Drum Domains
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 36

Thread: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

  1. #1

    User Info Menu

    Default Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I thought I would start a thread to discuss steel-shelled snare drums and the fact that they seem to get a bit of a bad rap. I've steered clear of them since I started drumming in 2003 - forums and other reviews tend regard them in a somewhat negative light - but recently I picked up a 14x6 steel-shelled Pork Pie Little Squealer, flat black, and it has caused me to re-think what I thought I knew about steel-shelled snare drums.

    I bought the Little Squealer because it was about as cheap as I've ever seen it, and to that end, I couldn't even buy the parts for what I paid, and that doesn't include the heads or the shell! The whole point though was that I planned to rob the hardware off of the shell and put it on a Keller shell. Then I started fiddling with it. Now that I have it dialed in, I've quickly become quite taken with it.

    Granted, it is loud, but I don't think it's overly harsh in the least, and it sounds GOOD, even with the stock heads and snare wires.

    So - thoughts?
    Your = possessive - your stuff, your dog, your car, etc
    You're = you are - a contraction.

    Learn it. Love it.

  2. #2

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I think steel snares get a bad rap cause they come with the starter kits. But I'd totally rather have a steel snare than matching wood snare. I like steel snares. I also like the Tama Metalworks line of drums. To me, steel is one of the brightest sounding materials for snare drums, and I enjoy a bright, high pitched snare drum.
    "The chances of being attacked and killed by a terrorist are less than the chances of being attacked and killed by your own heart"
    Carrying the message to Garcia. Today and everyday.
    Temple Beth Snare Buzz-Head Rabbi

  3. #3

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by trickg View Post
    I thought I would start a thread to discuss steel-shelled snare drums and the fact that they seem to get a bit of a bad rap. I've steered clear of them since I started drumming in 2003 - forums and other reviews tend regard them in a somewhat negative light - but recently I picked up a 14x6 steel-shelled Pork Pie Little Squealer, flat black, and it has caused me to re-think what I thought I knew about steel-shelled snare drums.

    I bought the Little Squealer because it was about as cheap as I've ever seen it, and to that end, I couldn't even buy the parts for what I paid, and that doesn't include the heads or the shell! The whole point though was that I planned to rob the hardware off of the shell and put it on a Keller shell. Then I started fiddling with it. Now that I have it dialed in, I've quickly become quite taken with it.

    Granted, it is loud, but I don't think it's overly harsh in the least, and it sounds GOOD, even with the stock heads and snare wires.

    So - thoughts?
    I've never thought of putting another drum's hardware on a Keller Shell. I might have to look into that... Eventually.

    I think it depends on what you play, really. I have no problem with steel snares, but I also need it to cut through whereas a wood snare would have less cut and prescence. Honestly if I were to tell you that steel snares were absolutely horrible and that nobody should use them, then i'd be a liar.
    So itchie, how did the kick sound?
    Quote Originally Posted by itchie
    like godzilla humping a mountain
    Quote Originally Posted by CycleDude View Post
    You, my friend, owe me a keyboard... I just spit coffee all over mine...
    Get counted! http://www.drumchat.com/showthread.p...ers-12079.html

    Check it.
    http://www.reverbnation.com/allihave

  4. #4

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I'll tell you what - this Pork Pie Little Sqealer is a sweet drum, and honestly, it's not terribly bright - it has a brighter after-ring, but otherwise it's a very full sound with a decent amount of body. It may only have 8 lugs, but I've never been convinced that 10 lugs are actually "better" than 8.
    Your = possessive - your stuff, your dog, your car, etc
    You're = you are - a contraction.

    Learn it. Love it.

  5. #5

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I saw that drum as the "Stupid Deal of the Day" last week for $90. I think that the main reason that steel snares get a bad rep isn't just that they often come with stater sets, it's the over ring. Lots of drummers hate resonance when they first start playing and expect to hear that dry compressed sound sound from their favorite recordings. However, when you've got them dialed in, that ring can sound great.
    Mmm... Saturns.

  6. #6

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by weezy View Post
    I saw that drum as the "Stupid Deal of the Day" last week for $90. I think that the main reason that steel snares get a bad rep isn't just that they often come with stater sets, it's the over ring. Lots of drummers hate resonance when they first start playing and expect to hear that dry compressed sound sound from their favorite recordings. However, when you've got them dialed in, that ring can sound great.
    That's the one - I added up the cost of hardware for a similar drum from an online supplier, and came up with between $120 and $130, depending on the lug!
    Your = possessive - your stuff, your dog, your car, etc
    You're = you are - a contraction.

    Learn it. Love it.

  7. #7

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    Steel snares are awesome, and some time I will own one

  8. #8

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I've had them, a 1983 Tama Mastercraft 6.5x14 and a Tama Metalworks 5.5x14. They were both great drums, even though I don't have them anymore. Personally I found that I don't love the signature "ring" of a steel snare, plus I wanted to try out different materials. I still have 2 birch snares, but right now I'm loving my COB Tama Stewart Copeland Sig Snare.

    I don't think there's anything wrong with a nice steel snare if you like the sound. I've thought about getting another one. Having owned a bunch of different materials now, I think I might get into it again.
    Jesse

    1986 Tama Crestar - Lacquered Piano White
    2016 Roland TD-25K
    2015 Tama Starclassic B/B - Indigo Blue Sparkle

  9. #9

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    My 5"x14" Olympic Premier steel snare. This is my only steel snare and it really kicks butt. You can lay in to a heavy rock groove with a rim shot back beat and it will cut right through. I have used it on a jazz gig too. This was a student model. Sort of Premiers answer to Ludwigs Acrolite. It is also a heavy drum which I actually like. Very solid.
    Ludwig Classic Maple vintage 1980 Silver Sparkle
    Ludwig Classic Maple vintage 1960 Gold Sparkle
    Ludwig Classic Maple vintage 1968 Champagne Sparkle
    Premier Resonators vintage 70's Polychromatic Red
    Slingerland 60's Vintage. Vintage Sky Blue Pearl
    Slingerland 1972 "Avante" Red
    Camco Chanute vintage. 1973 Silver Sparkle
    Gretsch Catalina Jazz. Blue Pearl
    Sonor Safari. Black Galaxy
    Rogers Londoner V vintage. 1977 Silver Mist
    Rogers Script Badge 9/72 1972 Black Nitro
    Beverley of England 4 piece vintage. Red
    Stewart 1966 Black Diamond Pearl MIJ
    Vintage Paiste 2002
    Vintage Avedis Zildjian

  10. #10
    ThePloughman Guest

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I own 4..... 5x14 Rogers Chrome over Steel SuperTen snare drums, 1973, 1976, 1976, 1980. Soon I will own a fifth COS SuperTen, this one will be a 6.5x14 from 1980.

    These are quality, professional level, high end snare drums. There is nothing cheap about them. And... they sound awesome. Ten Lugs, very sensitive, extremely loud.

    As has been previously posted, steel shelled drums get a bad rap mainly because many peoples experience with steel shells is on the bottom end of cheap.

  11. #11

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    From what I can see, there is nothing cheap about the one I picked up, at least not in terms of the materials it's made from. The drum is heavy and solid, and the throw is surprisingly good considering the price point. I've seen cheaper throws on more expensive drums, that's for sure. So really the places where they cut corners - the butt, (stamped sheet metal) the finish, (flat black paint) and the snare wires, which are just cheap snappy snares. I'll put some Blasters on this at some point. Even the heads, which are inexpensive logo heads, are made by Remo - probably the equivalent of ProTones, but it doesn't seem to matter too much.

    People mention the signature steel ringiness, but that can be attenuated quite a bit with some muffling.

    That brings us to another snare which seems to be gaining in popularity again recently, the Chad Smith signature snare drum - 5x14 steel shell with 10 lugs.
    Your = possessive - your stuff, your dog, your car, etc
    You're = you are - a contraction.

    Learn it. Love it.

  12. #12

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I have a 6 x 13 Dunnett stainless steel snare, and I have the hardest time getting a sound I'm happy with. It's an awesome, hand-made drum. Brilliant craftsmanship, really. It's a heavy hunkofmetal that's as loud as a gun. I got it used, but when it was new it was quite expensive. It was the drum Joey Jordison used and the drum Pearl copied for his original signature model.

    It has a 40 strand snare wires, with an Ambassador snare underneath. I'm still in the process of finding the right head and tuning combination for it. My preference is a undampened, coated G1. That combo is on nearly all of my other snares with great results. I've put the coated G1 on it, but it was to pang-ey. I tried a EC reverse dot, but that was not at all right, and now I have a clear G-plus, which was alright, for a while. But I'm still not pleased. I will not give up though.
    Last edited by Rob on Drums; 01-19-2012 at 11:09 PM.
    "The kiosk in my temporal lobe is shaped like Rosalynn Carter."

    http://www.facebook.com/robert.romeo
    Noble & Cooley Drums
    Sabian Cymbals
    Evans Heads
    DW Pedals and Hardware

  13. #13
    dave0549jv Guest

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I was looking back at some recordings I made with my old exports the other day, and I was kinda surprised at how good the old steel shell sounded. I kinda wish i still had it.

  14. #14

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I really want that red steel snare from yamaha. It's steel, and it looks cool. I wonder if anyone makes Iron snare drums.
    "The chances of being attacked and killed by a terrorist are less than the chances of being attacked and killed by your own heart"
    Carrying the message to Garcia. Today and everyday.
    Temple Beth Snare Buzz-Head Rabbi

  15. #15

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I'm not sure that I would want an iron shell. Wouldn't it be very prone to rusting?
    Your = possessive - your stuff, your dog, your car, etc
    You're = you are - a contraction.

    Learn it. Love it.

  16. #16

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    Me? I love any snare with a bit of ring in it. Be it steel, aluminium, chrome over brass, etc. Even wood snares. Most of my snares have a certain amount of ring in them, just not too much. Only my Pearl Export 14" x 6.5" and my 1960's Premier chrome-over-brass I've deliberately tuned a little lower and muffled a bit for recording. If and when I decide to get a 14" x 8" (or deeper) wood snare, I would do the same, just to have another fat snare sound.

    But my Tama 12" x 4" Nickelworks Steel Soprano is nice, snappy and a little ringy, and that's exactly how I like it. Same with my Starclassic Maple 13" x 5.5" ("The Workhorse") and Pearl 13" x 3" piccolo snares, even though they're wood, they still crank. My Roger's 14"x 5.5" chrome over brass snare is also nice and snappy. Same with my similar sized Drouyn, which has a Ludwig Supraphonic shell as it's basis. And as for my little 8" x 6" Pansini Acrylic Custom Efx Snare? Not just cranking, it's biscuit tin!
    "...it's the Paradigm Of The Cosmos!" Stewart Copeland on Youtube

    668: The Number Of The Guy Next Door To The Beast.

    "A random act of kindness; it keeps my heart in shape!" - Late8

  17. #17

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    Quote Originally Posted by trickg View Post
    I'm not sure that I would want an iron shell. Wouldn't it be very prone to rusting?
    Maybe, but unless you left it in the ocean, wouldn't really be much more than slight surface rust. After a few years.

    Oh man, that brushed iron snare is a beauty.
    Last edited by Kazaamski; 01-17-2012 at 12:52 AM.
    "The chances of being attacked and killed by a terrorist are less than the chances of being attacked and killed by your own heart"
    Carrying the message to Garcia. Today and everyday.
    Temple Beth Snare Buzz-Head Rabbi

  18. #18

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I have a Mapex Black Panther 14" x 6 1/2" stainless steel snare. The thing is a monster. Really loud. Cuts through everything.

    Custom Classic Pro Maple 6
    8",10",12",13" Mounted Toms
    (2)14",16" Floor Toms
    22" x 18" Kick
    6",8",10" Roto Toms
    14" x 6.5" Mapex Black Panther Snare
    13" x 3" Pearl Piccolo Snare
    Sabian: 13" Paragon Hats
    14" HH X Hats
    22" Paragon Ride
    (2) 16" Paragon Crashes
    20" Paragon Crash
    18" Paragon Crash
    20" Paragon Small Flange China
    19" Paragon China
    Wuhan:20"with gingles
    8",10" Splash
    Roc N Soc Lunar
    DW 8002B Pedals
    Tambourine
    Cowbell
    Sabian Squad






    C C Militia

  19. #19

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    My Pearl World series 14x6 steel snare is a really nice drum. It definitely cuts, it's sensitive, it's loud, and I love how it has an internal muffler, so I don't have to stick anything to the batter head.
    - Zack

  20. #20

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I sold my very first kit, a beginner Peace kit, to my school after I bought the export. It had a steel snare which I eventually tuned up and really made it sound good. For that reason, I kinda wish I didn't sell it. That snare sounded that awesome. I've been tossing up whether to pick up an old steel Pearl/Tama snare to add to my arsenal for ages
    Pdp LXE | Pearl ELX Export

    'Give me your fingernails, oh look, the moon' - Todd Sucherman.

  21. #21

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I think they're great for getting certain sounds that wood just simply can not. They have a kind of 'larger than life' feel to them due to the ringy echo characteristic associated with metallic shells. But aside from being metal and bearing that factor, steel is classified as bright toned, brass is warm toned, and copper is dark toned. Keep this in mind should you be interested in picking up any type of metal snare. Wood species of drums are very much the same, the difference being that wood has a different type of overtone than metal does- but both have the potential to be ringy.

    [Metal family]
    Steel - bright
    Brass - warm
    Copper - dark

    [Wood family]
    Birch - bright
    Maple - warm
    Mahogany - dark
    Last edited by Russ; 01-18-2012 at 11:04 AM.
    ZildjianLeague/LP/Aquarian/Mapex/Pearl
    Snares: 4
    RIP- Frank, Wolvie, Les Paul
    Quote Originally Posted by Pearl MCX Man View Post
    I wish I was your wife
    Quote Originally Posted by amdrummer View Post
    if double bass is cheating then so is using two sticks

    Forum Rules
    DrumBum
    No metronome?
    The Rudiments

  22. #22

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I think at least one steel shell should be in your snare arsenal. The last one I got was a 6 1/2 x 14 Premier older P badge made in England 8 lug. It's rather cheap but I like it a lot. the weight of it is nice too (light). Will probably use it for gigs which is why I bought it.

    Problems are one of the throw off nuts and washer on the inside needs some loctite, it loosens up. Also need to get lug locks because the one tension rod at point of stick contact needs to be tightened after every song.

    You can get them sounding pretty good (the cheapo's) just expect to tinker a lot or like to.
    RED DIRT MOUNTAIN
    UFiP TAMAHA Zildjian REGAL TiP

  23. #23

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    Steel snares, like any other material, can be used to produce good and bad snares. The quality of the shell, hardware and hoops all make a huge difference.

    As far as a bad rap, I think it has to do with the fact that most student starter snare packages (Pearl, CB, Ludwig...) come with a steel snare. Likewise with many low-end shell packs. It gives the perception a steel snare is of low quality.

    I've personally got two steel snares, and they couldn't be more different:

    14x5.5 Yamaha Jimmy Chamberlin Sig Snare - Thin, beaded and powder coated shell; lacks body and depth, but has a monster ring with almost a "conchy" sound to it. It is extremely sensitive and the backbeat really cuts through the rest of the music.

    14x6.5 DW 3mm Cast Steel Prototype - First run DW, heavy shelled steel snare. Deep and full, yet the crack and overtones are distinctively metallic. This is a great all-purpose snare for mid to heavier music: rock, blues, country.

    IMO, a well built steel snare can, and when tuned properly, will sound great. I've found my two prefer single ply heads that keep them open. However, like most other metals (brass/bronze, copper...) the thickness of the shell makes a huge difference in the sound, moreso than even the material type I believe. Thick shells provide body and crack, wheras the thinner shells accentuate the overtones of the drum.

  24. #24

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I think a steel shell snare can sound really good. About 5 years ago, a music store in my hometown brought in a whole bunch of those Ludwig steel shell Rocker snares (14 X 5 1/2) and were selling them for either $89 or $99 dollars. I grabbed one thinking "Well, for $90-100 this should be ok. When I got it home and tried it out...wow! This thing sounded like a gunshot! Huge crack with very little ring, which is odd because the stock head was an Evans G1 coated. Best $100 I ever spent.

    Of course, I was drooling over that $90 Pork Pie snare... I hate being broke!
    A repo man spends his life getting into tense situations.

    Premier Cabria Jazz: 10/12/14/20
    Mapex Dillinger Snare
    Sabian:
    AA 14" Regular Hats
    AAX 18" X-Plosion Crash
    AAX 20" Studio Ride
    HHX 18" X-Plosion Crash
    Paragon 19" Chinese
    Evans
    Vater Stewart Copeland Drumsticks

  25. #25

    User Info Menu

    Default Re: Steel Snares - Unfairly Judged?

    I had a steel snare with my Tama Rockstar kit. It was very ringy with the stock head. I managed to dial it in to my liking using a strip of thin material to muffle it a bit. Granted I didn't know much about tuning when I was a teenager.
    DW Performance Series
    Peavey Radial Pro RBS-1
    Roland TDW-20

    Gibraltar rack system
    Sabian AA/AAX/HHX/Vault
    Tama pedals

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •