Tongue Drums

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Blog series by GnarlyErik updated 06-08-2021 07:34 PM 3 parts 1480 reads 5 comments total

Part 1: The soundboard/tongue top

06-07-2021 01:08 AM by GnarlyErik | 1 comment »

There’s been enough interest in the tongue drums I’ve built, I’ve decided to make a blog entry to share what I have learned, much of it through trial and error, as well as what research as I can find. Plese keep in mind that I am NOT a musician, so there’s been a lot of trial and error on my part. I’ve lost count now, but I’ve made well over a dozen of these things, with no two of them exactly alike. I will attempt an ongoing blog to describe the process and what I’ve learned. Since...

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Part 2: Mallets - more than you need to know!

06-07-2021 03:26 AM by GnarlyErik | 3 comments »

Tongue Drum Mallets What I have learned about Tongue Drum mallets: The softer the business end of the mallet head, the softer the sound; The bigger the mallet head, the louder the sound – up to a point; I’ve tried mallet heads made from ‘Crazy Balls’ with very good results. I’ve made mallets using tennis balls filled with foam which seemed to work quite well, but are not as much fun to use. I’ve also made some from those filled tennis sized balls made for dogs and t...

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Part 3: Building Individual Tongue Drum Keys

06-08-2021 07:34 PM by GnarlyErik | 1 comment »

A few months ago I took the top off of a tongue drum in order to try to fine tune the tongues. In the process I accidentally split the top at the anchor ends of a couple keys. I re-glued it and it didn’t seem to make any difference. That got me wondering about building a tongue drum with individual keys, which could be tuned before assembly into the top. Tuning is really a tough proposition because it’s hard to determine the Hertz level of the key you are tuning since the sympathetic vibratio...

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