Instructables

Step 2: Springs

The options here are endless - it all comes down to what sound(s) you are trying to achieve, what resources (such as tools and small parts) you have at your disposal, and, of course, how much creativity you can muster. Lets start simple.

If you happened to pick up one of the two snare heads that I mentioned before (just about every drum shop should sell one of the Evans Dry heads with holes) then you have a distinct advantage going into this because you don't have to worry about dreaming up some way to attach your effects to the drum. Thanks to the 20 or so small port holes along the edge of the head, you can use just about anything that is small enough to fit in these holes to affect the sound of the drum.

This first idea I got from something called the Remo Thunder Tube that we used to sell (albeit not very many of) at the drum shop I used to work in. This little toy has a shell, a thin head and a long spring coming out of the back. You can get some cool sounds by playing around with it, so I thought it would be interesting to apply this idea to a snare.

If you have or can get your hands on a long spring, like the one coming out of the thunder tube, this can go well with the Evans head you have. Using a pair of cutters, try playing around with different lengths of spring, screwing them into the small port holes on the top of the snare head. The nice thing about these springs is that you can easily screw them in or out of the snare head, effectively changing the sound (and in some cases pitch) of the spring. Like you can see in the picture below, I used a total of 9 springs cut to different sizes: one is long and is merely a cool sounding low-pitched spring, while with the other 8 I was able to screw the springs into the head enough to get a distinct pitch out of each. Then it was just a matter of tuning them so that the strings produced the pitches of a major scale. And who said that drums cant be melodic?