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Slingerland Identification


Hi all!

New to the forum! Never had a a reason to join until now!

Nice place you have here!

Wanted to see if anyone can ID this kit for me that I just purchased from Steve Maxwell.

Super clean Red Glitter 22/13/16 with a chrome 14x5 snare. I'm just a dumb guitarist that plays a bit of drums and always dreamed of a solid vintage USA made kit. I'm digging this one, will pick it up in a couple weeks.

It has a Niles badge and maybe a Radio King, but from what I read, Radio King full kits stopped in 1957 or so and picked up again around 1960, but when they picked up again, they only gave snares the RK name. Not sure where I read that, could be wrong.

Steve also had another mint 16x16 floor tom from the same era that matched so picked that up too. Would like to pick up a 14 or 18 floor tom and a matching 14x5.5 wooden snare too at some point.

Any info anyone could give be based from the pics, much appreciated!

None of this really matters, psyched that I found this and will be happy regardless. :)


Posted on 8 years ago

The closest would be the 1n gene krupa kit with the 22" option, Beautiful kit.

Your drummers not much good is he!? What you need is someone that's as good as me. ! John Henry Bonham !!
Posted on 8 years ago

Hi Drumsguitar... and Welcome to the forum!

Wow, that's a really beautiful kit! Like vintagemore2000 said, it is most likely a GK 1N kit. Judging by the push button floor tom legs, tone control knobs and badges, I'd estimate the kit to be very early 60's. Talk about a well preserved kit! That COB RK snare drum is fantastic. Enjoy your kit!

Forgot to mention a few other clues to being an early 60's kit; the style of the cymbal stands. Also, the original 804 hi hat stand with your kit is the original 2-leg variety. These came out in the early 60's, but changed to the 3-leg version rather quickly, due to stability problems. That's not to say that your 2-leg hi hat will tip over! Just that the 3-leg version was more stable.


Posted on 8 years ago

Thanks vintagemore2000 and idrum4fun!

Man, you guys are good. Thanks!

Now I need to start listening to some Krupa.

I read somewhere that the serial numbers started in 1962. So very early 60's and a Niles badge with a S/N, early style hat stand, maybe 1962 or 63? Is that what you're thinking? Could it possibly be a 1960 or 61?

What does the "1N" stand for?

Great info regarding the hardware and hi hat stands.

I'm moving to Chicago soon, and as it turns out, a half mile from where this kit was made, pretty cool!

Thanks again!

Posted on 8 years ago

Black/brass Niles badge with serial number began in October '62. Expect to see a very low serial number if this set is a '62. Many of the Slingerlands of this era have an ink date stamp on the inside of the drum, check for that and also look at the inner wood ply. Prior to June '63 the inner ply is mahogany (dark, grainy), after June '63 the inner ply is clear maple (light, tight grain). You may also have a "P" stamp which indicates a pearl wrap. The 2-bolt rail consolette tom mount is also consistent with an early 60's build. One of the other experts may weigh in on this but I believe the mount changed to a 4-bolt design sometime in late '63-'64? Please let us know what you find out. Nice kit!

Posted on 7 years ago

Thanks for chiming in slingerfan, great info. I'll be picking them up next week and will update what I find!

Posted on 7 years ago

Hi All,

Got the drums, very happy with them, great shape.

Here's what I can gather from taking the heads off, cleaning them, and putting on new Ambassadors.

The kick, 13" tom and 16" tom are from June 63, with a P stamp inside. The add-on 16" tom is from '65. Both 16's look almost identical. The hardware screws on the inside of the '65 are slotted and can take a nut driver. hardware screws on all the '63s are slotted round. The push button floor tom legs on the '63 and '63 are also slightly different.

Consolette is rock solid, though I did swap it out for one of Steve's repros, storing the original.

Bearing edges look good, a couple places where I can see a tiny area of wood filler/glue shrink. Nothing worth talking about though.

I've never seen such rounded bearing edges and can really hear the sounds difference they make. The sound is warmer, rounder, and has a quicker decay than sharper edges that I'm used to. Those calf skins sounded nice when I had them tuned up, but I decided to take them off and store them, as they are original, and put on some coated ambassadors on the top, clears on the bottom for now

They are maple on the inside ply.

The snare is a 4 digit S/N The kick is s 5 digit.

The hardware is really neat. Can't say I'll use it, but very cool to check out the old hardware designs and how the industry has progressed until now. Again, storage. I'll use my existing hardware, more solid and less shaky.

All in all, I'm very happy with them. My first set of USA made drums, and vintage at that, think I did pretty good!

Thanks again for the replies!

Posted on 7 years ago

Great detailed information. What are the differences between the '63 and '65 FT legs? I have noticed a variant that consisted of a small groove around the upper part of the leg with a more square cut top. Also wondering if the 4 digit snare is a relatively high number and the 5 digit bass a relatively low number? You can't go wrong with a super clean original kit like that. Enjoy.

Posted on 7 years ago