Handpan Rental – Where? (N. America, Europe & Australia)


Handpan rental is a huge benefit when deciding whether to buy a handpan, or what type of handpan to buy. Unfortunately, this is not a widespread service.

Handpans for Hire

This is the small list of handpan hire options around the world.

LocationCompanyLink
USADaves Island InstrumentHire Now
GermanySound Sculpture.deHire Now
FranceGerard SpencerHire Now

Where Can I Rent a Handpan? – There are very few handpan rental services around the world, but Dii in the US and both Gerard Spencer and Sound Sculpture in Europe can assist. I am still looking for a service in Australia.

This article covers several handpan for hire options, for North America, Europe and Australia, and I hope may assist you in your handpan discovery journey, as it has mine.

The whole purpose of this blog is to document how tricky the world of handpan is once you discover it.

An irresistable instrument poses a plethora of problems once you have discovered it.

It looks beautiful, it sounds unreal (in the right hands, and even in the wrong ones too!), and the desire that burns inside you to own and play one is almost too much to bear.

Some will research and understand that ownership comes at a heavy cost. Some will research and opt for a cheap Amazon or Ebay model and regret it for ever more.

If you are in the former group that understands that you will be looking at least upward of parting with $2,000+ to own your own, you have a huge and difficult decision to make.

From which model you want to buy, to what handpan scale to choose.

I have a full handpan buying guide on-site to help you avoid the many pitfalls you may encounter.

This guide, however, will point you in the direction of a service that is not common but can play a fundamental part in deciding if you want to part with so much money for an instrument you may only have seen and heard on Facebook or YouTube.

How much does Hiring a Handpan Cost?

The cost to hire a handpand for one month can vary between $80 – $350 depending on where you hire from and the model that is being rented. The better quality and more expensive items will cost more to hire than the cheaper alternatives.

CompanyCost per Month
#1$80
#2$152
#3$343

I’ve not named the companies in this list for the chance of prices fluctuating, so this table provides a guide only and real time prices should be checked on the links in the table at the head of this page.

Why are there not more handpan rental options

After 20 years and growing interest, I would imagine, handpan rental or hire is something that has been considered more than once by more than 1 person. 3 Services I have discovered is testement to that, but what reasons could there be for them being so few and far between?

Cost of Insurance to hire handpans?

I can not say for certain, although I would imagine the biggest problem with this service would be handpan insurance.

From insurance research I have previoulsy undertaen, on a private ownership basis, it is cheaper to insure a handpan in Euorpe than it is in the US.

Transfer that to a business based insurance policy, and perhaps that is magnified to a point whereby it is not viable, or indeed too difficult to find an underwriter to provide a price for it.

Interestingly, the cost of private instrument insurance is not transferred to the cost of hire when comparing Europe an the US

How often does a handpan need repair of retuning after a hire?

If not that, then the condition of the handpans when they come back. One might think that if not all, then most people hiring a handpan would have a concept to the fragility of the instrument and its value. In turn you would imagine they would be inclined to treat it with the utmost care and respect.

My feeling is, this may not be the case. [It’s not mine!] – You hate to think this might be the case, but I am certain that misuse of the instrument, could at the very least require retuning of the handpan more often than a privately owned one.

Handpan Never Returned?

Hopefully not so much but it is very plausaible that a small percentage of hires never come back for one reason or another.

The cost of replacing an instrument off the back of irreperable damage or theft would be devestating, especially if the aforementioned insurance, was either not in place or so expensive as to not really provide a huge benefit.

With Hire prices anywhere from $100 a month upward, you can easily equate how many times an instrument needs to be hired at no further cost before it has paid for itself, and moves into profitable territory.

One thing to consider here is if a sale has been gained off the back of a trial hire, lets say.

And with that in mind, let’s consider the reasons someone might want to hire a handpan in the first place.

Why do you want to hire a handpan?

I can only talk from experience in my journey and actually had never considered hire for the longest time before it came to my mind.

To Try Before You Buy

This never entered my mind before I ordered my first handpan and therefore is not something I can speak with experience of.

I can however see the benefit of having a handpan to hand for at least 24 hours, to just sit in your lap, and make your first contact with.

It might turn out you are not so keen to own a handpan after you get to feel the size, weight and manner in which you need to play the instrument.

I think for the vast majority fo player who know own instruments, the first experience of handling a handpan was met with more excitment, joy and elation rather than a ‘What have I done with all that money!?’. But still I am sure one or two people where more impulsive in making a purchase and decided it wasn’t for them rather soon after it arrived.

Simply just getting close and handling a handpan is something that SHOULD be done before buying anyway, by seeking out your most local maker and making a visit to get up close and personal, to ally any of those concerns and prevent a mis-purchase.

The next reason, seems a really good one for a hire

To Experience a Scale

Hiring a handpan for the purpose of hearing and playing a scale up close and personal, and in real time and with the real sound seems like a great idea to me.

Anyone who has played, or been close enough to listen to a handpan being played knows that what you here on YouTube Videos, Facebook videos and the like is not EXACTLY what you hear when in person.

This may be for a number of reasons, not least mixing effects, or poor microphones not doing the instrument justcice.

The downfall of wanting to hire a handpan for he purpose of hearing a scale is that it will be very unlikley that you will able to simply choose any scale you want and be able to get it on hore.

The range of instruments available for rental is going to be limited way down below the number of different sound models, note counts and scales that you can custom choose from.

So disappointment may entail in this scenario.

To Try a Specific Model

Anyone looking for hire or rental to be able to try a specific model from a maker before buying is also going to be frustrated. The choice is very limited [Check the list of models from the links in the table at the top of the article].

If you are lucky enough to have a very open mind at this stage of your search then it may still be a viable idea to hire the instruments that are available most locally to you.

You may find you really like and connect with the MAG [who wouldn’t!?] available to hire from soundsculpture.de

Or you may connect with the model and scale that you actually get your hands on.

Again my best avice here to get a feel and touch for a specific model or scale is to contact your most local maker and arrange a visit to the workshop.

To find a handpan maker near you, try these lists

SteveM

I enjoyed the unpitched appeal of percussion prior to discovering handpans in a 'moment' I was experiencing. I've been writing ever since.

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