Turkey, anyone!?!


The more I read on this site the more I pang to travel to Turkey and hunt down the 'real deal'. I can see it now, trekking along 700 year old cobblestone streets, the dust and smoke swirling around us, while the adhan (Muslim prayer) bellows from the minaret. We turn a corner and there it is, the street of the zilciler (cymbal makers) a dozen or so little shops with 100's of shiny pies hanging on the walls, over the street, on the ceiling. We haggle a bit and I pick up a 22" ride for peanuts that sounds incredible...Yeah right, a bit of reality please! Although it sounds romantic I'm wondering if anyone has travelled to Turkey to get cymbals.. Or knows anyone that has. Is it even worthwhile?


Junior Member
It's possible to arrange a visit to the biggest cymbal facotries (Bos, Agop and Mehmet). What I've heard is that they locate pretty far from the center of Istanbul so you will need a driver to get you there.

Last spring I went to Alanya to spend a week in my father's residence (he is not Turkish, just happens to like the place) and found a little music store with a decent selection of Isty Mehmets. I bought a 22" Mehmet Sultan Jazz ride (21xx g). It has nice dry-ish stick, smoky and dark wash and a huge but controllable shoulder crash. Great cymbal indeed and the price I end up paying was "peanuts" compering to prices here in Finland.


Well, here's what the best cymbal shop (IMO) in Istanbul looks like - Drum Club. On this pic I am with the Product and Artist Manager of Instanbul Mehmet. I try to go there each year. And it's not just the good prices...

I haven't been able to go to the factories themselves. Indeed, they are away from the city and you would need time (in the first place) to go there - especially if you go with non-drummers or family. Going in a taxi to the factories can also be expensive - 60-80 EUR. For me what works is just to get a room in the center - old or new town. Preferably close to the Galata Tower. And just walk through all the shops. They are quite small btw and are not many. But are close to each other. Mostly near Galipdede Caddesi.

However I still fancy going to the factories if possible - but to make it worthwhile it makes sense to buy a big set of cymbals.