Clamps

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Pan Clamp


The first tool is a clamp on which to mount the drum to sink it. If you really want to just start hammering on a pan, by all means do so, but you'll find that it's noisy and that the drum wants to move around the room as you pound it. The energy you're expending when you swing the hammer is going into moving the drum and not stretching the steel, which is inefficient. If you're only making one pan for fun, that's ok, but doing this as a career means that I'm looking for every mechanical advantage that I can find, and so I developed this clamp system in about 1995. What you see here is a refined version of it.

concrete base The Base is made from a section of a barrel, filled with about 250lbs (100kg) of concrete. There's a 2" metal pipe attached to an H-frame assembly embedded in the concrete. This pipe forms the center-post around which the pan can be rotated when I'm working on it. I covered the exposed concrete with duct tape to seal it, and prevent dust from coming off the base as I hammer off the pan. base with casters I mounted six 2" swivel casters to a plywood disc. The plywood has a hole drilled in the center that fits exactly over the center-post. base with casters and lazy susan On top of the casters I place another plywood disc with a hole drilled in the center. This fits over the center-post, and is free to rotate. Essentially it's a giant Lazy Susan assembly. concrete base with drum I took the unused end of a barrel and cut a hole in the center to fit the center-post on the base. Then I place a plastic pipe over the hole. The plastic pipe is just bigger than the center-post, and will act as a bushing around it. Once I had the plastic pipe accurately positioned, I taped it in place with Gorilla Tape and filled the unused barrel with another 250lbs (100 kg) of concrete. I used a small engine crane to lift the barrel onto the Lazy Susan assembly.
base with drum and padding I fill the drum with a comforter/duvet/ pillows. Then I position miniclamps around the rim of the drum. I made 14 miniclamps, and their construction is shown further down the page. The miniclamps are used to mount the actual pan to the rotating drum. Padded Pan I fill the inside of the pan with pillows/comforters. Neither the skirt of the pan or the head of the pan should ring at all once it has been stuffed. base with drum and padding The pan mounted to the base!
concrete base The Miniclamps are made from 2" x 2" squares of 3/4" plywood. The bolt is a 2" long 1/4-20 stainless bolt. Regular bolts wear out over time. base with casters There are two small "legs" mounted to one of the plywood pieces; these act as stand-offs. base with casters and lazy susan The standoffs are made from 3/4" square pine, and are screwed and glued onto the plywood square. concrete base with drum The plywood square has a 1/4-20 thread-insert mounted in it. These are the kinds of things that you find in "home-assembly-required" furniture, and are readily available from most hardware stores.


Bass Pan Clamp

The bass pans require a different setup for sinking. I still use the main concrete bass and the lazy susan with the casters.

However, the bass pan is mounted to a wood-concrete "sandwhich" and held down with ratchet straps.

The sandwhich is made up of two circles of 3/4" plywood, separated by 2x4's. The circles have a diameter equal to the outside diameter of the pan, plus an allowance of 2 inches all the way around. Typically the OD of the pan is about 23", so the plywood circles are about 23+2+2=27" in diameter.

The 2x4's are arranged in a hexagonal fashion around the outside of the circles and are screwed down. The space inside the 2x4's is filled with concrete. Four large metal circular lugs are mounted to the edge of the disk to provide a place for the ratchet straps to hook onto. The disk has a hole in the center that the center post runs through. Around the outside of the upper circle I screwed some 3/4" plywood arcs that act as positional holders for the barrel to stop it sliding off the plywood.

The ratchet straps have large metal hooks on the ends. The hooks are longer than the lip of the barrel, and so will dig into the note surfaces when they're tightened down. To solve this problem, I made four small metal s-hooks that fit over the lip of the barrel and to which the ratchet straps occurs.

Of course, this entire assembly is quite tall...in the photo you'll notice the box on which I stand when I'm working on these.



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