Removing a Ludwig cortex finish

Discussion in 'Resto and Rehab tips' started by XVIII Airborne, Apr 28, 2016.

  1. TheElectricCompany

    TheElectricCompany Very well Known Member

    Likes Received:
    May 20, 2016
    I just bought a 24x14 that I'm going to remove the cortex wrap from. I don't have any shells to practice on and I want to get this right the first time, so I've got some questions for y'all.

    1. What is a good temperature to use? I see a lot of heat guns with two temperature settings, usually around 450 degrees and 1000 degrees. What would be too hot and what wouldn't be hot enough?

    2. Are regular work gloves good enough for this, or would you recommend gloves rated for heat resistance?

    3. What sort of set up do you use to keep the drum stable?

    4. Which works better, a flexible or stiff putty knife?

    5. Do you peel the cortex back or just work the knife under a portion until it tears? I imagine peeling could easily damage the outer ply.

    6. Does the wrap hold heat well, or will you need to work the knife while applying heat?

    I really appreciate any insight you guys have!
  2. John R.

    John R. New Member

    Likes Received:
    Jan 20, 2014
    Lift the overlap wrap then go the other,way removing the wrap in the same direction as it was installed. Lots of heat and patience as others have noted.
    The older drums have the wrap in the scarf joint making complete wrap removal next to impossible
  3. Uunderhill

    Uunderhill Well-Known Member

    Likes Received:
    Jun 3, 2012
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    I've done it - not fun.

    As recommended many times here use a paint strip gun - but I would add, use a metal paint scraper.

    While applying heat, wiggle the paint scraper back and forth between the cortex and outer veneer.

    Keep telling yourself you get to put on green sparkle when you're finished.

    The 18 x 20 " bass drum I refinished was originally covered in Walnut "cortex."

    The picture came out a bit large.


Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.