According to flutemaker Erik Sampson, the "Native American Flute was a courting flute, with soft sensitive tones." The flute is easy to play and perfect for beginning flute players. It can be made in a variety of sizes to fit large and small hands. In these steps, you'll learn how to make an 18-inch Native American flute out of bamboo.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Masking tape
Select your bamboo. For most flutes, you will need a mature piece about 5/8 inch in diameter. Don't use bamboo that is still green.
Cut the bamboo to be 18 inches long and sand the ends smooth. Use the dowel to clear out the nodes inside the bamboo so that it is open all the way through.
Cut a flat plane on the bamboo with the knife about 2 inches from the top of the flute. Keep the sliver that you've cut off. Sand the plane smooth.
Put masking tape around the flute where you will drill to prevent the bamboo from splitting. Drill two holes 1 inch apart in the flat plane. Remove the masking tape. Sand the holes using a bit of rolled-up sandpaper.
Carve the sliver of wood so that there is a small channel or indentation down the inside of it. Lash this to the flute on the flat area, covering the first hole completely and covering a quarter of the second hole.
Drill six holes down the centre of the flute, starting 6 inches from the top hole. Again, put masking tape around the flute where you will drill to prevent the bamboo from splitting. Each hole should be 1 inch apart. Remove the masking tape. Sand inside each hole.
Varnish the flute. When the varnish is dry, it is ready to play.
Tips and warnings
- Always wear gloves and safety glasses when cutting or drilling the bamboo.