What’s your best score?

Lazmo

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Searching through a pile of rubbish cymbals at a local music shop, I found a pair of New Beat hats. The Zildjian stamp was very faint and the New Beat ink was too. I tentatively asked how much, the guy said $60, and I internally smiled. Played them ever since, tonight in fact.
 

BBeyer

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I scored this Ludwig concert tom kit for 250.00 at a Sam ash store on Long Island, in the early 2000’s.
It came with a birch premier snare with parallel action.
I “think” that perhapsthe employee that sold them to me made a mistake and probably got in a bit of trouble.. because the price tag was merely a plastic stand with the price on it, and it didn’t say Ludwig on it.. the generic MIJ kit stacked up next to it said “Ludwig” and they wanted much more for it.
later on I added a few more toms and converted them to have resonant heads
 

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thejohnlec

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A few other deals....

1913-1920 Zildjian K Constantinople 10" splash $5.39: Thrift Store

NYC Bd of Ed 6.5x14 Acrolite with factory Imperial lugs (1 of 7 known) $300: Craigslist

1964 Ludwig Downbeat with Supraphonic, ALL ORIGINAL INCLUDING HEADS. All stands, Speed King, bags, 60's Zildjian Hats and 18 inch ride, 15" UFIP Crash. $300: Craigslist

20" A Custom China in mint condition $60: Facebook Marketplace

DW Collectors black Nickel over Brass 14"x 5" and DW heavy Duty 9000 series snare stand $250: Facebook Marketplace

1969 Ludwig Acrolite and a bunch of stands $30: Facebook Marketplace

and a few dozen more......
Sheesh, I gotta hang with you - these are amazing scores.
 

carmine strollo

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Best score would have to be...a friend who worked at a music store in Baltimore called me and said he had a snare come in that I should look at. It was in a hard case with a rope handle. A woman had sold it saying it was her husband's who had passed and it was in the attic gathering dust. I opened the case and it was a heavy heavy 5x14 with the words Super Ludwig on the rims. The rims and lugs were brass with claw hooks. It had etching on the side all the way around. I asked his price and he said $125.00.

When I got it home, I cleaned it up piece by piece. It had a supersensitive strainer...oh did I tell you it was black? I had no idea what it was so I took a picture and sent it to Ludwig. 3 weeks later I received a copy of a catalog from 1929. In the catalog they circled the drum (a concert Black Beauty Super Ludwig orchestral snare) which in 1929 sold for $82.50...

I ended up selling it to a collector in New York...$1200.00
 

itsjjp

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I have 2. First was the best, '54 set of Slingerland Radio King drums in red sparkle. Single-ply standard size snare, 13-16-20, with 16in A. Zildjian crash with a small edge crack that I cut down to 15in, 14in K Zildjian hats, 20in K Zildjian ride, crashable. Kick had some uneven fading and hardware was a bit pitted, but wrap was tight and drums nice and round. Original calfskin head on kick in usable condition, on batter side even. Ok so I did some video production work for a HS radio and TV teacher, mainly taping dance shows, all clean stuff, and some ice shows. He was light on money and asked if I'd work for the old Slingerland set. I did about $250 worth of work for all of it. Sold it all later on for around $4500. Deal 2 was a set of MIJ Tama Superstars in standard depths, Super Mahogany finish, 8-10-12-13-14-16-22, maybe 24, I forget. 8 and 10 were add on, a couple years newer, whole thing for $600 with a good hat stand. Tripled my money on that rig. I did play both for a while. Both were great.
 

miracle419

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A small shop in town had a brand new 17" Zildjian Sound Lab Prototype with K stamp, over hammered as hell, on the wall. Hit it with a stick and it was heavenly. Flipped it over, $75. I had one of those moments where I was looking over my shoulder like someone who was shoplifting; felt like I was getting away with something just being there. Next to it...a 15" Istanbul K with intact signature, sounded like trash, but we all know collectors pay out the nose for them... $60. Needles to say I walked out of there with both of them.
 

Carlos McSnurf

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zildjian K stamp IIa 18”. Bought for peanuts, sold ten times more.

My best score in category of drums is getting Ludwig 16x18 psychedelic red floor tom the week after buying ludwig psychedelic Hollywood outfit.
Both in zero fade condition, from similar era at reasonable prices
 

Corbin L Douthitt

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What’s the best deal you ever scored, on accident or purpose?

I’d say mine was many years ago when I typed into ebay “Sonor Vintage”.

Nowadays Sonor added a line called vintage series so now the search is flooded with those but sometimes people will post old sonor drums with that in the headline.

Someone just posted an oak finished phonic bop kit in amazing condition for buy it now $1,200 as “Sonor vintage set”.
They left out the key words bop kit, phonic, drum, rare.

I almost thought it was a mistake. I would value the kit more around $2,500 maybe more due to condition.

I asked the seller why they were selling after I hit the buy it now, they said the drummer was a local jazz drummer who was Sonor endorser in the 80’s and passed away. His family had them sell the kit on eBay for them.

Must of been the drummers at home practice kit because it looked like it came from the factory. Only issue was it came with a 10/12/16FT/18BD. No 14”.

I had to search for a few years but found the matching 14FT (which cost me $800 but it’s so rare and I really needed it:/)
Amazing kit and perfect for my Sonor collection.
A toss up. A January pawn shop purchase- for hardware, stands . HH pedal, cymbals. For about .10/dollar! Pre inventory sale And a pawn shop purchase of a pc Tama Superstar kit.12- 13-14-16-22- for $200 out the door.
 

Atom87

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Saw a blurry photo on Facebook Marketplace of a pile of dusty white drums in a garage, but thought I could make out a Sonor D series ferromanganese snare.
The seller was asking $300 for the lot, and considering those snares alone usually sell for $500-600 here in Australia, it was worth a look because it was only about a 20 minute drive away.
Got there, sure enough it was a D-505 with centennial badge. Accompanied by a white Sonor Phonic 24x14" kick and 18x16" floor tom and two white Tama Rockstar rack toms from the 80s.
I pulled the kick drum out and instantly saw rosewood inside the drum - at which point I started getting REALLY excited. I asked the seller 'have these drums been rewrapped?' and he told me yes, that his father used to play in wedding bands in the 1980s and found the rosewood finish too much so wrapped them in white drum wrap. The drums had been sitting in his garage gathering dust for quite a while and he just wanted them gone.
I got those drums into the car as quickly as I could, knowing how sought after the rosewood heavy shelled Phonics were (and how rare the 24x14 and 18x16 sizes were). I took them home and cleaned the dust, stripped the wrap off, and posted a Gumtree wanted ad for a rosewood rack tom to match (I usually only play 4 piece kits anyway). Amazingly enough, a guy saw the ad and sold me a matching rack tom for a good price a few weeks later. I sold the Tama toms and some hardware that came with the kit which covered the cost of the rosewood tom. These kits are going for mega bucks on Reverb these days and they sound incredible (albeit back breakingly heavy, super thick shells and the height of German engineered hardware).

Other great drum scores:
Ludwig 80s black 22x14 and 13x9 rack tom along with some cymbals (including Paiste Signature crash) and hardware. Think the lot cost me $200 from memory. I sold the cymbals and hardware and kept the shells in storage til I could find an orphan 16" floor tom to match. A year or so later found a 'Pearl' drum kit in a listing with bad photos but the lugs on the toms caught my attention, unmistakably Ludwig (kick drum was a mismatched cheap Chinese piece of a crap with a Pearl reso head on it). About an hour's drive and $500 later, and I have black Ludwig 10", 13", 16" & 18" toms, a Pearl Sensitone Elite snare and a few cymbals (nothing too special). I recouped $350 by selling cymbals and hardware, gave the kick drum away and will probably sell on the Sensitone Elite at some point. I've now got 2 x 13" toms so I'll probably sell one and maybe the 10" and use the $$$ to rewrap and buy heads for the kit.

Late 60s Yamaha D-22 in black willow finish for $350. Then managed to find the exact matching snare drum (matching serials) from another seller in my city a few months later for $100.

Sonor D-505 Ferromanganese snare spotted for sale alongside a junk 'Peace' (or similar from memory) kit. $150 from memory and sold the kit for $100.

Yamaha Recording Custom 22x16" kick drum for $80. Was going to sell it, but then scored matching 10" and 12" toms for $300 the following weekend. Scored a matching 14" floor for a good price on ebay and a few weeks later an earlier 9000 series (same colour and hardware though) 13" tom for $30.

Yamaha 8000 4 piece kit for $400 with some cymbals and hardware. Sold cymbals and hardware and got a free kit basically.

Basically brand new Tama Silverstar 6 pce kit (still tags attached) for $600 with a set of Sabian B8 Pros. Sold Sabians and the toms I didn't need = great gigging kit for free
 

dluquette

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Several years ago I ran across an Elvin Jones signature Yamaha snare. I think I paid less than $400 for it then. Looking for one now will cost you $1000 or more. Way more if you want mine. Also recently I scored an original Yamaha Maple Custom (small gold lug). Those maple custom drums are soooooo heavy but sound sooooooo good.
 

robthetimekeeper

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I bought a huge hoard of marching band gear for $300 once. I flipped it all for $3500.
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Another good one was a $200 drum set that included a COB Super Ludwig. Sold the snare for $800 and everything else for $200.
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Han

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What’s the best deal you ever scored, on accident or purpose?

I’d say mine was many years ago when I typed into ebay “Sonor Vintage”.

Nowadays Sonor added a line called vintage series so now the search is flooded with those but sometimes people will post old sonor drums with that in the headline.

Someone just posted an oak finished phonic bop kit in amazing condition for buy it now $1,200 as “Sonor vintage set”.
They left out the key words bop kit, phonic, drum, rare.

I almost thought it was a mistake. I would value the kit more around $2,500 maybe more due to condition.

I asked the seller why they were selling after I hit the buy it now, they said the drummer was a local jazz drummer who was Sonor endorser in the 80’s and passed away. His family had them sell the kit on eBay for them.

Must of been the drummers at home practice kit because it looked like it came from the factory. Only issue was it came with a 10/12/16FT/18BD. No 14”.

I had to search for a few years but found the matching 14FT (which cost me $800 but it’s so rare and I really needed it:/)
Amazing kit and perfect for my Sonor collection.
I once walked into a MARS MUSIC just before they went out of business. They had a "closeout" table with a lot of random things that were discontinued like drum heads and sticks. I saw what looked like a snare drum throw off under a piece of cloth that covered the table and moved it so I could get a better look. To my amazement it was a Gladstone snare drum made exclusively for MARS by Arnie Lang.
There was no price on the drum so I asked a salesperson...who knew nothing about drums... and after checking with a supervisor who also knew nothing about the drum they asked if I would pay $300.
I told them the top head was missing and the snare wires were bent so I offered them $175 and they took it!
I went home and contacted Arnie Lang and asked him if I could send it to him to "tune" it up and fix anything that needed fixing. When I told him what I paid for the drum he just about had a heart attack and laughed on and on because he said he had already been paid for it and he was happy I got the drum. In total, including Arnie's repairs it cost me around $300.
 

Rockdrum

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Ludwig 1971 Black Panther kit. 2-20" bass drums with Speed Kings, 12", 13", 16". 5.5x14" Super-Sensitive snare. Vintage Zildjian 21" ride, 20" ride, 14" New Beats, 18" Paiste Stanople crash. All original hardware including 3 flat base cymbal stands. $320.
 

Cauldronics

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My best score must’ve been the $400 I paid for a 1983 Tama Superstar kit with 5 toms and bass drum. It also had rims mounts for every drum except the floor tom.

It had already seen many gigs before I got it, but there was nothing wrong with the sound at all.

I justify the road worn looks with the old ten foot rule. Looks great from that far away! Most people are at least that far away at gigs when you think about it.
 

RettaW75

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My DTX750K kit. It's about $3700 CAD brand new, but I got it used, excellent condition, for $1200. The guy only had it for a year but then he died :(
JDTX760KUK.jpg
 

Tom Holder

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I walked into a musical (mostly guitars) pawn shop on Folsom St. in San Francisco in the late 90's and found, buried under a bunch of crap hardware, a dirty, dusty but otherwise perfect set of purple sparkle Slinger-Leedys, 13-16-22. Original heads all around. Pushbutton straight FT legs and clipper rail consolette. I believe they were made in 1962. Without much quibbling I bought them for $150. I took 'em home and cleaned them up a little, but I don't recall playing them out anywhere. I already had a very similar Slingerland set in gold sparkle which was my main player, and I lived in a tiny granny apartment and didn't have a whole lot of storage space. A short time later, I encountered a guy in Sammy Adato's drum shop that had the matching snare for my kit tucked under his arm. I told him about my find, and he begged me to sell him the set. I really didn't have room for it and this guy offered me $300, which I took. Dammit, I sure regret that. I'd never seen a purple sparkle drum set before or since until today when I saw the post & picture of the Slingerland set above. Ahhh... regrets, I've had a few!
 

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