3rd timpani - what size to get?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by DRW, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. DRW

    DRW New Member

    Hi all

    My band currently has 2 timps. 25" and 28" Premier concert fibreglass. We're looking to get a 3rd to assist with note changes. Our instinct is to get a 22.5" one (based mainly on ease of storage / transportation), but I'd like some advice on whether this is a sensible option or if we should go for the next large size; 30".

    We are fortunate enough to have 2 - 3 percussionists who are able, but not expert, hence the question.

    Thanks in anticipation.

  2. animal.22

    animal.22 Member

    Work your way through your library and decide which size would give you most changes, OR buy both. Just a thought.
  3. Matt the Shed

    Matt the Shed Member

    If you're dead set on getting another drum to match, I'd go for the 30" or possibly even a 32" - I've played on both and would say you get a better sound on the 32" when playing Fs and below, which ultimately is where you'll want it most. Your existing 25" drum should comfortably get you to an F and possibly stretch to a F# (assuming it is in good condition and tuned correctly), and this should be high enough for at least 95% of music.

    However, and this comes from experience, for the long term (so it'll cost a little more) I would strongly recommend selling or trading in your existing drums and purchasing a set of portable fibreglass timps (in similar sizes) - there are a few worth looking into from the likes of Adams, Majestic, Yamaha, etc. There are a number of reasons I'd say this - off the top of my head:

    1) they're more portable, so you should be able to fit a set of 3 in the back of a large-ish car, whereas you are unlikely to be able to get a 30" or above standard drum into a car. Your up-and-coming percussionists might even be able to occassionaly take a pair home to rehearse on and you won't have to keep hiring vans for everything.
    2) they're noticeably lighter and easier to carry, so in ten years time hopefully none of your percussionists (or anyone that helps shift kit) have reoccuring back problems (again from personal-experience).
    3) they're cheaper - perhaps even by a third and you're more likely to find better deals on a set of 3.
    4) they sound as good if not better than the Premier drums you have.

    If you're a contesting band, I'd recommend looking for block-mechanism timpani, e.g. Adam's universals or Majestic Concert, simply because that's what most contests supply unless they're sponsored by Yamaha! Incase you didn't know, your Premier drums are also block mechanism (as opposed to balanced). If you're not a contesting band, look for the best deal.

    You've got 3 percussionists, make sure you look after them.
  4. ploughboy

    ploughboy Active Member

    I'd say go for the 30" - I find there's alot more work for timps in the lower registers, if you tune your 28 properly it should cover F-F and leave you with really good flexibility. . .
  5. DRW

    DRW New Member

    Thanks Matt the Shed and ploughboy, exactly the type of advice I was after! :)

    I had already voiced with our committee the possibility of replacing the set, but we discounted it on the basis that we have a trailer anyway so transportation isn't such a concern and overall additional cost would likely be more. However, you've raised some other considerations such as quality of sound, which we will explore further.

    Any other views / considerations would be appreciated.
  6. Colin Gray

    Colin Gray Member

    I would buy the 30". You can easily get to a top F on a 25" and although there are pieces that need above that, I can count on one hand the number of times I have needed to in the last 5 years.

    I wouldn't personally replace your entire set unless you are going to buy portable timps that are copper. I have copper portables and they sound great - more tone, sustain, resonance, but they are really heavy. I've played on fiberglass premier timps and the adams portable version and there is no real difference in sound. The most important thing is to care for the skins. Buying new skins and servicing the timps will bring them back to life and improve the sound and tuning no end. Adrian Evans at Ev-Entz did a cracking job on my own timps and the ones we have at Flowers. You could try JAM percussion in Liverpool or try and get hold of Ray Payne - I know he does servicing but I don't have a number for him.

    Ploughboy is correct about getting F-F on a 28" but this will only work on top end Timpani with an extended counter ring/collar like the premier elite's/majestics. On the concert timps the usually range is a 6th, this is also the same for the adams portables. All the websites have the ranges available on their.

    Finally, if you do decided to buy, be careful were you buy from. Loads of shops have timps on their website but never in a million years stock them and unless they are a shop with a "Dealership" for the timps, the delivery time could be quite long. Again, I'd contact JAM Percussion, Ev-Entz or Bell Percussion in London first.
  7. Ianroberts

    Ianroberts Well-Known Member

    you wouldnt think drums was so technical would ya !!!

    have itttttttttttttttttttttt

    Last edited: Mar 28, 2012
  8. One point thats not been mentioned is getting the ****** things through door ways. For quality of sound, the rule is always the bigger the better, but door ways can be a major problem with a standard "post and clutch" timp larger than 28 inches. The portables of course, do solve the door way issue. I would love to get my hands on a set of Adams revolution timps, has anyone had a chance to play them?
  9. DRW

    DRW New Member

    Thanks for this point. Fortunately we did consider this and it was the deciding factor. With the potential for a new bandroom around the corner, we have decided to manage with the 2 that we have for the time being.
  10. Ev-entz

    Ev-entz New Member

    Thanks for the mention Colin.

    DRW - Ev-entz would love to help you out and will be sure to get a great deal for you and your band. For a chat about it feel free to give us a call on 01633 250062 obviously we've got our website which is www.ev-entz .co.uk but something like this is better to chat through to decide what's right for you. Ask for Adrian when you call. Hopefully speak soon.

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