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How the toms are mounted plays a critical roll in the tone of your shells. The general idea when thinking about how your shells are mounted, with regard to tone, is the more holes you add, the less sustain and natural tone you will hear from the shell.

Old School Mounting SystemIn previous decades, it was common to mount toms by drilling holes in the shell for mounting hardware. This means at least 3 holes for the screws for the mounting bracket and one massive hole for the mounting arm to be able to slide in and out of the shell. This was going double for the bass drum because the 2 upper toms were being mounted directly to the bass drum in the exact same fashion.

Modern Tom MountAround 1979 the heavens opened up and drum companies began to discover that suspending the drum drastically enhanced the sustain and tone of the shell. Their are many different versions on the market and each company has developed their own.

The key thing to look for is how much of the mounting system is touching the shell. Generally you want one vent hole, the drum company badge or logo, and the lugs touching the shell… that’s it!

Many companies have even gone to low mass lugs which only require one screw to mount it to the shell. This automatically cuts the total number of holes drilled in the shell by at least half.

Leave A Reply (2 comments so far)

  1. Gail

    Hardware that suspense the toms sounds like the best. One probably wants to have the ability to move the toms forward also.

  2. You are exactly right Gail. Letting the shell ring as freely as possible will ultimately produce the drums best tone.