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Old 12-14-2009, 07:27 AM
MetallicaItalian MetallicaItalian is offline
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Default Drum Shell Janka Hardness

I've been doing a bunch of research and I thought I'd post some of my findings on common shell hardness that may clear up some confusion about semantics and misleading advertising.

Feel free to correct me, I know some of these numbers vary...

Bubinga -1980 (I know Tama manufactures full kits)
Jarrah - 1920 (Australian drum company, Brady uses this in their block snares, Dave dave Abbruzzese, formerly of Pearl Jam used these)
Hard Maple (Sugar) - 1450
Ash (White) - 1320 (Not sure if this is the same type used in certain kits like Gretsch, the price seems rather disproportionate, maybe the 1320 is used in the $5K Yamaha kits)
Beech - 1300
Northern Red Oak - 1290
Birch - 1210-1260
Asian (Western) Maple - 940 (likely used in most budget maple kits)
Phillipe Mahogany (Lauan, Dark Red Meranti/Seraya) - 780
Poplar - 540
Basswood - 410

Let me know if I'm missing anything important or have any incorrect ratings. I'll try adding photo examples at some point. I just thought this would be really helpful in understanding sometimes deceptive advertising. For example, Philippine Mahogany, often considered a cheap soft wood, is not much softer than Asian/Western Maple which might be deceiving when advertised simply as "Maple".

Last edited by MetallicaItalian; 12-14-2009 at 08:26 AM.
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Old 12-14-2009, 07:51 AM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

Yes, Bubinga is at 1980. Jarrah is actually 1910 from this chart. Also, notice how hard Sweet Birch is at 1470. That puts it above the Hard Maple. I know most might use the softer birch, but who knows? This might be what Yamaha's (Hokkaido) is closer to, hence why they sound so dam good, and also Keller might be using this. Who knows?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janka_hardness_test
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Old 12-15-2009, 09:25 PM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

Ipe / Brazilian Walnut 3684

Cumaru / Brazilian Teak 3540

Tiete Rosewood 3280

Ebony 3220

Brazilian Redwood / Paraju 3190

Rosewood 3170

Lapacho 3060

Angelim Pedra 3040

African Pearwood 2990

Amendoim 2947

Bloodwood 2900

Ironwood 2890

Brazilian Cherry / Jatoba 2820

Red Mahogany, Turpentine 2697

Spotted Gum 2473

Mesquite 2345

Santos Mahogany, Bocote, Cabreuva 2300

Pradoo 2170

Tiger Wood 2160

Sucupira 2140

Brushbox 2135

Purple Heart 2090

Asian Pine 2048

Karri 2030

Sydney Blue Gum 2023

African Rosewood/Bubinga 1980
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  #4  
Old 12-17-2009, 06:41 AM
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Deathmetalconga Deathmetalconga is offline
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

Quote:
Originally Posted by MetallicaItalian View Post
I've been doing a bunch of research and I thought I'd post some of my findings on common shell hardness that may clear up some confusion about semantics and misleading advertising.

Feel free to correct me, I know some of these numbers vary...

Bubinga -1980 (I know Tama manufactures full kits)
Jarrah - 1920 (Australian drum company, Brady uses this in their block snares, Dave dave Abbruzzese, formerly of Pearl Jam used these)
Hard Maple (Sugar) - 1450
Ash (White) - 1320 (Not sure if this is the same type used in certain kits like Gretsch, the price seems rather disproportionate, maybe the 1320 is used in the $5K Yamaha kits)
Beech - 1300
Northern Red Oak - 1290
Birch - 1210-1260
Asian (Western) Maple - 940 (likely used in most budget maple kits)
Phillipe Mahogany (Lauan, Dark Red Meranti/Seraya) - 780
Poplar - 540
Basswood - 410

Let me know if I'm missing anything important or have any incorrect ratings. I'll try adding photo examples at some point. I just thought this would be really helpful in understanding sometimes deceptive advertising. For example, Philippine Mahogany, often considered a cheap soft wood, is not much softer than Asian/Western Maple which might be deceiving when advertised simply as "Maple".
My drums are made of solid Australian Cooktown ironwood, which rates about 2800 on this scale, as it is half again as hard as jarrah. Cooktown ironwood sinks in water.

The numbers represent how many kilograms of pressure are needed to drive a 1 centimeter steel ball 5 millimeters into a block of wood.
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Old 12-17-2009, 06:51 PM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

Lignum Vitae (a type of ironwood) 4500

I want a stave snare drum made out of that!!!!!!!!
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Old 12-17-2009, 07:27 PM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

Appreciate the numbers and the range and wonder how all of this is affected by the fact that most of our drums that have plys, are less than 5mm, as DMG suggests with the hardness test, and the fact that between the layers or plys is glue. Just a thought.
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Old 12-17-2009, 08:38 PM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

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Originally Posted by GRUNTERSDAD View Post
Appreciate the numbers and the range and wonder how all of this is affected by the fact that most of our drums that have plys, are less than 5mm, as DMG suggests with the hardness test, and the fact that between the layers or plys is glue. Just a thought.
That is a very good point. The Janka tests are done on solid planks of wood so the more processing the wood goes through, the less the Janka number will mean. Glue is largely a mystery substance; I am not sure if it is lighter than wood, or heavier. I think it is comparable to playing a hybrid plastic-wood shell.

Shell construction is also a factor. In solid and stave shells, the wood conducts sound efficiently, making each grain a micro-resonator and adding richness to the sound. Plys are cross-laminated and the grains cancel each other out. Really hard woods cannot be shaved into plies anyway.
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Old 12-17-2009, 10:56 PM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

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Originally Posted by Jon_Gwon View Post
Lignum Vitae (a type of ironwood) 4500

I want a stave snare drum made out of that!!!!!!!!
I have no problem with that, lol...
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  #9  
Old 12-18-2009, 06:39 PM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

Hahaha... Well played Frank!!!

That's absolutely beautiful... I want it.
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  #10  
Old 11-25-2010, 07:32 PM
??? ??? is offline
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

what are the woods use to make drumstick? can somebody post that here in scale
eg
10 (hardest) = hickory
9 = african mahogany
...
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Old 11-25-2010, 10:31 PM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

where's crazy 8s when we need him???
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Old 11-25-2010, 10:50 PM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

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where's crazy 8s when we need him???
Never far from trouble. :-)
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  #13  
Old 11-25-2010, 11:41 PM
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Default Re: Drum Shell Janka Hardness

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Originally Posted by ??? View Post
what are the woods use to make drumstick? can somebody post that here in scale
eg
10 (hardest) = hickory
9 = african mahogany
...
Oak, hickory, and maple are the most common for drumsticks. They are all about the same hardness, give or take, but there is more to consider with wood varieties than simple hardness. Strength characteristics aren't directly related to the hardness of a wood.

For example, the Promark Japanese Oak sticks are noticeably heavier than a hickory stick of the same dimensions, yet the hickory is higher on the Janka scale. The oak sticks also wear differently, and will often last longer, owing to oaks differing grain structure.

:)
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