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Old 07-10-2020, 03:21 PM
Mr.Toast Mr.Toast is offline
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Default Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

Howdy VDF’rs. I hope all of you are happy, healthy and enjoying the crazy summer of 2020.

I am making this post to officially declare (by the power vested in me by the Illuminati) today will be a Holiday holiday... at least here in the greater Cleveland area.
Why, you ask?...Because I picked up my first "set" of Rogers Holiday (made in Cleveland) drums from a local school auction for ONE DOLLAR!

In the past I have had mixed luck buying vintage drums from school auctions. I've picked up a few pretty nice Supras and a few nice marchers, but I have also bought a few snares that looked ok in the pictures, but in person, were trashed beyond help. (Reminds me of the online dating stories my single friends tell me.) Anyway, I typically steer clear of full kits (trap sets), because the ones I have been able to inspect have been in seriously, but understandably, rough shape. Turns out that decades of inexperienced teenage drummers have a negative effect on the condition of fine vintage drums...who knew?

The auction I stumbled on to this week did not list any promising looking snares, but it did have one interesting lot with just a single poorly focused pic of BDP Rogers drums scattered on the floor. The description read something like...60's Rogers Holiday set missing many parts. The school did not allow in-person inspections prior to the bidding due to COVID concerns, so all I could do was zoom in on the pic and do my best to take stock of what I could see. I could tell the bass drum, snare, and one tom were Rogers, and the other tom was a B/O badge Ludwig, but that was about all I could be certain of. I decided it was worth taking a run at.

It’s worth mentioning that this online auction was run in a way which is different than most. There was a set end time for bids like eBay, but below was a small note saying…”this auction may be extended” What happens is this...if there is active bidding in the final minutes of the auction then it keeps extending the time in increments of 3 minutes (I think) until the bidding war is settled. It makes sense from the sellers side, but in this case it cost me a good bit extra.

In the end, I won the lot for $390 after fees and sales tax. BUT WAIT! Did I lie when I said I got them for ONE DOLLAR? Well, it was not a lie exactly. To be more accurate, I should have stated that I used an initial investment of one dollar to get the funds needed to buy the drums. I’ll tell that story at the end of the post for anyone who is curious. Who’s wife (or significant other) among us can dare argue with bringing home another drum set when it only cost a dollar? He he he.

On the drive to pick them up I was still a little nervous that I had overpaid, but I figured worse case I could “chop shop” it and sell it for parts. When I arrived the school’s band director greeted me at the door. When I told him I was there for the Rogers stuff he sighed and said he almost bid on that lot himself. That gave me hope that the condition was at least decent. When I finally got to see them, I was pleasantly surprised. Oh, and of course I did not leave without asking if the floor tom was possibly hidden away somewhere. He assured me that he had looked everywhere for it. I left my name and number with him just in case.

Once home I took stock of what I had…

Rogers Holiday 20 inch Bass drum

THE GOOD
+ The wrap is in very nice shape
+ Nearly all the original hardware is present
+ The hoops are original and the BDP inlay looks good

THE BAD
- The interior has been painted black
- I’m positive the rail mount is not original, the tom mount looks Ludwig
- The heads are trashed and the reso head says Slingerland...ugh
- Some very minor pitting and surface rust here and there, but should polish up fine
- At least one of the “baseball bat” levers on the swivomatic collars is broken/missing

12 inch Holiday tom No. 40123

THE GOOD
+ Wrap is in great shape
+ Interior is original flat gray
+ Paper label is in nice shape and shows MADE IN CLEVELAND (Go Browns!)
+ Muffler is in nice shape

THE BAD
- Missing bottom hoop
- Top hoop may not be original
- Mount is missing some parts
- Some very minor pitting on lugs

13 inch B/O Ludwig tom

THE GOOD
+ Has all the lugs and a nice badge

THE BAD
- Bottom bearing edge has a gough in it
- Missing bottom hoop
- Top hoop may not be original
- Wrap has a few minor issues along the seam, but not horrible
- Muffler is broken
- Minor pitting on lugs

THE WEIRD
The badge has no serial number???

I saved the best for last…

Rogers Powertone Snare No. 4483

THE GOOD
+ Wrap is in great shape
+ Original strainer and butt are in good shape/function
+ Interior is original flat gray
+ Paper label is in nice shape and shows MADE IN CLEVELAND (Go Browns!)
+ It has playable heads on it and it sounds great

THE BAD
- Hoops are probably not original
- Missing muffler
- Very minor pitting that should polish up


QUESTIONS FOR THE VDF GURU’S

What year(s) do the serial numbers on the tom and snare indicate?

Is it common for the B/O ludwigs to not have serial numbers?

Considering the high cost and hassle of finding the legit replacement parts (the biggest cost obviously being a matching floor tom) and also considering the irreparable defiling of the bass drum’s interior paint job and the holes drilled for the bastard rail consulate, would you…

a) Sell it all together as is, and let someone else take on the project.
b) Clean it up, find a cheaper but suitable stand-in for the missing floor tom and sell it as a players kit.
c) Sell some, or all of the drums individually.
d) “Chop Shop” the whole mess and sell it for parts.
e) Go “all-in” on the restoration to make the kit as close to original as possible.

When answering the above, consider that I am not a true collector, nor am I a gigging musician. Although I have 4 collectable vintage kits and a dozen or so snares that I have refurbished in my basement at the moment, I fully intend on selling nearly all of them over the next few years. Provided that the world’s economy does not vaporize. I obviously enjoy the process of finding and restoring them, but I also like to make a little profit for my efforts when they go on to a new home. I like to think that I’m a drum flipper with a heart.

Thanks for reading my long winded story, and any help/advice is always greatly appreciated.

FOR THE CURIOUS…here’s why I could tell my wife I got them for $1 with a semi-clear conscience.

A few weeks back I went to the greatest estate sale ever. It was just down the road from my place and it was not run by a tag sale company, it was being run by the family. As many of you know, estate/tag sale companies do a much better job of pricing items now that they can quickly look things up online, so it’s increasingly rare to find a treasure that they have overlooked. Luck would have it that I showed up at this sale right when they opened, the man out by the garage explained that some items were priced with stickers and ANYTHING without a price tag was $1. When I started checking out interesting items in the garage almost nothing had a price tag on it. I remained calm on the exterior, but inside I was hearing the 1812 overture in stereo.
I ended up spending exactly $20, for which I got a great sounding set of vintage Koss Pro headphones, a nice pair of vintage MIJ binoculars, a nice camera tripod still in the box, 5 or 6 new fuse protected power strip extension cords, and some target shooting supplies (rifle rest, pistol cases, and metal spinner targets). When my arms were full and I was starting to feel a bit conspicuous like a fat guy lingering at a buffet, I spied a briefcase sized wooden box on the shelf. I peeked inside and it was filled with a mess of what looked like Erector Set parts. I still had one free index finger to carry it, so I grabbed it too. Once home, I took a closer look at the wooden box and it’s contents. It was like an Erector set, but it was made by the Lionel toy train company back in 1948. When I looked it up on eBay, I found a few of them for sale for between $200 and $750. It took a few hours to inventory and reorganize the hundreds of parts in the box, but in the end, it appeared that my kit was 100% complete. Even the cardboard separators used to display it on the shelf in the hobby shop were still there and virtually untouched since 1948. Another eBay listing had a bunch of excellent pictures showing how the contents would have been organized from the factory, which was a big help in sorting mine out. Anyway, my $1 set sold a few days before the school auction for just about exactly what it cost to win the Rogers Holiday drums. I know, I know, us flippers can always backtrack through a chain of flips or trades to justify the price we paid for something, but this one was just one quick flip and the amount was so close that I’ll always think of them as the $1 Holiday set.
In case you are wondering...my wife saw right through my faulty logic. She knows me too well.
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Last edited by Mr.Toast; 07-10-2020 at 03:36 PM.
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  #2  
Old 07-10-2020, 03:23 PM
Mr.Toast Mr.Toast is offline
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Default Re: Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

more pics of the drums
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Old 07-10-2020, 03:24 PM
Mr.Toast Mr.Toast is offline
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Default Re: Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

one last group of pics
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Old 07-10-2020, 04:09 PM
kdg kdg is offline
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Default Re: Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

What is remarkable to me is that for a public school instrument, it has not been trashed over the last 55 years. I know of a arts-magnet high school in my area that bought 4, 5x14 Ludwig bronze Supras, only to be ruined later that year by kids "bowling" them down the hallway!
The "Gods of Covington" have smiled upon you.

kdg
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Old 07-11-2020, 04:16 PM
Hulakatt Hulakatt is offline
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Location: Pittsburgh
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Default Re: Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

I'd unload the Ludwig tom, search for a matching floor tom and restore it as a slow burn project. My Gretsch RB kit has been a slow burn restore and I'm a few years into it.
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63' Slingerland Gene Kruppa kit (W/ COB Snare)
64' Gretsch Bop kit
65' Ludwig Club Date kit
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Old 07-11-2020, 04:28 PM
leedybdp leedybdp is offline
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Default Re: Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

That seems like a good plan to me.
The snare drum alone is a great find.
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Old 07-13-2020, 10:48 AM
Mr.Toast Mr.Toast is offline
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Default Re: Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

Thanks for chiming in guys!

After a little searching it looks like a proper restoration on this kit would necessarily be a "slow burn" project. A few of the bits are not to be found at all on eBay or Reverb and a few others are only available for silly prices.

I started working on the snare yesterday and it cleaned up very easily. I see why people love these drums. The build quality is amazing, what a well designed throw-off.
The more I see, I can't believe these were in use at a public school for any long amount of time. I asked the band director if they were donated to the school or something? He was a relatively young guy and wasn't sure where they came from, but he said they hadn't been used since he took over the program.
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Old 07-13-2020, 02:59 PM
Hulakatt Hulakatt is offline
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Default Re: Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

That's too bad for the students! We just used old Pearl Forum kits when I was in Jazz Band in HS in the 90's. I would've loved to play around on an old Rogers Holiday kit!
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63' Slingerland Gene Kruppa kit (W/ COB Snare)
64' Gretsch Bop kit
65' Ludwig Club Date kit
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  #9  
Old 07-13-2020, 04:29 PM
leedybdp leedybdp is offline
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Default Re: Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

Most high school kids would rather play shiny new relatively cheap drums than well-worn top notch older drums. I dealt with this for guitars and amps for thirty years. A brand new pointy and shiny piece-o-crap Chinese-made guitar and a gently used $800 Mexican Standard Strat are both for sale at $400. Tomorrow , the pointy thingy will be worth $200 on a trade in for a better guitar or $150 to sell it. The Mexican Fender will be worth a minimum of $400 today or even a few years from today.Which one does junior want when mom and dad bring him into the music store to buy him a guitar?
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Old 07-13-2020, 06:35 PM
Drum Doug Drum Doug is offline
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Default Re: Rogers fans rejoice! It's a Holiday holiday!

I think they are a great find Mr. Toast with lots of character! A little TLC will make them your own.

+1 with Leedybdp !

I spent 5 years teaching drums back in the late 70s. I strongly encouraged parents to buy their new drummer a used quality name kit like Ludwig, Slingerland, or Rogers vs what the kid wanted - a new shinny stencil kit (J-100s we called them). My selling point was that if little Johnny lost interest ( a definite possibility) they could sell the name brand kit and get their money back. If they bought the shinny J-100 kit they would probably take a 50% loss.

Back then Name brand kits were common and relatively cheap ( of coarse that was 40+ years ago) ! I bought my 20 12 14 Rogers Holiday kit back in 74 from a Mom who wanted to get them out of the closet. $250 with a 22" AZ ride and 15" AZ hi hats ... still have them ... sweet
Doug
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