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Swiv-O-Matic Bass Pedal Assembly & Bearing Upgrade
Greetings vintage drummers! I've been lurking on this forum for a while now and only made a couple of replies to existing posts up until now, but now am ready for a post of my own! By way of introduction, I started drumming as a boy but lost interest around the same time I got my driver's license. 20 years passed before I got back behind the kit, and that led to another couple of decades of learning, studying, listening, gigging, and messing with gear.

I never thought of myself as a 'vintage drum' guy until about a year ago, when I spotted a Rogers Celebrity kit for sale locally by its original owner. I did some research, posted some queries on DFO and bought the kit the next day. It is a beauty and one of these days I'll get some photos together and start another post! My Celebrity kit came with an almost complete set of hardware, but no bass pedal, so I hunted this one down to compliment my new vintage kit and to see for myself why so many folks like these pedals.

Today's topic is about my Rogers Swiv-O-Matic bass drum pedal. Although Rogers made many iterations of the Swiv-O-Matic pedal over time, there were essentially two basic variations – the “396” pedal had a “hinged heel” and the “395” had an “adjustable footboard” – mine has the adjustable footboard. Given everything I've read, I'd estimate date of manufacture somewhere around 1970, as my pedal had bronze bushings in the bearing housing rather than the preferred Torrington needle bearings (more on that later).

When I got my pedal, it was functional but pretty dirty. I decided I would take it apart, de-gunk it, and upgrade to the Torrington needle bearings while I was at it. This was not meant as a restoration, but just good old fashioned maintenance to get the pedal in as good “player's” condition as possible. Maybe if I find a good tutorial on making these old pedals shiny as new, I'll take it apart again!

Taking the pedal apart was pretty easy, but I missed one important thing and as a result did a little damage. The heel bearing screws are pinned in place with tiny roll pins. I didn't see this at first and started to damage the screw heads as I tried to budge the immovable screws. Don't make the same mistake I did if you take one of these apart – make sure you drive out the roll pins first (think I used a 3/32” pin punch).

Please click on the top left photo and then advance through the rest of the photos, reading the photo captions for the rest of the story. Thanks!
The missing washer has reappeared!
Attach swivel unit to pedal standard with a pull set screw.
Attach leather strap to footboard. Mine had a screw and washer which did not match the rest of the hardware and may have been replaced.
Attach the connecting rod to the heel base.
Attach the toe stop to the footboard. Again, screw and washer may not be OEM here.
Attach the pedal spurs to the pedal standard.
Attach the connecting rod to the swivel unit.
Thread the locking screw into the pedal standard.
Insert the bearing housing into the pedal standard upright. Affix with two set screws. Make sure it is straight (unlike next photo!)
Attach leather strap to beater cam.
Insert beater into beater cam and affix with set screw. I ran out of set screws but had an extra pull set screw available, so I used that. BTW,...
Wow, starting to look like a bass drum pedal! Time to attach to the bass drum and adjust to personal preference.

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