Should I Buy a Hang Drum on eBay?
PANArt 'Hang' (often called 'Hang Drum') are a relative of the 'steel pan' instruments of Trinidad and Tobago, and are constructed from two deep drawn nitrided steel sheets that are attached together to create their recognizable 'UFO shape'. PANArt Hang are highly sought after and rare instruments (or 'Sound Sculpture'), and few who have heard them, have failed to fall in love with the beautiful and distinctive sound that they produce.
While not encouraged by the Hang's creators, eBay is one of the most likely places to find one of these rare instruments for sale. However, should you be considering buying a Hang drum on eBay, there are a few things to keep in mind before purchasing a second-hand Hang online (or offline for that matter).
The first issue related to buying a second hand Hang is the (usually) greatly inflated price, but in a free market governed by supply and demand, and with the limited amount of PANArt Hangs currently in circulation, these high prices are unavoidable. And with second-hand Hangs currently selling on sites like eBay for in excess of six thousand dollars, you'll need to decide for yourself just how much owning a Hang means to you, and whether it's worth forking out this kind of money in order to obtain one.
Second, be wary of scams, from time to time dubious Hang listings have appeared on eBay, often multiple listings seemingly of the same instrument, by sellers who are not forthcoming with requested details regarding the condition, tuning, etc. of the Hang being sold. eBay/PayPal protection should cover you financially in the event of a scam, but it's always best to check out seller history/feedback, etc. and to contact the seller directly with any questions prior to purchase, to avoid disappointment.
And finally those looking to buy a second-hand Hang, whether on eBay, Gumtree, or even directly from a fellow musician need to be aware that 'PANArt' the Swiss manufacturers of the instrument will refuse to retune any Hang not bought directly through themselves, or one of their trusted partners. Meaning that should you purchase a pre-owned Hang elsewhere and find it out of tune, you'll need to seek out alternative means of returning your Hang to its original condition.
Or alternatively, should the purchasing of a Hang prove to be too problematic, there are now alternatives to the Hang drum for sale, such as the Caisa, Halo, SpaceDrum, BELLArt BEIIs, and Bali Steel Hand Pans.