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Rend Collective Experiment "Jingling Johnny"


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  • Rend Collective Experiment "Jingling Johnny"

       So I have embarked on a quest to find this instrument after I first heard of this band... and saw the crazy percussion instrument that Gareth plays in the song "Build Your Kingdom Here". Here is a link to the music video if you are unfamiliar Rend Collective Experiment - Build Your Kingdom Here OFFICIAL - YouTube. The crunch/stomp sound it ads compliments the bass drum so well and I knew it would fit in perfect with my band so I had to find one.
    After some quick research, I found a whole lot of nothing. One thing I did find out on a Wiki page was that no two Jingling Johnny's are the same... they are tailored to the players prefrence and all custom made. So that put me in a great position. Finding nothing on Gareth Gilkeson's Johnny and nothing on and Jingling Johnny's period. As a follower of Rend Collective's Instagram, I did have one good picture to go off of: Photo by rendcollective • Instagram, so I set out to gather materials!

    This post is for everyone like me who has looked and looked for a Jingling Johnny modeled after Gareth's from Rend Collective Experiment.

    First, I searched for a wooden post to use... something that would be able to take a beating as well as something that wouldn't break the bank. I tried Home Depot, a local furniture store and then Home Depot again. It was on my second trip to Home Depot that I realized I could stick more than one piece of wood together...! I grabbed two table 28" table legs that looked like this: 

    I went home and realized that to connect the two, I would have to run up to Ace hardware up the road to get the correct metal insert to screw the two together- wood threads on both side, however oppositely wrapped. After that was solved, I put some gorrilla glue on the faces that would be coming together and screwed them together tightly, matching up the sides so it would look like one piece of wood. After this dried I was able to stain it as well as put some finish on it to seal it up and protect it. Not to mention, to cut down on the length a tad, I sawed off an end up above the handle, as you can see in the photo:

    and here:

    So after my pole problem was solved, next on my list was finding the correct pan to use to amplify my sound. At first, I thought I could get away with simple cake pans from walmart, but with no avail. I eventually found a nice pair on amazon that looked to be very similar to Gareth's Amazon.com: Norpro 9-Inch Stainless Steel pie Pan: Kitchen & Dining. After waiting a day or two for them to get here I finally was able to mount them up to my pole. I drilled two holes in the base of the one pan to bolt all the way through my pole, as well as 4 holes around the rim of both pans in order to bolt on to each other. Turns out those pans are very well built and after a bit of a struggle, they finally came together:

    My Jingling Johnny was now ready for the addition of the spring, the component that would really bring this instrument to life. I searched high and low for a spring that matched up to the one I saw in the photograph. I found that when you get into springs of that size, theres kind of only two choices. With the 20" ruled out, I set my search to the 36" springs. Next was deciding what outside diameter (OD) and wire diameter I needed. From the picture, I could guess the spring looked to be around an inch thick, and I could also count about 6 or 7 coils per inch. With that information on hand, the closest spring I could find was a hefty spring from Reid Supply Co. for only about $12 1.250 OD, .148 Wire dia., 79.23 lbs./Inch, 36" Steel, Long Length - Individual Spring, Extension Spring (1 Each): Amazon.com: Industrial & Scientific. With that on the way, I can only leave you with a couple more images until the spring comes in and I can add to this post. Hope this helps, stayed tuned!


  • #2

    Awesome! I've been attempting this for weeks...


    • #3

      I love it!  Please post the next set of photos for your building journey.  I'm excited to see how it comes together.  I'm interested in making one myself.


      • #4

        Sorry for this follow up to take me so long! Just got it all completed today and playing my first show with it this friday. So here comes the rest of it!


        I finally got the spring in and the jingles came in as well. The Mounting brackets for the spring took me a couple tries because having so much tension on them just resulted on them bending and relaxing the tension. So I finally found some good right angle brackets that had a side brace connecting the two ends.




        After I got the spring all mounted up, I had to check the sound of course! After banging it all on the ground, I concluded it didn't sound how I imagined it- close but no cigar. It sounded too....open and hollow. and not the good kind, so I took the pans apart and stuffed the inside of the pans with large wads of news paper in order to dampen the sound. This helped a good bit, but unfortunately it still didnt deliver the perfect sound when hit with a stick such as Gareth does. It just sounds too heavy. Till this day, I still am unable to find a tin pan fitting the requirements of this project - i must keep you all updated as I continue my search. 

        I put on all of the hooks for the jingles and put on the jingles as well as bent the hooks in behind them so that they would not fall off.      EDIT: I used 20mm Jingle Bells



        I also put a rubber stopper on the end so as to not mess up the wood on the bottom when played on a hard surface. 





        So there it is! Just about finished, all thats left is to put some grip tape on the handle and hopefully find some tin pans in the future!






        Attached Files


        • Ecas32
          Ecas32 commented
          Editing a comment

          Also- another thing to consider is that the raw sound of the instrument is not gonna be exactly what you hear in the music video!!!  That is after studio magic is done to it, like crunching the mids and running a hi pass and low pass filter.  For an idea of the raw (acoustic) sound you will get from it check out this video of "Build Your Kingdom Here"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M8bFdTTNuN8


          One more thing, I realize I have left off the large bell for now, that is another thing I am on the hunt for. If anybody knows of something that might work, please let me know! the closest thing I've came across is a nautical bell such as this one http://www.amazon.com/Polished-Aluminum-Dinner-Bell-Nautical/dp/B003JOQOH2/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1376453687&sr=8-4&keywords=ship+bell


          I will hopefully post a video of my build being played shortly for a good idea of the raw sound, as well as a soundbit in the future after our upcoming album gets tracked.  





        • hanwich
          hanwich commented
          Editing a comment

          Hi could you send a link to where you got the jingles from


      • #5
        Flyguy- the purpose if the pan (to the best of my knowledge) is to amplify the sound of the spring a little as well as provide something to hit. Mine our bolted tightly together, although it may create an interesting sound having them bolted loosely over the other.


      • #6
        Ok what is the spring for??


        • JoePasko
          JoePasko commented
          Editing a comment

          I primarily scrape my springs rhythmically using a drumstick, a guiro scraper, or a Vic Firth 'Dreadlock'.

          There is a Brazillian Samba instrument called the 'reco reco', that employs the same concept.

          I can also whack the springs with a stick, for a dull twang.

          I have been experimenting with a wooden bridge inserted between the spring(s) and the cake pan, in attempts to enhance the twang.   There are plenty of clips on Youtube of folks playing stumpf fiddles and pogo cellos and the like... check them out if you are curious.

          I don't mean to hog Ecas32's thread.  But I am eager to do whatever I can to generate further interest in these cool and crazy instruments.  They really do have a long and fascinating history. Hopefully Ecas32 will jump on here and tell us all about his spring, too, which I see is of a significantly heavier guage than what I am using.

      • #7
        The Instrument You Are Looking For Is Called A Stumpf Fiddle. They Normally Sell For About $250.00.


        • #8
          Was I happy when I stumbled on this page! I went with using the wheelbarrow handle. I had a couple of smaller springs in the basement so I am trying those for now. I would agree with a previous note, getting the two pans (Bed Bath and Beyond) bolted together took the most time. I am still looking for a bell. I thought about adding a wood block if I can find one at a good price. Our two cats don't like it, boy did they run when I tried it out. Thanks for putting this page together, it was really helpful to me in building mine.


          • tdok64
            tdok64 commented
            Editing a comment

            I used a wheelbarrow handle and cut it down.  I actually had the springs sitting in the basement.  I got the pie tins from Bed Bath and Beyond and filled them with a couple handfuls of popcorn.

            The bell is smaller than I wanted, but for $1 at the Goodwill store I won't complain. The wood block is actually the bottom of a mortar and pestle I got at the same Goodwill store for $2

            I am looking forward to banging away on it at church.  I have seen a few videos and noticed some people use a drum stick and others are using a thinner longer rod of some sort.  Just curious what everyone else is using.

            Thanks again for the great page, My wife thinks I am goofy, but I think it is great. It was fun to build too!




            Attached Files

        • #9
          Alright my musically minded geniuses, our praise team leader showed me the Rend Collective Experiment video today and was amazed by "that thing they play" so I did the research and am in the process of building one for us. So far I have a wheelbarrow handle, 90 lb spring, l brackets, and the eye bolts. The problem I'm foreseeing is the brackets I got at Lowe's aren't going to take the tension of the spring. Ethan, where did you find the reinforced brackets? Also, Tdok64, since you used a wheelbarrow handle also, what did you put on the bottom of it to prevent damage? Also, what's the general consensus on what to use to play it?