16” x 12” marcher looks very similar, is a great little drum, and was also pretty cheap.
 

Joe A

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Restating this for the sake of the length of the thread—my understanding is that they employ drummers in between tours, making this somewhere between a boutique brand and a "good cause".

I've seen better welds and edges on Taiwanese snares, though.

And a lot of the shells are mahogany and poplar—probably my favorite combination, but sold at a hand-rubbed by virgins price (okay, "good cause", so maybe a they-were-caught-out-at-second-base-price).
 

Carlos McSnurf

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That’s a beauty, so you were talking vintage. What size is that bass drum? Did you refinish to match, or just get lucky, or look a long time...

My 16” x 12” marcher looks very similar, is a great little drum, and was also pretty cheap.
All the drums are ludwigs from 1920-30’s era. Bass is pioneer 12x26, bought from DFO member.

Single tensions are ok. I mix the heads if I want little different sounds. Bass is one of the best sounding drums I ever had. All drums are very light, and have a round, warm sound.
Playing Punk or Modern Pop with it would be questionable. That kit is intended for blues and country. And does it very well. Snare is 1950’s 7x14 student radio king
C16B3482-B1E1-4AD9-A1EF-B9296C0EF129.jpeg
 

owr

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Very cool Carlos, thanks for sharing
 

dale w miller

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Maybe you oversee A&F's manufacturing, and this explains why they're stuck in niche land. You spew a lot of words out, none that don't make your initial statements any less hyperbole.

"Not to give you my life’s background, but this story is not about the successful business that I own that’s in operation supporting my family for almost 20 years. It is about a fun side business I started as a creative outlet.

I started an auxiliary percussion company quite a few years back and created my own designs of original products. To mixed reviews I released one product and sold a few prototypes of different products as well.

Regarding the one product that I pushed, my hometown & childhood friend who plays in very big metal band promoted it on his Facebook and Instagram accounts for me."

Etc etc...


Nice tale. I don't take stories on the internet for face value...because everyone has one. What was the name of the company? What were the products? Where was the company based? What was the name of this "big metal band"? Examples of their FB and IG posts? Wheres the patents? CAD examples? Ad examples? Don't take it the wrong way, but I vet such things. For every story told on the internet, the vast majority are just that...stories.

If you're going to sell a story, qualify it.

But, I'll bite. Implying that a A&F $2500 snare might cost them $2200 to make is still ridiculous. Just because your venture failed, don't lump A&F in with your fall. I may not be a big fan of the company, but they're clearly more productive then what you presented.

Margins are margins, and any business can't be profitable long term, with those ones.
How about I take a picture of myself with my friend while holding the product and today’s newspaper?
 

Trilock_Gurtu

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How about I take a picture of myself with my friend while holding the product and today’s newspaper?
You a hostage? No, it wouldn't prove anything. You going out of your way to prove you once owned a failed business isn't going to change the hyperbole of your original statement.

It's probably best you just move on.
 

Mcjnic

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A new metal snare drum ... cost ... $4075.00






Yamaha used gold for their lug plating ... the silver is not a reasonable justification.
So ... one would have to agree that there are indeed high dollar snares out there beyond the A&F brand.
Therefore, A&F is AMONG a group of builders that are putting out drums (individual and kits) that hold prices in the lower end AND in the upper end of the spectrum.
I don't see how that puts them in a single category of being crazy for their pricing structure.
Some kits are below Ludwigs ... some are the same as Ludwigs ... some are above Ludwigs ... most all are well below some of Yamaha's top tier offerings.

I don't comprehend the mental gymnastics displayed here ... but they are indeed fascinating.
 


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