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Do you know how to tune a drum kit?


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Unfortunately in my experience, not all drummers know how to properly tune their own kits, and it's impossible to get a great drum sound if the kit isn't well-tuned. So knowing how to tune a drum kit can be a very useful skill for anyone who wants to record bands.

 

If you don't know how to do it, here's a link to an article by Bobby Owsinski with some useful drum tuning tips that you may find helpful.

 

And if you have any useful tips of your own, or things to watch out for, please share!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I found the Drum Di a huge help when I had no experience tuning; when a drum is really out of whack, it's difficult to interpret what will fix it until you've done it for a while. Otherwise, I was better off slacking all the lugs and starting over. Also, Drum Dial readings are objective, so they are a much better way to communicate tunings than stuff like "I get my top head really tight, and the snare head really super extra tight."

 

These days it mostly just sits, but I did break it out tuning the resonant heads when I installed Quietstrokes. I found the ideal tunings were so low, it's extremely difficult to get everything matched up.

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The Rhythm Tech Protorq is also a useful tool IMO...

 

http://www.rhythmtech.com/products/a...es/RT7350.html

 

The main issue with it is that it measures the lug tension as opposed to the head tension like the Drum Dial does... but it does help get things into the ballpark.

 

 

 

I have one of those too. Between the Drum Dial and the Rhythm Tech key, I can get where I need to me.

 

The drum dial is down to 59 bucks new, I paid more for mine when the first came out almost 20 years ago.

 

There's nothing worse than listen to me tune up a Rickenbacker 12 string from a dead start, other than listen to me tune up a set of drums from a dead start.

 

 

Both are handy as well as a decent ear.

 

 

Saw this online too.

 

[video=youtube;_KSVVn3BaoI]

Edited by Mikeo
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That certainly is a fast way to swap heads and get the lugs all to the same general tension - and get a really nasty ring! :lol:

 

You'd obviously have to fine tune it from there, but again, it does look like it would take some of the tedium out of the process of replacing heads.

 

Thanks for posting that Mikeo! :cool2:

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That certainly is a fast way to swap heads and get the lugs all to the same general tension - and get a really nasty ring! :lol:

 

You'd obviously have to fine tune it from there, but again, it does look like it would take some of the tedium out of the process of replacing heads.

 

Thanks for posting that Mikeo! :cool2:

 

49.99 at Sweetwater , MF/GC, or Amazon

 

https://www.musiciansfriend.com/accessories/tru-tuner-rapid-drum-head-replacement-system

 

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/TRUTUNER--tru-tuner-rapid-drum-head-replacement-system?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI3ursw_vz2QIVECWBCh2ZmQ3gEAAYASAAEgKj6_D_BwE

 

https://www.amazon.com/Tru-Tuner-TT001-Replacement-System/dp/B00C0IX2LY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1521310737&sr=8-1&keywords=tru+tuner

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It has been a long time since I've done it (1970's). But the web article is pretty much what I was taught. Tighten the head like you do an engine cylinder head in a cross pattern. Top, bottom, 3 o'clock, 9 o'clock etc. Do this until the head is fairly tight. Then hit the head about an inch from each lug tune and fine them each till they all sound the same. At that point you strike the center and tighten 1/4 or 1/2 turns in the same pattern as before until it feels and sounds 'right' to you, periodically recheck sound near the lugs. The first time I ever did this was on my first drum set, I ripped a head. Expensive for a 15 year old!

Edited by kbeaumont
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