Before you tune a drum…

  1. If you are replacing a drum skin and putting on a new one, first take a clean cloth and wipe over the bearing edge of the drum.
  2. Make sure there are no debris or loose bolts inside your drum.
  3. Place the new drum skin on your drum.
  4. Place the hoop over the skin and screw in the lugs so that they are finger-tight.
To tune the drum…

  1. Make a note of which lug you are tuning first (‘name’ it Number 1).
  2. Make a half-turn with the drum key.
  3. Locate the lug opposite Number 1. This is Number 2. Make a half-turn.
  4. Repeat this for the other lugs until you have done them all with a half-turn.
  5. Next, stretch the drum skin by pressing down with your wrists or the palms of your hands. Do this evenly around the surface of the drum skin. This is to ‘seat’ the drum head nicely over the bearing edge.
  6. Find your lug Number 1 and repeat the half-turn process with all of the lugs in sequence.
  7. Test the tension of the skin with your drum stick and ensure the drum skin is ‘sitting’ evenly.
  8. Continue to tighten the lugs in sequence with a quarter-turn until you have reached the required tension on your drum.