It’s always a good idea to make sure you have all the necessary equipment for your kit spares. A well-equipped drum kit can help keep you from having any unpleasant surprises in the middle of a gig. However, if you’re not careful, you might find yourself going over budget on spare parts and accessories.
I’ve been playing drums for years now and have learned a lot about what it takes to keep everything working properly both at home and on stage. Here are some tips that will help keep your kit running smoothly.
Your spare kit needs to be as streamlined as possible.
The first thing to consider is that your drum kit spares need to be as streamlined as possible. When you’re on stage and the drummer has a little snag, it’s not the time for you to be searching through a big bag of spares trying to find what they need. Instead, have each drum with its own small bag of spares: snare drum and kick pedal spares should go in one bag; tom and cymbal spares can go in their own individual bags (remember: never use duct tape!).
This will make it much easier for you if there is an emergency during a gig you can simply hand over the proper essentials without going through everything else first.
Secondly, remember that while cymbals are probably what people think about when they think about broken drums or missing pieces (especially if they like their drum solos), don’t forget about checking out the snare drum! Your drummer may get adventurous and play around with different types of sticks or maybe they’ve just picked up a new pair that’s just not working with them yet – either way, this needs checking before every performance!
Get a small bag of loop ends and put it in the bottom of your drum kit spares
Loop ends are the metal clips that attach to your drum kit spares heads and keep them tight. You should always have a small bag of loop ends in the bottom of your flight case or drum bag, just in case you need to change out or tighten a head during a gig.
The number of loop ends you need depends on how many drums you have, but we’d recommend getting about five packs for each kit that you play regularly. These can usually be found at any music store with an instrument section just make sure to get ones that are compatible with whatever kind of heads you normally use!
You can put these anywhere they won’t get lost: inside the top compartment of your drum bag, behind one of your snare drums if it doesn’t have too much room behind it (if it does then try sticking them into one side only), even under some T-shirts if everything else is full. Just make sure they don’t get lost!
At each gig, I run through my entire setup and make sure all the screws are good and tight. If your stands are wobbly, you’ll want to tighten all of their screws until they’re solid. The same goes for pedals: they should never move once they’re in place if they do, it could be dangerous during a show!
Finally, even if your drumheads have been tuned properly (which we’ll talk about in a second), you should still check them before every show. Depending on how much time has passed since your last gig or practice session and how hot/cold it is outside where you live, those drum kit spare heads will loosen up over time naturally, so check them often!
The snare drum is where you’re most likely to need spares.
The snare drum kit spares are the most likely to break and need a spare, so you’ll want to have one of these on hand at all times. The snare can be used for rolls, accents, rim shots, and more. If your snare head breaks or if it needs tuning, having a spare head will come in handy quickly. If the rim of your drum ever breaks or if you need to replace it with a new one that fits correctly under your skin (the material covering your drum), then you will also want spares available. There’s no reason not to have these items on hand – they’re inexpensive and easy to obtain!
It might be worth carrying a spare stand for your kick pedal.
If you have drum kit spares, you might want to carry a spare kick pedal for it. Carrying one of these around is not ideal, but at least it’s better than having no kick pedal at all. If you don’t have any other options, use any of the following:
- A mic stand (if your mic stand has a clamp)
- A folding music stand (if your music stand has legs)
- A broomstick (if there’s nothing else)
Don’t go to gigs without planning for what could go wrong.
The last thing you want is to be stuck at a gig with an issue and have no way of fixing it. Before you head out, make sure that you have all the tools and drum kit spares available should something go wrong. If you haven’t got them on hand, add them to your rig before heading off.
It’s also worth discussing with other drummers what they do when something goes wrong and how they handle issues with their kits. Our team here at Drum Workshop has some great tips on what we recommend having in place so check those out here.
In conclusion, it is essential to plan ahead and have a good set of drum kit spares. Remember that every drummer will have different needs, so make sure you know what yours are before you go out and buy any new items.