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  #1  
Old 08-29-2014, 03:41 PM
Jupiter tarts Jupiter tarts is offline
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Default Putting together a highly mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

Aside from my regular group that I play with, I'm also part of an acoustic guitar circle (about a 5-10 member attendance on a given day) and I was thinking of adding some much needed percussion to the group since the most we had for percussion was a few egg shakers and a tambourine. I want to put together a kit that plays like a conventional kit, covers a lot of what a standard kit's roles, is super portable, and not too loud as to not overshadow the unamplified guitars and vocalists. Also most important, I need to be able to fit this into my tiny Honda civic which will also have a guitar in it. It's your standard 4 door compact commuter car. If I can take the full kit with me in 2 car trips (a 3rd trip for my guitar) and packup in less than 5 minutes along with the group, that'll be even better.

I just need 4 bases covered with this group: snare, bass drum, hi-hat, and ride cymbal. I looked into getting a cajon and a kick pedal to serve as the bass drum. After trying out the combo for awhile at guitar center, I'm pretty happy with it. Now the remainder is where I get stuck. I know I could get an egg shaker in hand for the hi hat and just tap the snare on the cajon to cover snares, but I want to use both hands and actually play with sticks.

Would you recommend just piecing together an actual mini kit with a high quality real snare and hi hat (maybe throw a towel over the snare) so I can use it as an actual kit when I'm at home, or just look for other portable options? I wanted a slap top cajon for $110 new, but after searching on the forums, I found a lot of love for the Ludwig Acrolite snare which can be had for roughly the same price. That got me thinking that maybe I can just use real pieces of gear and end up happier in the end. What do you recommend for the remainder of the gear? What options are there?

Last edited by Jupiter tarts; 08-29-2014 at 06:08 PM.
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  #2  
Old 08-29-2014, 05:08 PM
jornthedrummer jornthedrummer is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

I have been in the same situation and have tried all sorts of 'percussion' snares. This includes LP's 10" and 12" Octa-snare. Sonor Jungle Snare and Toca's Jingle Snare.
The LP product is not meant to be played with a stick, The Sonor and Toca product sounds too thin and rim clicks are very(not useable) weak.
At the moment I use a 12" Gretsch snare with a 2nd skin placed on top(not tensioned) or a 13" Tama snare with a dampening pad(name defeats me right now).
Both snares get a fat, low volume sound. Rim clicks and rim shots still possible.

I would also be interested to hear what others have come up with as I still have not come up with something that doesnt look like a snare.

I also use a Cajon as a kick drum and its great. The playability is better than a normal bass drum.
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  #3  
Old 08-29-2014, 05:12 PM
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GeoB GeoB is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

A kit might be too loud if the rest of the group is not suitably amplified. How about Conga, Djembe, Bongo, Cajon and switch around for various tunes to keep it interesting? The towel over the snare sounds workable, or even brushes. Hi-hats would probably work too.
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Last edited by GeoB; 08-29-2014 at 08:06 PM.
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  #4  
Old 08-29-2014, 05:37 PM
KamaK KamaK is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

I know I may get stoned for suggesting this, but...

Have you looked at some of the portable-built e-kits? TD4 for example.

Its a trade off. Volume control and a diverse set of customizable instrument sounds at the cost of dynamics and nuance.
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  #5  
Old 08-31-2014, 07:14 PM
harvestdrum harvestdrum is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

I do something very similar. My little kit consists of;

18x16 Gretsch kick drum,

13" Pearl Omar Akim Sig. snare. Love this snare! Nice warm tone even with soft playing with hotrods.

DW 6000 HH stand and a single straight stand. I put these in a small tactical soft rife case.

I recently purchased a 20" Kerope cymbal to use as a ride but have found its a great crash cymbal too. This cymbal works so well in low volume gigs, I now plan on getting some hats too.

Anywhoo, this setup works great for me. Another idea you could try is a plastic suitcase.
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Old 08-31-2014, 07:58 PM
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Hollywood Jim Hollywood Jim is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

Build or buy a suitcase kit. Everything fits in the suitcase.

I think you would be surprised how nice a suitcase sounds as a bass drum.




.
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  #7  
Old 08-31-2014, 08:00 PM
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Hollywood Jim Hollywood Jim is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/s...ad.php?t=60170


.
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Old 08-31-2014, 08:06 PM
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ncc ncc is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

If volume is a your concern, here's an idea. You still will need a 4x4 area though. (Im curious what other people think about this idea so flame away. ;-) )

"Bop" or ultra small kit. (Look at Sonor Players from Sam Ash)

Snare stand, HiHat, and cymbal stand (perhaps a double cymbal stand in case you want ever want to bring 2 cymbals). Brands are up to you.

High hat cymbals and a good small crash cymbal with some ride capabilities. Brands and sizes are up to you.

14" Piccolo snare (wood or brass). Brand up to you.

Remo "Brush Up" pad on top of the snare batter head (http://remo.com/portal/products/2/59...sh_up_pad.html)

ProMark Cool Rods (http://www.promark.com/pmProductDeta...RODS_Cool_Rods)

Ludwig Lambswool Bass Drum Beater (i.e. Ludwig L1285 Lambs Wool - make sure it will work with your pedal though)

A little more to carry than a Cajon, but the playing is more natural. :-)
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Old 08-31-2014, 08:07 PM
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Hollywood Jim Hollywood Jim is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

Tiny kits:

http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/s...se#post1266159


.
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  #10  
Old 08-31-2014, 11:29 PM
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DrumEatDrum DrumEatDrum is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

This picture is from 1996/97, but here is how I did it



For the bass drum, I used 12" tom, bottom head removed, a small bit of foam, mounted off a cymbal stand. Pedal is free standing, but it's a DW, so it had velcro that kept it from moving.

2 10" splash cymbals used as hi-hats, off an x-hat type mount, also coming off the cymbal stand.

A 16" crash is used as both a ride and crash.

Plus a tambourine, also coming off the same stand.

And my regular snare.

One stand, plus snare, plus free standing pedal. Very transportable, Perfect for coffee shop gigs. And I was able to piece together out of what I already had.
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  #11  
Old Yesterday, 03:01 PM
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Hansolo Hansolo is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

It could be worth doing a google image search for 'compact drum kit' to get some ideas.

Also what sort of cost limit are you considering and does it have to be an acoustic setup?
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Old Yesterday, 07:46 PM
tamadrm tamadrm is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hollywood Jim View Post
Build or buy a suitcase kit. Everything fits in the suitcase.

I think you would be surprised how nice a suitcase sounds as a bass drum.




.
I know some guys that use a kit,similar to the "suitcase" kit,and they sound just fine,in an all acoustic setting.And the suitcase,really does make a good bass drum,and the whole thing fits in sthe suitcase,so it's completely portabe.Set up and tear down ,takes but a few minites.

Steve B
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  #13  
Old Today, 02:35 AM
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STXBob STXBob is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

This might be a stupid and/or unpopular question. Here goes, anyway.

Who wants percussion? The other players? Or just you?

I do the same sort of jam. They didn't want anything more than egg shakers. So I made a washtub bass and expanded my horizons. :-)

I'm not saying you shouldn't play percussion. I'm saying you should pay attention to what the guitarists/vocalists want.

When I *do* play percussion with unamplified musicians, I never use sticks. I take a snare, light hats, and brushes. That's it. I've found I don't really need the whole kit on those occasions.

Cheers,

Bob
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  #14  
Old Today, 03:31 AM
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Hansolo Hansolo is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

Here's another option to show what can be mounted on a single stand: http://www.wizzdrum.com/what-is-the-.../introduction/

Just start off with a basic setup to play with sticks, mallets or brushes, and possibly add to it as required.
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  #15  
Old Today, 03:58 AM
Jupiter tarts Jupiter tarts is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

Ha, sorry, didn't get a chance to visit my thread for a little while.

As for who wants the percussion, I personally really wanted more percussion but it was our group's bassist, who happens to be the group's leader/organizer, that really jumped on the idea because he does bass himself and really wants someone else to help run rhythm with him so we can have a dialogue going on. Everyone else I've asked likes the idea too so I'm taking the initiative to do some percussion with my very rudimentary skills in percussion.

I'd originally considered an e-kit but I'd say that we do often meet in parks and places without electricity. A generator wouldn't be feasible either since they make so much noise. Loving the suggestions so far. Went to sam ash a few times and realized I really like the sound of a piccolo snare.

Love all the recommendations so far, especially the thread showing peoples' small kits. I ended up buying a cajon and egg shaker yesterday and decided to build up the kit piece by piece. I realized that I wasn't playing it right and finally figured out how to get a decent snare sound out of it. I'm not so hung up on playing with sticks now but still want a good pedal for the cajon.

Unfortunately, I keep reading reviews about how poorly constructed those new cajon pedals are and how the cables are prone to failure. On the other hand, the rep at sam ash told me that a regular kick pedal has more force than the cajon pedal and would ruin the front plate over time. Is that true? Can a cajon not take a beating beyond slapping by hand? I was also thinking about getting those padded felt tipped sticks.
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  #16  
Old Today, 05:52 AM
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Hollywood Jim Hollywood Jim is offline
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Default Re: Putting together a high mobile kit for an acoustic guitar group

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jupiter tarts View Post
Unfortunately, I keep reading reviews about how poorly constructed those new cajon pedals are and how the cables are prone to failure. On the other hand, the rep at sam ash told me that a regular kick pedal has more force than the cajon pedal and would ruin the front plate over time. Is that true? Can a cajon not take a beating beyond slapping by hand? I was also thinking about getting those padded felt tipped sticks.
Try using a regular bass drum beater on the backside of the cajon. It might sound ok. Try some different beaters, felt, hard rubber etc. Then you can still play the front part of the cajon with your hands when needed.
The front part of the cajon is made of thinner wood so yes it won't last too long using a regular bass drum beater on it.

.
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