Building a Taiko Drum

Wine barrel with plywood rim insert pegged into place.

Drum barrel interior carved and tuned.

Candy apple taiko. Stained and finished.

First drum head (cow rawhide) soaked in water for 3 days and marked with template. Holes are punched for inserting mimi (stainless rods) for the stretching process.

First stretch with first drumhead. First taiko lift with 3 car jacks for tensioning the drum skin by pushing the barrel into the skin.

Second skin soak after drum head has been formed and dried (first stretch).

Dancing on the drumhead to break it in before final tensioning. This is not dangerous. Really.

Tacking the drum head and aligning the tacks to japanese precision.

The completed drum on the improved taiko lift.

Public Service Announcement: Taiko building can be hazardous to your health.
For more info on the taiko building process: Standford Taiko: Drum Making Process
All images and content copyright Robert Ploger, 2008-2017.