They’re called “slap tubes”…

Craft & Design Music

…but the technical term is End-Struck Plosive Aerophones. If you’ve ever seen Blue Man Group, for instance, you’re already familiar with the DIY PVC pipe percussion instrument played by YouTuber snubbyj in this video. I built a one-octave set of these, once, and it took about an afternoon, and about $20 worth of stuff from the hardware store. They have a great sound—somewhere between a marimba and a guitar—and are dirt simple: Cut PVC pipe to various lengths, arrange as a piano keyboard, and slap the open ends of the pipes with foam paddles to play. [via Neatorama]


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I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c't – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.

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