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Correct Diesel Tuning

Correct Diesel Tuning

Diesel tuning is more important than we think. Lets get down to the basics.

Diesel is distilled crude oil (Distillate). Unlike what most Hollywood movies promote of a diesel truck hitting a wall and exploding like a small nuclear bomb, oil does not readily ignite, particularly a liquid form. If we atomise it though, it will burn readily. The diesel principle relies on air being compressed to approx. 500PSI. This in turn heats the air, turning it into the igniter (diesels don`t have igniters such as spark plugs). Heard of a glow plug? Glow plug only glow on cold start-up to help warm up the air in the combustion chamber. A bit like when you are pumping up a push bike tyre, the pump gets warm.

Ok, so you now have very hot air and you inject diesel in through an atomising injector. As soon as the diesel leaves the injector and enters the extremely hot air the diesel ignites and combustion begins. Put a poor atomising injector in the picture and you have a different story. Because it is not atomising the diesel enough, the fuel volume burns erratically and slowly as the flame burns through the large droplets of oily fuel. If you were to light up a drum of oil, you would see a similar effect of slow burning and smoke. You can imagine that

This scenario changes completely with correctly set up injectors. Remember the drum of oil? Well, if you could fill the drum with a misty vapour of oil and light it up, you would not only get a large bang but it would be over within a flash. A good injector sprays fuel out as a mist and the fuel burns rapidly and relatively clean as the droplets are so small that they burn with a puff! A correctly set injector pressure also means the fuel is being injected at the correct time.

Now, the injectors are perfect but the injection pump could be slightly out of tune. Timing has to be set. If it is too early the vehicle can smoke and become quite diesel noisy and if it is too late, the vehicle can feel sluggish. Imagine the spray of fuel as a fist about to hit the piston. If it is hit too far before top dead centre it would not only hurt your fist and the piston but it would make a louder than normal bang as the two things hit head on. If the piston had gone past top dead centre and was hit, the force of the hit would be going down with the piston so you would have too little

impact on it. So you can see why timing is critical for maximum hit effect! Other things need to be checked like the fuel volume delivered

Well, there are 6 injectors supplying fuel to the engine (Imagining it being a 6 cylinder diesel). Looks like it has no problems getting fuel, but what about the important part that we forgot about, AIR? Well it has to draw the air through a maze. Filter, pipes, inlet manifold and a tiny inlet valve. This has to happen in a split second and the piston going down has to do all the sucking. That s the governing part of a diesel engines performance. Remember more fuel for more power is just more smoke! So we have to do something about the air to keep things clean. This is where a Turbo system comes into its own with Diesel engines. With a huge amount of air now available due to the turbo supplying air right to the inlet valve, the piston only has to suck air from there. Lets not forget that 1 cylinder has a suction stroke many times a second, so these fallacies of air being forced into the engine and blowing heads off with a turbo are only that! Now that we have more air, the fuel system can be set up accor ding for more power.

One last note; the diesel system that is on all 4WD diesels was designed to run on a fuel with certain burning characteristics. We don`t seem to be getting fuel in Australia meeting all these requirements. We have new vehicles smoking that obviously are not designed to smoke when running on real diesel. So when we, at Berrima Diesel, are setting up a fuel injection system for tuning, we have to take the burning characteristics of this poor diesel into consideration. Try to get your fuel from a reputable and `known brand` garage and keep your receipts. If you have problems, you then have as much `come-back` on the fuel garage as you have with a faulty product from a shop.

Footnote: The modern diesel has come a long way from its beginnings!! Well so we are all lead to believe!! That s where it all stops. In fact about the only thing that could compare is reinventing the round wheel!! That s right. Nothing has really changed. A diesel still needs fuel and air. Even though we now have trendy things like Common-rail High Pressure Injection and Electronics controlling everything, it is still the same old principle. The only major change appears to be the repair costs as usual. Most high tech injectors now cost over $2000 each and are throw away . Most Injector pumps are becoming throw away at around $6500. Where will it end??


Andrew Leimroth of Berrima Diesel Service is one of The Diesel Experts see www.thedieselexperts.com and has personally fitted on average 2 or 3 turbos a week for the past 10 years. That s thousands of tubos. Berrima Diesel Service are Australia`s Leading Diesel Service Centre solving diesel problems and consulting to the automotive industry since 1956.


Andrew Leimroth of Berrima Diesel Service is one of The Diesel Experts see www.thedieselexperts.com and has personally fitted on average 2 or 3 turbos a week for the past 10 years. That s thousands of tubos. Berrima Diesel Service are Australia`s Leading Diesel Service Centre solving diesel problems and consulting to the automotive industry since 1956.

The heritage of the drumset

African American Review , Summer, 1995 by Royal Hartigan

The drumset is a 20th-century American instrument whose historical development has largely been the result of African American creativity. It stands today as one of the most widely played, recognized, and powerful instruments used on the global stage.

The trap drumset emerged in the late 1890s, when single percussionists were forced for economic and logistical reasons to operate a multitude of instruments. Snare and bass drums of the concert and marching bands in New Orleans provided a base to which, from 1900 to 1930, other accessories or "trappings" - hence the name traps - were added. This diverse sound palette enabled percussionists to accompany films, theater, and other stage shows and dances. Additions included whistles, cowbells, tympani, chimes, marimba, bells, bird calls, and many other instruments. Early drummers, in their search for new sounds, also adopted the instruments they heard played by Chinese immigrants in urban areas in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, like the small Chinese cymbal (Bo), large gong (Da Luo), woodblock (Ban), temple blocks (Mu-Yu), and the first tom-tom (Bangu), usually a thick painted pigskin drum head tacked on to a red painted wooden shell.

Later, during the 1920s and 1930s, high-hat cymbals - at first less than one foot high and called low boys (Papa Joe Jones told me in 1981 that he invented the longer rod which brought the high hat to its present, aptly named height, but the Leedy drum company stole his idea and took all the rewards) - bass drum pedals, manufactured mounted and floor tom-toms, and larger cymbals came to be included in the drumset. By the bebop innovation of the 1940s, the drumset had assumed the basic form still in use today - bass and snare drums, tom-toms, high-hat cymbals, and ride and crash cymbals.

In addition to its physical history, I suggest that the drumset has a spiritual heritage traceable to the ancient drum orchestras of West Africa, especially in the coastal rain forest region from Ivory Coast through Ghana, Togo, and Benin to Nigeria, where drumming is highly diversified into variously pitched and timbred drums, bells, and rattles. In these areas there is a master drummer who directs the dynamic interplay of song, dance, and drumming with conversational dialogues (calls and responses). An ensemble of distinct personal drum voices, each with its own pitch range, timbre, and rhythm, specified by tradition, repertoire, and occasion of performance, comes together to make a composite statement. This dynamic living force creates a space for the "gods to descend," for people to connect with each other, with nature, with life, and with themselves. An interplay of coordinated independent voices characterizes the function, sound, and feel of the drumset performer in the African American "jazz" tradit ion and West African drumming.

The historical genocide of captive peoples and the radically different geographic, social, and political circumstances in the "new world" account for the evolution of this new instrument, which produced an ensemble of multiple sounds, speaking in a composite voice, mirroring the dramatic action of an ensemble, soloist, or dance. Dancers at the Savoy ballroom or tap dancers on the sidewalks of 125th Street in New York interact with the music: Not only do they dance to the music, but they create new rhythms, new music, as a response to what they hear.

Between the 17th and 19th centuries, when musical instruments, especially drums (which could be used for communication and revolt, as well as spiritual remembrances and affirmation), were forbidden, African American people used their bodies as instruments. The coordinated interdependence of multiple percussive instrumental voices in a composite statement is found in the "Pattin` Juba" hand-clapping and foot-stomps of African American peoples throughout the South (Jones and Hawes 37-40). Juba is a clapping play similar to the "hambone" patting and movements many Americans learned in the 1950s and `60s.

Among African Americans who were able to use external (to the body) instruments, Black Benny stands out as a drummer extraordinaire who could move an entire band with a single bass drum. We find other manifestations of African drumming in the Sunday dance and music sessions in Congo Square in ante-bellum New Orleans; in Revolutionary and Civil War fife-and-drum bands; at Pinkster Days in Albany, New York, and at Governor`s Days in Hartford, Connecticut, where marching ensembles included large sections of drums and metal percussion instruments; and in the drum-and-fife blues tradition of the Southern United States and in Barbados (Brown).

The drumset of the 1890s continued this rhythmic heritage functionally and spiritually. In the 20th century, the genius of African American master drummers like Baby Dodds, Kenny Clarke, Max Roach, Elvin Jones, Edward Blackwell, and Jack DeJohnette transformed the way the drumset is played. A heritage so strong and open can include people of many ethnic backgrounds.

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