Introduction: Earth-toning (soil-aging) Cymbals, (to Get a Darker, Warmer Sound)
The purpose of this Instructable is to show you how to soil-age a cymbal, which gives it a darker and warmer tone. Many cymbal companies sell already soil aged cymbals, but have extremely high prices.
These cymbals can run from $400 to $800 dollars. If you don't believe me, just check out Zildian or Sabian's websites. For most of us, those prices are way to high. This Instructable is fairly simple, and pretty easy. all you have to do is select a cymbal, dig a hole, and bury it, and then wait.
The Picture below is the finished product
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Step 1: Items Needed.
The first step is to gather all the materials and tools.
(note: you will need a good soil mix, with not too much clay, or too much sand, a good loamy soil works the best)
the cymbal of your choice, water spray bottle, cymbal cleaner, and rag
Tools: shovel, rake(optional), axe or clippers (optional)
Step 2: Preparing the Cymbal
To prepare the cymbal, you first need to clean it, so the soil/elements will bond to the surface.
After the cymbal is fairly clean, spray it with a fine mist.
Step 3: Digging the Hole.
Once you have the cymbal prepared, then you need to dig the hole to bury it in.
First, find an area with dappled sunlight.
Then use your rake to move away any leaves,
Now dig a small hole, approximately 6 to 8 inches deep, the purpose of this is to see if there is a high clay content. if there is, find a new spot to bury.
If you encounter large roots while digging the hole, use the axe or clippers to remove them.
If the soil is nice and rich, with little to no clay, start digging. if your cymbal is 18 inches wide, dig the hole around 21 or 22 inches wide, so you have a little extra room, and about 12 inches to 18 inches deep.
The fourth picture shows you what type of soil not to use
Step 4: Saying Goodbye.....for Now
Now comes the time in every drummers life where he/she has to let go of that prized cymbal, and let it grow and get a more mature sound.
1. Put about 4 inches of soil back in the hole, and mound it around the edges.
2.Place the cymbal in upside down, and put more soil on top.
3. Bury it completely.
Step 5: Mark the Site
After the cymbal is completely buried, mark the place where it is, you will be leaving it there for 4 to 8 months.
I used a 3 ft. long peice of pvc, and hammered it into the ground, and put a ring of rocks around it so when i dug it back up i wouldn't hit or crack it.
Step 6: Wait
This is the most important step, becuase the soil has to have time to bond to the b20 metal. the wait time depends on many things, such as the amount of overtones you want, the tambour and the resonance.
If you want one of the lighter tones, leave it buried for about 4 months, while if you want a darker heavier tone, leave it in longer.
While waiting, i reccomend making and creating things in a site called instructables, i'll post the link below.
Step 7: Unearth Your Masterpiece
After you wait for those few endless months, get your shovel, and go to work.
After you carefully recliam your cymbal, brush off the majority of the dirt off, and put it on a cymbal stand outside.
While on the stand, hit it with a drumstick for four or five good crashes, and take it inside.
You now have an earthtone cymbal for a fraction of the price.
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