My Winter Break Project

What is this? It's my winter break taiko project. I am attempting to build a stand for our 1.8 shaku (that's about 54 cm) nagado taiko. When we first arrived in Japan, back in August 2007, the first thing we did was buy this taiko, but we bought it with a Miyake stand, which holds the drum horizontally. You must play the drum from the sides, instead of from the top. It wasn't a mistake, we wanted to practice Miyake Taiko, but there are times when we want a regular old upright stand as well. In fact, last year, I needed one for a performance, so I had to rent one. It was only 1000 yen to rent it for a day. Not much, but still, looking at the simple design and construction, I imagined that it would not cost much more than 1000 yen to make one yourself, granted, it might not be as pretty as a professionally-made stand. Most of the time, we are just using this drum for practice, though, so a functional stand is really all that it is necessary. So before I returned the stand, I made sure to take measurements and draw a little picture of it, in the hopes that I could make my own someday.

Finally, after Christmas, I went to the hardware store, picked out a few pieces of wood, borrowed a saw from my in-laws got started. I spent less than 600 yen on the wood, but had to go back the other day and spend another 390 because I cut one piece too short. In spite of that, I am still under 1000 yen in total cost of materials so far. All I have left to purchase are screws and wheels. The screws won't cost much, but the wheels will probably bring up the cost closer to 2000 yen. I haven't priced them yet. It is quite a challenge to work on it, though. I don't really have a workshop or proper tools. To cut the wood, I had to use two bricks on my balcony, no vice and a dull saw. I don't have a square, so I had to use a measuring tape to measure the cuts, and draw the lines. Just by looking, I could tell that the lines were not as straight as they should be. Now the wood is all cut to the right size, and I've notched the corners so that it all fits together surprisingly well, considering the methods I used to measure and cut.

It looks something like this:

My next step is to drill holes for screws and put it together. Then I will mark off where to chisel a little shelf on each side where the taiko will rest. After chiseling the shelves, the only thing left to do will be to attach the wheels. The problem right now is that I do not have a drill. I am actually considering nails, but first I am going to spend a little more time looking for a drill to borrow.

I'll be sure to add a picture of the finished product (when it gets finished).

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