Dating k zildjian cymbals

It all seems to add up to a whole lot of dunno! Be aware that sizes may or may nor conform to an exact measurement. Most Vintage cymbals are thinner and therefore lighter than their modern equivalent.

Early American K (EAK) Zildjians (1979-1981)

Cymbals have a weight: If you have existing cymbals, knowing the weight of the cymbal that you are considering purchasing will allow you to have an comparison tool. These relationships are discussed at length and with heat on drum and cymbal forums around the web. Yeah, where do you start. If you are pricing to sell, basically the cymbal is worth whatever someone is willing to pay for it.

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Old K istanbul cymbals are occasionally seen on ebay completed sales lists either unsold, or sold at much lower valuations than here which all proves that the value is in the eye of the buyer! So, it is difficult to exactly determine the period that certain stamps were used. This is a rough guide to help estimate the age of your cymbal. There is no book, so far, so I took some pictures of my own cymbals over the years and arranged them in a timeline to my best knowledge. I will gladly support any further research.

Old Stamp IIa (1945-1949)

In the thirties Zildjian's most popular cymbal measured between 8 and 14 inch, weight paperthin, easily bendable. Drummers also used small but heavy brass cymbals. In the fourties Bebop drummers began to use larger rides and sizzle cymbals. Ride size ranged up to 30 inch and 16 inch Hihats are known from this era.


Cymbal weight stepped up with popular music. Some stories tell about drumshops stamping cymbals according client preferences. The first fifty years of A. Zildjian can be divided in 6 types as seen below.

Buying and Selling Vintage Zildjian Cymbals

This is also known as the 'pre-ink' period, so before mid s when Zildjian started the silkscreen ink stamps on the bottom with the open ink-stamp logo. Zildjian paper-thin gram cymbal and came with a Leedy trapset. Zildjian 8 inch paperthin splash. This is one of the first stamps. Hard to see in this photo is the "genuine turkish cymbals, made in usa" but it's there, it's a complete logo.

Pre-war cymbals have the straighter Pre-Round-Bottom "J". Zildjian used the Round Bottom "J". Very rare case of a misprint. This picture was send to me by email from a fellow Zildjian afficionado. Profile Degree of curvature from the cup to the edge.

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Higher profile cymbals will be higher pitch and have fewer overtones. Flatter profile cymbals will be lower in pitch and have more overtones. Taper Degree to which the cymbal changes in thickness from the cup to the edge.

How To Date a Vintage Zildjian using the Maker's Stamps

The design of the taper will contribute to the amount of Crash-like or Ride-like qualities in the cymbal. Bell All other factors being equal, the bell or cup size determines the amount of overtones of ring projected by a cymbal. A larger bell produces more overtones and a longer, full-bodied sound. A smaller bell reduces ring and sustain and provides a more defined stick sound for riding.

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  • Old Stamp I (1930s-1945);
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Ride Area The center portion of the cymbal. Crash Area The outer edge where a cymbal responds immediately and where most players strike to produce an instant Crash response.

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