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  1. Registered User

    Join Date
    May 2021
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    Default OptiMount Search Question

    Hello All...hoping someone can assist with a search before I resort to randomly purchasing parts as an experiment.

    I'm looking to retro-fit some Pearl hardware to a late-2000's "studio" configuration kit from Mapex.

    Those of you who remember the "studio" rigs from most (all?) brands in that era will recall that all toms, through 16" were mounted, with expectations that they were going to be on double-tom stands or racks. That is the case with the Mapex M-birch kit I have now.

    The good is that I now have a very nice "stealth-style" rack set up for the kit. The bad is the response of the 14 and 16 when mounted. there is a significant amount of energy-transfer from the shell, through the bolted-under-lug mount, to the rack itself. Both drums seem choked and the rack-mounted tambourine between them sings out with a tom hit.

    So, I'm looking to suspend/isolate the toms. My only limits are:
    (1) no additional drilling on the shells
    (2) I will NOT go to legs or RIMS that create a floor tom from a hanging drum...staying with the period "studio" concept
    (3) whatever solution needs to be consistent from the 10"/6-lug tom through the 16"/6-lug tom

    ...note that last one...the 14 and 16 are 6-lug and "square" (e.g.: 14x14-6, 16x16-6).

    And now we reach the big question...is there a version of the OptiMount that I can retro-fit on 14- and 16-deep drums with enough arm span to support a 6-lug pattern? If not, does anyone on this board have a suspension solution they can recommend for a hanging 16" 6-lug drum?

    Thanks for any guidance you can provide.

  2. Registered User

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    Jan 2015
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    Default

    Well, the Opti mounts are designed to work up to a 13/6 lug design. A 13/6 drum has approximately 6.8 inches of space between the lugs. People have used Optimounts on their 22/10 bass drums and those have ~6.9" between lugs. Even then, some bending is required to make them work. A 14/6 drum has ~7.33 inches between each lug, so if 6.9" requires some bending to make work, a 14/6 likely will never work no matter what amount of bending you put in to them. And a 16/6? 8.38 inches??? Fuggedaboudit.

    I would recommend going with a standard RIMS style isolation mount but finding a 16/6 is damn near impossible. Your best bet would be to buy the real deal RIMS mounts from Gauger. They use adjustable clips on them that you can size out to whatever lug spacing you want. You may need to get an 18" mount and bend it to a 16" radius. This way you can have extra length to work with and get at least 4 lugs on that 16" drum attached to the RIMS mount. Probably best to speak with Gauger directly about it and see what they think would work best.

  3. 2-time PDF FFL CHAMP

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    Dang, it’s unfortunate that your 14 and 16 are 6-lug patterns because I converted my Masters BSX 14x11 and 16x13 toms to floor toms many years ago and have the Optimounts still sitting in a closet unused, but they’re both 8-lug drums (and I’m not 100% if they’d fit square sizes but it’s possible).
    22x18 (2) | 10x7 | 12x8 | 16x16 | 18x16

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  4. Unban nik12

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    I'd just switch to the Gauger legs, which cradles the bottom rim like the RIMS mounts. It'll make for an overall sturdier feel and more versatile setup. No matter what mounts you go with to rack mount, I think you'll still get issues with the tambourine ringing out if it's mounted right next to the toms since they're heavier drums and energy will pass through the rack no matter what. It's an inexpensive kit so you wouldn't need to worry about devaluing the kit, especially since they can be easily removed.
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  5. Registered User

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    May 2021
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    Nope...went with the hanging kit used knowing it would remain a hanging kit. Staying period-correct. I converted an early 2010's Saturn to RIMS years ago...also a "Studio" kit...and had no such issues. Those were eight-lug-pattern drums, and we were closer to the "studio era," so it was easier back then.

    Going with a slightly different approach this time around, and I'll make sure to post results here. A mix of dampening and "tuned flex."

    First, all tubes (rack, tom arms, cymbal arms, etc.) have been internally dampened in a lightweight fashion by filling with "great stuff" expanding-foam sealer to dampen as much energy transfer as possible. Fortunately this added near-zero weight. This does not stop energy transfer and choking from the drums, but it does a very good job of limiting resonance and propagation in things that I don't want activated.

    Second, I am testing INDE BX2 "tunable flex" mounts to replace the stock Mapex mounts on the under-lug steel plates to allow the drums to vibrate independently of the rack on a modified leaf spring.

    If this does not do the trick, I will bite the bullet and custom-order the aluminum Gauger RIMS.

  6. Registered User

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    Since you have all been very helpful with input and opinions, the least I can do is show you the current-state on the kit and the "before" version of the mounts I'll be upgrading this afternoon.

    So, this is the used M-Birch kit I picked up. It has some "battle scars", and the stock hoops must have been chewed by the previous owner, since he put Tama AccuTune hoops on. I actually like that change. Snare is a Yamaha Stage Custom Steel 6.5 that I got at a ridiculously good deal.

    As you can see in the tom-mount pics, this system is nowhere near a "suspension system." However, there is very little shell penetration with only one screw-per-lug, and the lugs are very low-mass. That steel plate will give me a good place to mount the INDe "tuned flex" mounts without drilling the shell.

    One unfortunate quirk of the design is that two lugs are intentionally "shallow" to allow the plate to sit under them without the tuning rods being "out of round" relative to a hoop. This means I'd be replacing the two "mount lugs" with "standard lugs" if I were to convert to RIMS or any other system. Fortunately, I have ten of those on-hand, and I think I have a winner with the INDe mounts.

    Yes, since some of you will likely ask, the snare and the low toms intentionally "tilt away from me," and the small toms are just about totally flat. I am a fan of the mechanics/philosophies of both Jojo Mayer and Keith Carlock. Those drum angles allow a perpendicular strike to the surface when my hands and arms are relaxed...looking for zero-tension playing and minimum rebound energy loss.

    Cymbals are almost all Paiste PST7, with the exception of a first-generation Paiste Alpha splash. Very happy with these after being a 2002 and Signature player back in the day.

    Rack started as two Alesis DM-10 racks, cut and modified/expanded with some Gibraltar parts as needed. Outside of being far less expensive than starting with Gibraltar, this setup had a few advantages...
    - Tubes were thinner-walled/lighter...not an issue when all the load on the pipes is on short vertical sections
    - Alesis T-joints are lighter and are not metal...meaning they transfer less vibration
    - Alesis T-joints have a "notch guide" inside of them that fits in (surprise) notches on the tubing, which means no tubes rolling in their clamps, and therefore no need for memory locks on horizontal spans
    Name:  16-inch mount.jpg
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Size:  61.7 KB

  7. Registered User

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    I feel like there's a solution here by using the Ludwig Atlas mounts. Assuming they isolate better than the Mapex mount. I'd recommend using two arms to support the 16".

  8. Registered User

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    Quote Originally Posted by melvinspeed View Post
    I feel like there's a solution here by using the Ludwig Atlas mounts. Assuming they isolate better than the Mapex mount. I'd recommend using two arms to support the 16".
    Atlas mounts use 2 screws. Mapex lugs use 1 screw.

  9. 2-time PDF FFL CHAMP

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    Quote Originally Posted by dingerjunkie View Post
    Since you have all been very helpful with input and opinions, the least I can do is show you the current-state on the kit and the "before" version of the mounts I'll be upgrading this afternoon.

    So, this is the used M-Birch kit I picked up. It has some "battle scars", and the stock hoops must have been chewed by the previous owner, since he put Tama AccuTune hoops on. I actually like that change. Snare is a Yamaha Stage Custom Steel 6.5 that I got at a ridiculously good deal.

    As you can see in the tom-mount pics, this system is nowhere near a "suspension system." However, there is very little shell penetration with only one screw-per-lug, and the lugs are very low-mass. That steel plate will give me a good place to mount the INDe "tuned flex" mounts without drilling the shell.

    One unfortunate quirk of the design is that two lugs are intentionally "shallow" to allow the plate to sit under them without the tuning rods being "out of round" relative to a hoop. This means I'd be replacing the two "mount lugs" with "standard lugs" if I were to convert to RIMS or any other system. Fortunately, I have ten of those on-hand, and I think I have a winner with the INDe mounts.

    Yes, since some of you will likely ask, the snare and the low toms intentionally "tilt away from me," and the small toms are just about totally flat. I am a fan of the mechanics/philosophies of both Jojo Mayer and Keith Carlock. Those drum angles allow a perpendicular strike to the surface when my hands and arms are relaxed...looking for zero-tension playing and minimum rebound energy loss.

    Cymbals are almost all Paiste PST7, with the exception of a first-generation Paiste Alpha splash. Very happy with these after being a 2002 and Signature player back in the day.

    Rack started as two Alesis DM-10 racks, cut and modified/expanded with some Gibraltar parts as needed. Outside of being far less expensive than starting with Gibraltar, this setup had a few advantages...
    - Tubes were thinner-walled/lighter...not an issue when all the load on the pipes is on short vertical sections
    - Alesis T-joints are lighter and are not metal...meaning they transfer less vibration
    - Alesis T-joints have a "notch guide" inside of them that fits in (surprise) notches on the tubing, which means no tubes rolling in their clamps, and therefore no need for memory locks on horizontal spans
    Name:  16-inch mount.jpg
Views: 83
Size:  52.0 KBName:  Kit rear view.jpg
Views: 83
Size:  61.7 KB
    Beautiful kit and clean set-up, friend! Thanks for sharing.

    And no worries about the snare being tilted away or anything like that, it's all personal preference. I assume you play traditional grip though? I tend to notice most traditional grip players have their snare tilted away from a mechanics standpoint like you mentioned.

    You definitely put a lot of thought into the equipment and layout to reach your desired destination.
    22x18 (2) | 10x7 | 12x8 | 16x16 | 18x16

    22x18 (2) | 10x8 | 12x9 | 14x11 | 16x13

    Quote Originally Posted by Maark View Post
    What happens when the Unstoppable Banhammer meets the Immovable Alan12? I think the universe would implode.
    Quote Originally Posted by space jeff View Post
    yeah, but I'm the Jeff that Jeff talks about when he talks about "the Jeff" to other Jeffs.

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