The size of the notes correspond with the pitch: the smaller notes are higher pitched; the larger notes are lower.
The skirt or side of the pan is the area from the rim to the edge of the pan. The length of the skirt depends on which pan is being made. The tenor pans have the shortest skirt and the bass the longest. The length of the skirt also determines the pan’s tone and how the notes resonate when struck.
A guide to skirt length:
- Tenor 6 inches - 15 cm
- Second Tenor 8 inches - 20 cm
- Double Tenor 9 inches - 23 cm
- Quodrophonic 11 inches - 28 cm
- Guitar 17 inches - 43 cm
- Cello 18 inches - 46 cm
- Tenor Bass 24 inches - 61 cm
- Bass 34 inches - 86 cm
The rim is the joining of the playing surface and the skirt. The rim can either be flat (left) or round (right).
The holes are made just before fine tuning so that the pans can be tuned in their natural position, suspended. The position of the holes will determine where the notes are when the pan is hung; therefore they are usually made in the same place on each type of pan.
The playing surface is the main area of the pan where the notes are played.
The diameter of a standard pan is 22 3/4 inches.
The belly is the dome shape underneath of the pan.