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The most popular products with our experts are car wax, Windex, Mr Sheen and Pledge furniture polish.
Tom Willhelm (Daniel Adair’s tech), agrees: “I use Pledge furniture polish on both lacquer and wrapped shells. I spray the Pledge onto a diaper and then apply that to the surface to clean the shell. I prefer a diaper as it is less likely to scratch it.”
Drum restorer Jeremy Peake uses Mr Sheen, which is also a degreaser, for lacquered and wrap finishes. If a wrap is dull Jeremy uses a car colour reviver, then Mr Sheen and a cockpit shine spray.
Preston Prince offers: “If slightly scuffed with light scratching and blemishes I tend to wipe with a sponge lightly soaped in Fairy Liquid. I might even T-Cut the shells, then buff with a car wax or polish to pull out the blemishes.”
Good Charlotte’s Dean Butterworth says he uses Windex to clean the shells, lacquered or wrapped. If the finish is particularly dull Dean says he’ll “buff with wood polish or Windex”.
Jazz-funk legend Ndugu Chancler says, “For drums with lacquered or covered shells I use a lemon oil and a spray furniture wax with a soft cloth, or baby diaper to wax and keep the shells clean and shiny. On the lugs I will use a chrome polish to keep them shiny and protected from rust.
“Once the drums have a nice protective coating of wax, I keep the shells dusted. To bring back a dull shine I use a paste or cream wax with a buffer.
“I never use any abrasive cleaners or scouring pads on any equipment. If you keep the equipment clean you won’t need to use harsh cleaning agents.”
Ndugu makes a good point, that if you clean your gear daily you won’t have to do much for your yearly MOT. Laurie Jenkins says he gives Kasabian drummer Ian Matthews’ DWs a “once over daily with Pledge to keep the sparkle”.
And A J Nosek gives Andy Hurley’s drums “a thorough wiping with a clean, dry (soft) towel after every performance to make sure moisture doesn’t build up, especially around lugs/under rims.
“I use Carruba liquid wax or furniture polish to improve the shine; mild detergent soap in warm water to get off deep grime, but I make sure it’s completely dry before casing/travel/storage”.