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Red Thunder” made by Keith Hicks of Las Vegas Kaminari Taiko

Keith Hicks made “Red Thunder” from 98 pieces of 2×4, cut to 44 inches in length. He angle cut the 2×4’s to make staves, and glued them together. Before being shaped and sanded the body weighed in at 400 pounds! Try turning that drum while you are working on it. Keith made this rig to turn the body while being shaped and sanded.


Here Keith is working the body into shape. He said he used a gallon of glue to join the staves, and spent about 100 days working on his O-daiko body.

The end result – “Red Thunder” at Kaminari Taiko’s rehearsal. The final stats for Keith’s O-daiko: 275 pounds, 44 inches long, and 40 inches in diameter (44 inches at the belly). Keith says “Red Thunder” has been heard at a distance of 2.5 miles. Microphones! We don’t need no stinking microphones!

 for more Taiko drum photos for Keith Hicks

please see :


For an opportunity to purchase his book on ebay

Search ebay How to Taiko



Comments on: "Taiko Drum Making – Keith Hicks" (8)

  1. Chandra Naraine said:

    Once again, I would give an eye-tooth to play one of those huge taiko again….had the privilege once in Spain and the vibes are still running through my body! Tell Keith that a friend of mine in Manresa is building them from wine barrels….a truly intoxicating experience, if you get my drift!!

  2. Michael Flowers said:

    the el tigre butsudan is awesome are there anymore available?

  3. I thought you would like to know, this post has inspired an entire school community! The high school where I am the Art teacher, (Oak hall School in Gainesville Florida), has a Taiko program. We need a big Odaiko. We have been thinking about making one, and I just want to let you know that this post kicked us into gear! We will start this week! I am sure we will run into unforeseen issues, so if you don’t mind me asking, any advice along the way would be appreciated. I’ll be posting pictures of the process at Oak Hall Visual Arts facebook page. Wish us luck and thanks for the inspiration! This is going to be fun!

    • My husband, the Taiko maker says: If you give us an address he will gift you his book and DVD on how to make taiko drums. We are thrilled and honored. If you want you can call or text us at 702 505 1722. He also says search Keith Hicks /Red Thunder. This was the first drum he ever made. Please keep in touch! B.B. and Keith

      • If you want to see the book and Dvd he will send you just search ebay how to Taiko

      • That would be awesome! Our school address is Oak Hall School, 8009 SW 14th Ave, Gainesville, FL 32607 Thank you so much! We are excited to give this a try!

      • Looks like you decided to buy it. It’s packed up and ready to go! Keith sent his phone number in an email to you if you have any other questions. Let us know your progress! Love B.B.

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