How To Craft A Mallet For Toddler Drum Set

Posted in Learn | Last Updated on October 4, 2018

Are you looking for homemade crafts for kids? Here is a little guide to how to felt a mallet, as they are very important utilities for hand drums. As you dig deeper and deeper into the world of drumming, you can’t get a big enough variety of mallets, because every sort sounds different. It truly makes sense to look out for them in music stores, but there’s nothing like crafting your own mallet… with your child’s help, of course! Before we start, you may want to check our article about the best toddler drum sets on the market, in case you are in need of a new instrument.

What do You Need?

Bamboo poles are unbeatable in their durability. Very light-weight and wonderfully flexible, they are ideally suited for making your mallet.
Dimensions: 12″ to 16″ long, 0.27″ to 0.4″ diameter. Look around a bit.

A great handicraft store might be just around the corner from you. Felt wool – carded wool as fleece or gauze. Felt wool is available in many colors, as well as natural in various nuances from white to brawn.

You will also need: 1 tbsp. liquid soap 1 liter (1 quart) of hot water in a bowl, plenty of towels, craft resource clamps, wood wedge sand and a suitable room with an easy-to clean floor.

Off We Go!

For the ball you take felt wool in the form of a longish piece of fleece wool and form it in the dry state as tight as possible into a ball. Wrap it very tight in all directions over and over again. Add pieces wrapping them tightly in all directions until you have a suitable size. I recommend producing a few balls in different sizes, somewhere between 1 1/2 and 3 inches. Small mallet heads sound perfect on small drums, as big ones do on larger drums. The ball will shrink in the wet felting process, so you might scale the dry ball a bit larger.

- Put the tablespoon of liquid soap into the hot (still comfortable temperature for your hands) water.

- Dip the ball fully into the soapsuds, until there are no bubbles left.

- Afterwards you can wrap slightly for a smooth surface or create whichever color patterns you like.

A Tight, Round Felt Ball Take the ball with both hands and carefully roll it using circular motions. Too much pressure at the beginning will deform the ball, so start out softly and increase the pressure slowly and steadily. Remember that the ball as a mallet head has to withstand the huge beating stress, so roll it really tight! Continue rolling the ball with your hands under pressure for 15 to 20 minutes, as you wet it regularly in the soapsuds.

The result should be a nice round ball with a smooth surface. As you press the ball tightly with your fingertips you can test whether the strength is suitable. There should not be any dents or lumps left afterwards. Rinse the ball properly and place it on a towel. In the winter over a heater it will take 1-2 days to dry. In the summer exposed to the sun it will take 3-5 days.

What a Beautiful Mallet! Once properly dried, you are going to cut a tiny X in your felt ball using a sharp knife. The cuts should only be about half an inch in length and need to extend into the mid-point of the ball. Afterwards you’ll insert wood glue into the hole. Push the bamboo pole firmly into the ball and fix it with clamps and wood wedges.
As soon as the glue is fully dry your beautiful homemade mallet is ready to use! If you have any ideas or questions, please comment below, as I am happy to connect and to help you out.