Different Homemade PVC Instruments

Written by brooke bowers
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Different Homemade PVC Instruments
Use PVC pipe to create different homemade instruments. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Polyvinyl chloride pipe, more commonly known as PVC pipe, comes in a variety of diameters and lengths at a fairly inexpensive price. Cut, drill and combine these durable pipes to produce different pitches and sounds. Use the cut and drilled pipes to create personalised homemade instruments that are cheaper than their wooden and brass counterparts.

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Panpipes

Use different-sized pieces of PVC pipe to create a homemade pan pipe instrument. Use a half-inch diameter pipe cut into different sizes to create the various pitches of the pan pipe. Cut the pipe into 15.4, 13.6, 12.0, 9.8 and 8.7 centimetre pieces for the C, D, E, G and A notes respectfully. Sand the edges of the pipe in order to prevent cutting your lips. Line up the pipes by length and use PVC spray glue or duct tape to hold them together for use. Sand the surfaces of the pipes before painting for extra decoration.

Drum

Make a hand-held drum set with two-inch wide PVC pipes. Cut the pipes into 70.4, 62.6, 55.0, 45.2, and 40.3 centimetre pieces to produce the Bb, C, D, F, and G notes in your drum. Cut out two-inch diameter pieces of a plastic sheet and use PVC glue to hold it in place on the top of the pipe. Line up the pipes with the longest three in the front and the last two in the back. Line it up so that the top of the pipes are level. Use either duct tape or PVC glue to hold the pipes in place.

Shakers

Create perhaps the easiest of handmade instruments using PVC pipe and some common household materials. Cut a three-inch wide diameter PVC pipe into different-sized pieces. Trace the edges of the pipes onto a piece of plastic sheeting and cut out the circles. Glue a plastic circle onto one end of each pipe. Fill the pipes with differing amounts of rice, seed or other hard pieces. Glue another circle onto the other side of the pipe. Shake the pipes to make music with your homemade instrument.

Xylophone

Create a homemade hand-held xylophone at home using PVC pipe. Create a square frame of your xylophone using half-inch diameter PVC pipe and small elbow pipes. Use either thin metal or PVC pipes to create the musical part of your instrument. Cut your pipes into 258, 245, 230.5, 223, 210.5, 199, 186.5, and 181.5 millimetre pieces for the low G, A, B, C, D, E, F-sharp, and high G notes. Weave the pipes together using an over-under pattern with lengths of elastic.

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