Title: How To Tune You Bass Drums =]
HUWmungus - March 16, 2007 05:19 PM (GMT)
Right first i shall say i must thank Martin Ranscombe for this advice. This is in my own words from what i can remember :)
this is how to get a nice projective sound with alot of resonance (not need for mufflin btw right now. il cover that soon)
Well, firstly Tighten the batter head skin finger tight on the rods.
now stand (thats right STAND) in the centre of your head. After you do this go back and check all rods are finger tight . If you have a new head you may find a few rods are a little loose but dont worry. Just tighten them up finger tight again.
Right you should always tune the batter head first withe the resonant off.
Anyway onto tuning. Start turning the rods in turn (clockwise, anti clockwise no matter) in half turns while pressing the centre with your palm (this is to rid of wrinkles). Tensionprogressively (adjust the rods in half turns is the best way to do it. As soon as the wrinkles dissapear this level of tension may suit you. but if you would prefer a more bouncy feel take the head up half turns on each rod.
Now tap gently around the head around 2 inches from the edge. Check the pitch is even all the way round (although dont be too critical. only adjust major differences.)
If you find it necessary to deaden ur drums here nows the time. A small rolled up towel or a small pillow placed toward where the resonant head will be should do. Tape the towel to the drum (NOT the skin) and place the resonant head on.
now follow the same instuctions as before till the head is wrinkless. (oh and a word of advice. If u do have a hole in you bass drum. DONT stand on the head. just lean in in on the middle of the skin with two hands (unless youve been naughty and put a whole in the middle (tut tut))
Now as soon as tihs is done turn you bass drum over into playing position witha pedal attached. Heres where the listening comes in. When tuning the resonant head you'll notice the pitch will rise and also that theres a huge improvement in the clarity of the sound. From now its what you like as a sound. turn the rods clockwise. If your looking for a punchy sound the tighter the better.
Right i shall be posting two other seperate posts on toms and snares in the next few hours. Hope you find this useful.
soho07 - March 16, 2007 05:27 PM (GMT)
what if you wanted a different sound? for example i want chad smith's bass sound, will i have to do the same to achieve this or just buy a powerstroke 3 (like his) and then try that method?
i just use a pillow now......it does deaden the sound a bit but it was better than before, before it was boomy and no thud....
inhumane_assailant - March 16, 2007 05:27 PM (GMT)
I made a few spelling changes and make sure you dont use text type.
Ive just spotted some more spelling and grama mistakes :P lol
I might add onto it as well later if i get time. Good stuff.
HUWmungus - March 16, 2007 05:49 PM (GMT)
well to get chads sound id follow these instructions and tighten the resonant head quite tight for that chili pepper punchy sound :)
soho07 - March 16, 2007 05:52 PM (GMT)
interessant.....you see i keep hearing tuning advice to 'tighten the batter and loosen the resonant' and i've been tricked all along!
hehe, but then my bass became higher pitched and sounded weird, so i gave up and put a pillow in.......
HUWmungus - March 16, 2007 05:55 PM (GMT)
well take this from me ive tuned it to this standard yesterday. and its mindblowing. and the best thing is its not a dead click of a sound its a punchy boom. and trust it goes well with the chili peppers (Y)
Smitt - March 16, 2007 07:05 PM (GMT)
Well if you want Chad Smith's Bass Drum sound you will also need his bass drum. You obviously won't get the same sound out of a Mapex VX (basswood I think) and a Pearl Masters (Maple). Otherwise why would all the pros go for expensive kits.
HUWmungus - March 16, 2007 07:57 PM (GMT)
that is a good pooint. i do have maple shells and it worked for me. what are mapex Vs? birch?
Smitt - March 16, 2007 08:01 PM (GMT)
The Vxs are basswood with a maple venner on them. The only Mapex kits you could get close to the masterworks sound are Saturns and Orions but they're pretty expensive.
inhumane_assailant - March 16, 2007 10:02 PM (GMT)
<<<<has maple :)
Yeah, even on the M pros they put a 2ply layer of maple on. Every lil helps haha :)
But i belevie the VXs are basswood mostly, probly with a 2ply layer of maple as well.
Smitt - March 16, 2007 10:30 PM (GMT)
website says 1 ply maple.
soho07 - March 16, 2007 11:33 PM (GMT)
fine! (sulks off at average kit......)
i guess i'll have to keep saving up.........
Smitt - March 17, 2007 07:45 AM (GMT)
its not rubish. its just not as good as a kit that costs 1000s!
inhumane_assailant - March 17, 2007 10:12 AM (GMT)
My kit wouldn't sound aynthing like it really either.
1ply 2ply... meh lol.
Smitt - March 17, 2007 09:13 PM (GMT)
It is amazing what £3000 difference makes. My teacher has a Gretsch USA Custom and It is 'the canines reproductive organs'!
In fact from now on I'm going to start saving for an awsome kit! £5 a month to save up for a £5000 kit ,that should take..... um ..... only 83 years.
Crap! Does anyone want to contribute some money? :(
inhumane_assailant - March 17, 2007 09:54 PM (GMT)
sure :) *flicks a penny at smitt* every lil helps *taps his bum like in asda advert*
Smitt - March 17, 2007 10:26 PM (GMT)
still havent got that penny. can i have another?
inhumane_assailant - March 17, 2007 10:47 PM (GMT)
nice try :P lol
Im far to stindgy to send 2 lol.
soho07 - March 18, 2007 11:05 AM (GMT)
i would but you'd have to sing that barbie girl song........whilst in your boxer shorts.......holding a pink sparky handbag...........wearing a cowboy hat?
emanruse - March 18, 2007 11:54 AM (GMT)
there is no way i could bring my self to STAND on my bass drum head... especially if i'd just after paying out for a powersonic or something...
inhumane_assailant - March 18, 2007 12:58 PM (GMT)
I wear a cowbell hat instead :D
HUWmungus - March 21, 2007 02:02 PM (GMT)
a powersonic wouldnever break if u stood on it. with proffessional heads it'll easily take the weight. its with cheap factory heads u need to watch out for. believe e if a bass drum would break when u stand on it you would have to be wearin rugby boots. it might seem scary but no damage will be done
Smitt - March 21, 2007 02:20 PM (GMT)
You really don't want to do it on a kit that has thin shells or sharp bearing edges.
So it you have a vintage 4 ply ludwig with 60 degree bearing edges I wouldn't recomend standing on it.
instigator - April 22, 2007 10:15 PM (GMT)
well, i spent the afternoon tuning and re-tuning my bass drum...
it is slightly better sounding...
it is now too late to continue re-tuning so i checked out some drum tuning videos on youtube...
by the way, i used the method described in the Drum Tuning Bible...
but this method actually looks more interesting: Tuning with your Eye
soho07 - April 23, 2007 03:54 PM (GMT)
i gave up with tuning and just stuck a pillow in my bass......
i need to get a better kit anyway to find the right sound and tone etc, but i want a tight sound with no silly vibrations, very solid, just like chad smith's bass
but i guess the only real way to do that is get the exact same bass and/or head. not with a mapex v/vx with the remo ux stock heads!
the pillow did help though, although it is also a bit quieter too.......
Smitt - April 23, 2007 04:18 PM (GMT)
And also samples and triggers in the studio. Overdubbing and all that.
motioncity182 - April 23, 2007 06:52 PM (GMT)
You can make a Mapex VX sound incredible with the right heads and time well spent tuning. I did with mine and now it sounds incredible. I put an Evans EMAD2 on it, spent plenty of time tuning it up...I don't have anything inside it, just one external dampening ring and it's got a really nice low thud to it.
I wouldn't bother trying to make a bass drum sound like a recorded drum...it doesn't work, they use too many effects on drums in studios, compressors and whatnot. Sounds totally different live
Smitt - April 24, 2007 08:02 PM (GMT)
You hear all these 60s / 70s bands. And they are basicly live records, just in a studio! They didn't have all this electronic wizadry and they somehow made everything sound better!
Bonhams Bass Drum
How do they do it! :o
instigator - April 25, 2007 09:45 AM (GMT)
i read something the other day where a couple of big shot drummers were saying they used the Yamaha Rydeen kit on lots of records... one dude said it have a vintage feel!!!
i can kinda understand that... imagine that drum makers like yamaha put features or manufacturing technicques onto the cheaper lines after new techniques etc are invented and used on the posh lines...
sort of like my Tama kit having all the higher end features that used to be on the Starclassic line or whatever its called....
Smitt - April 25, 2007 11:45 AM (GMT)
I also think the rydeens have a flater bearing edge which dampens the head alot. This gives it a 60s / 70s sort of sound.