SOS Drums

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SOS Drums

Postby pickthebeam » Sun Dec 01, 2013 2:09 am

I bought the quinto myself from Jay in the mid 1990's. I bought the tumba and conga this summer from a guy in the Bronx. I know they are oak and dated 1987 but I'm not sure what wood the quinto is. Does anyone know. I think it might be cherry.
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby RitmoBoricua » Sun Dec 01, 2013 3:34 am

The resolution quality on the photo is not the best
a little blurry when the photo is enlarged but I am
almost certain that quinto is made out of cherry wood,
nice set of SOS. I hope this helps.
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby Madlatin » Sun Dec 01, 2013 4:16 pm

Yes, that quinto definitely looks like cherry. They are in beautiful condition. Good to hang on to, as Jay is retired and no longer making drums.

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Re: SOS Drums

Postby KING CONGA » Mon Dec 02, 2013 5:11 pm

Greetings madlatin. That if one fine looking quinto. What size head does it have? Looks more like a requinto.
Are you absolutely sure about Jay retiring? Wow
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby Madlatin » Mon Dec 02, 2013 6:45 pm

KING CONGA wrote:Greetings madlatin. That if one fine looking quinto. What size head does it have? Looks more like a requinto.
Are you absolutely sure about Jay retiring? Wow


What's up KC? I ended up placing an order for an 11,12 and a 13 drum last December from Jay. At that time, he said that was the last order he was taking. He told me that I was getting the last drums he was going to make. Josh got a new job and Jay finished up my set by himself. They arrived early. Guess I lucked out. I spoke with Jay last week and he said he is definitely retired.
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby rhythmrhyme » Mon Dec 02, 2013 10:49 pm

Nice congas madlatin, I have the exact same set in oak. I also order another conga and tumba last year, conga in ash, tumba in cherry. I while ago I also got a set of walnut bongos from Jay as well. When I talked to him retirement sounded imminent - hopefully his health is holding up and he'll enjoy his time now that he's not working!!

The 11" quinto sits beside my desk in my home office. Talk on the phone, do a little rip and practice, write a report, listen to some tunes - rough life :D Real nice bass response in that little drum!

The black anodized drum in the first pic of this thread definitely looks like a cherry requinto! Can't be more than 9.5", I thought Jay also made is requinto's shorter, so it may be a rather rare and unusual drum.

For comparison, here's my black anodized cherry tumba amongst her SOS family, the other drum with black hardware is Ash. The cherry drum is very light compared to her oak equivalent.
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby ABAKUA » Tue Dec 03, 2013 12:00 am

Yep, that requinto def looks like Cherry to me.


Madlatin, dayem bro, those SOS are pure porn. And if they in fact are the last set to ever be made by Jay, then they certainly will be treasures.
Sad if he is retired, one of the last carriers of the flame in terms of true traditional Cuban style hand made drums.
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby ABAKUA » Tue Dec 03, 2013 9:30 pm

rhythmrhyme - nice SOS collection, how big is that Tumba? looks huge! I love it! 8)
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby rhythmrhyme » Wed Dec 04, 2013 12:17 am

Yup, I'm really happy with these drums! They cover everything I can ever see needing in a conga and I feel like my hunt for the right drums is over, and has been for a while.

The "super tumba" is 14". It's big, but actually still functional and can be easily brought up to play as a tumba or as a lead drum for folkloric stuff like Palo or Bembe. The bongo's I got from Jay are fantastic as well, I simply love everything he sent me. I'm very happy to have found him before he retired!
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby ABAKUA » Wed Dec 04, 2013 3:11 am

Nice one. Def. amazing drums. Congrats on having some very fine drums indeed.
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby Madlatin » Wed Dec 04, 2013 3:40 am

RR, Man! Nice line up for sure. Being that you have drums by the same maker but different woods, is ash that much louder than cherry and oak?
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby Omelenko1 » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:32 am

Here is my cherry SOS trio from 1992. Jay the master craftsman carried on the tradition from Gonzalo Vergara has officially retired. If properly cared for they will last a lifetime.
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Re: SOS Drums

Postby Omelenko1 » Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:33 am

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Re: SOS Drums

Postby rhythmrhyme » Wed Dec 04, 2013 6:48 pm

Madlatin wrote:RR, Man! Nice line up for sure. Being that you have drums by the same maker but different woods, is ash that much louder than cherry and oak?


I'm not sure I would describe the ash drum as louder, but it is brighter, if that makes sense. I had Jay put a rather thick head on it and if perfectly matched with the oak it may be a bit louder, I'm not sure. I find the slaps are just a bit more crisp and dry and it projects well with little effort. I use the ash conga as my center drum, and the oaks as my tone drums. The cherry conga is definitely the mellower of the 3 woods, more bass tone and longer sustain. It is also the lightest of them all so I expect the lighter wood resonates better and leads to more bass response while reducing the bright crisp aspects as a tradeoff - it has zero overtones though, while the oak has a bit and the ash has the most. That being said, if I tune the cherry up just a bit higher than the oak conga (like 1/3 of a turn) it really comes to life and starts to sing. These characteristics make the drum great to play on it's own in a rumba setting, but a little tricky to mix in with the ash and oak drums if playing a salsa style set up.
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