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PPT Mouthpieces

Percussion Tongue Drums

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
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21,949
Anyone know much about these?

Lovely sound, thought I'd make one. Ordered a set of plans from tonguedrums.com, but they haven't arrived, no reply to chase up emails, either. :(

Am tempted to go it alone, but web info, especially on tuning is hard to come by. Many of the non-Steve Roberts examples on youtube sound terrible, so I don't want to spend a fortune on wood and make something that won't be any use.

I found S Roberts 'plans' for a simple one from an old woodworker mag online, but no tuning info. I'm not looking for which notes to tune to, but how to get a tongue to a specific note, including bringing it's harmonics into tune. I've found what I need for Marimbas, but these tune differently. and there's a lot of supposition on the web.
 

MLoosemore

Deluded Senior Member...
Messages
759
They look fantastic. Like a pretty wooden interpretation of a steel drum. I bet the tuning takes some doing
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Messages
13,552
I've had one since back in the 80's. It's not tuned. The different shapes make different percussive sounds. It's symmetrical with the centre being offset to one side to give each shape a high and low sound. Very pleasing to play. It came with hard rubber beaters. It always reminds me of elephants when I play it. I don't know why.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
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21,949
Colin, what does it sound like untuned? Those from tonguedrums sound really good, the others not.
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
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13,552
I picked this one from a selection that were on offer. It stood out head and shoulders above the rest.

Just a quick pounding to give you an idea.

DeadAudiolink Removed
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
21,949
thanks. Must tune, you've made my mind up. Sound's not bad, a lot on youtube are terrible.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
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21,949
plans finally arrived today. Posted 10 Jan. Terrible. But now I can get going on it. Daft thing is I already knew as much about tuning the things as is contained in the plans.
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
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13,552
I'm assuming the wood will have a big influence on the sound.

The shape of the tongues affects the type of sound they make. The thin togues with a pointed tip seem to ring more.

The thin ones with a round end ring less but have more depth of tone.

The ones with a flower shaped head are more percussive with more bass.

The beaters are important too. My soft rubber ones seem to have perished and gone a little hard.

A tuned tongue drum would be a lovely thing, rather like the metal pan drums but with a less bell like quality.

Good luck with the construction.
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
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13,552
Click the links above
 
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sushidushi

Mine's an espresso
Messages
651
I had never even heard of them and had to Google after listening to Colin's Soundcloud track. Before I listened I thought it might be another expression for tongue slapping... :eek:
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
21,949
I'm assuming the wood will have a big influence on the sound.

The shape of the tongues affects the type of sound they make. The thin togues with a pointed tip seem to ring more.

The thin ones with a round end ring less but have more depth of tone.

The ones with a flower shaped head are more percussive with more bass.

The beaters are important too. My soft rubber ones seem to have perished and gone a little hard.

A tuned tongue drum would be a lovely thing, rather like the metal pan drums but with a less bell like quality.

Good luck with the construction.

Wood - yes, it seems to from what I've researched and heard on youtube. I've got a nice chunk of African Padauk for it. Still need to find some oak for the sides/ends.

Ta for the hints on shapes.

Beaters - he sells sets, but suggests making from 1" superballs and 1/4" dowel. Just drill a hole in the ball and glue. I guess contact adhesive or superglue would work well.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
21,949
I'll probably make some as I want to experiemtn with different beaters, but the link looks like a quick way in, thanks Colin.
 

Ivan

Undecided
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7,641
At risk of much fnnarr fnnarr-ing and warf warf-ing...

What are 1" superballs?
 
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