Repairing Rogers B&B Lugs

Discussion in 'Resto and Rehab tips' started by tommykat1, Apr 16, 2012.

  1. tommykat1

    tommykat1 DFO Master

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    Yes, B&B lugs can be repaired. And since replacements are expensive and virtually unobtainium, this may be the way to go for many.

    The lugs in the following photos were, for the most part, badly cracked and were repaired for two Rogers cocktail drum outfits. One kit I play regularly was finished in February, 2008. The kit has been stored under tension since then. After four years, there have been no issues.

    The process is somewhat arduous but worth the effort. Lugs with broken tabs will work, as long as at least half the tab is intact. It's a three step process.

    Here's what you need:

    > 5/8" x 24 #10 zinc plated machine screws and nuts. These are used for the lugs with broken tabs.
    > Propoxy20 Steel Epoxy Putty
    > JB Weld (Quick Dry)
    > Lacquer thinner or acetone (lacquer thinner preferred)
    > Razor blade
    > Grinder or metal file
    > An old B&B lug nut and tension rod. These are used together as a stencil/embossing tool.

    WARNING! Lacquer Thinner and Acetone are very powerful chemicals. They'll melt some plastics they touch, they are highly flammable, they stink to high heaven, and the fumes are dangerous to your lungs, and brain cells! What's more, they're not good for your hands, either. Work in a well ventilated area! You will use these to clean the putty off of the outside of the lugs.

    First thing to do is thoroughly clean the lugs inside and out with lacquer thinner. You'll need to be sure that no oil or dirt is present, as that will inhibit the Propoxy from bonding.

    Step One: Work the Propoxy20 putty into a lug, primarily the corners, and a thin layer through the middle. Use an extra lug nut and tensioner as a stenciling or embossing tool (see below). This tool is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT, as you have to be sure that the lug nut and spring fit properly in place after the putty dries. Stenciling inside the lug end creates a shouldered, reinforced bearing area to left and right of the lug nut when it's fitted in place on assembly. This is what strengthens the original design.

    Remember that the amount of putty to use is thicker at the four corners of the lug, and is just a light coating through the center of the lug where the spring floats. TIP: the Propoxy20 likes to stick to your fingers as much as it does the brass. Use lacquer thinner to "model" the putty, like the way you use water to model clay. (Wear gloves, of course!)

    Here's a repairable lug, my first attempt at a the lug nut stencil or embossing tool, a replacement screw and a ground hex nut. Yes, sometimes the hex nuts need to be altered because of the extremely tight tolerances between the lug nut and tab. Note that I pushed a wad of duct tape through the lug nut to create the embossing tool (again, my first try, later replaced with a better version). This serves two purposes. (1) It acts as a handle and also helps push excess putty out of the lug hole; (2) It protects the lug nut threads so that it doesn't become worthless.

    [​IMG]

    Side note: I later dumped the use of the duct tape embossing tool method, and instead sacrificed a lugnut and tension rod. I cold welded a hex nut to the end of the lug nut, thereby creating a tool that would both stencil the shouldered area where the hole is, and also emboss a slot at the other end of a single-hole B&B lug to allow the spring to seat.

    Note that what you see below is the assembled tool. To use the tool, you unthread the lugnut first, so now the tool is in two pieces. (1) Push a wad of putty into the lug, which will temporarily cover the tensioner hole. (2) Push the tensioner through the hole from the outside, forcing the putty out of the way. (3) Thread the lugnut part of the tool onto the tensioner from the inside of the lug. Pull the lugnut back into its normal working position, as it would sit in a functioning lug. This will force the putty out of the way of the path of the lugnut. (3) Wiggle and twist the lugnut left and right and ram it back and forth to create a path and loose seat for the permanent lugnut to rest after the putty has dried.
    [​IMG]

    View after step 1, before cementing the nut above the tab of a badly cracked lug:

    [​IMG]

    Step two: For lugs with broken tabs, you'll need the 5/8" x 24 #10 machine screws and a matching nut to replace the 1/2" x 24 screws. Use JB Weld to fasten the nut in place above the broken tab. The JB Weld is gooier than the steel putty and encircles the nut more efficiently. Use a screw to align everything properly as the assembly dries.

    Step Three: Use more epoxy putty to seal in the nut to the shell, which also adds additional strength. Add even more putty (as shown) to reinforce the tabs.

    While the putty is drying (about 20 minutes) use a razor blade to scrape the material flat and flush with the lug edges. To me, this was the most fun part because, at this point, the lug looks and feels hefty, strong and svelte--if not a bit of an ugly duckling inside!

    IMPORTANT! Between all steps, you want to check that the lug nuts and springs assemble properly...or the lug is toast.

    Two finished lugs. The lighter gray area shows where the razor blade smoothed the surface:

    [​IMG]

    When you're done, viewing from the outside, it's nearly impossible to see the old cracks. I believe that the lugs are stronger this way than as factory originals. I even reinforced the good lugs prior to rebuilding the drums. I hesitated at this point, but thought, screw it, I want to play these babies, and I don't want a lug snapping off when I need it most.

    Here are some samples of the finished product:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here are some perfectly good "peanut" B&B lugs that I strengthened so the drums could be played reliably:

    [​IMG]


    Hope this method works for you as it did for me!
     
  2. atomicdave

    atomicdave DFO Master

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    WOW! Thanks!!! :occasion5: I was looking for a different topic and came across this....I think I searched it before and didnt see this. I had similar process in mind but you took it to the extreme. Cant wait to do my first b&b lug repairs!
     
  3. JDZ

    JDZ Asst. Manager, rhythm section

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    So , Tommy, have you ever put the lugs to the test by placing them in high tension? Something like snare drum tension.

    Thanks in advance,
    Dave
     
  4. amosguy

    amosguy DFO Master

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    He has used them on his Stew Magoo c0cktail set for 5 years I think - snare included.
     
  5. tommykat1

    tommykat1 DFO Master

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    Dave, yes, as Amos mentioned, I repaired my 1960 B&B Parklane cocktail outfit with this method over 5 years ago. I store it under tension, and play it regularly. The 5" Holiday snare is at 88/batter and 84/reso on the Drum Dial, which is very tight. No issues whatsoever. If you visit the Rogers Owners Forum, you can read the history, as I've been adding a post every year on the anniversary of the completion.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Red Martin

    Red Martin New Member

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    Hi Tommy!
    With big interest I read your thread (here and on the original forum) and that it holds up that long now.
    I got the same ahead as JP is no option for me. And congratulations to the kit in general. I really love that!

    Two questions:
    - As per your descriptions you have not worked on the "crack line" itself before working with the putty, right?
    So the crack line will disappear when everything is ready..?
    - You have not placed putty on the "Tension rod"-side as otherwise you can't get your stencil tool out and place the
    original nut in when putty is dry, right? So putty will "only" be on the long sides of the lug (incl. tab side)?

    Thanks and best regards from Germany,
    Martin
     
  7. NoBuddyRich

    NoBuddyRich Very well Known Member

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    What a great Kit! Work of art. Congratulations
     
  8. tommykat1

    tommykat1 DFO Master

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    Re the "crack line:" No, I don't do anything about the cracks. Simply work the putty into the inside of the lug, and, using the extrusion tool, force the excess putty to extrude out the hole. Make sure you wiggle the tool around somewhat to give room for the permanent lug nut o move a little. This is necessary to easily line up the tensioner with nut when fastening the drum head, ie, the nut needs to swivel slightly.

    Re your second question, yes, most certainly there is putty on the end of the lug where the tension rod attaches. The emobossing/extrusion tool consists of a tensioner and a lugnut. The lugnut is removable so, (1), you push a wad of putty into the lug, which will temporarily cover the tensioner hole. (2) Push the tensioner through the hole from the outside, forcing the putty out of the way. (3) assemble the lugnut part of the tool and pull the lugnut back into its normal working position, as it would be in a functioning lug. This will force the putty out of the way of the path of the lugnut. (3) Wiggle the lugnut and ram it back and forth to create a path for the permanent lugnut on reassembly, after the putty has dried.

    You have about 20 minutes to get this done. There is is plenty of time, including cleanup with lacquer thinner and scraping smooth with the razor blade. After the putty dries, it is as hard as steel; there is no leeway here. It will be impossible to work with, without a hammer and chisel.

    (Note: I realize that my instructions weren't clear here, so I amended them. Thanks for pointing this out.)

    Hope this helps.

    BTW, my completed set is one month away from six years of use. I now use the snare in my rehearsal room, so it gets played almost daily. There are NO issues.
     
  9. Red Martin

    Red Martin New Member

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    Hi Tommy,
    thanks so much for your further explanation!!!!
    Now it seems very clear to me and I will try it the next days. :)
     
  10. Red Martin

    Red Martin New Member

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    Yesterday I tried my first 3 lugs (started with one that will not necessarily be used). Will try the next on weekend when new putty arrives..

    Just for those, who don`t want to repair them on their own and don`t want that JP replacements,
    here are two sources I found who will repair them. I contacted the second one but they won`t send overseas.. So I just share these adresse, but have not any experience with them myself.

    http://nelsondrumcraft.blogspot.de/2010/12/new-service-rogers-bread-and-butter-lug.html

    http://drumfox.com/Drum_parts_and_stands.html
     
  11. TwisterUp

    TwisterUp Well-Known Member

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    I can't wait to try this on my busted-up B&Bs. Only problem is that the kit I got has 4 lugs completely missing. Anyone know of any cost effective sources for lugs (cracked or not)?
     
  12. tommykat1

    tommykat1 DFO Master

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    Forum member Rogersoholic is Drumfox.com (above link). He likely has cracked lugs for sale. Also forum member Allen Fogel has uncracked lugs available.
     
  13. tommykat1

    tommykat1 DFO Master

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    BTW, it has now been six years (2/14) on my B&B repairs. Always stored under tension, no issues. Yeah!
     
  14. johnny_g

    johnny_g Well-Known Member

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    :notworthy: Best explaination ever. Many thanks, J
     
  15. Red Martin

    Red Martin New Member

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    My repair (done as per instruction and tips above) also holds up until now. In two days my first gig with it. Really lookin` forward!
    Thanks again Tommy for sharing this value help!!!
     
  16. FFR428

    FFR428 Very well Known Member

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    Tommy thanks for the repair guide. I just started these repairs on a bunch of cracked BnB lugs. My first was a real bad lug as practice. It was one if I screwed up it would be ok. But it was to serve as a practice test. It came out very well and can now be used! I could not find the Propoxy 20 local here. So I tried a JB weld product called "SteelStik" it's a steel reinforced epoxy putty. Worked very very well. I used a bit too much but will correct this on the others. Just wanted to thank you for the great tips! Very helpful information.
     
  17. tommykat1

    tommykat1 DFO Master

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    That's great! I'm sure that "SteelStik" is the same thing. The Propoxy epoxy putty idea is pretty well known now, with a lot of other brands weighing in. I'm not even sure which company invented it. When I decided to take the plunge 6 years ago, I was sold on ProPoxy at a high end hardware store, so that's the brand I describe. I've also tried others and they appear to be the same product.
     
  18. tommykat1

    tommykat1 DFO Master

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    UPDATE: seven years on the B&B repair, no issues. I'm gigging this very regularly again in a cool little three piece dinner band. And, as always, stored under tension, ready to play.

    01 Drums & Stage 3 - Not Cropped.jpg
    02 Drums & Stage Close In.jpg
     
  19. tommykat1

    tommykat1 DFO Master

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    Bump! Eight years on the repaired/reinforced B&B lugs with zero issues. I still gig this kit regularly--at least twice a month. All drums stored under tension. Here's a gig from a few weeks ago.

    Stage View.jpg
    Players View.jpg
    Audience.jpg
     
  20. Trev

    Trev Very well Known Member

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    Great stuff! Man, it's an education and a half on this forum. Thanks tommy!
     

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