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Very slim momentary switch? (Also, think this DIY pad idea will work?)

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  • Very slim momentary switch? (Also, think this DIY pad idea will work?)

    Just bought a Yamaha DD-55 (older model, since then there had been the DD-65 and DD-75 but they are all very similar piezo tabletop drum units.)

    I want to use it to play hang drum and handpan virtual instruments (VSTs), and for that 8-9 pads would be ideal, as that's the number of notes these instruments have; it comes with 7.

    I'm thinking I can add two more by abusing its foot pedal inputs. For the pads, I'm planning on using foam-backed metal coasters. They happen to be exactly the right size, as though they were designed for this purpose. Unfortunately, I believe the Yamaha only takes a piezo output on one of the 1/4" foot pedal jacks, with the other taking a momentary switch.

    For the piezo I think it'll be really simple, just attach a 27mm piezo to the metal side of the coaster with double-sided tape, and then mount it over one of the speakers with like 3-4 felt pads with double-sided tape. The feel of the coaster's foam is very close to the Yamaha's pads, which is great as I'll mostly be playing by hand.

    The bit I'd like suggestions on is how to handle the momentary switch for the pad over the other speaker.

    Does anyone know of a piezo-sized momentary switch or a simple circuit to get a piezo to act as a momentary switch?

    (BTW I realize that not having velocity control on one of the pads is highly suboptimal, but beggars can't be choosers... I do plan on upgrading to an Alternate Mode DrumKAT DK10 - which has 10 pads - when I have the money.)


    UPDATE 1: I started reading through the stickies and I think is what I want. IMHO someone should change the title of that post to "Building Keith Raper's Piezo/Piezo to Piezo/Switch Circuit" - I did search the forums but with my search terms it didn't show up. I'm still interested in any feedback about this in general however :-)

    UPDATE 2: I found the below, so it looks like actually, I don't need the above circuit, and this is going to be even simpler than I was thinking, although I'll have 2 notes with no velocity sensing, not one. Now to figure out what this "cone" thing that people keep mentioning w.r.t. piezos is about...

    "My Yamaha DD-55 comes with two of those pedals. They are plastic with a piezo sensor in the middle. Just press down on it and it plays. I have hooked them up to the Roland and it works. The only thing is you don't get any sensitivity, it's either on full or off, no in between. I actually use one..."

    UPDATE 3: So I think I figured out the foam cone is something that goes under or over the piezo, but maybe only in higher-end hardware? There's a video of a DD-75 being opened at and as far as I can tell it just goes foam pad / plastic / taped-on piezo, no cones involved.

    UPDATE 4: Ah the 3 sentences I was looking for... "They are only used in drums with mesh heads. The cone pushes into the head and the vibration goes through the cone to the piezo which is under it. You don’t use a cone if using a rubber pad."
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    Last edited by danjcla; 10-15-20, 05:03 PM.