November 27, 2010

My DW Pedal Broke

This just happened last night.

My broken DW 5000 pedal.

A view of that broken metal piece...
My DW 5002AH Delta 2 double bass pedal is an old model (circa 2002, i suppose), and I bought it second-hand from a good friend just a couple of months ago.  Prior to purchase, I made a pretty good inspection of this double bass pedal.  Though it's an older model and it needed some cleaning, I didn't locate any issues or potential problems.  It was still mechanically sound, and most important, its action and response still feels great.  It's a nice set of pedals, and I enjoyed using it in the last ten weeks or so.  Until...

During our gig, somewhere in the middle of a song, something went wrong with the primary (right/main) pedal.  The chain just separated with the footboard, which forced me to use the slave (left/auxiliary) pedal for the remainder of the song.  Good thing we were playing a slow jam R&B tune when it happened.  If it was an upbeat tune with plenty of bass drum doubles or syncopations, it could have been my doom.

... that connects the chain to the footboard.
After that song, I quickly unhooked the primary pedal from the bass drum hoop to check out what happened.  It turned out, this small piece of metal that connects the chain to the footboard just snapped.

It's no quick fix.  The chains seem to be riveted on to the sprocket.  The broken little piece of metal looks like it either needs to be replaced, modified, welded, or super-glued with an extra-strong steel epoxy.  And so, I set aside the broken DW and went for the house kit's sloppy yet still functional Gibraltar bass pedal.

I don't know if this is an isolated case.  I don't know if this is a common problem experienced by other DW pedal players.  I don't know if it's just plain bad luck and I don't think the previous owner/s already tampered or modified this pedal.  But one thing I'm certain of is this is another one of many DW pedal durability and reliability issues, and it's sad to say that I got turned off with it.  I don't think I'll ever buy another DW pedal.

This is where the chain meets the footboard. Broken.
Prior to this incident, I've never broken a high-end pedal.  It's the first time in my whole drumming life that something like this happened to me.  And I'm not the heavy-footed type, which is why it's quite a surprise for me.  I guess it's either I have this fixed in a machine shop or order genuine replacement parts, whichever's more convenient or more reasonable.  Then perhaps I'll sell it and upgrade to a better one.  I think I'll go back to those Japanese pedals, which are more durable and more reliable.  Or better yet, if my budget persists, I'll invest on one of those high-tech direct-drive pedals.

It sucks that I'm pedal-less again, for now.  Once again I have to rely on what's provided on the gig venues, or if there's a good soul out there who's willing to lend me a pedal while I don't have a new one.  But what's more frustrating is it's also a matter of wrong timing.  Just when I'm totally inspired to practice more nowadays & I'm in the midst of preparing for the last couple of days of my drum workshop with Mike Alba, the DW pedal gave in, and I don't have a spare pedal at home.  I'll never own a DW pedal again.

This should be my first and last DW pedal. Disappointment.