Facebook Twitter YouTube RSS
Home DIY Electronic Drums Finishing Touch!

Finishing Touch!

It’s time to get this eDrum working. In the last post we made the foam sensor coupling. In this post we will install the piezo/foam coupling assembly to the sensor plate and solder up the connections. We will be cutting 3M heavy duty double stick tape into small circles. Pull off a length of tape and using wax paper place the exposed side of the heavy duty stick tape onto the wax paper (I didn’t have wax paper so, I used the backing of a full sheet label).

tape 1 tape 2

With a pencil and a penny or a dime (you will get more sensitivity with the dime) trace the shape to the wax paper/heavy duty tape. Keep in mind it will not trace easily. Once traced cut out the shape.

piezotape3.JPG piezotape4.JPG piezotape5.JPG

Remove the wax paper and place your circular piece of heavy duty tape in the middle of the piezo. (brass side)


Now we just need to remove the protective layer of the heavy duty tape and sick it to the center of the sensor plate. Once in place you can trim the wires to length and solder them the correct terminal on the input jack you are using. Here are the wiring diagrams I used. Roland module wiring , Alesis module wiring. It is a good idea to tin the wire leads first. If you don’t know how to solder, check out this website: How to Solder.


If you want a dual zone, take another piezo with only a half circle tape piece on it and mount it to the side of the cake pan as shown below. Refer to the wiring diagrams for proper wiring placement.

piezotape7.jpg dualsens.jpg

Now that the piezo assembly is done now we can prep the foam sensor. Using the 3M chemical resistant 2-way tape, place a piece just big enough to cover the bottom of the foam sensor coupling. Trim the tape around the outside diameter of the foam and with an exacto knife cut a small notch for the piezo wire leads to fit.

couplingtape1.jpg couplingtape2.jpg

Just remove the tape backing and lineup the notch in the foam to the piezo wire leads and press into place. Double check to make sure the foam comes above the edge of the cake pan about 1/16″ – 1/8″. If it needs to come up, just place washers under the sensor plate assembly. Put your drum head on and you are finished!

cup-plate1.jpg cup-plate2.jpg finished.jpg

Well, We have finally gotten to the finishing point for this project. I will have one more post in the X4L section and this post will be a look back at what I would do differently when I do this again. eDrumming for me is one big experiment, so I am always changing, tweeking, and messing with my designs. More to come soon.

 Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Reddit Share on LinkedIn
2 Comments  comments 

2 Responses

  1. Hi there Phil,

    First of I want to say this project looks amazing, superb guide if you ask me, and very inspiring, I’m thinking of using you’re design for a new set of DIY pads to build in the future. But before I will, I would like to know when the last post is coming with this in it:

    “Well, We have finally gotten to the finishing point for this project. I will have one more post in the X4L section and this post will be a look back at what I would do differently when I do this again.”

    Also how the pads are responding to your playing and if there’s any negative about them (double triggering, lack of sensitivity etc.) to say.

    I’m looking forward to hear something (you can email me if you like!)



    ps. I found this website on vdrums.com :)

  2. Hi Phil,
    What a great website you have here. I have been playing e-drums since my first Simmons set in the late 80’s. Now I am interested in converting an acoustic set to e-drums and I have begun exploring the cake pan idea you have come up with. I got such a kick out of seeing your name which is so close to mine.

    Keep up the good work,

    Phil Borland

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *