How to make a wind chime

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How to make a wind chime
Wind chimes allow us to snatch music from the air. (Getty Thinkstock)

Wind chimes allow us to snatch music from the air, and it takes only a few minutes to craft together a set of chimes that reflect your home decor or the whimsy of your imagination.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Monofilament line
  • Craft wire
  • Electric drill/assorted bits
  • Electric screwdrivers
  • Groove joint pliers
  • Heavy-gauge wires
  • Linesman pliers
  • Magnetic Screwdrivers
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Nut drivers
  • Ratcheting screwdrivers
  • Wire crimpers
  • Wire cutters
  • Tubes
  • Chains

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  1. 1

    Think about scrap materials you may have around the house.

  2. 2

    Consider your decorating motif. A wind chime made of bamboo in an Oriental style might not look appropriate hanging outside a Victorian style house.

  3. 3

    Check out nearly any object that generates a tone when struck.

  4. 4

    Consider buying your material. Most popular presently is some form of hollow metal tubing.

  5. 5

    Think about hollow copper tubing. It will age with a beautiful patina.

  6. 6

    Think about a traditional material, perhaps hollow bamboo sections.

  7. 7

    Consider something offbeat. Tour flea markets and pick up old metal tools, kitchenware or small bottles.

  1. 1

    Strive for the ideal weight and balance. You want the chime light enough to be moved by a gentle breeze and arranged to hang level.

  2. 2

    Choose metal tubes and trim them to lengths that will provide a sequence of pleasing tones.

  3. 3

    Test different lengths of tubing - or the various materials you plan to use - by suspending each with a string and striking it with the dangler you plan to use.

  4. 4

    Be as exact about the musical notes you want to generate as you want. A musical ear helps, but it can be determined scientifically as well.

  5. 5

    Select the type of line you'll use to suspend the chimes. Monofilament fishing line and dental tape are options.

  6. 6

    Select the material by which you'll hang the chime assembly. Light link chain available from any hardware store is a good choice.

  7. 7

    Choose the material for the plate from which the chimes will hang as well as the striker and the dangler.

  8. 8

    Weatherproof wood plates, strikers and danglers if the chime is to be exposed to the weather.

  9. 9

    Cut out the plate from which the chime is to hang. Here's a chance to find something in a flea market that might be adapted.

  10. 10

    Drill holes around the edges of the plate.

  11. 11

    Feed light pieces of chain or a similar material at an angle and connect it together with a metal loop from which to hang the chime.

  12. 12

    Hang chime elements from the opposite side of the plate.

  13. 13

    Hang chime elements at different lengths.

Tips and warnings

  • You can decorate tubing as you please - anything from colours matching your patio furniture to barber-pole candy stripes.
  • Supervise children when they're working with sharp tools.

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