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  #1  
Old 10-09-2009, 07:13 AM
Ludwig-dude Ludwig-dude is offline
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Default "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

This should get posted as sticky or to an FAQ of somekind, because to be honest this question is getting a bit tiresome to me, having to see it every few days by someone on the forum that didn't even bother to do a search.

"Is my Ludwig snare brass?" Well....here goes. A Super-Ludwig and a Supraphonic are NOT one in the same drum. All chrome Super-Ludwigs are Brass shells. Period. These drums are MUCH heavier in comparison to the later Supraphonic drums. They made them up until the end of the SMALL round muffler, the old WFL if you will, somewhere about 1962-1963. After which they started making the shell out of aluminum and chroming it. This is where the name changed to Supraphonic. All supraphonics from 1963-1979 were chrome plated aluminum. They pit, corrode, flake, what-have-you when not extremely well cared for. Some refer to this as finish acne. If your drum has this and the chrome is not in perfect shape it is definitely aluminum and NOT Brass. If your drum has a serial number on the small Keystone badge, its is aluminum. After the change to the Blue/Olive badge in the 70's this is where it can get tricky. In around 1978-79 Ludwig started offering the Supraphonic in chrome over brass as well, and later chrome over bronze. There is USUALLY a "B" or "BR" stamped above the LARGE round muffler knob to ID these from the standard aluminum Supraphonic. Again because its not aluminum they are heavier than the standard supraphonic.

Some say there is a test you can do to check for sure, but I don't recommend it because it entails removing a lug and scraping at the lug holes to determine the color of the metal filings. Personally I'd rather not be scraping filings off of my drum, but if you don't care, do so at your own discretion. Weight test is the better way. Also, if the drum has an "AG" ink stamped on the inside or a round label that reads "Reliable Anti-Galvanic" it should be aluminum. This was the name of the company that made the shells for Ludwig and NOT the actual shell type.

As far as the LARGE keystone badge, Monroe and Chicago from the 80's on, the same general rules apply as for the 70's drums.

Why everyone goes to the extreme to have to know what kind of metal their drum is made of is beyond me.....all three types sound great to me, and the difference in sound is negligible. The average Joe most likely isn't going to be able to tell the difference in a blindfolded test with all three types of drums setup, and tuned the exact same way. Its going to sound like a Ludwig, PERIOD.

I know a fellow who swore up and down that an Acrolite drum was inferior to a Supraphonic, (they use the same basic shell, the acrolite has two fewer lugs and isn't chromed though) so we did the blindfolded test with an acrolite, a bronze supraphonic and a regular chrome aluminum supraphonic. He couldn't tell the difference! So what's all the hoopla over what its made out of?

I hope people read this post first before asking this same tiring question again, as like I stated, the question is getting old. BTW, I will state that this is a GENERAL GUIDE and there are always some exceptions and anomalies, so please don't reply back with "hey you forgot about......" its a general guide, not the absolute rule.

Last edited by Ludwig-dude; 08-13-2012 at 10:48 PM.
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  #2  
Old 10-09-2009, 10:39 AM
latzanimal latzanimal is offline
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Default Re: "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

So what is mine again?

Great guide, someone should sticky this..... hint, hint..
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  #3  
Old 10-09-2009, 12:44 PM
Zerek Zerek is offline
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Default Re: "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

Is my wood snare brass?

j/k

Nice job man!
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Old 10-09-2009, 01:04 PM
O-Lugs O-Lugs is offline
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Default Re: "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

Are aluminum and brass the same thing?

You're right, L-D. I agree with you.

But, for collectors. the brass drums are still more desirable, I think. Maybe that's one reason why people want to know if their drum is brass or something else.
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Old 10-09-2009, 01:35 PM
john rutsey john rutsey is offline
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Default Re: "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

whats a drum?
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  #6  
Old 10-09-2009, 02:03 PM
Jaye Jaye is offline
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Default Re: "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

Magnet-test discerns steel....but isn't aluminum a lighter-weight shell (than brass) ?
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  #7  
Old 10-09-2009, 02:04 PM
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Webmaster Webmaster is offline
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Default Re: "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

This is a BIG question! I know, because I get questions and emails from my web site, another huge drumming site and another group of sites.

I answer on average 20 - 30 questions per week and this is not on the forum. (directly by email)

So, there will always be the person that does not know how to search and also have no idea that their drum is a Supraphonic. Those people will always need help.

The main web site has a brass or not guide that has been there for at least 3 years. Here is the Ludwig Brass or not guide

I also have this guide on eBay in my eBay guides in a similar form, just not as big. You can read all of my guides on eBay here. eBay Guides

I also have the same brass or not on other web sites in The Drum Experts network and in fact web sites dedicated to the Acro, Supra, Super and BB. Click here for the main links page and then look on the right for Snare Drum Web Sites

So, I will stick this guide! BUT the questions will still come in and the same questions will be asked.

I have my hand in a lot of web site work trying to fill the voids and add the history where I can. My goal is Jan 1, 2010 to officially be back on the main web site and adding all of the new material I have.

SO, I have asked in the past, present and future if anyone wants to create an article or content I can find a perfect spot for it on one of the 70 or so web sites!

Thanks Ludwig-Dude! bring on the material!

David
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Old 10-09-2009, 02:48 PM
latzanimal latzanimal is offline
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Default Re: "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

Quote:
Originally Posted by john rutsey View Post
whats a drum?
No wonder Rush replaced you.....
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  #9  
Old 10-09-2009, 03:10 PM
Ludwig-dude Ludwig-dude is offline
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Default Re: "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

Quote:
Originally Posted by latzanimal View Post
No wonder Rush replaced you.....
Who is Rush?
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  #10  
Old 10-09-2009, 03:20 PM
Ludwig-dude Ludwig-dude is offline
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Default Re: "Is my Ludwig Brass??"-Lets Clear this up

Thanks for making this a sticky thread David. I realize that there always will be this question asked, I just hope this helps reduce it a bit. Sometimes you just get tired of answering the same questions over and over...
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