WFL Wood Shell 5 x 14 ??

baz1949

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Quite a few years ago when vintage drums were reasonably cheap to buy I bought a 6 lug 5 x 14 WFL SD from the States. The previous owner had painted it blue, yes I know. All the fittings were nickel plated, WFL Throw off and Butt Plate Hoops, it is a Mahogany/Poplar Shell but I cannot find any reference to such a drum in the Rob Cook Ludwig Book. The nearest drum I can find is a Pioneer which would make it a Ludwig drum Unfortunately I have only just discovered this I cannot send any photos as after taking all the paint off and sanding it down I have sent it away to be re-wrapped in Oyster Pearl

Have any of you guys got a similar SD or have I been well and truly shafted and should it be correctly labelled as a Ludwig Pioneer drum

As always I really appreciate your input, it all adds to my knowledge

Thanks Barry

PS You're never too old to learn and pass on
 

K.O.

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Sounds like a Pioneer, pictures would help.WFL bought the Ludwig trademark in 1955 and changed the name of the company almost immediatly but the transition of the drum brand from WFL to Ludwig took a couple of years. I don't have my resources handy at the moment to check catalogs but it sounds like you have the drum that was WFL's version of the Pioneer but perhaps was called something else. "Pioneer" was a name used by Ludwig and Ludwig on some earlier snare models and the name probably was part of the 1955 purchase.
 

baz1949

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Sounds like a Pioneer, pictures would help.WFL bought the Ludwig trademark in 1955 and changed the name of the company almost immediatly but the transition of the drum brand from WFL to Ludwig took a couple of years. I don't have my resources handy at the moment to check catalogs but it sounds like you have the drum that was WFL's version of the Pioneer but perhaps was called something else. "Pioneer" was a name used by Ludwig and Ludwig on some earlier snare models and the name probably was part of the 1955 purchase.
Thanks for that Kevin, it all seem legit apart from me not knowing the original finish. It had been stripped and painted Blue. I will provide photos once it has been recovered Barry
 

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when you look in in there, (not assuming it's all-inclusive but)

Let's say "WFL" started in 1937 and went to ....
I didn't see any 6 lug 5X14 wood snares in the shown WFL catalogs.

Now - the 491 appears- in the 1957



(above the 490 is the 491 listed )
That catalog is titled "Ludwig & Ludwig" snare drums.
WFL badges are seen all-around.

So lemme take a stab at that; --- "WFL" From 1937 to 1958/9

how's that sound
(love my 2 490's btw!
one more than the other!

www.vintagedrumguide,com
and
www.drumarchive,com
the most used popular vintage drum catalog resources
@baz1949
 
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K.O.

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What does the badge say on it?
Is it WFL, Chicago, IL or WFL, Ludwig Drum Co, Chicago? The second is the initial "transition" badge from 1957.
 

K.O.

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Thanks for that Kevin, it all seem legit apart from me not knowing the original finish. It had been stripped and painted Blue. I will provide photos once it has been recovered Barry
It looks like the 6 lug 14" drums probably came with a natural mahogany finish. If that is the case then it will probably be problematic to add wrap to it. The drums of that era were molded with the wrap already on them. The painted and natural finish drums ended up with the same outside diameter as the wrapped drums. Therefore, if you wrap one of these natural drums it typically makes them oversized and heads won't fit. Something to be aware of.

These snare drums were sometimes sold in a kit called the "Drummer Boy" outfit which was a very early version of the later UFO case type student kits. It was a beginners set packaged in a cardboard case. It's in the 1957 catalog about halfway in. At that time it was the Ludwig Drum Co. but they were still marketing the drums under the WFL brand.
 

DrFrankCoco

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Mine is a October 58 vintage. I'm having a bit of a unsatisfactory issue with snare sensitivity. Ambassador batter, diplomat snare side and tama bronze wires.
 

baz1949

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It looks like the 6 lug 14" drums probably came with a natural mahogany finish. If that is the case then it will probably be problematic to add wrap to it. The drums of that era were molded with the wrap already on them. The painted and natural finish drums ended up with the same outside diameter as the wrapped drums. Therefore, if you wrap one of these natural drums it typically makes them oversized and heads won't fit. Something to be aware of.

These snare drums were sometimes sold in a kit called the "Drummer Boy" outfit which was a very early version of the later UFO case type student kits. It was a beginners set packaged in a cardboard case. It's in the 1957 catalog about halfway in. At that time it was the Ludwig Drum Co. but they were still marketing the drums under the WFL brand.
Thanks for this great info, much appreciated
 

JDA

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what's the blow up part number on the snare in that ad which I can't enlarge w/o trouble.
491?
yeah ok went thru the trouble It's still a 491
 
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JDA

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same as in the VDG catalog pic I linked..
But a more specific Ad and very Groovy K.O.
Isn't/wasn't/ she sweet.
 

JDA

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"ok I didn't mean it !" (lol
oh Brooke?... was a Man Killer wow
Bill 3 older sister - older right.
Brooke Ludwig Crowden.
 

K.O.

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"ok I didn't mean it !" (lol
oh Brooke?... was a Man Killer wow
Bill 3 older sister - older right.
Brooke Ludwig Crowden.
Yes, older half-sister to WFL III. She was 7 when WFL II married Maggie (although he did adopt her) and B3 came a bit later. WFL II shows that picture of her posing with the Drummer Boy kit in his autobiography. Later she got to meet Ringo and the boys when II handed Ringo his golden snare.

gold snare.jpg
 

K.O.

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Funny that the 6 lug model is the "Supreme" and the 8 lug model is the "Contest". Kind of bass ackwards. By that logic would a 10 lug version have been called the Ludwig "Adequate" snare?
 


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