Vintage Drums Project

I'm a lifelong drummer, (since 1964) and have a love of jazz. That led me to be a big fan of Buddy Rich, as a young man, and later, that also led to me obtaining some vintage 1938 Slingerland "Radio King" drums. ( See my music-related site at

In about 2000, I created a 3D model of the drums in Carrara. Since I'm now using "MODO", it seems like a good time to update and improve the model. For you drummers out there, the sizes are: 14" X 26" bass drum, 9" X 13" mounted tom, (2) 16" X 16" floor toms, 5 1/2" X 14" snare drum. The cymbals are 20" ride, 14" hi-hats, (2) 18" crash cymbals, and 6" splash cymbal. This model is now available in my 3D Catalog.

So, here we go...

The shells...

Just like the original manufacture, I began with maple shells, which include a mohogany veneer on the inside and outside. In this case, the seat itself is also made from a cylindrical shell, and covered in the same material as the drums.

Drums have a lot of hardware, so that was step two. Luckily for me, the metal lugs on all of the "Radio King" drums are the same size, except for the snare drum. This let me use "instancing" in MODO, to create all of them with almost no increase in file size. The snare drum has different lugs, as well as a snare control, and snares, just like the actual drum.

The bass drum in this setup has two "spurs", to prevent it from moving, as well as holders for two cymbals and a small tom tom. The "claws" that hold the front and rear heads on were also modeled as closely as I could, and were a challenge.

Starting to work on the "marine pearl" finish, and the cymbal material, while I build the cymbal stands, snare drum stand, and the bass drum-mounted tom holder. These are modeled from my own set of these drums, so measurements were easy to obtain.

Click the "Page 02" link below to continue.

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Unless otherwise noted, all content on this site is ©Copyright by Mike James - - All Rights Reserved
NOTE: I am not at liberty to redistribute any of the documentation used to build any of the 3D models on this site.