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Star Single Tom Stand and Classic Stand

Ditch the snare basket and streamline your setup.

Tama is not only one of the world’s premier drum makers, but it also offers some of the most stable, durable, and well-engineered hardware on the market today. This past year the company introduced two new pieces for drummers looking to simplify their setups without sacrificing sound and flexibility. These are the HTS108W Star single tom stand ($227.49) and the HC52F lightweight Classic cymbal stand ($100). Let’s check them out!

Star Single Tom Stand

The HTS108W is designed as an alternative for drummers who like to mount rack toms in snare baskets but don’t want to choke off the resonance. It’s a hefty stand that can be used with any rack tom with a depth of 10″ or less, and it has enough height adjustment to place a tom in a standard position above bass drums between 18″ and 26″ in diameter. The Omni-Ball tilter allows you to adjust the angle of the tom easily to achieve the most comfortable spot. The large steel L-rod, which can be adjusted up to 6″ out from the base to accommodate different horizontal positions over the bass drum, is held securely in place with Tama’s Glide-Tite grip joint and a memory lock.

The rubber feet are oversized for increased stability and have retractable spikes to prevent the stand from creeping away during the gig. The legs are double-braced to prevent tipping, and Tama insulated the inside of the top pipe with a True-Sound mute to keep the stand from absorbing vibrations from tom hits, and thus sacrificing sustain. This is a super-hefty tom stand, but it works great. It allowed me to extend my rack tom a few inches toward the center of the bass drum, which isn’t possible with most standard snare baskets. I also didn’t notice any tone dampening when playing the rack tom on the HTS108W stand. The only downside I found was that the .5″ L-arm was too wide to fit the mounts on some of my vintage drums, and too small to accommodate one contemporary model I tried it with. So be sure to measure the bracket hole on your tom before making the purchase, or be prepared to purchase a correctly sized replacement mount. Otherwise, this stand is great for simplifying setups without compromising stability or flexibility.

Classic Stand

Contrasting the heavy-duty Star single tom stand, the HC52F Classic stand is extremely lightweight and compact. It features a flat base that borrows from the design of cymbal stands made in the 1960s and, weighing just 3.2 pounds and folding up to under 23″ in length, is small enough to fit inside most cymbal bags. The tilter is toothed to keep the cymbal locked into place, and it allows for various angle adjustments at ten-degree increments. The thumbscrews are thin but sturdy and ergonomic for easy adjustments.

The flat-base tripod sits low to the ground, so you can place the stand closer to the bass drum than you can with a regular tripod. And unless you’re a heavy hitter, the tripod and stand are plenty sturdy to hold ride cymbals and crashes without tipping or slipping.

Tama also made the upper tube out of solid 9mm steel, rather than a hollow pipe. This was done to provide additional stability without adding too much weight. There’s a rubber ring placed at the end of the solid tube to insulate against vibrations that could cause the stand to rattle.

I often use vintage cymbal stands on club gigs and recording sessions because of how lightweight and compact they are and because they tend to allow the cymbals to sustain a bit longer and with a fuller tone. The problem with those old stands is that they tend to be a bit flimsy, and the thumbscrews often slip. Not so with the Tama Classic stand. It may look like a throwback to the ’60s, but it’s as cutting-edge as it gets.

Michael Dawson