Here is a wonderful example of a very rare late 30s, Slingerland 5x14 Radio King metal shell snare drum. The shell is heavy brass, one piece, and nickel plated brass. According to Slingerland’s catalogs of this era, this metal shell snare could only be ordered in 5x14 or 6.5x14 sizes The plating options available were either nickel or chromium. Unlike the popular “Krupa" model, there was limited information describing all options that were available when ordering the metal version. Most likely, these metal shells were much like a special order that was requested and specified by the consumer.Read More
Here is a wonderful example of a rare, black diamond pearl Rolling Bomber snare drum. This particular snare drum is unique in that most Rolling Bombers produced were ordered with the popular white marine pearl. Black diamond pearl was very uncommon for this time period.Read More
During Slingerland’s pinnacle time of manufacturing a drummer could actually request a special color order that they envisioned. Some of these orders produced were for a "mono" or one solid color lacquered painted finish. These unique finishes were much more uncommon to find on Slingerland drums of this vintage era. Here are four examples of Slingerland Radio King snare drums produced with "Solid" lacquer colored finishes.Read More
...a rare and unusual aspect of this drum is it was made with a solid one ply maple shell construction instead of the normal plywood shell.
In my early days of collecting, I often asked myself, “What is this model?” or “Why is this snare drum made like this and inconsistent with similar drums of this era?”, or “Why is this snare drum different than the one in the catalog?” As I grew more familiar with Slingerland drum catalogs and references, I became a vintage Slingerland drum detective of sorts. I learned to read between the lines of the typical and not so typical examples. I discovered that these hybrids came into existence because of the supply and demand issues at the factory.Read More
In 1940 Slingerland decided to go back to the drawing board and create a new Radio King snare drum model. This model would become known as the “New Super Gene Krupa Model” with a unique and innovative strainer system which became known as the "clam shell" strainer. Unlike the Gene Krupa 6.5” x 14” model with the three point strainer and eight center streamline lugs, this new Radio King snare had been drastically redesigned.Read More