Making a Decorative Drum?

The dimensions of the drum are 17"h x 24"w. I going to try to use a single piece of plywood (can you suggest a type?) cut to 17" x 75".  My question is when I cut the kerfs do I cut with the grain or across to get the best bend?

-Vikki W.

Cameron Park, CA

Our Expert

For making a decorative drum (rather than a musical drum) I suggest that you use a bendable plywood. There are a couple of brands that are readily available and I'm sure that an on-line search will reveal a source.


If you'd rather not use a bendable plywood then I suggest that you use solid wood and cut the kerfs across the grain. Cutting the kerfs with the grain will severely weaken the stock and it will most likely break when you attempt to bend it.


Use a combination blade such as the Amana Prestige no.PR1040 and cut each kerf through most of the stock thickness. Keep in mind that the closer you space the kerfs the more fluid the resulting curve will be; widely spaced kerfs will telegraph through the surface and make the curve appear segmented.


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