Try this simple, effective activity to make your own instrument using simple household items, which you can play and twang after!
This guide is part of our Sense Arts, Sport & Wellbeing programme. This activity can be done at a time that suits you, either in your own space or in an educational setting.
Who is this for?
This is a crafting activity for people who are deafblind or have complex disabilities and can be enjoyed by anyone.
Why does this make a difference?
This is a creative activity that helps people explore and expand their creative choices while supporting independence in the activity.
How to do this activity
What you’ll need
- Crisp tube
- String or guitar strings
- Rigid ruler or piece of wood
- Metal skewer
Skewer a hole in the base of the crisp tube.
Tape the ruler to the bottom end of the crisp tube so half is extended out.
Fold a piece of cardboard over the other end of the ruler, tape it in place and cut in a 1cm notch.
Thread the string through the hole and tie a knot in the end to fit the notch made in the cardboard.
Make a 1cm notch in the top of the crisp tube to hold a knot at the other end of the string (thread the string through the hole in the base of the tube first). To make it as taught as possible, unhook the knot from the top of the ruler, then tie your second knot a little in from the top of the tube before hooking both knots back in place.
How to play your tube guitar
1. Hold the tube between your knees or elbows and hold the ruler with one hand, while plucking the string, gently bend and relax the ruler to hear different pitches, using the left hand to grip the ruler and the right hand to pluck the white string from left to right.
2. Holding the tube guitar the other way round pluck the string and shake it back and forth to hear a ‘wobble’ sound. The string must be really tight for this and works best with a guitar string or wire – take a look at adaptations to find out more.
How to adapt the session
If you’d like to use a guitar string, secure the ball at the end of the string into the notch made at the top of the ruler. Use a bolt and nut to wrap the other end of the string around at the top of the tube, like in the picture.
If you fancy, you can also decorate your tube guitar.
Content created by Tom Peel.