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  #1  
Old 11-28-2007, 01:21 AM
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Default My Hand Built Snare

I had an idea a few years back that I wanted to make my own snare drum from scratch. So I got a big 'ol hunk of pine and went at it with a hammer and chisel until I had a very crude drum shell that unfortunately ended up being 5"x11", so it was pretty much useless.
Then, a few years later I had another opportunity to create a better snare drum for a project at my high school. So I found a guy that turns bowls for a living and he had some idea of how to help me along, so he taught me the basics of using a wood lathe and lemme have at it.
The entire process took about two months (including two separate three week periods in which the unfinished shell sat in my closet drying)
The wood is poplar and it is 5"x10"
Tell me what yall think and shoot with any questions ya got.
thanks,
Matt


This is the wood i was going to use. It is a White Oak that my neighbor had taken out of his yard and it looked good enough to me...


...But apparently it wasn't big enough plus oak cracks alot when it dries anyway, so I just used this great chunk o' poplar instead


Mounted on the lathe, after much of the roughness had been taken off...it's a bit more cylindrical at this point.


Some more detail...working out the innards of the chunk to make it hollow.


Safety First!


Sorry I didn't take a picture after all the lathing or while drilling the holes, but this is me applying red wood dye to the finished shell


My fingers were red for three weeks.


Applying a few coats of clear lacquer...


And of course(haha...coarse :\ no pun intended) steel wool-ing between dried coats of lacquer


Here is the hardware i bought to mount on the shell.


Beautiful!

And I'll attach a sound file for your audio pleasure. The song is called Towers of London performed by my band, Stingray. Recorded live @ Sector 7 G in Augusta, Georgia.

http://www.supload.com/sound_confirm...1380185793.wma
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Last edited by mattwolfdrums; 11-28-2007 at 01:35 AM. Reason: Adding link to sound file.
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  #2  
Old 11-28-2007, 01:29 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

WAY WAY COOL! You built your own solid-shell drum!

A lot of people here finish a Keller shell and say the "made a drum." You're one of the few people here who can really, honestly say they made a drum.

Where did you get the poplar for the shell? I think it's really great to make you drum from something local as well.
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Last edited by Deathmetalconga; 11-28-2007 at 01:43 AM.
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  #3  
Old 11-28-2007, 01:38 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Man that is cool. If it sounds even halfway pleasant you have the pride of knowing you BUILT your own drum. As it starts to age and crack and dry out it will only gain more character. It looks great and thanks for sharing.

Hint from an old man. Cheap disposable plastic gloves from the paint store. Or water based paint. Then again you were caught red-handed. Good job. And as DMC said you didnt just assemble your own drum, you BUILT it.
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  #4  
Old 11-28-2007, 02:03 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Quote:
Originally Posted by Deathmetalconga View Post
WAY WAY COOL! You built your own solid-shell drum!

A lot of people here finish a Keller shell and say the "made a drum." You're one of the few people here who can really, honestly say they made a drum.

Where did you get the poplar for the shell? I think it's really great to make you drum from something local as well.
The fellow that let me use his lathe had a few chunks of poplar aging in a pile of wood shavings and since I couldn't use the oak I had originally planned on using, he was nice enough to give me one to use.
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Old 11-28-2007, 03:29 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

that is pure awesome! bet your super proud of that, i know i would be!
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Old 11-28-2007, 03:45 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Dude absolutley amazing. Ive never seen anyone use their own wood and cut it out from scratch and everything. Thats awesome, gj.
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Old 11-28-2007, 04:07 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

That is sooo cool! Id be so proud. Good work! =D
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  #8  
Old 11-28-2007, 04:22 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Man I wish I had a lathe. That finish looks very nice too sounds good too.
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  #9  
Old 11-28-2007, 04:26 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

very cool!

whats up with the inside of the shell?
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  #10  
Old 11-28-2007, 04:38 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

crazy man!! you should open your own company!!! hey hire me when u get big ok hehe..
blessings...
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  #11  
Old 11-28-2007, 05:10 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Wow!!! That is awesome! I am so impressed by that..... I wanna steal it.
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  #12  
Old 11-28-2007, 10:13 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Quote:
Originally Posted by Deathmetalconga View Post
A lot of people here finish a Keller shell and say the "made a drum." You're one of the few people here who can really, honestly say they made a drum.
Yeah, but I bet he didn't grow the tree!
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  #13  
Old 11-28-2007, 10:34 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

On my list of "Things to do before I die'', maybe one day. The finished product looks so good man.
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Old 11-28-2007, 02:49 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Impressive. I have great admiration for people who make stuff...
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Old 11-28-2007, 03:03 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Looks and sounds great! I was thinking "Should have worn gloves" too when reading this *lol* It looks like some of the finish got onto the bearing edge, but for your first time you did an incredible job (better than I could do that's for sure).
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Old 11-28-2007, 03:07 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Beautiful! Has a nice crack and looks great.
How did you make the bearing edges?

Mhhh...there is a nice basswood tree in front of my house. *hehe*

Karl
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Old 11-28-2007, 03:25 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

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Originally Posted by Drummer Karl View Post
Mhhh...there is a nice basswood tree in front of my house. *hehe*

Karl
There's the answer to your wanting a new set :D
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  #18  
Old 11-28-2007, 03:45 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

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Originally Posted by fourstringdrums View Post
There's the answer to your wanting a new set :D
Well...makes me think.
Though the diameter of the drums would be pretty small, wouldn`t it?

10", 10"...8"...6".......3".

But seriously, making your own drum out of your own piece of wood is impressive.
Good work!

Karl
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  #19  
Old 11-28-2007, 03:46 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Very very very nice !

Congrats, awesome work done here. Did you left the wood block dry before or after the lathing ? I have thought of doing this with maple or north american white birch but i'm afraid the block or the lathed shell would crack as it dry.

Look very pro !

Two thumbs up !

Quote:
Originally Posted by iamtak View Post
very cool!

whats up with the inside of the shell?
Look like the scratch from the inside shell lathing/chipping.
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  #20  
Old 11-28-2007, 04:55 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Quote:
Originally Posted by iamtak View Post
very cool!

whats up with the inside of the shell?
Ahh yes, the inside is not quite as clean as the outside.
This is because to use the lathe, the shell had to be mounted on a base so I couldn't just cut the bottom out while it was spinning on the lathe. So because it was my first time attempting this, I used trial and error on cutting the bottom out, one of which included drilling a series of holes through the base close to the inner circumference of the shell and then using a jigsaw to cut the base out. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but it didn't work out too well as you can tell. Fortunately I don't believe it has adversely affect the sound of the drum.
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Old 11-28-2007, 05:06 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

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Originally Posted by mind_drummer View Post
Did you left the wood block dry before or after the lathing ? I have thought of doing this with maple or north american white birch but i'm afraid the block or the lathed shell would crack as it dry.
Good question. The man that helped me with this project, like I said before, makes bowls for a living, so he knows a thing or two about the properties of wood. Basically, the wood cracks when the water and sap evaporate too quickly and the wood shrinks so fast it splits. So, the slower you let the wood dry the better.
After my first session with the lathe, i had a very (very very) rough shell which he suggested I wrap in newspaper and stick in a cool area where the temperature doesn't fluctuate much for three weeks. On the fourth week, I went in for my second session, but after I had dug into the wood, I could tell it was still very wet, so I took it back home for another three weeks where the wood lost about five pounds of weight and about 1 inch in diameter.
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Old 11-28-2007, 05:09 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Sounds good. Looks amazing too. It's one thing to make your own snare from scratch but to make it look awsome is another thing! Red and black is a classy touch. Enjoy it mate I really enjoyed reading and looking at the pics.

Any plans to make another?
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Old 11-28-2007, 05:40 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

100% built your own snare, I bet you're really proud. I'm gonna attempt doing it one day.

Tom
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  #24  
Old 11-28-2007, 06:47 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

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Originally Posted by driver View Post

Any plans to make another?
Yes I would love to make another. If I did it would probably be a deep shelled 14" snare. And using the knowledge I gained from my first go at it, I should be able to make a very decent drum next time.
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Old 11-28-2007, 07:04 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Thats great good luck with that. Make sure you document all your future builds for us to drool over!
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  #26  
Old 11-28-2007, 08:19 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

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Originally Posted by mattwolfdrums View Post
Yes I would love to make another. If I did it would probably be a deep shelled 14" snare. And using the knowledge I gained from my first go at it, I should be able to make a very decent drum next time.
You could start a company doing this. Seriously.
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Old 11-29-2007, 01:41 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

woah. Very nice bro. I want to do that some day :D
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  #28  
Old 11-29-2007, 04:15 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

I've contemplated building drums in the same manner before, the only thing that kills me is the amount of wood you waste by having to carve out the center of it. It would be nice to start with a huge piece, and find a way to drill it where you could make smaller drums from the same piece of wood.
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Old 11-29-2007, 05:07 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

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Originally Posted by The popes love child View Post
I've contemplated building drums in the same manner before, the only thing that kills me is the amount of wood you waste by having to carve out the center of it. It would be nice to start with a huge piece, and find a way to drill it where you could make smaller drums from the same piece of wood.
I've thought of the same thing before i wish it was possible somehow... maybe i'll figure it out one day...
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Old 11-29-2007, 06:17 AM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Quote:
Originally Posted by The popes love child View Post
I've contemplated building drums in the same manner before, the only thing that kills me is the amount of wood you waste by having to carve out the center of it. It would be nice to start with a huge piece, and find a way to drill it where you could make smaller drums from the same piece of wood.
there is away to do that....
there is a guy over at GN who is getting a whole set in walnut from just one stump...
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Old 11-29-2007, 10:14 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

www.ghostnote.net

Welcome to the addiction.
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Old 11-29-2007, 10:21 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Very impressive. And to think that I'm proud of myself when I manage to organize my sock drawer.
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Old 11-29-2007, 10:52 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Hey i was going to make a snair but my school told me i couldnt because they didnt know what to use but now i know , your snair is lush , nice finish love the red would you do the same when makeing a 10"TOM
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Old 11-29-2007, 11:21 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

This will blow your mind. Exquisite natural whole-shell goodness with very little wood wasted. He also makes furniture and other wood cylinders. If there is one set I could consider trading my Spirits for, it is the nine-piece Siberian elm set. He holds a patent on this process but is willing to license it out to other people.

www.heartwooddrums.com
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Old 11-29-2007, 11:25 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Very nice snare, i love the finish on it, looks amazing Gratz on making it from scratch aswell
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  #36  
Old 11-29-2007, 11:57 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattwolfdrums View Post
I had an idea a few years back that I wanted to make my own snare drum from scratch. So I got a big 'ol hunk of pine and went at it with a hammer and chisel until I had a very crude drum shell that unfortunately ended up being 5"x11", so it was pretty much useless.
Can you give any more info on this project? We have some wood lying around here and the thought of making a drum or two crossed my mind. I doubt I could get it anywhere close to perfect, but it'd still be fun to try.

Great looking snare, by the way.
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  #37  
Old 11-30-2007, 07:01 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

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Originally Posted by Velimor View Post
Can you give any more info on this project? We have some wood lying around here and the thought of making a drum or two crossed my mind. I doubt I could get it anywhere close to perfect, but it'd still be fun to try.
Basically I used a hammer on a hatchet to get the ouside diameter close to what I wanted taking off big chunks at a time.
Then I went in with a 3/4 inch chisel to fine-tune it and try my best to make it as round as possible.
For the inside, I took the largest diameter drill bit I had and drilled a bunch of holes all helter-skelter around the inside. That just makes it easier to get started with the chisel. If your piece of wood is big enough you could also use a chainsaw to make a big X in the middle of the chunk to help get you started.
Then just take the chisel to the inside, working your way out until you get your desired thickness.

Don't forget that wood shrinks a good bit as it dries and certain woods like pine and oak tend to crack rediculously as well so watch out for that. But its a fun project, you should enjoy it.

And dont worry if the size of your drum is not a standard size or shape for hardware....theres ways around that :)
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Old 11-30-2007, 07:02 PM
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Default Re: My Hand Built Snare

Quote:
Originally Posted by Deathmetalconga View Post
This will blow your mind. Exquisite natural whole-shell goodness with very little wood wasted. He also makes furniture and other wood cylinders. If there is one set I could consider trading my Spirits for, it is the nine-piece Siberian elm set. He holds a patent on this process but is willing to license it out to other people.

www.heartwooddrums.com
Good god. This is absolutely glorious.
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