Tuning a 16" head to itself

User avatar
geoffgilldrums
Posts: 22
Joined: Mon Aug 18, 2014 7:57 am
Location: Atlanta, GA
Contact:

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby geoffgilldrums » Tue Aug 26, 2014 6:43 am

never tried that drum dial sticks, but i do use a little good car wax on my bearing edges if i am doing a thorough job on new heads.

another thing to consider on seating heads is the blow dryer / heat gun (!! gotta know how to use this if you have a heat gun set to LOW) trick. to get the mylar just a bit softer & advance the head break-in / seat process.
Atlanta drummer. If it grooves, I dig it !
User avatar
langmick
Posts: 1433
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:38 am

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby langmick » Tue Aug 26, 2014 7:07 am

I finger tighten till I feel resistance, I've been a bike mechanic for a long time so I can feel it pretty well on each. Then I crank the head up, put some pressure on it a few times, let it sit as i do the other toms, then come back, loosen all the way, re-finger tighten then get the drum to the pitch i want.

Thats worked out pretty good for me, using Ambs and Emps primarily. It was odd that the Evans seemed to have distinct levels of tautness, making it harder for me to fine tune.
User avatar
Matus
Posts: 360
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:45 am
Location: Madrid (Spain)
Contact:

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby Matus » Thu Aug 28, 2014 1:31 pm

Oh, this is a nice one...
First off, you will ALWAYS have harmonics/overtones going on. The key is to have a head in tune with itself so you don't have a massive amount of dissonant overtones. That way, the overtones are there but won't disturb your ears and interact with other heads in an unpleasant way.
This has nothing to do with head stretching or anything like that. Assuming you have good bearing edges, a round tom, a round rim and a good shaped head, it's all about the tuning and head selection.
I had that head on a 16" tom for practicing (a friend sold me the Stage Custom tom and gave me the head) and it sounds kinda dull for what you're trying to achieve. Go for clear Emperors or G2s. Or Ambassadors if you're too much into Simon Phillips :)
Then it's all about the tuning process. What I do is finger tight, then the push the center-wrinkles out thing, and from there I start tuning the head with itself. The key element is that from 14" drums up it's on a range where many people have a hard time hearing tonal differences. This is what having a fine ear actually is, being able to tell a very close tonal difference and how wide your effective range for that is. My advice: for starters, tune it up to where you can hear notes next to the lugs more easily, have all lugs in tune with each other and then go back down in quarter turns until you reach the fundamental you want. You might lose a little accuracy while tuning down, but it shouldn't be anything of importance.
Both heads at the same tone is the ideal, but be careful not to have your bottom head too tight, as it will shorten the decay, or too loose, as it won't resonate enough. And you need that resonance to keep the sound going. A half step higher than your batter head is still ok. Same concept applies to your batter heads, of course.
User avatar
Da Chooch
Posts: 210
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 12:49 pm
Location: Austin, TX

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby Da Chooch » Thu Aug 28, 2014 2:31 pm

OR - it may just mean you need a few of these(?).

Image
....ALWAYS let the Wookie win....
chris perra
Posts: 433
Joined: Mon Oct 11, 2010 7:00 pm

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby chris perra » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:16 pm

Does it sound good when you hold it in the air?

If you have tuned them so each skin is in tune with itself and they aren't conflicting with each other you should be good.
I usually tune the bottom head a bit tighter than the top being careful to not create a half step between them..

Have you checked your bearing edges or tried another skin? I'm not a fan of the 360 heads.. They make a crappy kit sound good but hold back the tone and sound of a high end kit... Sort of like EMG active pickups on a guitar.

Try ambassadors on top and bottom that's probably the most open sustainy sound you can get.
User avatar
Kurtis
Posts: 1236
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2010 2:08 am
Location: South Bay

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby Kurtis » Thu Aug 28, 2014 8:55 pm

Lots and lots of sound advice going on. Do yourself a favor and go with the clear ambassadors. If that doesn't work it's the drum or hardware.
User avatar
electrizer
Posts: 482
Joined: Sat Apr 30, 2011 2:35 am
Contact:

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby electrizer » Fri Aug 29, 2014 1:00 am

Many thanks for all your advice guys, the feedback is amazing! Unfortunately, I won't be able to try it out any time soon as I've lacerated my right hand quite badly which has also put me off drumming for some time :/ I'll come back with my tuning experiences after recuperation.
User avatar
geoffgilldrums
Posts: 22
Joined: Mon Aug 18, 2014 7:57 am
Location: Atlanta, GA
Contact:

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby geoffgilldrums » Fri Aug 29, 2014 6:04 am

the other thing i wanted to throw out if this 16" is just a complete PITA to tune: start over and tune it to resonant frequency of the shell. its a bit of work the 1st time, but worth it long-term. step one for me was to take off both heads, suspend the drum and tone the shell w/ a timpani mallet. you can also sing into the shell...pitch-bend up / down until you hear the shell note get reinforced & resonate. using tune-bot (guitar tuner?), tune to that note. 16" example specs here: http://www.tune-bot.com/drum-tuning.html . i am kinda nuts w/ this stuff...i track which heads i am using on each kit. it was funny when i tried Evans 360 J1s; completely diff Hz vs. Remo. just on the long-term tone, i dont think i will ever go back to Evans except for the fab EMAD system for BD.
Atlanta drummer. If it grooves, I dig it !
User avatar
electrizer
Posts: 482
Joined: Sat Apr 30, 2011 2:35 am
Contact:

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby electrizer » Fri Aug 29, 2014 7:37 am

geoffgilldrums wrote:the other thing i wanted to throw out if this 16" is just a complete PITA to tune: start over and tune it to resonant frequency of the shell. its a bit of work the 1st time, but worth it long-term. step one for me was to take off both heads, suspend the drum and tone the shell w/ a timpani mallet. you can also sing into the shell...pitch-bend up / down until you hear the shell note get reinforced & resonate. using tune-bot (guitar tuner?), tune to that note. 16" example specs here: http://www.tune-bot.com/drum-tuning.html . i am kinda nuts w/ this stuff...i track which heads i am using on each kit. it was funny when i tried Evans 360 J1s; completely diff Hz vs. Remo. just on the long-term tone, i dont think i will ever go back to Evans except for the fab EMAD system for BD.


Thanks man! Yeah, I don't know why but not having my toms sing well is something that keeps me awake. And yet another opinion for Remos and against Evans. Interesting
User avatar
langmick
Posts: 1433
Joined: Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:38 am

Re: Tuning a 16" head to itself

Postby langmick » Fri Aug 29, 2014 3:18 pm

I view Evans as heads that are great with triggers or as a means to a FOH mix that is repeatable.

They have a sound to themselves where Remos are less visible.

Return to “Drumming Chat”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 29 guests