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My New yet Old Addition

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1 My New yet Old Addition on Wed Aug 12, 2015 4:34 am

Lately, I've been captivated with the old masters and their approach and acoustical of their instruments. These snares are dating back as far as the 40s' through 50s'. So what on earth am I raving about here?

Of course I'm referring to my most latest winning bid purchased on Ebay: A 1950s' Gretsch Round Badge Vintage Jazz Snare drum. Considering what most of these are presently valued at (especially the sparkle finishes), I got it at a great price, $277. + $78. s.h. totaling $355.00 at my door! The badges alone can run from$50. to $100 bucks!! The bidding was a tough one where many were participating. It was at the very last 30 seconds, a storm of bids toppled mine, then at the last split of only 2 seconds my bid was entered, just being a dollar over the highest bidder. It was a blessing indeed to win this new yet old addition to my jazz Tama kit!

This is my first vintage purchase and am very well please with this snare. This is the exact sound I was trying to get out of my newer snares but couldn't quite get it. I had a chance to play it tonight and not only sounds superbly old schooled, but 'feels' fantastic especially on those cool, traditional press rolls!!

Just thought I share, what I believe, is a blessing!
PTL!!!! cheers cheers cheers cheers cheers cheers cheers

Before polishing the badge

After polishing the badge

Interior hand signature

Throw Off is a replacement but works excellent. That with a PureSound snare on the resonate head.

Added Snare adjustment devise, original part

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2 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Wed Aug 12, 2015 5:38 am

What a Great Drum Rac.

Saved by you



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3 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Wed Aug 12, 2015 2:25 pm

Thanks Colin. That's a good perspective on these drums as in preservation. I like that. Yes, the snare is awesome sounding unlike what's out there today. I mean, I do like the newer stuff but there is something about the simplicity of design that holds it's own unique characteristic acoustics of the day...simply wonderful and I'm totally blown on this drum. I can now understand why there is a group of people who truly appreciates the vintage quality...amazing! In fact, in all the years of purchasing drums, I would have to say this one tops! bounce bounce bounce cheers cheers

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4 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Thu Aug 13, 2015 3:49 pm

I'm not into vintage drums but very nice, Rac!
The main thing is YOU are happy with your purchase.

What I would recommend however is to take off all the
hardware and put the pieces in a bucket, pour some CLR
over them and let them sit for a couple of days and
periodically swirling them around in the bucket over the
two days or so and maybe lightly scrubbing them with an
old toothbrush as you see fit.

Then simply rinse and dry them off, they'll look practically
new and all that grunge and whatever rust that may be on
the metals will clean up really nicely....  I did this just recently
with a used 5X14 chrome Ludwig snare drum I bought back
in 70, 71.  I couldn't believe the difference.

Just my suggestion....  Congratulations and enjoy.

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5 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Fri Aug 14, 2015 1:54 am

a bucket, pour some CLR

I'm thinking that means Clorox? Yes, I've read it somewhere on a blog among a few vintage restorers. They also recommended a toothbrush as well as cotton swabs for those tiny, hard-to-get areas. People that collect items like these refer these as 'project drums' - These do take TLC and time. At this moment, it looks pretty decent and I intend to carve some time in it's appearance. But as to the sound? I'm actually using it on a jazz gig and it sounds incredible!

Thank you for your suggestion.

NOTE: Anyone has any suggestion(s) as to bringing back some of the sheen on the finish? It's dull and slightly yellowed but not that bad which is understandable. Restores claim that it can't be done but never know-someone might have overruled that conclusion. Hey, I can live with it too. Smile

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6 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Fri Aug 14, 2015 1:29 pm

No, Rac not Clorox.  There is a product called CLR (Calcium-Lime-Rust)
that dissolves stuff like hard water build up, Calcium, lime, rust and other
gunk off of metals.

Notice he says not to leave in there overnight
because of it leaving a black residue.  I left
stuff in their for two days and the solution started
to turn black a little.  I just took the items out and
wiped them off with a towel and everything was fine.

Use your own discretion.

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7 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Fri Aug 14, 2015 10:17 pm

Thanks D for that information. It sounds like you may have had an interest in vintage drum restoration. Never the less, wonderful input here. I will try those as soon as I can carve the time for it. I may be just plain lazy LOL!!! Most people that do invest in these items are mere collectors and not players, from what I've been hearing. Small percentage are actual drummers.

They restore to later put it back up for auction that yields higher dollar value than when they first bought it. The difference between them and me, is that I play it. Just the other night a bass player found that offensive seeing me actual play this drum. He's thinking in terms of a collector and not a player. Well, I told him I play what I buy and it's my business as to what I do with what's mine. Lol!!!

Thanks for the information.

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8 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Sat Aug 15, 2015 3:08 pm

Well, like I said, Rac, I recently cleaned up a
chrome Ludwig snare drum that I bought back
in 1970 or so with this product.  It works wonders.  
I believe that thinking in terms of stopping the
process of decay be it you choose to play them
or not is prudent.

And I hear you about the collector vs. the user.
I really like cars and if I could afford it, I'd likely
have a bunch of em, and you can bet that they
wouldn't be sitting in some warehouse with rope
barriers around them collecting dust.

All the best.

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9 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Sun Aug 16, 2015 11:27 pm

thinking in terms of stopping the
process of decay

Yes, consider that I would want to continue using this drum, gives it more reason why I should maintain it's condition as you suggested. Being that Hawaii has a high humidity rate which is due to the ocean being close by, restoration coupled with preventive care would be a must here. Makes me think when I had an collectors item up for bid on Ebay a few weeks ago. I could not get it's top dollar due to rust on it's exterior side - got pretty good money for it but could have been better if the item was free of rust and that's near impossible but yet possible if I had taken preventive procedure using the product you've mentioned here.

Thanks for reminding me,

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10 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Sun Sep 06, 2015 1:16 am

Vintage round badge snare on the gig.

I love the sound this snare produces; round, warm with enough snare and resonance to make it that classic Gretsch snare sound. Words do injustice it's just a wonderful snare that I've immediately attached to. Rarely using my newer snare these days.

Still not sure as to why these (this one) drum(s) sound superior, in my opinion. I think they did something resulting in distinct characteristic qualities that's unsurpassed! I do notice, however, the lightness of the shell along with a die diecast hoop on the top, a slightly thinner hoop on the bottom and a tensioning lever on the other end of the snare hold. Also, that classic internal muffler, which is hardly seen these days, that gives you finer control on the interior muffling - no need for exterior padding (e.g. moon jells, etc.). The drum exhales, if I may, in tonal quality that is incredible. Just a wonderful piece of instrument that is timeless!! My secret love...Lol!!

My take here,

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11 Re: My New yet Old Addition on Mon Sep 07, 2015 2:28 pm

Very nice, Rac... I'd like to hear a recording of it sometime.
Did you clean it up? It looks good!

As to the superior sound, sometimes within a group of diamonds
there is that one that for whatever reason seems to be more
refined and shine brighter than all the others.

IE: Bruce Lee, Michael Jackson, Usian Bolt etc. Gifts of God
that shine brighter than the norm.

Enjoy, my friend. sunny

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