I have been working on the tone drums for a while. I have seen several different versions and it would be easy to make. But I wanted this pattern so I got it. This project taught me patience. The tops were supose to be 3/4" thick oak. I cut the tops out and hit them and all I heard was thud. Made the boxes. Then I clamped the tops to the boxes and hit them. All I heard was thud. The material was too thick so I planed it down to quarter inch thick and tested again and had the same result. So I glued everything up and then I could hear the tones. However I will not know if the thicker wood would sound better and on some of the drums I have some that had a twang to them I don't know why.
A lesson learned about super balls. They don't drill well and if drilling in the parting line they split. Here is a link to a project that would take a lot more time and patience then I will ever have Music in the forest.