Introduction: Build Your Own Brazilian Tamborim (with or Without Jingles)

The next item in my series of DIY Brazilian instruments is my tamborim. This version includes jingles (like Meinl's "patented" tampeiro), but you can just as easily cut these out. I like the novelty of the sound, so I kept them on for this build. While my previous repinique build was mostly to save money, this tamborim build was mostly for the fun of doing something on my own. A new Meinl tamborim will cost you $30 retail (, while the total cost for this build will come in around $20 or so depending on the cost of the hooks and lugs.


1. Cheap-o 6" toy tambourine (I paid about $3 on eBay, but this one is $5 on Amazon:

2. 6" metal ring (I paid $5 for a real tamborim hoop)

3. 6" drum head (any standard head will do; I got mine used on eBay for super cheap. The cheapest I can find currently on Amazon is this one at about $4:

4. The tricky part is finding a good method of attaching the head. I reused some parts I took off another double-lugged tamborim. I've been looking into finding short banjo-style hooks and lugs, but have had no luck. If you've got good ideas, please let me know in the comments.


1. Flat screw driver and pliers to pull out the staples from the tambourine.

2. Phillips screwdriver for screwing on the lugs.

2. Drill for making holes in the tambourine.

Step 1: Take Off the Old Head

First peel off the old head from the tambourine. Be careful with the staples as they are pretty sharp. Just use the screwdriver/pliers to pull them out.

Step 2: Drill Holes and Attach Lugs

For this step, I eyeballed a relatively even spacing around the shell for attaching the lugs, leaving a little room at the bottom so the cheap wood wouldn't split. I drilled holes and attached five lugs.

Step 3: You're Done!

For the final step, place the head on the shell, put the ring over this, then attach the hooks to hold it down. A tamborim should have a pretty high pitch and very short decay. This will vary depending on the thickness of the head. This old marching head I used was pretty heavy, so it's not ideal but got the job done.

Notice that the bearing edges on this design are flat. I could have mitered the bearing edge, but it's not really necessary since you're aiming for a short decay anyway.

Thanks for reading, and look forward to more of these Brazilian instrument instructables in the future! Let me know if you have a better idea for attaching the head. I want to make this cheap, fun, and repeatable.