Here’s a snare drum that I’ve had for a while. A good friend of mine was the original owner and sold the drum to me about 10 years ago at the 2005 Chicago Vintage Drum Show.
This is a very rare, special order Craviotto snare drum that was part of the Steve Maxwell Collection (Steve is the world’s largest Craviotto dealer). Only two were made in 2003; #1 is in my collection and #2 is in Sweden last I heard. The story is that the original owner (and possibly the collector in Sweden) wanted a Craviotto Lake Superior Timeless Timber 700 year old solid birch snare drum in a 6.5 x 13 size. The order was placed with Steve Maxwell. I was told by three very reputable sources, Johnny, Steve Maxwell and Joe Kenny that in the process of bending the planks/boards Johnny broke 26 boards in order to get two perfect shells. Steve Maxwell was kind enough to let me quote the “broken boards story” in his own words: ”The deal with the broken boards was this: It isn't just the fact that it is a 13 that makes it hard, (because Johnny does 13s, 12s and 10s all the time with no issues). The issue was that it is specifically the Timeless Timber that made it almost impossible to bend a 13. The reason is that the Timeless wood is exceedingly hard from being under pressure in the lake for about 100 years. As a result, the 14 was really the smallest diameter that could be rolled without it becoming excessively wasteful due to broken boards.”
2003 6.5x13 CRAVIOTTO/STEVE MAXWELL COLLECTION BIRCH LAKE SUPERIOR TIMELESS TIMBER
The Shell: The solid birch shell has the typical Johnny Craviotto craftsmanship that he is famous for. The interior is signed and dated 2003. After I bought the drum I asked Johnny if he would authorize a new/updated name plate for me. He came through like a champ.
The Hardware: I’m not sure about drum #2 but this drum has nickel plated hardware, die cast rims and a Trick strainer with the Craviotto logo.
The drum has an Evans G1 batter, Craviotto/Remo snare side and Pure Sound 20 strand wires. The drum has a great “pop” to it and is used all the time in my drum studio.
I felt that this very rare Craviotto snare drum should be shared with my friends, fellow collectors and the vintage drum community.
Enjoy! Mike Curotto