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  #1  
Old 05-27-2008, 03:46 PM
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goldie goldie is offline
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making a hand snare drum =)


hello i play the congas ( large tribal sounding hand drums)
and have decided that i need to add something cool to my set up
therefore i decided to make a hand snare drum (you can't buy them because they don't exist) that will sit on a stand
i have never attempted to make a drum before so i will probably need some help if anyone can tell me any useful info it would be appreciated
stuff i may need help on
where to buy skins and does it come in sheets or circles
where to buy snare wire
and any other info will most certanly be needed
thanks i will be uploading photos if all goes as planned

also if anyone knows how a hand percussionist can get a cymbol sound or gong sound i would love to try it for my next project

thanks guys
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  #2  
Old 05-27-2008, 06:05 PM
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CJDG CJDG is offline
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Re: making a hand snare drum =)


Hello, this is quite an undertaking with making your own drum. Plan what you want before you buy. Remember to measure twice before you do any cutting/marking and have fun with this. If you end up getting frustrated put it down and come back with a fresh perspective.

Keller makes nice shells for drums... and they would be 100% maple. You can buy parts from online from places like Drummaker.com - Your Complete Source for Custom Drum Parts & Supplies which is where I bought the parts for my snare. Over the last few years I have purchased two snare shells from them and both came through shipping fine. I had the bearing edges cut by drummaker and did the rest myself. If you want to check out my snare sound I posted a song here not to long ago.

How exactly do you plan to do the top? Will it be like a regular snare or are you going to add some form of a conga top? Do you have an idea for the depth?

I see two ways to attack this. One way is to build the thing yourself. The other is to modify an existing conga (or mini conga) into a snare. Snares have wires… you can either add a bottom head with a snare system… or cut the snare wires in half and install a clamp inside the shell that will press the wires into the top head. Either way will work and will give you different sounds.

Skins are easy to come by… musiciansfriend or any local drum store will carry replacement heads.

As far as cymbals go… well if you are going to be using your hands then I recommend that you get a thin cymbal. There are some out there “designed” for hand percussionists… though you can get the same from a thin cymbal. I would go to a guitar center or local drum shop and start hammering away at some cymbals. It will give you an idea of what is out there and what you might be looking for. Gongs will be there as well.
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  #3  
Old 06-01-2008, 12:46 PM
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Re: making a hand snare drum =)


thanks for your reply cjdg
basically my plan is to make another small conga (a congita to be precise)
and add snare wire with a clamp.
don't care about the noise of the actual drum ( my main congas cover that just fine ) i only want to get the sound of the snare.
i was actually told that if i just wanted the snare sound i should attach wire to a tambourine lol ...... but won't sink that low.

didn't know that you could get cymbals for hand use or gongs
so thanks for sharing the info

if anyone knows how best to attach the snare wire to a conga skin i would love to hear it
goldie
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  #4  
Old 06-02-2008, 01:02 AM
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CJDG CJDG is offline
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Re: making a hand snare drum =)


Ok... so the purpose of snares are that they vibrate without touching any part of the shell. Either the straps or string hold the snares even over the drum head... but the snares must not be touching the rim... did I forget to mention that the snares must not be touching the rim.

Snares already choke a drum's sound enough. So attaching them properly is the vital to allowing the drum head resonate as much as possible. I wouldn't recommend attaching snare wires to the top head of a conga because it might impact the sound too much... possibly choking the sound to something you dislike. Plus attaching the snare butt and strainer to the shell would mean drilling on the shell.

Have you tried getting different kind of brushes and making some sort of a hanger that rests the brush against that top head. If you were to do this you could control how much wire rests on the head and what pressure it rests there. Your versitility would be endless. Or just keep a wire brush close and when you want a snare hit drop the brush on the head. Now I havn't tested this theory at all... it might not even work. But it gives you a different direction to look at. My guess would be that you want a heavy gauge wire to use.... at least the same thickness of regular snare wires.

Maybe you could wrap some ball chain around one of your fingers. You know, the kind used for military dog tags. Then when you want that sort of snare sound you slap the finger with the metal beads down on the head.

I am a big supporter of using odd methods to achieve what you want. Not everything done in the musical sense needs to be bought from a music store.

Good luck.
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  #5  
Old 06-11-2011, 03:42 AM
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Re: making a hand snare drum =)


Can't you make a hand snare from a tom like let's say a 12" tom with a remo mondo head and a set of snares as the bottom (of course if you add a snare butt you would have to drill into the shell), but would you think it could work? how much are those mondo snares anyway? Thanks!
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  #6  
Old 06-11-2011, 11:03 AM
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slingerland59 slingerland59 is offline
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Re: making a hand snare drum =)


I'd just take an existing snare drum (a cheap wooden one would work) and modify it by trimming the top wooden rim so it's flush with the head. And you'd have to change the tuning lugs into flat headed screws or something so they are flush with the head too. It's definitely doable and I bet would sound a hell of a lot better than a modified hand drum or tom. You could then experiment with coated heads to see which one sounds best when played with the hands.
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