Gong Hacks: #1

Gong Hacks  

Over the course of my career, I've come up with a lot of practical and easy solutions to everyday percussionist problems, so I plan to feature these here in 2019. A lot of these may seem like common sense, or simple ideas, but I'm surprised how many other people haven't thought of them.

Gong Hack #1

Your hands are you main tools, so you really need to take care of them. When I'm loading/unloading, and setting up/tearing down, I always wear a pair of work gloves. These have not only saved on the wear & tear my hands take, but they have saved me from injuring my hands on many occasions. Note, these are made from heavy material or leather, not your white cotton gloves that many Gongers wear to keep fingerprints off their Gongs.

I currently have 2 pair that I bought for under $10 each pair at a local hardware store. I keep one pair with my cases, so they're always ready when I have to load up for a gig. I know most of you probably don't have and use as many Gongs or stands/racks as I do, but even with 1-Gong and 1-stand, these can be a big help.

Wearing gloves keeps my skin from getting cut, scraped or pinched by cases, instruments, vehicles, stairways, doors, stages, etc. There's nothing worse than cutting your hand right before a performance, and I've done that many times in the past. One time I was setting up a stand and sliced my finger on a chrome sliver from the end of a rack tube. I was bleeding on everything and the cut was right where I hold my mallets/sticks. OUCH!

It's winter here where I live, and even if I travel only a short distance, the Gongs and stands all get cold, sometimes really cold. Wearing work gloves (winter gloves are clumsy) as I set up keeps my hands from freezing. Conversely, in the summer, the gear can often be hot from traveling in the heat, or sitting around waiting to be set up. If things are damp from a temperature change, the gloves keep things from slipping out of my grip. An added bonus is that the gloves keep finger prints off of all my gear.

Another problem I had was breaking finger & thumb nails when I tightened all the 100 or so wing screws on my rack. Often, when tightening one, my finger/thumb would hit an adjacent wing screw or clamp, sometimes breaking a nail, sometimes cutting/scraping my skin. Or if I wasn't paying attention, I sometimes would pinch my hand or finger in a clamp, or between rack tubes. The gloves have stopped those types of injuries.

Granted, gloves are a simple idea, but sometimes the simple ideas are the best.

~ MB

Chop Wood / Carry Water / Play Gongs™

Over the past 8 years and 3 different blogs, I've written almost 500 blog posts. That's a lot of my time and energy devoted to putting my thoughts and ideas out there on the internet for you to read. As we approach the end of 2018, and the 9th year of these blogs, if you've enjoyed reading them, and have gotten value out of them, please consider a donation. You'll be helping me keep writing for hopefully another 8 years. Thank You ~ MB.


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