SIA handcrafted Snare drums

So you may or may not have seen that we took delivery of a couple SIA snare drums last week. They crept onto the website over last weekend, and have already seen some keen interest in the shop. Handcrafted in Sydney, Australia by Sia Seysan these snares are absolutely stunning.

There’s not a great deal of info on these drums out there, in fact I don’t think SIA even has a website. Regardless, they’re starting to pick up some tasty reviews so we thought we’d better get some on the rack for people to try. We’re the first shop in the UK to stock these beauties, in time for their debut at London Drum Show this autumn.

We have a lovely 14×7″ Sheoak stave snare drum, which is absolutely stunning to look at. Fitted with 10 vintage-esque tube lugs and triple flange hoops, this drum just sings. We tried it at a couple tuning points and it just sounds lovely. Very loud, great sensitivity to the snare wires when eased off a little, I guess its really down to personal taste. But this drum doesn’t disappoint on any level, way up their with the other top drum companies out there.

I recorded it with one mic at an average mid-high tuning, and also with a kit (bass drum mic and one overhead). You can hear it here; it’s got a great tuning range, if you come down to the shop and play around with it you’ll see what I mean. More information on this drum on the website.

We also took delivery of a 14×6″ in Brush Box which you can view here What stunning snare drums these are; We don’t deal with much modern gear here, but occasionally something crosses our radar that we think is worth shouting about. These tick all the boxes.

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Slingerland ‘140’ aluminium snare

A short blog about a great snare drum we have at the shop, this Slingerland ‘140’ ridged aluminium.Sling 140

With its super thin metal shell, this drum is really bright with plenty of volume. I find that with the snares slacked off a little, there’s loads of sensitivity with many a jazzer putting this drum through its paces in our shop. We brought a few over from the USA and this is the last one in stock.

The only non original feature is the tone control muffler – the original was missing so we fitted this one in the existing holes; Fully functional, most probably wouldn’t notice. 8 lugs, stick saver hoops and the simple but practical rapid snare strainer… tune it high for jazz and get a real funk crack out of it, or tune it down low for that 80’s thud that seems en vogue at the  moment with a bit more attack than an acrolite. Sound files here, short video feature here. More images on our website –  Nick Hopkin Drums. Enjoy.

Hayman ‘Vibrasonic’ snare drum

Today I’m looking at a Hayman ‘Vibrasonic’ snare drum that recently came into the shop as part of a full kit. This snare drum is in lovely condition. It dates to around 1973, by the silver badge and the colour of the drum – ‘Regal Red’. This would have been manufactured towards the end of the Hayman name; Hayman ceased production of drums in 1975, you can read more about that here.

This snare drum is in lovely, original condition. There are no marks or scratches to the red wrap and neither is there any wrap lifting (which was common on hayman drums, especially around the lugs). The chrome is good, the only real exception being on the original snare strainer; despite this, it is fully functional and has the Hayman logo inscribed. All features are original – baseball bat style tone control dampener, 1o lug triple flange hoops, turret style lugs, slot head tension rods.

The white ‘vibrasonic’ shell interior is in great condition, with no crazing. The shell is round and sound, all good. I fitted the drum with new Remo Ambassador heads and the drum tuned up great. There are some sound files of the drum at low / mid tuning & mid/high tuning, both with and without moon gel. It sounds great at both, but for me its sweet spot is at a mid/high tension.

I’ve done a short video feature on this snare drum on my YouTube channel. There are more images and information on the snare drum and the matching drum kit on http://www.nickhopkindrums.com