Thoughts on Craviotto kits

KingLudwig

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I’ve been toying with the idea of ordering a Craviotto private reserve curly maple kit 22/13/16/14. I known it’s a lot of money but does anyone own any Craviotto and what are your thoughts. This might just be a fantasy of mine, not sure. What do you think?

GO FOR IT FRANK!!! Ya only live once.
 

owr

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I have a 10/12/14/20 Maple kit. Picked it up used, spent about as much as a lot of folks spend on a new USA custom. You don't need to spend $10k on an exotic finish (mine is a wrap from the early days). For me it came down to a number of things. First off, I could afford it, second, Id rather own a few high end sets than many mid level. At this point in my life its quality over quantity. Third, I do spend too much time thinking about/looking at gear instead of practicing or listening to music. So it was a way of gaming myself, if I bought something from the top of the stack, I wouldn't need to worry about getting something "nicer". It worked to a degree, I didn't lust after a new kit for 6-7 years after. Fourth, I live close to the original shop, so there was a bit of home town pride in getting a kit. Fifth and most important, to JDAs point but counter to JDAs point ;), these are the drums I hear in my head. I never saw Gen Krupa, or even Elvin sadly. Of course I've listened to tons of recordings but the sound/feel of instruments that Iget to be in the same room with will always trump a recording for me. My local jazz club has a Craviotto house kit, so I've heard it a 100 times from dozens of different drummers. It is the sound in my head more than anything else, there is no drum kit other than one Ive owned and played that I have heard more, by a mile.

To the OP, if you can afford a kit without it hurting you and your family financially, and out of all the boutique high-end kits its what you want, then go for it. If you get anything else you'll always be wondering. I'm sure the Summits sound great, but if you want a Craviotto, you'll never be satisfied. I think they sound and play different than anything else I've had (different, not better). I recently picked up a Sugar Percussion kit for many of the reasons discussed above (and I wanted a big size kit). I did pay full new price for these, but it's something I saved for and am able to handle. I think they are just as nice if not nicer than the Craviotto's, but I'm happy I have both because they are very different. I also have an old 60s Rogers kit that I enjoy playing just as much as the newer boutique kits, so its possible to be fully content with "less".
 

What It Is

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hsosdrum

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what can be played on these drums that can't be played on other drums



you see Hoss I don't "get" that. Especially the last five words.

meaning or I'm asking
Does it make you play different? Is it an Inspiration thing.
Are "you" not inspired (sufficiently by what "you" (anyone on this thread) play now..

(and by "you" I don't mean anyone in particular by "you" I mean "us" in general/)

I think I'm already (and have been) at "peak inspiration" (with the drums I "choose") and don't see any ways above it..
and I'm fine with that. 100%. At least the drums.

am I stuck in a very.....long rut.. I don't think so +/- : ) (lol)
" I don't want to be pulled out!"
lol (and that (Crav) ain't gonna make me! (lol)
I'm talking strictly about how they sound at my ear, Joe, not how they inspire me to play. The two or three Craviotto kits that I've played and heard played at NAMM shows (admittedly for short periods of time before the NAMM cops came around with their dB meters) have had a familial sound, even though one was maple, one was cherry and one was walnut. They were all fitted with Fiberskyn heads, which accounts for much of the similarity, but I've been doing this playing drums thing for long enough that I can tell what the head contributes to the sound (especially since I've been using Fiberskyns for decades and know them extremely well) and what the drum contributes to the sound. And the Craviottos all sound like they're in the same close-knit family, and most importantly, they do not sound like any other drums.

Whether or not Drummer XYZ would find this sonic difference inspiring enough to make it worth the considerable investment is up to Drummer XYZ. I can tell you that Drummer Hsos (or Drummer Hoss) definitely finds this sonic difference inspiring enough that if I had that much disposable income (this is where winning the lottery comes in, because absent that I've no chance of ever having that much disposable income) I'd feel very good indeed about investing it in a Craviotto instrument.
 
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wayne

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I have a 10/12/14/20 Maple kit. Picked it up used, spent about as much as a lot of folks spend on a new USA custom. You don't need to spend $10k on an exotic finish (mine is a wrap from the early days). For me it came down to a number of things. First off, I could afford it, second, Id rather own a few high end sets than many mid level. At this point in my life its quality over quantity. Third, I do spend too much time thinking about/looking at gear instead of practicing or listening to music. So it was a way of gaming myself, if I bought something from the top of the stack, I wouldn't need to worry about getting something "nicer". It worked to a degree, I didn't lust after a new kit for 6-7 years after. Fourth, I live close to the original shop, so there was a bit of home town pride in getting a kit. Fifth and most important, to JDAs point but counter to JDAs point ;), these are the drums I hear in my head. I never saw Gen Krupa, or even Elvin sadly. Of course I've listened to tons of recordings but the sound/feel of instruments that Iget to be in the same room with will always trump a recording for me. My local jazz club has a Craviotto house kit, so I've heard it a 100 times from dozens of different drummers. It is the sound in my head more than anything else, there is no drum kit other than one Ive owned and played that I have heard more, by a mile.

To the OP, if you can afford a kit without it hurting you and your family financially, and out of all the boutique high-end kits its what you want, then go for it. If you get anything else you'll always be wondering. I'm sure the Summits sound great, but if you want a Craviotto, you'll never be satisfied. I think they sound and play different than anything else I've had (different, not better). I recently picked up a Sugar Percussion kit for many of the reasons discussed above (and I wanted a big size kit). I did pay full new price for these, but it's something I saved for and am able to handle. I think they are just as nice if not nicer than the Craviotto's, but I'm happy I have both because they are very different. I also have an old 60s Rogers kit that I enjoy playing just as much as the newer boutique kits, so its possible to be fully content with "less".
"If you get anything else, you'll always be wondering"

That stops a lot of players from guessing. Good point
 

FrankF

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Ha! Love mine! I went big with my 24/13/16 with matching 14x7 snare. Sure I get JDA’s comment as they truly are works of art. Great drums. This is my third kit. My first was a mahogany 22/13/16 and then the same sizes in curly maple which Rob (Treviso1) picked up from me. I got rid of the other two because I got tired of band mates accidentally bumping into them. I know stupid.
I’m big believer in gigging with all my kits. If I’m not playing the kits out, they’re gone. These drums really love coated Ambassador’s with a PS3 on the bass drum. They have a beautiful warmness to them from behind the kit.
I’ve told my wife to commit me to loony bin if I mention selling these.

View attachment 523685
Dan that is a great looking kit!!
Ha! Love mine! I went big with my 24/13/16 with matching 14x7 snare. Sure I get JDA’s comment as they truly are works of art. Great drums. This is my third kit. My first was a mahogany 22/13/16 and then the same sizes in curly maple which Rob (Treviso1) picked up from me. I got rid of the other two because I got tired of band mates accidentally bumping into them. I know stupid.
I’m big believer in gigging with all my kits. If I’m not playing the kits out, they’re gone. These drums really love coated Ambassador’s with a PS3 on the bass drum. They have a beautiful warmness to them from behind the kit.
I’ve told my wife to commit me to loony bin if I mention selling these.

View attachment 523685
love the kit. The one I’m thinking about is the curly maple with a 22 bd. My problem is I own too many kits now two DW kits, one Gretsch Broadkaster, a 1964 Ludwig. But, the Craviottos are fantastic.
 

little rock

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Joe, I agree with everything you said. I have a 120th Anniversary Gretsch kit and a USA Custom five piece bop kit which I bought used in pristine condition. I am perfectly content and satisfied with these and long for nothing else. However, if I was younger and still gigging I might try to swing a set. I know they are really nice and I congratulate anyone who has the good fortune to own one or more of them.
 

itsjjp

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Outstanding drums but overpriced imo. I can think of multiple ways to get a comparable kit with money left for some outstanding cymbals, hardware and perhaps even a new mic kit or monitor or something.
 

FrankF

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I own one (actually 2) Cherry kits. Both were bought used: 13-16-24 and 12-14-20 plus a 5.5x14 snare. Sequential numbers. I have gigged with the snare but thus far I've kept the kits at home.

They're definitely special (to me) but I also have some great Gretsch, Ludwig and Sonor drums that I feel just as strongly about. Each has their own vibe and feel. It has been my experience, though, that solid shell drums are more sensitive to temp and humidity changes than those with ply shells. Add calfskin heads to those and things get really fun!

I'd say that if it's one of your "bucket list" items and you can afford it.....why not?
Butch, what made you choose the cherry? I’ve listened to the demos on Memphis drums site and dealt that the reserved curly maple sounded best to my liking. What are your thoughts on the comparison
 

Slingwig26

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Thoughts? My thoughts are...if you got the money and want the kit, buy it! They are way too expensive for me and I wouldn't have a need for them unless I became Neil Youngs touring drummer.
But for you??? If you really want it, and don't have a wife that wants 2 handbags for $8,000.00?, buy it and enjoy it and don't think twice.
 

Butch1970

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Butch, what made you choose the cherry? I’ve listened to the demos on Memphis drums site and dealt that the reserved curly maple sounded best to my liking. What are your thoughts on the comparison
The first Cherry kit was more about opportunity and the fact that I was playing more “rock” sizes at that point. The 2nd kit was also about opportunity, I guess, one day hoping to find a more “Jazz” sized kit from the same run and one of Steve Maxwell’s customers deciding to liquidate it from his large collection. REALLY I would’ve loved to have found a Mahogany kit to go with the old Crav snare that I have.

My story probably doesn’t help you much….I was happy to go with different wood from what I already had (maple or maple blend)….but I see nothing wrong going with the kit you have your sights set on. It’s a safe choice and will certainly sound great!
 

cochlea

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But for you??? If you really want it, and don't have a wife that wants 2 handbags for $8,000.00?, buy it and enjoy it and don't think twice.
If my wife said those handbags were once owned by Ringo and Bonham, I'd be okay with it.

If you really want a Craviotto kit and can afford it, then by all means go for it and don't look back.
 
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Monday317

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I’ve been toying with the idea of ordering a Craviotto private reserve curly maple kit 22/13/16/14. I known it’s a lot of money but does anyone own any Craviotto and what are your thoughts. This might just be a fantasy of mine, not sure. What do you think?
If you can afford it, go for it; who needs two kidneys anyway? Never heard anything bad about Craviotto except you can’t pick up any of their stuff at Walmart…
 

JDA

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I question/ am not sure/ not entirely convinced the Concept of an entire solid shell set is sonically desirable
(nothing to do with the money)
I hear a set of (what I inflammatorily call ) wood blocks/ (being serious) mono-tonal.
 
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Houndog

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I question/ am not sure/ not entirely convinced the Concept of an entire solid shell set is sonically desirable
(nothing to do with the money)
I hear a set of (what I called) wood blocks/ mono-tonal.
You ever heard one in person ?
Ever played a kit ?
 

JDA

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nope nope just questioning
it's a legitimate question
(just soundfiles)
 
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Genr

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I own 6 kits that I am very happy with:

DW Collectors Series
Vintage Rogers (1963 Cleveland tags)
Gretch (1985 USA Custom before they were called that)
Gretsch BroadKaster bop kit
Yamaha Absolute Birch
Allegra with maple hoops

Each of these kit are of the highest quality, sound wonderful, and it there's ever an issue with them it's likely my tuning.

That said, I was in Maxwell's, years ago with my friends Mike (drummer5359), as he mentioned previously in this thread. They had many great Craviotto kits there. For me/us the cream of the crop was a Walnut bop kit with maple hoops. I couldn't stop playing it. It's a decade later and we still talk about how blown away we were by that kit.

Whatever kit I own/use, I still play like me, the kit doesn't make me a better drummer (but a deficient kit can make you a worse drummer IMHO). BUT, if you go for a Craviotto kit, I will dare to say you will never be disappointed by their sound, unless you, like me, sabotage yourself with deficient tuning on occasion.
 


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