Roto Toms

Discussion in 'General' started by iflog, Nov 9, 2018.

  1. iflog

    iflog Well-Known Member

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    This should be good. I recently bought a set of Remo Roto Toms just to add something to my set. Its a home set. Don't play anywhere. Just for my enjoyment. They are the 6'', 8'', 10'' set. My drums are Ludwigs. I have 8'', 10", 12", 14" and 16" toms. I use a TuneBot and have my toms set to keys by their standards and they sound fantastic. The 8" is E. The 10" is C and the 12" is G. I adjusted the RotoToms by ear and then set the TuneBot on them. Funny as heck but they are E, C, G, same as my toms (just higher pitched obviously). Should I keep the RotoToms to those same keys as the toms or not?
     
  2. lrod1707

    lrod1707 Well-Known Member

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    Hi, I too have Ludwig's which I just got and added roto toms. I use a drum dial to get a general idea of my tuning then the rest is done by ear. I have not done what you did with the roto toms but it's interesting. As a long time user of roto toms, I always viewed roto toms as something you twist to your liking depending what tuning you have on your main drums. I have never tuned them to any specific notes. I think the best thing is to experiment with what you hear. Different sounds for different situations. Off topic: That little center metal block in the roto tom stand stinks. The roto's always eventually tilt to one side. It's impossible to tighten it completely. If it's happening to yours and you find a fix, please post it. I'm looking for a solution. Also, I posted a pic of my set so you can see it.
    Take care,
    LRod
     

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  3. iflog

    iflog Well-Known Member

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    Do you have a Remo stand? They are super heavy duty but I know what you are saying. I ran a tap through mine to make sure the treads were good and made a longer drum screw to fit. I also put a lock washer and an oversize washer in there. It seems to hold real good now.
     
  4. gezz

    gezz DFO Master

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    I would LOVE a full set.. 6" through 18"

    Gerry
     
  5. dale w miller

    dale w miller Well-Known Member

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    The first studio I ever recorded in the house kit was a roto tom set. It was pretty cool sounding, but not something I could see using except for a gimmick.
     
  6. lrod1707

    lrod1707 Well-Known Member

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    Yes, it is a Remo stand. I just bought the roto toms new a couple of months ago. It's the original heavy duty stand that comes with it. Don't get me wrong, the stand is fantastic, built like a tank and super heavy. The problem is that little metal center mount. It's a flawed design that should have been corrected decades ago. I had the same roto toms back like 20 something years ago and it was the same crappy design. I am going to follow your lead by going to the hardware store and modifying it as you did.
    Thanks for that!
    LRod
     
  7. lrod1707

    lrod1707 Well-Known Member

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    Me too! Problem is they only advertise the 6" 8" 10" set. I'm sure they could be found used but I would love new ones in the other bigger sizes. I don't know if it's true or not but I read somewhere that Remo still makes the bigger ones if you custom order them. I just don't see them on their website. I'm gonna email them out of curiosity and find out.
     
  8. lrod1707

    lrod1707 Well-Known Member

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    Honestly nothing gimmicky about them. They are true metal drums with no heads in the rear. They add a lot of sound for more creativity during playing. They are also a good option for drummers with a small set and small budget that want to expand. Its tough to find a way to add 3 brand new toms that include a heavy duty stand for a couple hundred bucks. They are also excellent for long rock rolls (example, playing Rush) and also for playing latin style music. I used them years ago and stopped playing for years. Now that I finally got back to playing, when I bought my new setup, the roto toms were one of the first things I added. If you look at my setup, I have plenty of drums but I added the roto toms for the purpose of adding a sound that you don't get from standard toms. Many pro drummers have used them on many songs and albums. They definitely have their place and purpose in drumming.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2018
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  9. iflog

    iflog Well-Known Member

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    I bought mine on eBay. Bought the stand and toms separately from 2 different sellers. Got a great deal. The stand with the bar sells for about $170 alone brand new. I paid $40. Cleaned the chrome, repainted the rack and it looks like new. I have the 6, 8, 10 set. Soon after I purchased them I found a 8, 10, 12 set on Craigslist with brand new Remo Pinstripe heads for $140. It wasn't a Remo stand though. Still a good price. Wish I would have waited a few more days before I bought mine. I would rather have that set.
     
  10. dale w miller

    dale w miller Well-Known Member

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    If you’re talking about the 3 small ones, I had those on my kit. They were a nice cheap way to expand my kit.

    I was talking about the entire kit being roto toms. Though the 16 and 18 could be tuned quite low, there was no bottom end. They feel like you’re hitting paper.
     
  11. cutaway79

    cutaway79 Well-Known Member

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    Agreed. I replaced my toms (10", 12" toms, 16" floor tom) with Rototoms a while back (14", 16" toms, and 18" floor). They sounded decent, and very punchy when playing by yourself. But once the band comes in, most of the tone/body is lost, and it all sounds very thin. I went back to regular toms after a few months. Would've been sooner, but my band thought they looked cool ('80s band).
     
  12. lrod1707

    lrod1707 Well-Known Member

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    Damn, that stinks. $140 for an 8, 10 & 12 is great considering you can't buy them new anymore. I would love to find a deal like that. But then again we already have the 8 & 10 so it would be nice to find the 12 to add to the current setup. Either way you paid $40 for your set, that's a great price.
     
  13. lrod1707

    lrod1707 Well-Known Member

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    Yep, the small set. I didn't understand your post which you were taking about a whole set. I do agree with you about that, a whole roto tom drumset would not cut it. That would just seem weird and would sound dull. I need my main setup to have shells and 2 heads. The roto's are great as accessory instruments.
     
  14. lrod1707

    lrod1707 Well-Known Member

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    In the 80's all of that stuff looked cool (Just think Simmons octagon electronic drums). It was more about look than sound. So yes, you did look cool to your audience! Heck, back then I had 2 bass drums. Today I would never even consider that. Much better to have a double pedal. I remember looking at my set back then and considering to add a 3rd and maybe even a 4th bass drum(s). How dumb is that? LOL!! I thought doing that would make my band the coolest. I quickly learned that only someone like Alex Van Halen could pull that off and be cool.
     
  15. cutaway79

    cutaway79 Well-Known Member

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    Hahaha, totally! The Rototoms looked cool and unique. And I would get people asking about them all the time. But the sound... Might have been ok if they were always mic'd/eq'd. But full band, unmic'd... forget about it.

    Same here with the kit... Used to be double-kick, deep toms (at least 3 up-front), drum rack, etc. Now it's a basic four piece. I'll occasionally add a tom (which usually gets subtracted after the novelty wears off). But two bass drums? Never again.
     
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  16. lrod1707

    lrod1707 Well-Known Member

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    Those pics are definitely 80's. The coolest!
     
  17. gezz

    gezz DFO Master

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    I hope Remo is watching this thread. Yes I def dig the sound.. I would use my gretsch USA 14x20" bass drum and 15" floor Tom with them ...for more bottom end.
    Gerry
     
  18. iflog

    iflog Well-Known Member

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    Sooooooooooooo. Back to the original post I made. Does anyone have any preference on how to tune them? By ear, by note, adjusted to your other toms, or whatever sounds good to you? Like I said, I have a TuneBot. If you have only tuned your drums by ear I recommend one highly. I LIKED my drums. Always thought they could be better somehow. I bought the TuneBot and set them according to their specifications and was amazed at how much better they sound. Now I LOVE my drums. It was a total transformation that put the sound of all my drums in tune with each other.
     
  19. fibes3

    fibes3 Well-Known Member

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    I contacted Remo about 3 weeks ago to find out if they plan to make roto Tom's in sizes 12, 14, 16, and 18. I was informed they only plan to produce the 6-10" toms.

    Steve Weiss music currently sells the 12 and 14 as a set and they currently have a 16" as well.
     
  20. lrod1707

    lrod1707 Well-Known Member

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    Interesting! I figured they would only make the 6, 8 & 10. That's all they show on the Remo website. I checked out what Steve Weiss has. Pretty cool! They have their own house brand roto toms. They look just like Remo's. I might look into adding a couple of bigger ones in the future. It would be cool to add some large ones on a stand in between my 2 floor toms above them.
     

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