DC04 Shells - Raw and Nitrided

Most handpans are made of nitrided DC04 grade steel. We offter top and bottom shells, raw and nitrided of DC04 steel. We strive to have at least a few different batches available at each moment in time so that you can try out and select the steel which works best for your process. You can ask questions or make an order in the contact form at the bottom of this page.

Top and bottom shells

We offer two types of shells. Top shells are used for the playing side of a handpan, it is possible however to make a port in it and turn it into a bottom shell.

Please note that it is more difficult to make a bottom out of a nitrided top shell compared to making one out of a raw top shell. Nitrided tops, due to their increased hardness, crack more easily when trying to form the port.

We also sell pre-made bottom shells, they have the port in the middle of the shell, a neck and a curled around collar which you can feel with your fingers when you grab the handpan through the port. The curled around collar has a large radius so it feels smooth and round.

Our nitriding recipe

The nitriding recipe for nitrided Ayasa shells has been fine-tuned by us since 2014, working closely with our steel hardening partner here in the Netherlands. The recipe consists of gas nitriding with a post oxidation process. The post oxidation process creates a very thin “blueish” layer, giving extra rust protection. Given that our nitriding recipe is quite short, it is still quite resilient to rust formation but gives more sustain than many other, usually longer, nitriding recipes. The perfect balance between sustain, workability and rust protection is what we found.

Our nitrided material has been tested extensively and it has been determined that it does not infringe Panart’s patent.

DC04 Batches

Batch #13 Demonstration

See below the older batches for a sound demonstration:

Difference per batch

Please note that every batch of the Ayasa Deep Drawn is a little different. The same material (for example DC04) can have very different properties. Every property has a set tolerance for the quality of steel (for example carbon, manganese, copper, etc.). They vary and can have differences of 50% or even more. Besides the make up of the different metals, the differences in the way each batch of steel is formed is perhaps even more important for the structure, texture and eventually the sound quality of the metal. We try to choose our material wisely, based on our experiential and scientific knowledge. Before selling any batch of steel, we first test the material to see if it is a reliable base to create instruments up to our standards.


Prices have changed since 14-11-2023. All the prices are quoted excluding VAT. If you are from the EU and have a valid VAT number, we do not have to charge VAT (21%). If you are located outside of the EU you also do not have to pay VAT. Only when you are inside the EU and do not have a VAT number then you would have to pay 21% on top of the prices listed here below

Dc04 shell prices:

  • Raw top shell €51
  • Raw bottom shell €70
  • Nitrided top shell €72
  • Nitrided bottom shell €91

DC04 shell prices when ordering 100 shells or more:

  • Raw top shell €45
  • Raw bottom shell €64
  • Nitrided top shell €66
  • Nitrided bottom shell €85


Since November 2023 we are not providing a rust-free guarentee anymore for RAW and Nitrided DC04 material. When you order shells you might find little to large rust spots on the shells or even wholly rusted areas.

We try to avoid this problem as much as possible, however we do not have full control over it. By ordering DC04 material you are agreeing to the terms that shells can not be returned, or refunded for reasons of rust.


We are shipping in boxes that can fit a maximum of 11 shells. If you wish to purchase 30 shells or more, we can ship a pallet to you and you will save on both the shipping and packing costs. Any order of a 100 shells or more will be credited a €6 discount on each shell in the order. Pick up from our workshop in Almere, The Netherlands, is also possible.

It is not possible to freely mix top and bottom shells in one package and guarantee the shells to stay in the best condition during transport. That is why we ship in two types of boxes:

  • Top shell box: Order any amount of top shells (raw, nitrided, stainless, ember, mixed) up to a maximum of 11 pcs. In this box it is possible to add one single bottom shell.
  • Bottom shell box: Order any amount of bottom shells (raw, nitrided, stainless, ember, mixed) up to a maximum of 11 pcs. In this box it is not possible to add any top shells.

The shipping costs range from € 50 – € 250, depending on your location and weight of the package (i.e. the amount of shells). After receiving your order, we can quote you the precise shipping costs.

Specifications DC04 Shells

  • Tuning ring diameter: 530mm
  • Total shell diameter: 552mm (including flanges)
  • Height: 130mm
  • Flange width: 11mm
  • Min Shell thickness: 0.9mm
  • Max Shell thickness: 1.0mm
  • Port Diameter: 82mm
  • Port height: 19mm
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