Three top rings? Yea or nay

Advice and questions on making and fixing instruments
djembefola.com logo
 

Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby dleufer » Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:19 am

Hey guys,
I´m just wondering what people think of using 3 metal top rings as opposed to two when skinning a djembe? Some sites I´ve been looking at claim that it gives a better sound and a lot of other benefits but I can´t quite see how it would improve the djembe at all. What do you guys think. I´ve got a nice lenke shell on it´s way from Africa at the moment so I´m trying to suss what the best type of rings are...
User avatar
dleufer
3 ksing ksing
 
Posts: 369
Joined: Thu Dec 25, 2008 1:36 am
Location: Galway, Ireland
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Rhythm House Drums » Wed Mar 18, 2009 2:02 am

It's a waste of metal in my opinion... more of a marketing pull than function (we have 3... you heard it... 3 top rings while all our competitors use 2...) haha... I guess technically it would hold the skin tighter and keep it from slipping better.. but properly sized rings and good heading technique will keep the skin from slipping anyways. I've always used 2 top rings and never had a problem so I've never seen a reason to try 3.

Hope this helps... I'm interested to see what some of the other drum builders on this site say about the subject.
User avatar
Rhythm House Drums
3 ksing ksing
 
Posts: 383
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 5:27 pm
Location: Matthews NC, USA
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby bops » Wed Mar 18, 2009 7:16 am

I've never tried it but I'm not all that interested either. It doesn't have any practical advantage that I can see.
"If you knock long enough, eventually the door will open."
Tasumakan - Djembe and Dunun Video Lessons
User avatar
bops
Djembefola
 
Posts: 1070
Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2007 4:43 am
Location: Madison WI, USA
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby bubudi » Wed Mar 18, 2009 8:06 am

i know someone in europe who brings high quality drums from mali, headed there with high quality imported rope. for the last year all his drums have the 3 top rings. he says that this puts more pressure on the skin which allows the tension to remain higher for longer.
bubudi
Site Admin
 
Posts: 3549
Joined: Sat Oct 21, 2006 3:56 am
Blog: View Blog (1)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Rhythm House Drums » Wed Mar 18, 2009 6:00 pm

It makes sense that it would hold tighter for longer (I'm really just making this post to hit the big 50...) :dance:

But really... I don't see any disadvantage to using 3 top rings other than a few bucks on cost. If it's in your head that 3 rings are better... than you'll be more comfortable heading the drum with 3. I say go for it! And when your drum friends are complaining that they have to pull a diamond every 6 months... say haha... not me.. I used 3... you heard it... 3 top rings!

I think one place where 3 top rings will help... is when you are heading the drum and the skin is still wet. It's easy if you have a jig that pulls your verts to pull too hard while the skin is wet and it slips through the rings which makes the rings too low on the shell. I think a 3rd ring would help in this instance... but then you'd have to play around to make sure you give yourself enough slack so the ring isn't too high either.
User avatar
Rhythm House Drums
3 ksing ksing
 
Posts: 383
Joined: Thu Oct 23, 2008 5:27 pm
Location: Matthews NC, USA
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby bubudi » Thu Jun 04, 2009 12:45 am

i asked a bit more about the 3 top rings and was told that provided the 3 top rings are done right, the added weight and tension will eliminate any air leakage and therefore produce a more responsive drum, especially with a smaller shell mounted with a thick skin. the drum will have more projection. when you tune your djembe higher it becomes more responsive due to the extra tension, so i guess this is a similar thing. i wouldn't expect any air leakage with 2 top rings if they are snug with the shell, but am yet to try 3 rings on any of my drums.
bubudi
Site Admin
 
Posts: 3549
Joined: Sat Oct 21, 2006 3:56 am
Blog: View Blog (1)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Dugafola » Thu Jun 04, 2009 6:41 am

drumskulls employ the 3 ring system quite often. check their website and you can see which drums are done with 3 top rings.
should i shave my moustache?
User avatar
Dugafola
Djembefola
 
Posts: 1793
Joined: Tue Sep 26, 2006 9:03 pm
Location: Santa Cruz CA, USA
Blog: View Blog (7)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby bubudi » Fri Jun 05, 2009 12:38 am

here's how it looks like underneath

3 top ring system.jpg
3 top ring system.jpg (28.28 KiB) Viewed 885 times
bubudi
Site Admin
 
Posts: 3549
Joined: Sat Oct 21, 2006 3:56 am
Blog: View Blog (1)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Dennis103 » Fri Jun 05, 2009 6:55 am

bubudi wrote:i asked a bit more about the 3 top rings and was told that provided the 3 top rings are done right, the added weight and tension will eliminate any air leakage and therefore produce a more responsive drum, especially with a smaller shell mounted with a thick skin. the drum will have more projection. when you tune your djembe higher it becomes more responsive due to the extra tension, so i guess this is a similar thing. i wouldn't expect any air leakage with 2 top rings if they are snug with the shell, but am yet to try 3 rings on any of my drums.


The air leakage argument is rubbish. First of all, there is plenty of air leakage through the hole at the bottom of the djembe, so any minimal leakage at the top would not make any difference. However, there can't be any space between the skin and the point where the skin goes over the top edge down towards the rings, even if that edge were very uneven (which it isn't in any decent djembe). The tension is just way too high. The skin follows the contours of the djembe top edge precisely without any room for air to escape there.

And what is this 'when you tune your djembe higher'? Why would a skin all of a sudden become stronger because of this third ring so you can tune it higher? You can tune it just as high with 2 rings - until it pops :D

The only reason I have ever come across that makes sense is esthetics: you can have your foldover skin AND the ropes in view, since the foldover skin goes behind the ropes now, not over the top.
User avatar
Dennis103
1 ksing ksing
 
Posts: 96
Joined: Sun May 10, 2009 6:51 am
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Dugafola » Fri Jun 05, 2009 3:36 pm

Dennis103 wrote:
The air leakage argument is rubbish. First of all, there is plenty of air leakage through the hole at the bottom of the djembe, so any minimal leakage at the top would not make any difference. However, there can't be any space between the skin and the point where the skin goes over the top edge down towards the rings, even if that edge were very uneven (which it isn't in any decent djembe). The tension is just way too high. The skin follows the contours of the djembe top edge precisely without any room for air to escape there.


yea...the air out of the bottom is what you want. i don't think he was referring to that. i think what he meant was what you reiterated above: that you don't want any space b/w the skin and edge. too big of rings up top leads to a timpani type tune and a "flatter" sound coming from your drum. that's why most people who skin their own drums want their top rings as tight as possible.

Dennis103 wrote:And what is this 'when you tune your djembe higher'? Why would a skin all of a sudden become stronger because of this third ring so you can tune it higher? You can tune it just as high with 2 rings - until it pops :D

The only reason I have ever come across that makes sense is esthetics: you can have your foldover skin AND the ropes in view, since the foldover skin goes behind the ropes now, not over the top.


i don't know if a skin will become "stronger" as you say, but it'll defintely hold tension and tune longer assuming properly fitted rings and the 3 ring system due to the added friction on the skin and shell.
should i shave my moustache?
User avatar
Dugafola
Djembefola
 
Posts: 1793
Joined: Tue Sep 26, 2006 9:03 pm
Location: Santa Cruz CA, USA
Blog: View Blog (7)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Dennis103 » Sat Jun 06, 2009 8:21 am

Hmmm, I don't know about 'added friction'. As if two rings will let the skin slip. Which is demonstrably untrue. And if your rings are too wide, that applies equally to 2 or 3 rings.

Sorry, I have not heard (not here and not elsewhere either) a single mechanical argument that sounds like it could be true for choosing 3 over 2 rings.
User avatar
Dennis103
1 ksing ksing
 
Posts: 96
Joined: Sun May 10, 2009 6:51 am
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Dugafola » Sat Jun 06, 2009 4:27 pm

yes more friction. count up how many skin to skin or skin to wood contacts there are for 2 rings and then 3 rings. more contact points = more friction. more friction means your skin will be less prone to slip.

it also depends on your ring size and the way your shell and edge has been shaped.

the majority of responders to this thread have never even tried 3 top rings. you guys should try it out before your dismiss it or make any assumptions on what it does or doesn't do.
should i shave my moustache?
User avatar
Dugafola
Djembefola
 
Posts: 1793
Joined: Tue Sep 26, 2006 9:03 pm
Location: Santa Cruz CA, USA
Blog: View Blog (7)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Dennis103 » Sat Jun 06, 2009 4:42 pm

Dugafola wrote:yes more friction. count up how many skin to skin or skin to wood contacts there are for 2 rings and then 3 rings. more contact points = more friction. more friction means your skin will be less prone to slip.


True. But if your skin doesn't slip with 2 rings, and most skins don't slip, the 3rd ring is pointless to prevent slipping.

the majority of responders to this thread have never even tried 3 top rings. you guys should try it out before your dismiss it or make any assumptions on what it does or doesn't do.


I'm not making any assumptions, I'm interested in hearing arguments that hold water :D
User avatar
Dennis103
1 ksing ksing
 
Posts: 96
Joined: Sun May 10, 2009 6:51 am
Blog: View Blog (0)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Dugafola » Sat Jun 06, 2009 5:01 pm

Dennis103 wrote:
Dugafola wrote:yes more friction. count up how many skin to skin or skin to wood contacts there are for 2 rings and then 3 rings. more contact points = more friction. more friction means your skin will be less prone to slip.


True. But if your skin doesn't slip with 2 rings, and most skins don't slip, the 3rd ring is pointless to prevent slipping.

the majority of responders to this thread have never even tried 3 top rings. you guys should try it out before your dismiss it or make any assumptions on what it does or doesn't do.


I'm not making any assumptions, I'm interested in hearing arguments that hold water :D


i got your water buddy.

if you're such a great drum builder, why don't you post some pics of your work?
should i shave my moustache?
User avatar
Dugafola
Djembefola
 
Posts: 1793
Joined: Tue Sep 26, 2006 9:03 pm
Location: Santa Cruz CA, USA
Blog: View Blog (7)

Re: Three top rings? Yea or nay

Postby Dennis103 » Sat Jun 06, 2009 8:26 pm

Dugafola wrote:if you're such a great drum builder, why don't you post some pics of your work?


Sorry, no offence meant. I'm simply interested in hearing reasons or explanations that make sense, physically. I'm perfectly OK with someone saying "hey with three rings my djembe sounds a lot better" but if reasons ARE given, I'd like them to make sense. So far I haven't seen anything like that. That is not a criticism on your or anyone else's djembe or playing technique or drum building skills, it only refers to my interest to figure out why (theoretical physical reasons) three rings would be better.

As for my work, so far I have replaced a handful of skins using the normal 2 ring system and normal mali weave. I have found that the greatest variant in sound production is a persons' technique, all other variables are dwarfed in comparison, wood, skin type (apart from the clear difference between goat and cow), too wide or too small rings etc. etc. I play for a weekly dance class and my djembe is used regularly by african players too, who all produce different sounds from each other and from me. The slap is noteably different in pitch and volume. My own slap is usually higher in pitch but of lower volume than the africans' but between them there is a difference in pitch too.

I have considered the three ring system, including a 2.5 ring system where the middle ring is thinner and more flexible. I haven't in fact used it, mainly due to the extra work and fiddle, and because I have never heard any good reason why it should be used, other than subjective comments that the djembe sounds better. Which, given that to my mind most of the variants are in the technique, and a new skin will invariable sound different anyway from the old skin, is interesting to hear, but not a scientific or physical 'reason' which convinces me.

So again, no offence, I hope my extra info will give you some background, and I am truly interested to hear why a three ring system is preferable.
User avatar
Dennis103
1 ksing ksing
 
Posts: 96
Joined: Sun May 10, 2009 6:51 am
Blog: View Blog (0)

Next

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Baidu [Spider], MSNbot Media and 1 guest






Feedback

Translate this page using Google