By Al, the drummer
This is the second blog in a series of three about the Deltonians drum kit. It’s an Acoustic to Electric conversion. The first blog explains why I did it and the third one explains the software aspects of it.
This blog describes the actual physical build process.
Ii ordered most of the stuff from Jobeky drums, and delivery took 2 weeks. They build all their triggers to order.
The Roland TSD27-KV2 comes with a digital snare. This is way more subtle and sensitive than anything I could do with a conversion, so I decided just to use it as is. It’s a full sized snare and fits on my snare stand. The main difference between this an an acoustic snare is the rubber ring around the head. It changes the playability marginally, but other than that, it’s an amazing drum.
Yes it is ‘wrapped’ differently to the rest of my kit, but I am the only person who notices that!
My original kit had 5 toms. I only ever used three so I decided to ditch the smallest one and the largest one. I’ve gone for a 2-up one down configuration.
Fitting the triggers was easy. Just pop the head off and then remove screws for one lug. Not just any lug, though. I chose a side trigger because I wanted to avoid a hotspot in the middle of the drum. Side triggers get round that problem but you need to make sure it’s in a place you never hit. So I chose the lug nearest me as I play.
With the lug screws removed, just mount the trigger. They say to have the foam protruding about 2mm above the bearing edge. I did that using a spirit level running across the drum, balanced on the bearing edges. It was easy then to measure the 2mm.
The next thing was to mount the jack socket through the drum shell. I’d watched some videos on removing the air vents, and I tried it. It wasn’t for me! The air vents were not particularly conveniently placed for wiring, and I was worried about damaging the shells because my vents put up quite a fight. In the end I decided to drill the shells and insert the jack sockets just where I wanted them.
For this I bought a 22″ Jobeky prestige 2-ply premium mesh head and one of their adjustable bass drum bar triggers.
Fitting it was pretty easy, once I realised you don’t have to keep the bar ‘straight’. At first, I was trying to run it between two opposite lugs, but it was impossible to get the foam pad to sit anywhere near the strike zone of my pedal.
I did the same ‘spirit level’ trick to get the foam to sit just above the bearing edge.
The setup in the picture put the foam in about the right position, but it was a bit high and the beater was hitting it at the bottom of the foam. I wasn’t 100% happy with the triggering. I couldn’t see any way of lowering it, but then I found that there are other mounting holes on the back of the trigger, so I was able to lower it just a cm or two by using different holes.
I just used the cymbals that came with the TD27-KV2. They worked with my original hardware, so virtually no work needed there.
I wanted to use an additional cymbal pad to add a splash cymbal. That was pretty easy. I bought a used CY-8 on eBay and plugged it in and popped it on a new stand.
I was after an easy set-up / tear down. So I use the rack from the TD27-KV2 and I have permanently attached the wiring loom to it. So setup just involves putting the drums and cymbals in place and connecting them to the nearby dangling wire. It’s a tiny bit awkward to transport the rack with all the wires hanging off, but it’s easy enough. I just fold it down and pop it in my car.
I’ve got the rack set up so that I can use either the pads that came with the TD27-KV2 or my converted shells. This works extremely well.
I wanted to have as much as possible attached to the rack, and as few free-standing things as possible. I’ve managed that pretty well. Apart from the bass drum, the only things that touch the floor are the drum rack, my throne and the snare stand. Everything else is mounted on the rack. I had to buy some bits and bobs to enable that.
I bought these mainly on eBay. You get people on there selling spare parts for racks.