ashiko made of old growth, vertical grain douglas fir staves and natural goat hide

These first two drums are not for sale; they've been around for about the past eleven years and I've subjected them to a fair amount of drum circle time. I am making new ashikos these days and I am anticipating some great sounding, lightweight and sturdy drums with simple maple peg tuning.

Solid vertical-grain Douglas Fir staves. Wood in this drum is from what I quartersaw-milled as part of the flood of '97 casualty. This amazing tree had been growing at about a 60' angle from the wall of the creek canyon and had lost its top at about 30 feet at least 120 years ago. It had sprouted a new top at the break, as well as a second one about midway from top to ground - both of which created a labrynthine burl along the trunk during over more than a century of growth of just these secondary trees. The trunks of the two tops milled into typical construction-grade lumber, but the main trunk is old-growth, vertical-grain wood that just smells, feels and works completely differently than what you'd expect when this species is mentioned. I save this wood for projects that allow one to appreciate the energy of the tree from which it originated. The root and 25-foot length of log attached to it continue to provide a safe spot to sit when the creek is high - it forms a natural bridge. My daughter and I counted growth rings back to the year 1613 at this cut; so subtract several more to estimate when this tree sprouted. You can see the root upended and trunk spanning the creek behind me in the picture.
Drum construction is identical to the previous page, including maple tuning pegs. Since I prefer to discover neat woods in my meanderings around here, I may be able to create sets of these pegs from such things as the already-dead limbs of Pacific Yew, Manzanita, White and Black Oak and possibly Maple and Dogwood... Apple, Cherry... lots of possibilities!

Please check this site around Spetember 14 - about when I project the drums I am making now to be ready. If you've recently emailed me to place an order, I still encourage you to wait until the middle of this month as I am incorporating some improvements in design into the current series.
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