Getting Your Drum Kit Back
So, you’ve decided to take the plunge and get that drum kit back?
Good for you!
Now, it's time to think about getting that drum kit back.
As I see it, there are two ways to go about this. You can pull your old set out of storage, replace a few things and get it working again. Or you can buy a new set from a number of online or local sources.
I unfortunately had sold all my gear so the choice was more limited for me.
Reactivating a previously dormant/mothballed drum kit.
For those of you who had the good sense to hold on to your old gear…bravo! Unfortunately, I did not fall into this category.
Reactivating a dormant kit can be a real adventure especially if the kit is considered of a vintage era. Manufacturers are currently very focused on reproducing vintage sounding/looking kits. Having the real deal is an added spark. Start by unpacking and inspecting each component for playability and fitness for action. You may have some repairs or purchases to make to bring the kit up to a healthy state both mechanically and sound wise.
Check with your local music store to see if they either can fix it or recommend somebody who can. GuitarCenter may be another option for this info.
At the very least, purchase a new snare head.
Preferably, a coated head. It will give you the option to pursue brushes as a form of study and playing. Brushes are a must for certain forms of Jazz and Country. They’re a very cool technique to master and have in your back pocket. Returning to your passion of drumming should leave all doors open to all genres of music. It will bring you the sense of satisfaction and accomplishment that makes it the life altering event it can be.
The Evans G2 Level 360 coated head is a very versatile snare head, both resilient and articulate. It has a serious pop when played with sticks, a very fine coated texture for brushes and enough inherent dampening that reverberation and ringing will not be an issue. A lot of thought went into this well engineered head.
Buying a used kit
Options abound, but keep in mind there may be some repair/replacement work required.
Lots of drum kits coming on and off the market all the time and of all assorted levels of quality and eras. You can pre-select your price range. If you’re willing to devote a window of time to this effort, you could find a bargain or the individual components to assemble a kit. Kits often come minus the snare drum, so be prepared for a separate purchase. Please refer to the adjacent article on buying a used snare on eBay. Apply this philosophy to a kit and/or snare and you'll be fine.
Very similar approach to eBay and available in virtually all countries as well as regions within those countries.
Your Local Retail Music Store
Many music stores carry used gear as well. Often a player will use their older kit as a trade-in/trade-up to a newer one. This may be the best option for risk adverse buyers. If anything goes wrong, it’s in the retailers’ best interest to make it right.
Buying a New Kit
These are the best times ever for buying a new kit. Prices are very attractive and the quality is consistently high due to the automation involved in the manufacturing process.
Virtually all the manufactures have a value line that benefits from the manufacturing process of their more expensive lines. The Pacific Drums by DW is a perfect example of this.
All kinds of affordable kits are available from top of line manufacturers. Save your money and a get a decent mid price level kit and spend a little extra on sonically matched (made to perfectly harmonize with each other.) cymbals. You can get a wide range of sounds out of any given drum kit by selecting and installing different types of heads, however a cymbal has one sound. Some of the packaged cymbal configurations offer a set of cymbals consisting of a Crash, a Ride and two Hi-hats that are all sonically matched. Sabian, Zildjian, Meinl all offer these packages at very affordable prices.
Where to purchase whatever you need.
In all my cumulative years of playing, I have yet to see prices better than Guitar Center. In addition to being a partner site to Snare Drum Reviews, I see their ads consistently in Modern Drummer. Their quality and prices are beyond compare. They deliver to Canada as well.
Protect your hearing at all costs! Your ability to play long term depends on it!
Next up...How will you start learning again?
In my next post I'll tackle the learning resources you need to consider as you're getting ready to start practicing and learning on a regular basis. I'll talk about my trusted books and workbooks and also some that my drummer friends swear by.
I hope you'll join me!
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