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  1. Registered User

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    Default Number of lugs... plus hoops in general

    Alright. I've been playing drums for 25 years, or 17 years or something in between depending on how you count it. First self-taught, then regular lessons for about 2 years, playing in bands etc. But I have never gotten into the details, like shell thicknesses, hoop types, hoop thicknesses etc. For the last 16 years, I have had one drum set, which is a Pearl MLX set from '84 or '85. When I've seen "die cast hoops" and this or that being discussed in magazines I've really just thought "whatever, I have the set I happen to have and that's what I'm going to play on".

    I very recently decided to get another set, and as it happens it is a Decade Maple set, 20/10/12/14 (and prossibly a 16 later, they're out of stock now). Since I've been so fortunate to have a professional level set from so early on, I've never HAD to wonder about any of this stuff. But now... I guess I should try to understand some of these things.

    What difference does any of it make? The MLX's have 2.3 mm SuperHoops, the Decades have '1.6 mm triple-flanged' hoops. What does that mean? Does that alone make a drum sound different? Does that make them more difficult to tune or make them go out of tune easier? Are they going to bend or break?

    The Decade floor toms, even the 16" one has only 6 lugs (the MLX one has 8). What's the difference there? Is that alone going to make it excessively difficult or impossible to get the tuning right?

    If thicker/stronger hoops would be a significant improvement in some way, where would I get them? Who makes 2.3 mm 16" hoops with only 6 lugs?

    A couple of questions there. Help and information is much appreciated.

  2. Registered User

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    The thinner 1.6mm hoops will allow the heads to vibrate more, which will open them up a but. Theoretically the thicker hoops will hold tuning better. The 8 lugs, as opposed to 6, will give more even tension across the head (less space between each lug) and will give you more tuning range.

  3. Registered User

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    Quote Originally Posted by notoriousRJD View Post
    The thinner 1.6mm hoops will allow the heads to vibrate more, which will open them up a but. Theoretically the thicker hoops will hold tuning better. The 8 lugs, as opposed to 6, will give more even tension across the head (less space between each lug) and will give you more tuning range.
    Can you elaborate a bit, especially about that last one? Where would the larger tuning range come from?

    I would guess that in general a (otherwise identical) thicker hoop will simply be STRONGER, so it won't bend or be otherwise affected as easily because of tension. But why would the amount of lugs matter in any other matter than providing more possibility for fine tuning?

  4. Registered User

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    More lugs, more tuning points...finer tuning. Yes, thicker hoops are stronger. It will affect the sound...in fact if you really wanna be picky about it, even the thinner hoop itself will resonate more than a thicker hoop and produce a different sound....as will steel vs brass hoops producing a different "ring". Really depends on what you are playing and the sound you are looking for. I think, in general, most people probably wouldnt appreciate some of the differences but there are definite effects caused by the lug count and hoop thickness.

  5. Chomp, Chomp

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    It’s more than just finer tuning. The more lugs on a drum, the less important each individual lug becomes as the space between tension rods is reduced. The closer the lugs are to each other, the chances of the hoop flexing is reduced.
    Thicker hoops are stronger and less likely to flex between tension rods. The exception would be Pearl’s Fat Tone hoops. They are 1.6 mm hoops, but the top of the hoop is rolled and welded to give them stregth and reduced weight.
    I also think that you’re underestimating the people on this form. I think most would absolutely be aware of hoop thickness and number of lugs.
    Drumming since 1961.
    Pearl MCX 8 Piece Bronze Glass
    Many Paiste Cymbals

    Tama SLP Fat Spruce 4 piece
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  6. Registered User

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    This is all good information, and I do appreciate you taking the time. However this is all much too theoretical at least for my needs. I understand the principles of what a hoop is and how it works. What I'd like to know is what kind of a difference does it make in reality, in practice. To go back to the last part of my first post:

    The Decade floor toms, even the 16" one has only 6 lugs (the MLX one has 8). What's the difference there? Is that alone going to make it excessively difficult or impossible to get the tuning right?

    If thicker/stronger hoops would be a significant improvement in some way, where would I get them? Who makes 2.3 mm 16" hoops with only 6 lugs?
    I've had a little time to actually play the set now and I don't foresee a big problem with the durability, I'm not THAT heavy-handed and actually rarely play rimshots now that I think of it. I haven't noticed anything drastic with the tuning either.

    The biggest concern in my eyes is the 16" tom with only 6 lugs (and a thin hoop). Will it be a problem? I think I actually saw someone here (on this sub-forum) suggesting that if they got the Decade set, they would replace the hoops with stronger ones. I think that is something to consider, but I've been browsing online stores and I haven't found ANY sort of a 16" hoop with only 6 lugs on sale. So, do they even exist?

  7. J-Con

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    Drum Factory Direct. One of the best sources for drum parts.

    Here's your 16", 6 hole hoops,

    https://www.drumfactorydirect.com/in...oducts_id=2007

  8. Registered User

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    Cool, they exist. Unfortunately for me though, I live very far away from Pittsburgh... and there's even a little bit of water inbetween. The shipping costs would probably be pretty disproportionate for one or two hoops. I wonder if some place closer imports stuff from there...

    On a sidenote: those 6-hole hoops were not probably made specifically for mid-range Pearl Decade sets from 2016 on. Was there a time, maybe way back, where 6 lugs for a 16" drum was something closer to a standard thing to do instead of something people scoff and laugh at?

  9. Registered User

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    Quote Originally Posted by WhatIsIt View Post
    Cool, they exist. Unfortunately for me though, I live very far away from Pittsburgh... and there's even a little bit of water inbetween. The shipping costs would probably be pretty disproportionate for one or two hoops. I wonder if some place closer imports stuff from there...
    Just stock up on your favourite drumsticks on the same order. It's free shipping over $99. 2 hoops + 7-8 pairs of drum sticks and you're there.

  10. Registered User

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    The banner only says free shipping for continental US... the site doesn't say how much the shipping would be for anyplace else, I'm guessing because it varies hugely depending on things. I would also almost bet that there would be some sort of extra tax/customs BS...

    I don't know. I don't live that far from a drum builder who I think makes his own hardware, maybe he could make me some luxury hoops for my Pearl Decade toms. How'd that be for stupid?

  11. Chomp, Chomp

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    Quote Originally Posted by WhatIsIt View Post
    The banner only says free shipping for continental US... the site doesn't say how much the shipping would be for anyplace else, I'm guessing because it varies hugely depending on things. I would also almost bet that there would be some sort of extra tax/customs BS...

    I don't know. I don't live that far from a drum builder who I think makes his own hardware, maybe he could make me some luxury hoops for my Pearl Decade toms. How'd that be for stupid?
    Where exactly do you live? I think the idea of having “luxury custom hoops” made would far exceed the cost of two hoops from DFD plus shipping. If your drum builder isn’t set up for making a 16” six lug hoop, the costs of tooling up, making, and plating those custom hoops would far exceed the cost of your floor tom. In as much as you asked, I think the idea is very stupid.
    Drumming since 1961.
    Pearl MCX 8 Piece Bronze Glass
    Many Paiste Cymbals

    Tama SLP Fat Spruce 4 piece
    Zildjian K Custom Dark Cymbals

  12. Registered User

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    [deleted excess information]
    Last edited by WhatIsIt; 01-13-2018 at 08:34 PM.

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