Other west African instruments, like balafon, ngoni etc.
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By l'amourdu rythme
Hi I was wondering if anyone would know how to tune this drum. It looks like a standard mali weave but with 2 bottom rings? I haven't tuned it because I just don't know how to go about this drum given its irregular shape.

Thank you.
IMG_1307.JPG (133.19 KiB) Viewed 1957 times
IMG_1308.JPG (153.39 KiB) Viewed 1957 times
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By michi
Wow, what a drum! :-)

I would take a few pictures of it from all sides, for reference. Study how the original weave works, and then undo it all. Re-tighten the verticals, and then start the weave again.

By the looks of things, there is no more room for additional weave, so re-tightening the verticals seems the only available option.

By Paul
Personally, I don't know if I would do that (i do like to play devils advocate). The surface is very irregular as are the sides, as such there is obvious slippage going on. I think if you let off the tension the whole thing might come apart. Unless you want to reshape the surface and reskin it, I would just go at the rim with a rubber mallet and try and get more knots on it.

I lived with a guy who made the opposite of this drum ie. one trunk that split into two heads, the man had a lot of sleepless nights trying to get it to sound good.

Is it a stick drum?
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By l'amourdu rythme
thank you for your reply.I have had this drum for a year now and just have never tuned it I am just a little afraid of tuning 2 rings. Honestly i have now idea how it is meant to be played. I got this drum in Colorado from a guy for 2 didgeridoos and he got it from the guy that made it. It had been sitting in his shop for about 2-3 years. Its somewhat loose and has a deep low sound when played with hands. When played with a mallet it has a huge boom and sustain. somewhat between a djundjun and a japanese Kodo drum.

I wish i knew about it :/
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By dleufer
From the pictures it doesn't look like that rope will hold up to much tension and the warped rim would lead to very uneven tension if you did manage to tune it up. I'd say your only option is to heat it up with fire, traditional style. Just warm it in front of a fire or halogen heater before playing.
Alternatively, take it apart, level the bearing edge and put proper rope on.

P.S. It really looks like an underwear mannequin:
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By Waraba
That's what the maker was going for. To play the pants off that thing.