A well-made chöd drum can last a lifetime, with proper care. Each drum is unique and handmade in an ancient tradition handed down from lamas and masters to craftsmen for centuries. Caring for a chöd drum is simple. The basics include keeping it free of debris and in a stable temperature environment.
Dust and debris can accumulate on the skin of your drum and cause discoloration. This is why drums are always kept in their case when not in use. Painted skin drums are easier to clean, as the paint functions as a protective layer for the goatskin. If dirt does get on your drum, use a clean damp cloth to gently wipe away the dirt.
As with all animal skin drums, it is important to remember that water expands and heat tightens. Too much humidity can lead to your drum skin softening and developing ripples, and extended time in the damp can lead to mold. We have a guide on how to safely and slowly tighten your drum’s skin. This method includes pressing damp towelettes to the drum skin and hanging it in a window.
Keep your drum away from direct sunlight because all of the chöd drums sold at Tara Mandala are animal skin drums. Overheating in the sun or next to a heater can lead to the skin over-tightening and tearing. Cloud skin drums can be moisturized by our skin’s natural oils. Running your hands across the skin will help. If it requires more conditioning, using a very small amount of pure shea butter, lanolin, or another conditioner safe for rawhide drums.