Vintage Mystery Gretsch rewrap?

Forrest89

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Hey y'all, I'm curious if anyone has any knowledge on vintage Gretsch drums, particularly if these serial numbers mean anything?! I've done my research and learned a whole lot of nothing about these drums. I picked them up in a garage sale but was suspicious about the stop-sign badges considering it was a rewrap, but it sounded pretty good and the price was right. Wondering if anyone could help?

It's technically a 4 piece but the 10" power tom wasn't fully wrapped, the rest is a 20,12,14. No floor tom legs so it must've been a hanging tom that had the hole's plugged up. The bass drum must've come from the 80's or 90's(Maybe the 00's?) considering its a deeper depth and the rack toms are deeper depths as well.

Thanks!
 

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KCDrumDad

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At one time, people disregarded Gretsch serial numbers and did not consider them to be helpful for dating the drums. In more recent years, it is clear to many that serial numbers can be used along with other physical characteristics of the drums to estimate manufacture dates. The two serial numbers pictured that I can read (28223 and 28233) and the way the model numbers are written on the labels indicate that these two labels would have been on drums from the 1973-1974 time frame. Note that Gretsch experienced two fires in their Arkansas manufacturing facilities in 1973, which likely disrupted production a bit, so the date estimates are a little loose and just that - estimates.
 

KCDrumDad

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The placement of the labels relative to the vent holes is very unusual, as they are almost always 180 degrees from the badge, not on the same panel. Your drums appear to have been modified in multiple ways, so it is difficult to determine if the labels themselves left the factory attached to those particular shells.
 

ThomasL

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As far as I know, Gretsch did not make that deep drums in 1973-74, and also the model numbers do not match the sizes: 4249 should be 14x20" bass drum, 4415 8x12" tom. If they originally came with RIMS-mounts, they should be mid-80s or later?
 

Forrest89

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The placement of the labels relative to the vent holes is very unusual, as they are almost always 180 degrees from the badge, not on the same panel. Your drums appear to have been modified in multiple ways, so it is difficult to determine if the labels themselves left the factory attached to those particular shells.
I think the badges were bought separately and added after the rewrap, so who knows? I’m glad everyone is confused as I am.
 

Forrest89

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As far as I know, Gretsch did not make that deep drums in 1973-74, and also the model numbers do not match the sizes: 4249 should be 14x20" bass drum, 4415 8x12" tom. If they originally came with RIMS-mounts, they should be mid-80s or later?
The 4249 was from the 12” Tom and 4415 from the floor tom, there’s no internal sticker on the bass drum. For a while I was wondering if the toms were bought separately than the kick and it was frankensteined together.
 

Forrest89

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At one time, people disregarded Gretsch serial numbers and did not consider them to be helpful for dating the drums. In more recent years, it is clear to many that serial numbers can be used along with other physical characteristics of the drums to estimate manufacture dates. The two serial numbers pictured that I can read (28223 and 28233) and the way the model numbers are written on the labels indicate that these two labels would have been on drums from the 1973-1974 time frame. Note that Gretsch experienced two fires in their Arkansas manufacturing facilities in 1973, which likely disrupted production a bit, so the date estimates are a little loose and just that - estimates.
Interesting, I was wondering if the toms were older since modern heads feel a bit more snug. I feel like this kit was frankensteined together with the 10(not pictured), 12, & 14 coming from one kit and the kick was added from a later era.
 

retrosonic

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Yes, it seems to me that someone had access to all kinds of oddball parts, badges etc, and simply made a playable set...nothing wrong with that, but its certainly a mystery.
 

Forrest89

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Yes, it seems to me that someone had access to all kinds of oddball parts, badges etc, and simply made a playable set...nothing wrong with that, but its certainly a mystery.
Totally, I’ve been trying to sell it and I’ve been getting all of the questions I don’t have any answers to. I feel like someone will eventually bite, it sounds pretty good but it’s a project I thought I would have more time and money on, and since all gigs stopped I’ve had the time, but not the money.
 


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