Guitar | Bass | Keyboard | Microphones | Mixers | Audio Interfaces | Sequencers & Software Plugins | Live Sound & PA | Drums | Club & DJ | Accessories | Blowouts

Cajon (drum box)

Here's the place to talk about and post plans for building your own DIY projects, such as vocal booths, patch bays, midi switchboxes, preamps--U Name It! This forum includes pics, plans, and ideas by our top contributor Owel.

Moderators: Tweak, owel

Cajon (drum box)

Postby dhdb on Wed Aug 03, 2005 7:19 am

Hey,
I am planning to build a Cajon, seems pretty simple and fun project. I've tried to search the internet for plans, especially thickness and type of wood, size and placement of the hole, and positioning of snare(s) and attachment.
example: http://www.schlagwerk.com

Is it possible to buy a separate snare drum type of snare? I am also thinking of just using old guitar strings.

david
User avatar
dhdb
Member
Member
 
Posts: 43
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2003 3:03 pm

Postby dhdb on Mon Aug 15, 2005 12:56 pm

update: I found some plans in Dutch. I have modified them, and this weekend I have started building the cajon. I hope to post some pictures and sound sample within 2 weeks.
User avatar
dhdb
Member
Member
 
Posts: 43
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2003 3:03 pm

Postby dhdb on Wed Aug 31, 2005 3:57 pm

work in progress... I have very little time and not the right tools, so progress is very slow. here's some images.

Image
this is the front side, without front

Image
close-up of the snare (tension) adjustment system I made using two furniture bolts.

Image
how the snares are attached at the top

Image
back with soundhole

everything is birch triplex glued together (with some nails on the inside)
Last edited by dhdb on Sun Sep 04, 2005 11:10 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
dhdb
Member
Member
 
Posts: 43
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2003 3:03 pm

Postby owel on Wed Aug 31, 2005 4:53 pm

I know cajon means box... but what is it really?

Can you give us some background info?
User avatar
owel
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
 
Posts: 8775
Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2002 12:10 pm
Location: 36.0° N 86.8° W

Postby MASSIVE Mastering on Wed Aug 31, 2005 10:59 pm

(ka-HONE) It's a box you sit on and play as a percussion instrument. There are good ones and crappy sounding ones. Can resemble a kick AND a snare of sorts...

It's funny that you mentioned Dutch plans... For an instrument of Spanish origin, those crazy Dutch guys have some good sounding cajons...

Anyone (Owel?) looking for the sound - The cajon starts in at 1:20 in on this file.

http://www.massivemastering.com/audiosa ... ample5.mp3

Happens to be a Dutch guitarist also...
John Scrip - Massive Mastering, LLC
Chicago (Schaumburg / Hoffman Est.), IL - USA

IF YOU DIDN'T NOTICE, this place is sort of dying. Feel free to sign up at http://www.recordingstudiocentral.com if you'd like to help us start fresh!
Image Image
User avatar
MASSIVE Mastering
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
 
Posts: 8855
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 1:01 pm
Location: Chicago area, IL, USA

Postby dhdb on Thu Sep 01, 2005 7:42 am

crazy dutch??

for a short history see http://www.tonecajon.com/?page=history for example.
User avatar
dhdb
Member
Member
 
Posts: 43
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2003 3:03 pm

Postby MASSIVE Mastering on Thu Sep 01, 2005 9:49 am

Nothin' but love for the Dutch... 8)
John Scrip - Massive Mastering, LLC
Chicago (Schaumburg / Hoffman Est.), IL - USA

IF YOU DIDN'T NOTICE, this place is sort of dying. Feel free to sign up at http://www.recordingstudiocentral.com if you'd like to help us start fresh!
Image Image
User avatar
MASSIVE Mastering
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
 
Posts: 8855
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2005 1:01 pm
Location: Chicago area, IL, USA

Postby Dugz Ink on Sat Sep 03, 2005 6:02 pm

David inspired me to learn more about these things, so I've been searching everywhere for everything that I could find about cajon shapes and dimensions. It turns out that there isn't a "standard" design... although his is the most common.

I saw a cool picture of Mick Fleetwood sitting on one that has a slanted face, and another picture of one that was being played like a conga/etc. (It had legs attached to both sides.) Hmmm...

So I started working on my own design. Here's a cut-away side view.

The playing surface is on top, and it's slanted away from the player.

Although sound energy doesn't just travel in a straight line, I wanted to get an idea of where the sound energy would bounce... that's what all of the red lines represent.

Any comments before I start cutting wood?

Image
So I asked this God a question, and by firm reply he said "I'm not the kind you have to wind up on Sundays." Jethro Tull
User avatar
Dugz Ink
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
 
Posts: 8186
Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2004 9:10 pm
Location: Nashville, TN

Postby dhdb on Sun Sep 04, 2005 11:08 am

cool to see more people are interested in building a cajon!

piezo pickup is a nice idea, never thought of it. are they expensive?

I was planning to just mike it, maybe with two mikes: one at the sound hole to capture body and bass, one at the front to capture the attack sounds. the mike at the hole would have to take some distance though, to stay away from the air punches coming out of the sound hole.

are you also going to attach snares to the playing surface?

I assume you plan to play it standing because I cannot imagine where to sit on your design. in that case, isn't this a little low?

btw, I will post a drawing with dimensions when it is finished and sounding decent.
User avatar
dhdb
Member
Member
 
Posts: 43
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2003 3:03 pm

Postby Dugz Ink on Sun Sep 04, 2005 1:16 pm

piezo pickup is a nice idea, never thought of it. are they expensive?


K&K Sound has some inexpensive units. They recommend putting them on the "drum head"... but I think that would apply more to djembes and so on. Because the cajon is made of wood, there will be aLOT of sound transfer through the body... just like an acoustic guitar.... so I'm not sure what will be the "best" mounting point.

However, it's easy enough to attach them with tape and experiment.

(I have some notes in this thread from my experiments with mounting piezos.)

are you also going to attach snares to the playing surface?


If all goes well, I think I will build more than one cajon. I would really prefer to have snares on a cajon that has 2 playing surfaces; then I'm not stuck with just playing a snare.

I cannot imagine where to sit on your design ... isn't this a little low?


After seeing people playing cajons in various positions, I thought I would try a design that can sit between the player's legs while the player sits in a chair. This is partly out of necessity; I have a bad disk in my back, so I can't lean over and play a cajon like yours for a long period of time.

D~s
So I asked this God a question, and by firm reply he said "I'm not the kind you have to wind up on Sundays." Jethro Tull
User avatar
Dugz Ink
Forum Moderator
Forum Moderator
 
Posts: 8186
Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2004 9:10 pm
Location: Nashville, TN

cajon building

Postby cadguy on Wed Sep 07, 2005 9:13 pm

Hi ...also about to start a cajon building project..just bought some wood...going to keep the 1st attempt simple.....much like the box pics dhdb has posted....where did you get the Dutch plans?.......haven't figured the snare part yet......i'll keep you up to date as I go....check out http://www.popercussion.com/ for some nice cajons and sound clips.......
User avatar
cadguy
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Sep 07, 2005 9:04 pm

need help

Postby gameshark888 on Sat May 06, 2006 5:25 pm

I am planning to build a Cajon "snare" Drum but I don't know the how to's
does any body have the pdf plans or any other plans? Cauz I wanna give it to my Father as a gift for his B-day ^_^ thnx in advance for your help guys
by the way my e-mail is mep888@yahoo.com mep888atyahoodotcom thnx ^_^
User avatar
gameshark888
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat May 06, 2006 5:18 pm

Postby Toffe on Sat May 13, 2006 6:25 am

I am too extremely interested in building a cajon.
I'm currently waiting for 20 meters of bambu to arrive so I can start building japanese flutes :D

So I want a nice project I can do while waiting.

I just can't seem to find any plans. Where did you guys find them?
User avatar
Toffe
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat May 13, 2006 6:22 am

Postby boas on Mon Jun 12, 2006 7:10 am

Hello. I'm new here, and ended at this forum after googling for diy Cajon. I have some badly translated but still good instructions on building a Cajon. They come as a PDF-file; mail me if you would like to get a copy.
I'm also very interested in other drawings/descriptions, so if you have a good instruction lying on your computer, I'd be glad to receive a copy.
my mail is: andreas**knapweb.dk (change ** to @)
Thank you in advance.
User avatar
boas
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 2:30 am

Postby boas on Mon Jul 17, 2006 2:17 am

There have been a lot of mails from people who would like the cajon plans I mentioned in the reply above. Instead of sending me a mail, please use the following link to download the PDF-document directly:

www.ocanartesania.com/V2/pdf/articulos/ ... _cajon.pdf

-boas
User avatar
boas
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jun 12, 2006 2:30 am

Postby chconnor on Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:48 pm

Hi - I know the thread is old, but in case anyone comes across it, I made a pretty detailed page on cajon building. It also collects what I think is all the information on the web about it:

http://caseyconnor.org/cajon

Hope it's useful!
-Casey
User avatar
chconnor
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Feb 24, 2008 3:45 pm

Postby guitarboy on Thu Feb 28, 2008 12:02 pm

David Marks did a really cool web episode for making a drum table.

Try Youtube or google. His show was called 'wood working with David Marks' I believe.

He'll walk you through all the details of making one.

I hunt through his stuff as well as 'the wood whisperer' for tips and techniques for my new woodshop.
Gear:Echo-Layla24, Cubase SX, Alesis QS6.1, Mackie 1604-VLZ, lots of rack stuff that's all blinkie, and neat looking...and guitars that go wheedly wheedly wheedly, weauuuuuuuh auuuurrrrrrghhhh.
My Studio Pics
User avatar
guitarboy
Gold Member
Gold Member
 
Posts: 260
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 12:33 am

Re: Cajon (drum box)

Postby chicanoj74 on Thu Jan 01, 2009 5:30 pm

Hi. Newbie here. I've built a few cajons now using Baltic Birch and it seems to be too rigid. I'm going to try American Birch next. I've heard that A or D strings are best for a flamenco cajon (my interest). Does anyone know what the best gauge is? Also, my highs are sounding more like congas than a flamenco snare. Is this because of the Baltic face (too rigid) or the string placement (3 strings in the middle, running straight up and down)? I know a good flamenco snare should be dry and easily accessed.

I've been using 1/2" ply for the top, bottom, and sides while utilizing quarter inch ply for the back (hole side) and 1/8" for the face. I've noticed that cajons I've seen in the music stores only use 1/2" for the top and bottom. 1/4" is probably too thin for the sides (in my experience), they offer a 3/8" in some places. I think this is what most professionally made cajons use.

Mario Cortes and Mienl use two strings doubled up in "v" formation, with allen screws as tuners (accessed from the bottom). I've experimented with machine head tuners with varying degrees of success in terms of sound. The double "v" seems to get a better snare, but I haven't replicated this success myself.

Does anyone know what string/snare system the brands Schlagwerk (La Peru) and PRK Percussion use???

Thanks!
User avatar
chicanoj74
Newbie
Newbie
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 4:55 pm


Return to Do-It-Yourself Projects

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests