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Help identifying old all wood kick, plus advice on restoring.
Old 10th November 2009
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sahiaman's Avatar

Help identifying old all wood kick, plus advice on restoring.

Hey guys, I just recently picked this up. Does anyone have an idea as to what kind it is? The drum head has a 'ludwig' sticker, but I doubt that means anything at all.

What I know of the drum is that it's from the 70s, and it's all wood. No marking anywhere else.

Also, anyone have good links to parts to restore it? I'm thinking about refinishing it all, any tips there?

Old 11th November 2009
Most bass drums are 'all wood'.
At least most bass drums look similar to the one you have.
I'm 99.9% sure it ain't Ludwig.
It may not even be 70's.
It looks more 60's to me.
Not sure what brand it is.
Old 13th November 2009
Here for the gear

My first instinct (even before seeing the sticker on the head) was Ludwig or Gretsch. The stud mounts remind me of Ludwig. Unfortunately, without a name plate/serial number on it it will be hard to tell.

Are there any markings underneath the egg foam?

As far as refinishing, sand it down (start with rough and get finer grade sand paper) going with the grain, wipe it down really well to get rid of any dust, apply a lacquer or shellac for color, then finish with thin and even coats of a urethane or other clear coat. Sand (can wet sand even) with super fine paper between clear coats (don't haze it, just get it tacky enough to put the next coat on) and apply as many coats as you want for the desired finish.

I found some tutorials through Google last year to refinish my buddy's Ludwig Accent (took the wrap off and used similar method above). I'll try and post them if I find them.
Old 13th November 2009
Here for the gear

Instructables has a good one here:

How to refinish a drum
Old 13th November 2009
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drumzealot's Avatar

The direction of the grain reminds me of cheap Japanese drums from the 60's. But those drums typically have "Japan" of "Made in Japan" stamped somewhere on the hardware.
Old 14th November 2009
I was thinking 60's Japanese too.
Old 15th November 2009
Here for the gear

The lugs look a bit like '60s Slingerland pieces, but most of the old Japanese kits copied that same style. The shell gives further evidence that it's probably an import kit since it's got skinny little reinforcement rings and a dark mystery-wood inner shell ply. Tom mount looks Japanese as well.

These were sold under many different names such as Star, Apollo, and Stewart... certainly not high-end stuff at all but they're the ancestors of brands like Tama and Pearl; they had to start somewhere.

I just picked up an Apollo kit at a yard sale for $20 with a Ludwig snare... still need to get them cleaned up and replace the heads, but they should be fun to mess around with, and they have a SWEET red swirl wrap.

They're nothing to write home about though.
Old 30th November 2009
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sahiaman's Avatar

Thanks guys. Turns out other people also think it's a Japanese no name brand also. It sounded great, and was less then the price of two movie tickets, so it was a no brainer to at least try recording it.
Old 4th January 2010
Gear Addict
Gulliver's Avatar

Yep, that's a late 60's/early 70's japanese drum. It's mahogany with maple reinforcing rings. In my experience, the kick drum is the easiest drum to get get a good sound from, you should be able to tweak on it and get some useable sounds!
Old 5th January 2010
Gear Maniac
alba359's Avatar
It appears to me to be an old Japanese set. The lugs look like those on a 20" Norma kick I had from the late 60's. But my Norma kit had a rail mount and no reinforcement rings. Most of the 20" Japanese kicks only had 6 lugs per side as I remember. The wood grain and the hardware for the bass drum legs looks the same. Looks like a fun project!
Old 7th January 2010
Here for the gear
ajcox1986's Avatar

Looks like an old Star kit [Tama].
Old 15th January 2010
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sahiaman's Avatar

Thanks everyone for your input. I tracked a bit with the kick, it have a very mix friendly sound, like it's been eq'ed already. I'm diggin it.
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