Cutting the Skin
This is the first step in forming the head. When the soaking is complete, take the skin out of the water, dry it off and place it with the good side up on the plastic tarp. Inspect the skin for any defects and try to place the template so that it will miss them, or at least place them in the mimi area or to an edge if possible. Scribe the outside with the awl and then press to mark the centers of the mimi holes. Remove the template and cut the outside circle with tin snips. Then we get a piece of plywood that is roughly one foot long by 6″ and place it underneath a set of 4 holes. We use a ½” hole punch and pound it with a rubber mallet. Consider using earplugs for this step, just like you do at drum practice! Pay attention that the hole punch is centered on the dot that you made with awl, otherwise these slight position errors will throw off the level of the mimi all around.