Make Your Very Own Cajita Drum. (Latin Percussion)

Introduction: Make Your Very Own Cajita Drum. (Latin Percussion)

About: Bernardo Wolfgang Cano, some- what at your service. not to sound unpolite but I am quite busy with several projects at a time thus the cup of tea I'd promise you upon entering my house would be delayed. Anyway…

You may have heard as an avid world Percussionist of the Legendary Cajita Drum. the Cajita drum is a wooden box with a handle over the lid. it is played slinged on your neck, and slamming the lid down to create the bass slap tone while hitting the sides with a mallet or a stick. the sound it produces is like that of a soprano cajon. In this Instructable you are going to make your very own without having to travel to South America to get one. this is an incredibly fun instrument for any age! so hey, lets begin!


so the items are pretty basic, you probably have them around your house.

- ACID Cigar Box.
these boxes are very very sturdy and have a great sound. look for one at your local tobbacco shop. (PS: I am not a Smoker and I do not nor am I trying to encourage anyone to smoke. I am rather a salvager and I really like cigar boxes). otherwise, look for another all wood sturdy cigar box (to build a snare cajita, make sure the bottom of the cigar box is thin). get creative!

-wood screw

-drill bit and drill to drill hole for the wood screw (haha, tounge twister)

-epoxy (two part)

-a string (In this case I chose a leather string I had laying around)

-a snare (i salvaged a few from old snare drums, i took them off and then simply cut them in half)

-blow dryer

and last but not least a dowel or a stick of some sort (here I used a wooden handle from a croquet hammer thing, I cut it in pieces and used one for the lid handle of the cajita and the slightly longer piece for the beater)

Step 2: Remove Labels

unless you don't want to, but otherwise the cajita looks more authentic without the labels. heat up the labels with a blow dryer, and then after 5 or 6 minutes remove the label gently. caution the labels are going to be a bit hot, but this way you wont have to spend HOURS removing the super sticky residue of the labels on these ACID cigar boxes.

Step 3: Installing the Handle!

drill a hole on the lid of the cajita in the center, close to the end of the lid as pictured on a Cajita Drum. pretty basic stuff. then drill another hole on the bottom of the handle which you will be using to lift the lid up and down. last but not least screw the screw from the inside of the lid, through the lid, onto the handle and tighten. secure the handle onto the lid with epoxy to prevent it from falling off from constant use.

Step 4: Installing the Sling!

drill two large holes on the sides of the cigar box and then feed the string through into the inside and tie a knot. repeat on the other side.

Step 5: Installing the Snare!

cut the snare in half with a pair of wire cuters or super manly scissors and make sure in fits inside the cigar box, the end of the snare wires facing the joint of the lid. epoxy the snare in place. wait a few minutes for the epoxy to settle. of course, read the label on the epoxy to see exactly how much time you need to wait.

Step 6: DONE!

there you have it! your very own snare cajita! strike the bottom of the box to hit the snare sound, the sides, slam the lid, and what not. have some fun with this! I hope you enjoyed this simple instructable and feel free to leave comments, suggestions, as well as your own build of this Cajita! thank you!

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    3 Discussions


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Oh, we really need a video of this being played!


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Cool - you can embed it into one of your steps.