Rock Band drum pedal problem turned mod

Rock Band drum pedal modLike many fellow drummers I was eagerly awaiting the release of Rock Band because it had a drum set. Less than a week after my prayers were answered I was plunged into the depths of hell after my guitarist decided to give the drums a whirl. He left me with a broken Rock Band drum pedal. So I decided I would fix the fucker on my own. This modded drum pedal is waaaay smoother than the one that comes with Rock Band, which helps a ton when playing the double kicks on expert. Ok, so here’s how I did it:

My broken Rock Band drum pedal. Sad. :(
rock-band-drum-pedal-1.jpg

Here’s the underside of the broken plate.
rock-band-drum-pedal-2.jpg

You’ll need to remove 4 screws to get to the magnetic sensor, which you’ll need later.
rock-band-drum-pedal-3.jpg

I used pliers to dig out the trigger. Notice that the trigger is comprised of two disks. The thinner disk has the glue on the backside and is the piece that connects to the pedal. The thicker disk is held magnetically to the thinner disk. You do not need the thin disk as it’s only function is to hold the thick magnetic disk in place. Save the thick magnetic trigger for a later step.
rock-band-drum-pedal-4.jpg

The rear of the pedal is not connected to the spring, so you can just pull the spring out.
rock-band-drum-pedal-5.jpg

Here’s another view to show you that nothing holds the spring in place.
rock-band-drum-pedal-6.jpg

I thought I would investigate the sensor in the base of the drum pedal, but later discovered I didn’t need to open the base. I included these photos so you could see the inner workings of the base of the Rock Band drum pedal. To remove the sensor cover, there are two screws on the underside of the base. The forward screw tube (which I’m pointing at in the photo with my screwdriver) was too tight for the screwdriver in the photo. If you do need to access the sensor, make sure to use a skinny shafted screwdriver.
rock-band-drum-pedal-7.jpg

Ooooh, aaaah, the magic sensor of the bass drum pedal. Notice it’s off center positioning, that will be important to remember when aligning the magnetic trigger in later steps.
rock-band-drum-pedal-8.jpg

I could have left the broken rear piece of the pedal, but I didn’t want my shit to look ghetto. To remove this pin, tap a screwdriver with a hammer to get it started. IMPORTANT NOTE: DO NOT tap the pin out in the direction indicated in the photo. I later discovered that one side of the pin is knurled, which made it harder to remove. If you go the other direction, it will be much easier for you.
rock-band-drum-pedal-9.jpg

I found that twisting the pin back and forth as I pulled made it come out the easiest.
rock-band-drum-pedal-10.jpg

See, I’m twisting.
rock-band-drum-pedal-11.jpg

Now the base of my pedal is complete, so it’s on to modding my real drum pedal.
rock-band-drum-pedal-12.jpg

I used this Premier pedal.
rock-band-drum-pedal-13.jpg

This was an old beater I had that I didn’t mind carving up to hold the magnetic trigger.
rock-band-drum-pedal-14.jpg

I used my handy Leatherman to dig out some felt in the beater to countersink the magnetic trigger.
rock-band-drum-pedal-15.jpg

I decided to hold the trigger in place with some Gorilla Tape, which holds much better than the revered Duct Tape.
rock-band-drum-pedal-16.jpg

Here’s what the completed beater looks like. You can barely make out the round shape of the trigger, which helped me in the alignment process with the sensor.
rock-band-drum-pedal-17.jpg

A normal bass pedal is designed to strike a vertical surface. I could have mounted the base of the Rock Band drum pedal vertically, but decided it would be too much work to create a strong enough structure to withstand the awesome power of my right leg. So instead, I decided to adjust my pedal to bring the beater forward so it would hit the base of the Rock Band drum pedal lying down. I found it easiest to unscrew the bolt on the chain, pull the beater forward, and replace the screw in a higher link. That pulled my drum pedal forward. I also had to readjust the tension spring, which you can see on the left of the pic, to make it work for the new position of the beater.
rock-band-drum-pedal-18.jpg

To bring the two pieces together, I mounted the base of the Rock Band drum pedal to a strip of wood. I made sure the wood wasn’t too thick for my real drum pedal to attach to it. I must warn you. I spent over an hour playing with the alignment between the trigger in my real drum pedal and the sensor in the Rock Band drum pedal base.
rock-band-drum-pedal-19.jpg

All of the effort was well worth it. My new set up has a much smoother action and it is noticably easier to hit double kicks with this rig. If you end up doing this mod, drop me a comment with a link to a photo of your kit. Good luck, and rock on!

You’re back, yeah!!!

From Gary Stenny on January 3rd, 2008 at 4:59 pm

Gary! It’s good to hear from you. I miss you. When can we hang out? I’m off on Mondays and Fridays. Perhaps I can come by the office and catch up.

From Justin on January 4th, 2008 at 12:57 am

YOU NEED TO GET LAID!

Gary! I miss you. When can we hang out?
AAAAAHHHH HA HA HA HA HA!
fAG!

From KEITH MOON WAS SHITE! on January 4th, 2008 at 9:31 am

Awww, you don’t have real friends. That’s so sad. :(

From Justin on January 4th, 2008 at 12:50 pm

OK Very Cool.

I two fell to the same fate. I knew it was only a matter of time before it went. I could feel the plastic warping.

I just completed a ghetto mod, using the drum pedal from my set and a few pieces of wood. I will put together a post over the weekend. My site has been down for updating so I will have to finish that as well.

Basically I created a base with slots for the drum base bars to rest in. this makes the hole unit more stable, so the damn thing does not slide anymore. I mounted the pedal upright and wrapped it with a wool hat temporarily. I was informed by my brother that the magnetic sensor on the baste is delicate.

More to come…

From JT on January 4th, 2008 at 11:49 pm

JT, the slots are a great idea. If you have pics, please send me the link.

From Justin on January 5th, 2008 at 2:23 am

this is such a badass mod
major props

ricky in texas

From ricky on January 5th, 2008 at 3:36 am

Thanks, Ricky

From Justin on January 5th, 2008 at 3:56 am

wow that is awesome! Since im using rock band to teach me how to play drums (basic beats) this mod would be perfect for my setup.

How much would you charge to make a set if i were to send you my bass pedal and the RB one?

From eric on January 5th, 2008 at 4:04 am

[...] 360.. this game is so fun. I have basically just messed with guitar on Medium. Check this out: Metafluence - Rock Band drum pedal problem turned mod Lots of pics showing a guy that fused the Rock Band bass pedal with a real [...]

From Rock Band - Tweak3D.Net on January 5th, 2008 at 5:07 am

Simply awesome! Wait til I get to the hardware store!

From Eve Isk on January 5th, 2008 at 6:38 am

[...] Rock Band Kick Pedal Mod [...]

From Another game mod — Vinny’s View on January 5th, 2008 at 10:21 am

I second that. how much would it cost to have you mod ours?

From Makkers on January 5th, 2008 at 10:26 am

THAT’S FANFUCKINGCRAZY! As soon as we broke the first one, i then realized why REAL ONES are made the way they are… maybe ROCK BAND should offer TWO types of pedals.. the cheap one and the good one.

From SuzyMcNuzy on January 5th, 2008 at 10:36 am

I think I’m not going to do the service for pay because aligning the pedal and base sensor is delicate, and I don’t think the relationship between the two pieces would survive shipping.

Here is another method I found since posting this.

From Justin on January 5th, 2008 at 12:35 pm

I WANT! I am totally going to make one of these right now!

From DaMieN on January 5th, 2008 at 1:46 pm

Send me a link to the pic when you are done :)

From Justin on January 5th, 2008 at 8:10 pm

[...] Read | Permalink | Email this | Comments [...]

From Gadget & Tech News » Rock Band mod uses real drum pedal on January 5th, 2008 at 8:24 pm

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From Rock Band mod uses real drum pedal | Gadget & Tech News on January 5th, 2008 at 8:27 pm

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From Rock Band mod uses real drum pedal | Gadget & Technology News on January 5th, 2008 at 8:58 pm

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From thelulz.net » Rock Band mod uses real drum pedal on January 6th, 2008 at 11:48 am

[...] Anyways, if you play the drums in Rock Band and you want a smoother and more durable pedal, you can follow this guide that uses a real drum pedal - Rock Band Pedal Mod [...]

From Rock Band Drum Pedal Mod on January 6th, 2008 at 9:20 pm

[...] Read | Permalink | Email this | Comments [...]

From Rock Band mod uses real drum pedal : The Gadgets Show on January 7th, 2008 at 12:15 am

As my girl Jessy always says, sweet action! Good looks, Justin.

From Roy Christopher on January 7th, 2008 at 5:23 pm

Thanks, Roy! Are you back in PDX yet? ;)

From Justin on January 7th, 2008 at 7:09 pm

Awesome, now to whack a Y-splitter onto that cable and mod up to a double kick.

From Free Xbox Live on January 8th, 2008 at 4:22 am

Just curious…the very last “completed” photo appears to have a Tama Iron Cobra beater and not the “normal” round felt you show earlier?? No?

From Rhyvven on January 8th, 2008 at 7:03 am

I’m flying back tomorrow night. I’ll call you later in the week.

From Roy Christopher on January 8th, 2008 at 1:59 pm

http://unf.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=32296861&id=25106230

I used an extra Pearl pedal set I had and followed roughly the idea presented here. During construction I lost the magnet and had to go to Lowes to get some, which actually worked out way better. I got bigger and better magnets and hooked em all over the beater and then taped it, this way aligning the beater with the sensor takes less than a second, just get it close and it works every time.

-Nick

From Nicholas Cudd on January 8th, 2008 at 2:39 pm

Rhyvven, you are correct. I had to replace the original beater because my dog mistook it for a chew toy. :)

Roy, hit me up when you get the chance. We’ll keep the rain on for ya.

Nicholas, dude that is sweet! Love the idea of additional magnets to make alignment easier.

From Justin on January 8th, 2008 at 2:52 pm

[...] set that comes with Rock Band. From covers for the drums (to quiet down the constant banging) to a drum pedal mod (that won’t break if you actually use it), gamers have been coming up with ways to improve [...]

From For the Serious Drummers Only « Hawty McBloggy Invites You to Play on January 10th, 2008 at 2:32 am

I had the same problem! 3rd week of RB and snap… one of my friends broke the pedal.

And… Alas… I did almost the same thing you did… except I mounted the sensor magnet into the metal pedal itself (there is a small circular grove under the Pearl pedal)

I then took the sensor out and mounted it underneath, It works great (after the 30 min of aligning)
My only problem was that since the pedal was not connected to anything, like the bass drum…. its moved forward and would ’tilt’ forward if I wasnt too careful. I want to make a mount to attach it to the two bars that are on the bottom of the RB drum set.

From Andrew on January 10th, 2008 at 1:29 pm

Andrew, I don’t think you need to build a mount. Just buy a thin, but not too thin, piece of wood and clamp the pedal to it. That should prevent the pedal from tipping forward.

Great idea to mount the sensor underneath the pedal rather than on the beater. :)

From Justin on January 10th, 2008 at 3:19 pm

Is it a MUST to use the Rock Band drum pedal magnets, or can you just use any magnets? I don’t want to hav

From Adam B on January 15th, 2008 at 7:52 am

You should be able to use any magnets.

From Justin on January 15th, 2008 at 10:53 am

i fixed mine by taping an old flip flop to the top, took about 5 minutes it looks retarded but works

From Stephen Bucci on January 17th, 2008 at 5:46 pm

That’s fucking rad! I’d like to see a pic of that. :D

From Justin on January 17th, 2008 at 6:42 pm

get a life

From marque on January 18th, 2008 at 10:09 pm

OK You can finally check out some pics of the mod I did. I have made some revisions and will post the template and plans soon.

JT

http://blog.tomasitech.com

please pardon appearance, I am in the middle of updating site.

From JT on January 20th, 2008 at 12:56 am

[...] Build your own DIY RockBand drum pedal Mario Doom Total Conversion Hamster Mario Get to level 70 in World of Warcraft — without killing anything Goatse in Zelda (SFW) [...]

From GGL Wire » Today’s Link Roundup on January 22nd, 2008 at 1:04 pm

I think one of the coolest things about Rock Band and music in video games is that there are so many more people interested in taking the leap to playing real instruments to experiment. While I was at NAMM last week, I saw a new drum company launching this spring called Dixon Drums and they’re making high quality, aggresive drum sets on the cheap. If you ever wanted to be a drummer, nows a good time to make the leap. Check them out @ http://www.myspace.com/dixondrums

From Brody on January 24th, 2008 at 1:26 pm

Brody, I think you are right on here. I’m pumped about Rock Band less because of the specific game, and more because of the innovation in the music space. I too think we’ll see more people making the leap to “real drums”. In fact, I just bought http://www.rockbanddrummer.com/ and I’m just starting to fill it out.

From Justin on January 24th, 2008 at 4:51 pm

[...] Metafluence - Rock Band drum pedal problem turned mod (tags: rockband) [...]

From Mind Gravy » Blog Archive » links for 2008-02-01 on February 1st, 2008 at 6:24 am

why don’t you just use a foot switch? you can buy one at guitar center for 15 bucks. it works great. i had one on my electro kit, slapped a ‘big to little’ converter(radioshack, 3 bucks at most) on it and i was good to go.

From yo on February 9th, 2008 at 7:00 pm

Was going to try mounting the sensor to the base of my drum pedal, but do not see the screws on the underside of the base. Did you have do remove any plastic part to get to them, or might I have a different make?

From Warren on February 13th, 2008 at 2:11 am

Sorry, I’ll clarify. I do not see the screws on the underside of the Rock band pedal to remove the sensor cover. Mine is all plastic underneath.

From Warren on February 13th, 2008 at 2:14 am

Warren, I’m not sure if they have changed the design. When I did it the screws were easily visible from the underside of the pedal. Would you be able to post some pics online and link to them from a comment on here?

From Justin on February 13th, 2008 at 2:13 pm

Thanks for the quick response Justin. Not too savy on posting things but I think I have a facebook account I haven’t used and will try to put some pics up there.

I’m a non-drummer. Made it half way through expert before hitting my wall. Got inspired by y’all saying what a difference a real pedal made.

Had a pretty mod going, but it failed miserably when I bought a way to cheap pedal… my bad. Taking the sensor out is me trying to salvage, although ultimately (and at the risk of throwing good money after bad) I may just get a different pedal.

Any thoughts on whether a Pulse Pro single kick pedal would do the deal, isn’t too expense, but got some good reviews for speed and smoothness.

Thanks again.

From Warren on February 13th, 2008 at 9:10 pm

[...] is the Drumshhh that silences your drums to make sure you don’t keep the neighbors up. One guy created his own drumming pedal after breaking the one that comes with the game, while this guy added a real [...]

From Viacom Hopes to Rock Out in 2008 on February 15th, 2008 at 12:13 pm

all you need to do is take an alarm contact and put it on the bottom of the pedal and done. works great. I have it on a pearl drum pedal.

From Shawn Robinson on February 18th, 2008 at 8:19 am

call me blind but I cant find the screws in the bottom of the base please help.

From nick on March 4th, 2008 at 4:46 pm

Nick, I’ve heard this from at least one other person. I think they have changed the design. :(

From Justin on March 4th, 2008 at 4:48 pm

hey thanks for the quick response. well I took a reciprocating sax cut out the plastic between the two bar holders and from there (with a pair of pliersI pulled out the foam . I found the screws there one under all four.

From nick on March 4th, 2008 at 5:13 pm

saw not sax sorry for the typos I cant see what im typing in this box

From nick on March 4th, 2008 at 5:15 pm

Call me wierd but I made mine out of wood left over from a remodel. haha. Our wooden wonder is working pretty good. Its just two pieces of wood and a hinge.

From Bl4d3_0f_b4k45 on March 16th, 2008 at 2:30 am

This mod is great, thanks for making it! I’m definitely going to try this out. I can’t stand the action of the RB pedal.

From John on April 4th, 2008 at 12:30 pm

[...] just as good, if not better than the cheap game stuff? Answer? YES. There’s even a genuine drum pedal mod in the werks! [...]

From All Things Chill » Blog Archive » Rock Band Add-Ons. Hooray! on April 7th, 2008 at 11:34 pm

You can also hack an old amplifier to turn a real kick drum trigger into a switch. A kick drum trigger is a pad with a sensor. It’s designed to pick up the thump of the drum pedal beater, but it is really just a microphone.

You can plug this microphone into an old tape deck, adjust the gain, and use the volume indicator as a switch. Video and instructions are on my site at http://kickproject.com.

From Michael L Perry on June 18th, 2008 at 5:31 am

Hi
I’ve got everything working. But there seems to be just one problem. My pedal registers 2 beats every once in a while (about 30% of the time). Is this something to do with the alignment? When you have your setup, does the beater actually hit the sensor part? Mine seems to register a beat when it gets close, but then when I release the pedal, it registers another beat as well. Is there any way to fix this?

From Shehzad Hamza on July 13th, 2008 at 12:16 pm

i had the same problem but wow all i did was duct tape a piece of wood on top of my pedal to hold the two parts together.but this is more impressive.Good job

From Velks on August 20th, 2008 at 12:03 pm

I took it all apart. It’s just a switch - or for that matter to pieces of wire touching makes the beat.

I took the drum pedal apart until I was left with the plug that goes into the back of the drum kit and it’s wire.

I had a real pedal and discarded the beater. Using two pieces of aluminum foil and the wires to make a connection when the pedal hit it’s travel stop was pretty easy.

From Alan Matthews on October 12th, 2008 at 11:45 am

Great suggestion, Alan!

From Justin on October 13th, 2008 at 2:56 pm

my bass pedal doesn’t have any screws on the bottom of it to remove the box piece from, what do i do?

From private on February 6th, 2009 at 2:03 am

What say you about all of this?

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