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Problem with Drop Clutch

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  • Problem with Drop Clutch

    Hey. I have a Pearl drop-clutch on a Gibraltar hi-hat stand, supporting a pair of 14" A Mastersound hi-hats, a RhythmTech Hat Trick(double), and a Paiste Alpha splash on a spare clutch.

    I've noticed that when I get into heavier playing, or even light playing for extended periods, the clutch begins to loosen. I think the pull-rod itself is loosening, because I've noticed the lever of the drop clutch in completely different orientations than when I mounted the hats. As an aside, I've noticed this problem happening before I started mounting the extra gear on the hat stand. Any reccomendations?

    Thanks.

    -Jaay

  • #2
    Drop dead gorgeous...

    Jaaaaaay,

    I used to use drop-clutches a whole lot, a number of years ago. I finally quit using them, mainly due to technical difficulties.

    In my case, I found that the drop clutches fell into a couple of catagories:

    1. Those made with aluminum bodies, so that the tension screw would eventually strip the threads on the body of the clutch. Tension it too light - it slips. Tension it too tight, it strips.

    2. Those made with steel or magnesium bodies, which didn't strip from the tension screws, but usually would "drop" at inopportune times during heavy playing.

    Sounds like you're having problems with a whole lotta weight causing slippage. You don't specify if the spare clutch you're using to mount the splash (?) is actually resting on the drop clutch or held by its own tension. If it uses its own tension screw, it should be a non-factor.

    You don't mention if the tension screw on your drop clutch seems to loosen up during play, or if the whole assembly just slides down the rod at normal tension. Something you might try, in order to keep threaded screws from de-tensioning is Loctite 242 (blue). This is only appropriate if you are leaving the clutch in place for any appreciable length of time, as it dries to max effectiveness overnight. Caution: Don't use the Loctite Red, as it usually takes impact tools to loosen. Really.

    You could also experiment with texturing the pull rod of your hi-hat stand, to facilitate better grip for the tension screw.

    I used to use it (drop clutch) just for extended double-kick passages, but got tired of the equipment problems associated with the things. I gave up, went back to a normal clutch, and mounted a set of remote (closed) hats on my kit for use during double-kick work.

    Your mileage may vary...
    -Danny

    Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

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