Sunday, November 13, 2011

DIY drum case

My latest drum purchase. This is a westernized version of a Thai drum called a "klong yao", made by Toca out of fiberglass. It is quite light, and has a fabulous bass tone, as one can imagine by the length of the body. At local drum circles I am usually one of the more experienced players, so having a drum that can both drive the groove and help steady it is important, and this one is much better for that than my old Remo djembe. Remo makes a similar klong yao, and I tried one out many years ago but balked at the $400 price tag (it also weighs more). The Toca one is around $200 and Dave's Drum Shop here in Ottawa can bring in any Toca product (it was fun browsing the catalogue...).

But of course a drum needs a case! Many folks carry their hand drums in bags, and I'd thought of buying a gym bag and lining it with foam, but since I'm often hauling more than one instrument at a time something that could better protect the drum as I squeeze gear through doorways was needed. For my small jazz kit I had extended a 12" case to fit three small drums, and I used that same idea for this one. So, start with one retro 70's drum case (again from Dave's Drum Shop) and add some foam. Note leather strap with buckle instead of modern plastic buckle.

To accommodate the lengthy drum an extension was needed. My material of choice for this is sheets of (used) corrugated plastic and duct tape (yay for our petrochemical industry). In this case, a stash of abandoned signs from the Reform oops Conservative Party had been found a while back and now were being put to much better use.

Test fitting.

The trick to getting coroplast to bend is to use a utility knife to score one side. Then add duct tape...

Tabs of duct tape hold things in place, and a few full wraps of tape will be added when all sheets are in place.

Perfect fit.

Looking good! For now the strap is lengthened with a bungee cord. If I find an old belt that is long enough I could use that instead.

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