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Handle or timpani style tension rods, from both toms and bass drums.

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Gretsch bass drum rod circa 1920s-30s.
Long baseball bat style handle with less taper than Ludwig & Ludwig T-rods of the same era.
Gretsch Broadkaster bass drum rods, 1930s-50s. The first Broadkaster style. Very similar to Ludwig & Ludwig faucet head rods. Gretsch rods are stouter, with less taper toward the center.
A side-by-side comparison of Gretsch vs. Ludwig & Ludwig rods of the swing era. The rods with black paint are Gretsch, whereas the frontmost rod is L&L.
Gretsch Broadkaster bass drum tension rod, 1950s. This is the later version, with a platform on the shaft for use with the butterfly claws of the 1950s.
Gretsch bass drum rods, mid 1950s-present. Similar to 50s/60s Slingerland but blunter tips. Similar to Kent but with a shorter space between the head and platform.

John Grey

John Grey 40s Autocrat bass drum tension rod
John Grey Autocrat bass drum tension rod, 1940s. 12-24 threads.
John Grey 40s Autocrat bass drum tension rod
a squared off version of the ubiquitous faucet handle style of the time


E.W. Kent 1950s bass drum rods. Easily mistaken for Gretsch and Slingerland. The platform on these rods is further down the shaft.
Kent 1960s bass drum tension rods
E.W. Kent bass drum rods, late 1950s-60s.
Kent 1960s bass drum tension rods
Kent may have continued with this style after they started importing their drums from Japan sometime in the 60s.


Leedy thumb rods, 1910s
Leedy thumb rods, 1910s-20s. These ones are 10-24 thread. Slightly smaller head than most in this style, with a smoother contour. These would have been used with 3/8" thick spacers to allow the rods to clear the claws/hoop and be able to turn.
Leedy Indianapolis era bass drum rods, 1920s-30s. Some European brands copied this style but used M6 threads. 
Leedy 1930s-40s bass drum tension rod
Leedy bass drum tension rods, 1930s-40s. Note the "L" stamp on one side of the heads.


Ludwig & Ludwig 1910s-20s bass drum tension rods. This early version has a longer handle than the common later style, and a gentler taper toward the center.
Ludwig & Ludwig 1920s-60s bass drum tension rods. Shorter handles than previous style, otherwise very similar. Some versions had an "L" stamp on the side as shown.
Ludwig Pioneer 1930s bass drum tension rod
Ludwig & Ludwig Pioneer bass drum rod, probably 1930s. An obscure style which only appeared on (some) Pioneer bass drums.
Ludwig Classic bass drum tension rods, 60s-present.
Originally a WFL design.
Ludwig Standard bass drum rods, late 1960s-70s. The Standard lug design was also used on the Rockers series but these rods only appear on Standard drums. Similar to Tama SuperStar rods, but with no raised lip on the wings.


Pearl bass drum tension rod styles
Various vintage Pearl (and associated stencil kit) bass drum tension rod styles
Pearl bass drum tension rod styles
1960s-90s. Pearl used 1/4-20, 6mm and 12-24 threads on their bass drum rods until the 90s.


Premier Beverley bass drum tension rods
Premier Beverley bass drum rods, 1970s. Used on some Premier drums in the 1980s.
Olympic Premier bass drum tension rods
Premier Olympic bass drum rods, 1960s-70s.
Premier bass drum tension rod
Premier single wing bass drum rod, 1970s
Premier bass drum tension rod
A redesign of their signature single lever heads, with short threaded section.


Rogers Cleveland era bass drum tension rod


Slingerland "S" bass drum tension rods, 1928-41.
Slingerland 40s Radio King bass drum tension rod. The rod shown is short for use as a timpani style rod on a tom.
Slingerland 1940s-mid 1950s Radio King bass drum tension rods.
Radio King bass drum tension rod head style comparison
The more bulbous version of the same style (the lower part in the above photo) may be a foreign copy of the design, or a short-lived alternative version by Slingerland.
Slingerland "torpedo" bass drum tension rods, 1950s thru late 60s. This head style had several different versions with conical (as pictured here) or ring-shaped claw platforms below the handles.
Slingerland 1970s-80s bass drum tension rods. Early versions (as pictured) have a separate handle piece, compression fit onto the shaft. These are prone to wobbling and detaching.
Pearl produced very similar rods with 1/4-20 threads in the 1970s. 

Star/Hoshino Gakki/Tama

Star bass drum tension rods
Star bass drum tension rods, 1960s. These were found on stencil bass drums, 1/4-20 threads.
Star bass drum tension rods
Star bass drum tension rods, 1960s-early 70s. This style invariably had 6mm threads and was used on a wide variety of stencil drums.
Tama SuperStar bass drum tension rod 1970s
Tama SuperStar and ImperialStar bass drum tension rod, late 1970s-early 80s. Standard 12-24 threads.
Tama SuperStar ImperialStar bass drum tension rod
The second version of the SuperStar bass drum tension rod, early 1980s-early 90s. Similar to the Ludwg Standard style but with a lip on the upper handle.

Walberg & Auge

Walberg & Auge bass drum tension rods. A design they seemingly only used on their own drums. Era unknown, probably 1930s-60s.
Walberg & Auge handle tension rods
Walberg & Auge handle tension rods, probably 1930s or 40s-60s. These were mostly used on single tension marching snares.


WFL Ludwig bass drum tension rods
WFL bass drum tension rod (left), late 1930s-50s and later adopted by Ludwig. Pictured with a much later one-piece Ludwig rod. WFL was uncommon in using both key and handle rods on their bass drums.


Yamaha 60s 70s bass drum tension rod
Yamaha "Y badge" bass drum tension rod
Yamaha 60s 70s bass drum tension rod
Yamaha bass drum tension rod 1980s
Yamaha bass drum tension rod, 1980s-00s. Used on a variety of lines, found in both 6mm and 12-24 thread.
Yamaha bass drum tension rod heads
From top to bottom: later and earlier versions of this rod style. Later versions are more rounded.