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Tuning/Muffling Snare Drums

 
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Matinee Idyll (129)



Joined: 27 Jun 2007

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Location: Victoria, Australia

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2007 3:44 am    Post subject: Tuning/Muffling Snare Drums If a post contains some illegal issues you may abuse on it - just click Abuse and fill the form Reply with quote

Ahoi! Please help - it resonates to all hell - hit it once and my ears ring for hours. I want kind of a... Michael Giles snare sound. Do I need to tighten the bottom skin as much as I tighten the top one (the one I hit)?

How can I make it... quieter?
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halleluwah



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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2007 5:48 am    Post subject: If a post contains some illegal issues you may abuse on it - just click Abuse and fill the form Reply with quote

I'm not sure much about the actual tuning issues themselves (I'm not a drummer), but there are some tricks I've used before when recording drummers in order to muffle the volume just a bit. You can use tape to affix something to the top head of your drum, depending on how much you want it muted (at the Nova Heat recording sessions, we taped a wallet to the top of the snare; it's something I read that Alex Van Halen used to do). Or there are also little plastic rings that you can get at most music stores that you put on top of your drums to mute them too.
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Jason Penick



Joined: 27 Jun 2007

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Location: North Oakland

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2007 7:00 am    Post subject: If a post contains some illegal issues you may abuse on it - just click Abuse and fill the form Reply with quote

You can always stuff a small pillow inside the drum as well.
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Josh Hoisington



Joined: 27 Jun 2007

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2007 9:32 pm    Post subject: If a post contains some illegal issues you may abuse on it - just click Abuse and fill the form Reply with quote

You can't put a pillow inside a snare. Well you could, but then it wouldn't really be a snare drum anymore.

How good of an instrument is it? If it's cheap, I would go about muffling it slightly differently.

Either way, you could definitely get away with tightening the heads more, but of course that raises the pitch. And yes, the bottom head should probably be tighter than the top, possibly by some ways.

I've had pretty good success with the wallet taped to the top head. I think it's a bit cumbersome and probably kills more overtones than I'd care to, but it's cheaper than the alternative.

I think the best place to start is buy some "moongel", from what I've heard, it works really well, and you don't need a lot of it covering up the head.

You could also try laying a tea towel over the entire head of the snare a la Ringo.
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alan



Joined: 27 Jun 2007

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Location: London

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2007 9:40 pm    Post subject: If a post contains some illegal issues you may abuse on it - just click Abuse and fill the form Reply with quote

I'm going back a long time here but I think I used to use Gaffa tape - a large cross on the bottom skin. You also need to make sure the snare itself is not too loose.

But at the end of the day a drum is there to make a lot of noise! Putting a pillow in it would make it sound awful.

Just hit it more softly!
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Fancy Lad
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Joined: 27 Jun 2007

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2007 3:17 am    Post subject: If a post contains some illegal issues you may abuse on it - just click Abuse and fill the form Reply with quote

Put your drums at the bottom of an empty swimming pool. Then fill the pool with water. That should dampen the sound somewhat.
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