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Crash/ride cymbal

Paiste Rude 16" crash/ride


A crash/ride cymbal is a medium weight, slightly tapered cymbal, normally in the 18–22-inch (460–560 mm) range, designed to serve in a drum kit as both a crash and a ride cymbal.

The drum kit
Drum KitBass drumChina cymbalSnare drumSnare drumFloor tomFloor tomSplash cymbalRide cymbalTomsHi-hatCrash cymbalDrum hardwareDrum hardware
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A ride/crash cymbal is similar in design and function to a crash/ride, but slightly heavier and/or less tapered to optimise the ride rather than the crash function. It is far less common than the crash/ride.

Crash/ride and ride/crash cymbals have several uses:

  • In a very small kit, one may be the only suspended cymbal, used as both crash and ride.
    • Some beginners' cymbal packs have only three cymbals: A pair of hi-hats, and a crash/ride.[1] However most cymbal packs even at entry level have separate ride and crash cymbals, and the drum hardware packs sold with most drum kits include stands for two suspended cymbals.
    • Many early drum kits had only one tom and one cymbal, both mounted on the bass drum. This cymbal would nowadays be called a crash/ride; At the time it would simply have been called a medium, if anything.
  • In a large kit, they bridge the gap between the largest crash cymbal and the smallest ride.
  • At very soft volumes, one will provide a more conventional ride tone than a full-sized ride cymbal.
  • At very loud volumes, they provide fuller and longer crashes than conventional crash cymbals, which may sound for too short a time.
Three-piece kit with one suspended cymbal, 1959

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