The True Resonant Quality of 6061 Aluminum: Crystalline Lattice Structures

Posted by Gabriel Martinez on

Gabriel Martinez

Technical Bulletin 001

The True Resonant Quality of 6061 Aluminum: Crystalline Lattice Structures


One of the reasons I use Aircraft Grade Aluminum(6061 T6) for the GI Hoop is that of the superior resonant qualities in the material which result in greater drum resonation.

This is because of the 6061 T6 atomic structure or the crystalline lattice structures.


Fig. 1: Rendering of the Aluminum Crystalline Lattice Structure

Crystalline lattice structures is simply an engineering term for the structure that a material’s atoms take on a molecular level. The aluminum that I used in the GI Hoop has a tempering of T6 and this is important because of the effect the tempering process has on the aluminum’s crystalline lattice structure.


The T6 designation means that the 6061 aluminum has certain elements dissolved into the structures before being submerged into a cooling solution that locks in the dissolved elements. Then after additional thermal processes, the T6 grade is achieved. The T6 tempering process results in lattice structures that are more organized so there are less weak spots in the material which cause stress. So in a way, this relaxes the material.

Fig.2 Grain Size growth during the heat treatment process

That means the sound waves resonating from a drum can travel with greater ease into the drum hoop because the atoms are more organized. In my drum hoop demonstration video, one can hear the clear difference in resonant quality between my hoop and a triple flanged hoop.


The lesser quality steel hoop has more voids & impurities and therefore chokes a lot of the natural resonance. The end result is True Resonant Quality, bringing out the finer details of the drum shells material.


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Zhang, X., & Chen, T. (2018, May 7). Solution Treatment Behaviors of 6061 Aluminum Alloy Prepared by Powder Thixoforming. Retrieved March 7, 2019, from

Aluminum 6061-T6; 6061-T651. (n.d.). Retrieved March 7, 2019, from


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