Advice and questions on keeping your instruments in top form
By Socrates
#1144
Hi!

What can you guys who have experience with transporting a djembe (with an airplane) tell me? I'm going to Madrid around new year and there is a park where they jam every sunday. So, though clumsy, I've been told to bring my djembe. Is it just a matter of putting the djembe in the bag (I have a good one) and check it in for cargo, or should I mind something?

Thanx!
Socrates
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By James
#1147
Most airlines have a special hold for instruments so phone ahead before. Ryanair charges you 25-35 euro for the pleasure but they make up the penneis whereever they can...

Don't have the head at full tension.

Good ideas
- Get wood size and shape of the head and put it on top of bag. I've seen a bad with a special pocket sown into it hold a piece of wood like this
- same as above, with foam...
By bubudi
#1149
you should be able to bring your drum on the plane as hand luggage. then you will know exactly what happens to it. good thing you have a padded bag. also be aware the air pressure changes in a plane, so as james pointed out, don't have your djembe at full tension.
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By Dugafola
#1154
i have checked my djembe as baggage dozens of times with no problems.

i have pretty heavy duty cases and a 'djembe lid' that's made of cardboard and cordura nylon.

sometimes i'll put extra padding around the leg of the djembe with clothes or jackets.
By Socrates
#1158
Hi,

thanks for your comments. I have a very snugly fitting bag, so I have little space for extra padding or skin protection, but I'll do my best :)

Bubudi, I can't imagine I can take it as hand luggage... it surely won't fit in the containers above the seats and you're obliged to store all your hand luggage either there or between your feet, right? But if Dugafola is right I should not be too worried. I will take some tension off the skin (just a lovely job, doing and undoing the ropes every time... who has such patience or time?)
By cnickroot
#24107
I'm not an expert in this area, but I would think it was the temperature and humidity changes at different altitudes, not air pressure, that would mess with the head tension.
(Why, yes, I am a science teacher. What gave it away? :) )
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By rachelnguyen
#24116
Like Duga, I have flown and checked my drum and had no problems. I have a TKL bag. I do usually ask if they can put a fragile sticker on it. Some airlines will, but will ask you to sign a release. (Air Canada, for example.)

I second stuffing the foot.

Rachel
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By michi
#24117
cnickroot wrote:I'm not an expert in this area, but I would think it was the temperature and humidity changes at different altitudes, not air pressure, that would mess with the head tension.
(Why, yes, I am a science teacher. What gave it away? :) )
You don't need to be an expert to figure out that air pressure cannot change skin tension :)

That's because the pressure on the inside of the drum and the outside of the drum will always be equal, no matter what that pressure actually is.

Cheers,

Michi.
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By Djembe-nerd
#24121
you should be able to bring your drum on the plane as hand luggage.
This is the first time I heard this, can someone else confirm this. I always check in the djembe.
so as james pointed out, don't have your djembe at full tension.
I used to do that untill I learnt Mamady never losens anything on his djembes including lead djembes, since then I travelled a few times now, never loosen anything, it has turned out alright.
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By michi
#24123
Same for me. I've never loosen anything, and my djembe has been on dozens of domestic and international trips as checked-in baggage without incident.

I very much doubt that many airlines will allow you to take a djembe as carry-on baggage. A normal-size djembe is way larger than what carry-on baggage regulations allow. It won't fit into an overhead locker, which pretty much rules it out as carry-on baggage.

Cheers,

Michi.
By Worcester Djembe
#24850
Back in 2005 I brought home a djembe from South Africa to Boston on British Airways. I didn't loosen it or anything and it arrived back in the states just fine. No fancy bag (just thin cloth) or anything but I did cut a piece of cardboard and put it on the top just to be safe.

I took it onto the plane as a carry on and handed it to the stewardist and they set it aside, I picked it up from them on my way off the plane. Did this on the plan from Cape Town to London and from London to Boston.



Best option is to just call the airline and ask them...you'll get the answer as to whether or not you can bring it on the plane by hand or not.
By haworth
#26866
Never thought about adding a piece of wood or cardboard to protect the head. Great idea. Thanks! Working on a plan to get all my drums back to the US from 2 years in Guinea.

Janice
Dubreka, Guinea