Tabla Repair

in Repair & DIY, Tabla

Although it might not be perfectly correct but following are some of the commonly observed problems in tabla and methods to repair them.

  • Replacing tabla head: There might be various reasons due to which the heads of the tabla gets damaged such as water, breaking off of Syahi, depression in heads due ti improper hammering, or splitting of head. Replacing of head is sometimes better than to buy a whole new tabla set.

First of all you should always ask your teacher or guide to assist you in the same since they have experience and guide you do your work perfectly. The next step is to disassemble whole of the tabla carefully. Wear work gloves to prevent your hands from damage and then find an end of tasma, gradually start removing it. Pull it slowly so that it does not break and remove it until it reaches the starting point.

Now you can easily have a look of inside of tabla. Now accurately measure the diameter of head. Visit a tabla shop and try various heads if anyone of them fits your tabla. Make sure that the head you choose contains three layers, syahi is layered and contains a layer(bharti) below the innermost layer known as kinnar. Also never go in for buying an oval head as tuning the same is next to impossible.

After you have bought the required head, take a bit of water and apply it on the bharti. Always remember that water should never be applied on the side containing syahi as it will affect the tonal quality of the tabla.

Place the head and start weaving it with the help of tasma. It is a bit tedious task so if you feel that it is not in the proper direction, remove it and reweave it. Be patient as frustration might lead to damaging your tabla.

After that the tabla needs to be carefully tightened and tuned accordingly.Leave it unused for some time so that it gets settled.

  • Replacing Tasma\Kundal: Breaking of Tasma\Kundal is one of the commonly observed problems in low quality tablas. If the tasma needs to be replaced, either replace whole of the tasma or replace a small part by adding an extended piece bad tying it with original one or take help of gatta(wooden braces) in joining the extra piece.

If the Kundal needs to be replaced, go to a tabla store and try finding out a metal ring that fits your tabla head. A metal ring is the best alternative as it does not break easily.

  • Dented Bayan: Denting a bayan is not a very serious problem unless and until it is not too big. One can easily ignore a small dent. as it rarely affects the sound quality. Bayan can re-shaped while the head is being replaced.

  • Another common problem in tabla is Buzzing Syahis. It might happen due to two reasons: either a tabla is placed in a room with high moisture or there is loose particle in Syahi.

If it is due to moisture, then wait for sometime and check if it buzzes again. If the problem still persists, then apply a bit of glue making sure that it does not affect the head much.

Always keep in mind that one can not be perfect in just one go. You need to be patient and have to practice to master the same.

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