Bass Drum Tuning: How to Get Good Sound Every Time!

Tuning a bass drum isn’t a difficult task, with just a few practices you can get the sound that you’re looking for with almost every kick drum.

Read this article to learn simple steps on how to tune your bass drum the nicest and fastest way.

Learn how to tune a bass drum in 4 easy steps

First, take out the batter head including the lags. if you have, you can use 2 drum keys at the same time to make this process even faster, when you got the drum heads and the lugs out, it’s time to put some wax on the bearing edge of the drums – this will help the head seat more smoothly.

Now you can put the new head on your bass drum, then tight the lugs with the drum key(s). Imagine the drum as if it was a clock – it is recommended to start with the lug that is in the 12:00 position, then the one that is at the 06:00 position, then 3:00 and then 9:00, after that, tight the other 4 lugs in the same pattern starting from 13:00.

Place your elbow on the center of the drum head and press on it, the head should make a sound of stretching, this will help the head to sit better on the drum, now keep pressing the head with one hand, while you do this, take the drum key with the other and continue to spin the lugs in the same pattern, about half a turn each time, until the head become tight on the drum, and there are no wrinkles.

Check the sound of your bass drum by hitting the center of the head with a drum stick, you can tune the lugs to be the same pitch by hitting with the stick on the head, close to the lugs, and tightening the lugs that are tuning lower then the others until they sounds the same. The more you will tighter the lugs, the tone of your bass drum will get higher.

Bass drum tuning

Learning bass drum tuning

Tip: Purchasing and tuning a new front head can improve dramatically the sound of your bass drum.

Relevant video

See this video by Drumeo to learn how to tune a bass drum.

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