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#38892
I have a mid sized djembe that i got from a pawn shop. i've had a few years - never re-skinned it. played it the other day and it's sounding flat. like its not tight enough.

i tried re stringing it a couple different ways. but i didn't notice any difference.

IF i loosing the strings, and soak the head, and then re-tighten it, will that make it more tight for a more crisp sound?
or should i just buy a new head and start from scratch?

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#38893
I don't see the image in your post. It'd be good to see it really. I'd say never rewet a skin as it can slip or loosen around the rings and you'll end up needing a re skin anyways as it may slip after when pulling verts or tuning. Once the skin is set in the rings it doesn't need to be resoaked. You can still take it off the drum and put it back on and tune away if you want.

As is discussed in other threads generally people wishing to retune drum, first take out the knots and then tighten the verticals with a dowel or tool or by hand, and then go and put in the weave to get more tension if needed or to tune skin to appropriate pitch.

If after all that the drum doesn't hold tune, then a reskin is necessary. Bear in mind a reskin is hard to do right, but achievable if well researched. Luckily the info and knowledge is out there, as well as the materials to do it.
#38894
Don't wet the skin. It may be easier to pull a wet skin, but a djembe is properly tuned dry.

If there was a sudden and drastic change in tone, it may be that the skin has torn somewhere you haven't looked - under the rings, for example. It's also possible the skin has slipped.

Otherwise, there was a change in climate and you need to tighten.
Elfere wrote:i tried re stringing it a couple different ways. but i didn't notice any difference.
It's not clear what you did here. What you should do is either add diamonds, or undo any diamonds already present and tighten the verticals, then add diamonds if needed.