Tuning and other technical issues

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DrZoidberg Offline
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Tuning and other technical issues

Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:55 pm



So snarescience people, I'm teching for my first time this year. I'm not Jeff Queen by any stretch of the imagination, but my chops passable, and I'm getting better at teaching. I do not, however, have any idea how to tune a snare, how to fix a snare if it breaks, how to adjust a carrier, etcetc. What are some common technical issues I could run into, how would I go about dealing with them, and what tools do I need? I know a little about drumming, a little about teaching, but nothing about hardware. All replies are greatly appreciated.


joe356 Offline
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Re: Tuning and other technical issues

Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 10:07 pm



First question would be what drums they are. That changes what tools you need. I have a separate tool set for the group I teach that uses Pearl vs. the group that uses Dynasty.

First and foremost, you want a sturdy, long handled drum key. They usually run around 15 bucks. I'm not talking about the ones they give out with drum sets, but the ones who's handles are around 6 to 8 inches long. You'll need the extra leverage for ease of tuning on a marching drum.

Snare drums tend to be pretty low maintenance as far as repair goes. As long as the kids don't slam them around, the main issues I tend to run into tend to be with the strainers. They are pretty self explanatory if you just look carefully at the system. Most have bolts that adjust vertically (parallel to the lugs), and horizontally (parallel to the head). Don't use the vertical knobs to adjust snare tension. Those are simply used to set the snares evenly across the bottom head. You should see a straight line from one side of the strainer to the other (no upward angle at the bearing edge). The horizontal knob is what should be used to adjust tension of the snares.

For tuning, there are a million ways to skin a cat. I'll assume you know enough to tune the lugs to each other. If they are a typical high school group, I would go after a fairly wide open sound to create the most projection possible. The easiest way to do this is to keep the bottom head at a higher pitch than the top. It sounds very strange up close, but huge from about 20 feet away. If you have time to do it, and really want tons of snare response, take the time to tune the snare guts. Google McIntosh and snare tuning, and you'll find a youtube video all about it.

Other than that, drums are usually pretty easy to trouble shoot. If something goes wrong, its usually pretty easy to tell what it was (a broken lug will look broken, and is really easy to replace etc).

Good luck with the new gig.


swissflamdrag Offline
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Re:

Posted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 11:08 pm



to add, most carriers require that same drum key and then maybe an allen wrench

and yes, run a search on these forums on tuning, lots of different threads on tuning.

My main method is again bottom head higher then the top.
no tape/muffling.
make sure the guts are flush (McIntosh video)
don't choke the guts out, just keep them at a relatively low tension to get a lush snare sound


My main tuning philosophy is that marching drums are instruments too, my goal with snares is to try to get the closest sound to a symphony tuned snare drum as I can.
Northwest High School class of '12
Forte 2011 Snare


sxetnrdrmr Offline
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Re:

Posted: Wed Jun 20, 2012 10:07 am



if you have XL carriers, you will need 7/16" wrenches...I carry two, and 1/2" wrenches...also carry two

the RAndal May or Pearl Air Frame stuff all just uses drum keys

as others have mentioned, tuning is a huge topic. Follow the instructions to Google things.

You can PM me if you want my take on tuning...I can get pretty detailed and long for a regular post
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Kaitou Offline
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Re: Tuning and other technical issues

Posted: Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:04 pm



http://www.rlrr.com/v3/nuances_episode.php?id=5

Pete Sapadin has a video about tuning the guts there
TA67 wrote:She walked over to me and said "I formally request that you turn my body into a playground of lust and wonder, o burly man." To which I agreed. I laid her down on the desk, and well...we both got As for the entire semester as a result.
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DrZoidberg Offline
playin' eights
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Re:

Posted: Wed Jun 20, 2012 11:31 pm



The snare drums in question are Pearl snares

Thanks you for all the responses


HaViiK Offline
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Re: Tuning and other technical issues

Posted: Fri Jun 22, 2012 3:45 pm



Kaitou wrote:http://www.rlrr.com/v3/nuances_episode.php?id=5

Pete Sapadin has a video about tuning the guts there
This is a great video. Tuning guts makes a huge difference.

If there is one thing you should buy it would be a Falam or MX5 bottom head. Makes tuning significantly easier. You may have them but a smaller band may not.

Good luck and take your time learning now to tune!
-Steven Wright

Rustburg High School:
  • Bass 05, 06
    Snare 07, 09
    Tenor 08
    Instructor: 2010-Present, Undefeated in 2011


@Steven_HokieDT
http://www.facebook.com/steven.T.wright


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