Why does The Atlantic describe handpan manufacturing as a “weird little industry?”
Most handpan distributers have incredibly long waiting lists, with buyers submitting requests months in advance, in their efforts to track down the greatly sought-after instrument.
Why does it usually take so long?
The craftsmanship and dedication necessary in creating the specific form of a handpan is deliberate and precise. There are no schools to learn how to tune a handpan. It is recommended to have a tuner who has been practicing their craft for 5 years to build your handpan. It is wise for a tuner to understand what their instruments will be in 2-3+ years time. Anyone who purchases a handpan wants to know that their instrument will be playable for a long time to come.
Craftsman who work on handpans do not often share their industry secrets; therefore, the lineage of handpan craftsmen is very sparse. There are not many people who make handpans. The demand for handpans is much higher than the supply. Alas, most places have waiting lists. Some handpan manufacturers will have waiting lists for up to 5 years and beyond.
How is it possible that Handpan.com has no waiting list?
At Handpan.com, we do our best to expand our repertoire of craftsmanship and materials, in order to meet the demand for the orders that we receive. By making more tools, and encouraging craftsmen to share their knowledge of industry craft, our approach is more open to everyone. We believe anyone who wishes to own a handpan and use it for good purposes should participate in this healing art. We also believe anyone who wishes to tune handpans, should be able to acquire the proper resources and tools to do so.
Other makers typically go the more artisanal route, keeping the distribution small, niche, with a smaller network base of friends and family.
In addition to our attitude of inclusion, our tuner has over twenty years experience, and has been retuning the Hang since 2003. He is incredibly efficient with his time. After many years of fine-tuning his craft, there are not many surprises in his field. After thousands of hammer strikes, he has learned exactly where to hit the steel for it to create a resonant, reverberating sound.