Hi Hat Clutch For Alesis Nitro Electric Drum Set

Last Edited: 2023-10-07 02:42:37

I don't talk about my drum sets here much because I'm not much of a drummer.  I've had 2 acoustic sets and 2 electric drum sets.  I can honestly say all 4 have been pretty great.  I'm going to blab a bout it for a while in the next section so if you want to skip story time, skip down a bit.

My Drumset History

I had bought a $250 drum set from Guitar Center back in like 2008.  Very exciting first drum set.  Wasn't the greatest, but it was good to learn some stuff on.  I got to do a few videos with it like lowrider:


Then we moved to an apartment where neighbors don't really care to much for acoustic drum sets.  I sold the acoustic set for $200.  Well, I got screwed over on that drum kit because the person disappeared.  I wound up getting an Alesis DM6.  It was a bit pricey at the time, but it allowed me to continue playing in the apartment for a few more videos like Horse With No Name:


Then I found a great deal on a Pearl Import set for $250 and we were in a house for a while.  I don't think I got to make any videos with that.  I did try to kind of meld the two kits together, but it did not pan out the way I wanted it to.

Sold the DM6 for $200, and asked the guy that saw the ad on Craigslist, if you ever want to sell this kit again, let me know.  I will buy it back for the same amount if it still works the same.  Serendipitously ran into the guy a little later in life, turns out he sold it for like $50 when his kid got bored with it.

Then I moved away from the big city we were living in and I sold the Pearl set for $250 (even money!) and just recently got an Alesis Nitro Mesh Set.  It's a lower end electric set and the sound is not the greatest as you can hear in the video.  HOWEVER, if you have an extra $170 bucks unless you find it on sale, EZDrummer3 is an amazing upgrade!  AMAZING!! I plugged the USB into a macbook air with that software, clicked the MIDI button, and checked the Alesis Nitro selection and it just worked.  And it sounds incredible!

Hi Hat Clutch

In case someone is reading this that doesn't know what a clutch is on a hi hat, the top hi hat cymbal is held over the lower cymbal and allows you to adjust the hight.  The ones that I've had in the past have a switch you can flip and it will drop them together.  This way you can use your left foot for something else like double bass - or in my case, operate the loop station pedals.  But I didn't have that on the electric kits.

When I do loop station stuffs, I may be recording on the loop station when I switch instruments and that first click when I put the hi hat together would be recorded, or worse start that part of the loop prematurely and that's no good.  If I had an acoustic set, I would just drop it together like the lowrider video at the top of this post.

Wiring Hi Hat Pedal

The Alesis Nitro has a 1/8" (3.5mm) plug with three contacts.  I figured out that shorting the tip and the lowest ring together will simulate closing the hihat.  I had this large switch laying around in my junk that I was able to use that is just open/closed.  I didn't want to cut into the wires so I ordered a male and female jacks on amazon so I can just plug it together inline.

I did this drawing on a Kindle Scribe.  I'll have to write another blog about that thing, it's pretty awesome too.

Connecting to the Kit

I was able to 3D print a piece of plastic to hold the switch to the kit.  In the drawing, I drew the thing that screws on the top of the hihat because my first idea was to connect to that piece of plastic, but I needed it to be stronger.  I found that the screw is M8 / 1.25 that holds the hihat piece so I went to the depot and got a nut that matches.  Used a soldering iron to melt that bolt into place so it's nice and tight.

For the switch I only gave it .2 mm clearance so that is nice and tight as well.  Feel free to use my design and modify it as you'd like: https://www.tinkercad.com/things/1uNyxuFqIBO-alesisnitrohihatclutch/

There you go

If you have any questions, leave your 2 cents below!



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