Advice and questions on keeping your instruments in top form
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By nkolisnyk
Hello all, just a question about skin thickness. I've owned beautiful DSD Hare djembe for about 8 years now. I've had 3 medium-thick-ish skins on the drum, which I figure is par for the course of keeping it at solo pitch. This drum has always had a sweet spot to tune to, where the tone-slap-bass is nice and balanced. Trouble is, keeping it at this pitch long-term eventually is it's undoing.

This time around, I skinned it with a bad boy ultra thick skin. I suppose I expected a drier sound with a nice pop slap and solid tones. After tuning it up to my old skin's pitch, I ended up with nice tones, but tons of overtones and a basketball bass.

Is this typical of a thick skin? Are thick skins meant to be tuned way higher than mediums (I hope it can take it...), and would that kill the tones in the process? Is it possible it just needs to be worked in? Your opinions are always valuable.

User avatar
By djembefeeling
Hi Nick,

that is hard to tell in advance. Every drum is different. It is likely that the overtones will reduce the more tight the skin is fixed and that the bass diminishes. Probably the tones will be a little less nice, too. You'll find out in the process.

But there is no alternative and you shouldn't worry about if the skin can take it. If it pops, you just redo it, if it doesn't it's fine. If you don't try, you've got a djembe you don't like...

cheers, jürgen