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Khyentse Gong

1. Single strike with rubber mallet.
2. Multiple strikes with rubber mallet:

This is unique huge, heavy and resonant gong. It weighs over 30 pounds and is designed to played as it swings from some kind of support. I am told it is 70 to 150 years old and it certainly looks it. It unusual for such a large gong to become available. Physically the gong is beautifully thick with dark old patina. It is structurally sound no cracks or what looks like vulnerabilities.

The metal is hand hammered, not cast which has an immensely positive effect on the sound. The shape and mass are designed to push a lot of air, like at a village calling level. If you look at videos of the new tiny versions of these, they can be played spinning for a doppler shift effect.

The paths from Buddhist temples in Burma to America is a story of different cultural values. In times past a wealthy local temple goer decides to make a gift, commissioning a new bell for the temple. Since a shiny new one is much nicer than a worn old one the gift has merit and is gladly accepted. The old bell is sold into the specialized scrap metal trade. The other path, more common now, is an outsider makes the offer, not just for the new replacement bell but also for a donation in excess of the scrap value of the old bell. Again new being better than old – and with a bit of money in the bargain – the offer is accepted. Whichever initial path the bell then passes through a series of middle men, each with their markup, until it lands where my supplier came across them.

This acquisition story is similar to that of old singing bowls. In the case of singing bowls on some of my visits East I get to actually meet the incredibly multi-lingual people who travel to the remote villages. Quite often none of their large handful of languages includes English so I converse through a translator. The cultural mindset I hear from places where so much is old and worn and life moves slowly is the idea age adds some kind of extra value is a foreign one. The metal has value, for sure, that is tangible and held tightly. Antiquity, provenance, uniqueness – no.

The gong measures 28 inches across, 20 inches top to bottom and weighs about 34 Lbs. It comes with some crude rope for hanging, though you might want to do something entirely different from a safety point of view.

The fundamental frequency of the gone is a very deep 78 Hz or D#2. With a single strike you can hear it singing for about a minute. Keep in mind these gongs were made to be struck multiple times. The sound is pretty consistent, wherever you strike it on the surface of the gong the tone is similar, each strike just amplifies the intensity. If you are really into the deep tone our N88 mallet dampens the overtones, For the recording I used the rubber mallet, something you can buy in a hardware store.

If you are interested in the gong please fill in a contact form or email me and we can make arrangements. The price is $2500 plus shipping which might be over $200 as it includes a  specially built crate for secure delivery. Sales tax is charged in California only.

Bowl Type: 
Widest Diameter: 1 in
Height: 20 in
Bowl Size: 
Weight: 33.5 lbs = 15195 grams
Rim Type: 
Rim Thickness: 
Artwork and etching state of preservation:
Musical Note: D2 Very Low Octave
Approximate Frequency: 78 Hz
Bowl Number: G1


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