Maya Richardson

How To Make A Cajon

It is very interesting, though quite simple by sight, musical instrument is cajon. In fact, cajon is the acoustic drum which has square shape, and is more similar to a box, than to a drum.

The history of this instrument is quite interesting. It appeared at the beginning of the 19th century, in the far-away country of Peru. If we trust stories and tales, for the first time, cajon was made of a box for fruit with hands, and was used for reproduction of a sound, instead of drums. The matter is that drums have been forbidden at that time in that country; therefore to play on boxes is quite alternative and legal option. In time, the instrument was improved, and a bit later it became a full-fledged musical instrument. Today, people very often dance flamenco to the cajon and in general, it is used in various genres of music today. Let’s look how today we can make cajon with own hands?

For a start, you need to prepare some wood – it is material of which the instrument will be manufactured. It is possible to use as whole sheets of wood, or, for example, thick plywood. Thickness side and top walls of plywood has to be about 10 mm., and the back wall is a little thinner – only 5 mm, or it is possible to use plastic instead of plywood. Also, don’t forget to prepare strings or the spring cartridge for your cajon.

The contracture of the instrument can be assembled with the help of small nails, or using only epoxy adhesive. The main thing is to observe that the corners between the connecting walls must be equal to 90 degrees, and the cajon must not have any defects. For more reliable construction, you can fasten additional edges which will give steadiness to the instrument. Remember that you will sit on this instrument; therefore you should do it similar a stool – steady and reliable.

As soon as you have made the construction of a cajon, you can start the installation of the spring cartridge or strings. So, for strings, it is necessary to make a special platform on which they will stretch on the one side and to screw in them pegs which will regulate the tightness of strings. For the spring cartridge everything is much simpler, however it is necessary to make a small hook mechanism which will also regulate a tension of the cartridge.

So, cajon made with your own hands is almost ready. All you need is to sit down on it and to check your own opportunities of playing on this instrument. You should draw conclusions, and, perhaps, make changes in the instrument; it is also possible if it seems to you necessary.


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