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There is some argumentation about when the K Zildjian cymbals begin to be stamped with “Istanbul” and it is likely that many consumers wanted cymbals from Constantinople long after the city had changed its name.
Today, K Zildjian cymbals from the Istanbul period are perhaps the most sought after vintage cymbals in the world.
Most other identifying information (stickers, silk screens, ink or grease pencil) fade away and disappear over time.
The date of a cymbal is important because different periods in the evolution of the modern drum set are marked by distinct acoustic potentials.
In 1929, Avedis Zildjian III, moved part of the family cymbal business to Massachusetts.He took a suggestion from Jo Jones, drummer for Count Basie, and mounted cymbals on a pole creating the “hi-hat.” Another idea from Gene Kruppa, drummer for Benny Goodman, led to a big cymbal with a lot of ping called a “ride.” (Wall Street Journal, 5/31/96, p.B1) Other cymbal identifiers may be lost over time, such as stickers, ink labels, grease pencil writing, and signatures under the bell.I became fascinated with the story of the oldest Chinese cymbals in vintage collections in the United States, and the Chinese Cymbal Timeline is the result.
Click here to see a timeline of early Chinese cymbals imported to the US.A Zildjian Stamp Timeline Chinese Cymbals G Zildjian Cymbal Mystery Italian (UFIP) Cymbals K Zildjian - Canada & US Timeline K Zildjian - Constantinople Timeline K Zildjian - Istanbul Timeline Stamp Anomalies (new) This website offers information about the age of cymbals based on the “stamps” found on them.