At first, the drumheads were parchment, most often made of goat or calf. These drumheads are fragile and sensitive to temperature and humidity variations. Their tensions fluctuate and they must be constantly adjusted to keep the sound in tune. To reduce humidity, lamps can be installed in the drums, which also has the advantage of backlighting the drumhead and highlighting any paintings.
Today's drumheads are actually made of Mylar®, a very resistant material invented by Dupont de Nemours in the early 1950s. This membrane, used in aerospace, has a very high tensile strength, shock resistance and moisture resistance. It is also resistant to high temperatures - up to +150°c - and is available in different thicknesses
It is in 1957 that Chick Evans then his fellow-member Belli Remo tighten a film of Mylar as a drumhead. It was an immediate success. This evolution contributes to the standardization of the diameters of the drums. Until then, especially in France, drums were made to metric measurements and not standardized, each manufacturer determining his own measurements. The international standard in inches was adopted around 1963. Drummers could therefore buy the drumheads of their choice from any manufacturer, including Dermaplastics from ASBA from 1958.
Other exciting topics on the drums
Accessories & hardware
The bass drum pedal
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