42-strand snare wires

VitalTransformation

Silver Member
Hi forum!

I’m wanting to hear about everyone’s experiences with 42-strand snare assemblies!

I have a 14x6,5” Tama steel snare that I like very much (it’s fitted with standard 20-strand snares) when playing solo. But under high volume playing, it seems the head/shell tone is overpowering. A bassist even asked me whether the throwoff had been disengaged after rehearsing a tune!

So what are y’all’s experiences with 42-strand snare sets? Will it remedy my issue?
 

AzHeat

Platinum Member
Definitely less shell and head tone, but more buzz. Snares will activate at the lightest touch.
 

pgm554

Platinum Member
Hi forum!

I’m wanting to hear about everyone’s experiences with 42-strand snare assemblies!

I have a 14x6,5” Tama steel snare that I like very much (it’s fitted with standard 20-strand snares) when playing solo. But under high volume playing, it seems the head/shell tone is overpowering. A bassist even asked me whether the throwoff had been disengaged after rehearsing a tune!

So what are y’all’s experiences with 42-strand snare sets? Will it remedy my issue?

The gotcha with a 42 is the width of the snare bed that is required for it to seat properly.
If your snare bed isn't wide enough to accommodate the width of the 42,your snares will just rattle.

https://www.pearldrummersforum.com/showthread.php?275705-42-strand-snares-on-Pearl-14-x-4-quot-snare
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
Check the tension of your wires. It may be too tight. Resonant head may also be too tight.

I was at a gig a few months ago, and the drummers snare drum sounded a lot like what you are describing. The wires were far too tight and his resident head was also too tight. Once he loosened them slightly the drum sounded much better.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Check the tension of your wires. It may be too tight. Resonant head may also be too tight.

I was at a gig a few months ago, and the drummers snare drum sounded a lot like what you are describing. The wires were far too tight and his resident head was also too tight. Once he loosened them slightly the drum sounded much better.

That's weird. I tend to get a better snare response with the resonant head tighter, which allows the snares to be tighter against the head.
 

PineyplayParadiddles

Senior Member
Yeah you might need to loosen the wires off slightly and the resonant head might be choking out at the high volumes you're playing. A high tension head will start sounding a bit pingy when you're hitting hard. Loosening the wires might sound odd to you at lower volumes but when you play hard it should come through. A lot of the times people tighten it up so it sounds good to the player but out in front of the kit a bit more snare buzz is preferable.

42 strand wires are good, but I find that most drums don't like them, measure the snare beds and see if they're quite wide.
 

makinao

Silver Member
Unmiked and from the driver's seat, 42 strands are sensitive and lively specially on a steel snare. They also balance out the boingy overtones of steel shells.

Miked on top of a 6.5" or deeper shell, you'll hear a bit more snare than a 20-something strands. Miked from the bottom might be a bit too much though.

I've got two setups for my old Pearl 14x5.5 steel snare with 42-strands and tight Ambassador snare side. One has Ambassador batter tightly tensioned for a real snappy, lively sound. Used when it's a main snare. The other is with Fiberskyn 3 batter loosely tensioned for a fat but still snappy sound. Used for auxiliary snare. In both cases, the snares are just below choking.
 
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Bull

Gold Member
You will get more sympathetic buzz but you should be able to tweak the excess out. If it's too much, you can always try 24s or 30s.

I am currently using 42s on my 7x14 Tama brass and like them a lot.
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
I use 20 on everything really, but I've been tempted to try out some 42s as it'd be interesting to get some more snare response at lower volumes.. I think Vinnie uses them, too. I even have some lying around, I think.
 

VitalTransformation

Silver Member
Thanks for the replies guys! I'm not really concerned about sympathetic buzz, so I'm tempted to try a set.

I tension the snares and reso head like I do any other snare, with the reso tight but not quite to the point of choking and the snares fairly loose (just above sustained rattling). So unless there's something about particular snare that requires a different setup, I don't think my issue is user error.

Regarding the snare bed width, how wide is wide? Like most modern metal snares, the beds are just a slight flanging of the bottom edge. I'd say that the "bed area" covers maybe 30-40% of the bottom edge.

EDIT: Ah, wide enough too cover the whole width of the snares, I get it... I think I should be safe in that case!
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
My concern with 40 or 42 is the strap or cords being wide enough to put even tension on the width of the snare plates on the end to cause all of the snares to have even tension.. I do OK with 20's
 

Fred D

Pioneer Member
Puresound makes a 30 strand snare wire called the Super 30 that I have used with good results. I have 42s on a couple drums and they sound great. Either way it's a modest investment.
 
D

drumming sort of person

Guest
I've been using 16 strands for years and they sound perfect. I'm really surprised that 20 strand wires wouldn't work just fine. When you use the snares with way more strands, the snares tend to mute the snare side head a bit. The overall sound is pretty mushy, but some guys like that. Tony Williams used them, but I can't say I liked his snare sound.
 

Living Dead Drummer

Platinum Member
I tried them once, many years ago but I didn't dig them.
I did end up going with 30 strand wires on a heavy steel shell drum. Sounded beautiful. Once and a while pull them out on deeper drums, again 30 strand, not 42.
 

Jbravo

Senior Member
I recently put puresound 30 strand snares on my snare. Huge improvement over the stock 20 strand Ludwig snare wires...
 

Trip McNealy

Gold Member
I use TAMA Snappy or the Gibraltar 42-stranders on all my 14x6.5" metal drums (brass, black nickel, Supra, etc.) Just seems like a nice pairing to my ears. I have yet to try on my wooden snares - usually those I have been sticking to 20 or 16 strands to bring out the wood tone more.
 

VitalTransformation

Silver Member
Hm, looks a bit like there are camps of 30- and 42-strand fans!

Maybe I should buy both the Tama 42-strand set and the Puresound Super 30 set. I'm sure I'll find a home for both of them!

Weird that, after all these years, I can't be sure that I've ever played a snare with more than 24 strands (that I've been aware of).
 
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