What's with the ending knots on my djembe?

What's with the ending knots on my djembe?

by Brooke

I just got a new djembe and need to tune it. It came with extra tuning rope and a handle attached (I unraveled the handle to start tuning the drum) but both are attached to the drum with ending knots. I did some reasearch on this and couldn't find any other drum with two ending knots on it. This is preventing me from tuning my drum and I dont know what to do. Please help!

African-Music-Safari.com's Answer

Dear Brooke,

Posting a picture of your drum would make sure we understand the same thing when talking about "ending knots". But I guess what you are facing is quite normal. Firstly, have you decided yet which tuning method to use?

If the verticals are not tight, you should tighten them by simply opening one ending knot and pulling the verticals all around the drum. (In case the two ending knots are on opposite sides of the drum: Open one to start tuning and see where it takes you. Then open the second one as well if it's necessary to continue.)

If the verticals are tight, it's enough to just do horizontal tuning (also called "Diamonds" or "Mali Weave"). In this case you don't need to open the ending knots. Just use the extra tuning rope and start pulling diamonds where it is attached to the drum. You can ignore the handle.

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Thank you!
by: Brooke

I was confused and thought I HAD to untie and tie back the ending knots one more time before starting horizontal tuning and I didnt know how to come at it. Im pretty sure that the verticals are tight enough for horizontal tuning as there is almost no slack when I pull on them so Ill just put some diamonds in it to tune it up a bit. Thanks again!

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