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How to Make a Bobby Pin Thumb Piano

Making one of these hand held musical instruments is a great project to work on with your children. This is a guide about how to make a bobby pin thumb piano.
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April 17, 2017

My daughter needed to make a musical instrument for her 7th grade science class that had at least 4 notes. I remembered that she had made a neat little thumb piano years ago at a craft fair. She made a new one and it is perfect!

Supplies:

  • scrap wood (approx. 3.5 x 5 in)
  • 5 bobby pins
  • staple gun
  • hammer
  • sand paper
  • markers
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Steps:

  1. Cut a piece of wood to the correct size. Then sand it to smooth out the surface and edges.
  2. Straighten out the bobby pins, as shown below.
  3. Staple each of the bobby pins to the wood, near the edge of the wood.
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  5. Use a hammer to tap the staples tightly over the bobby pins.
  6. Then staple each bobby pin down a second time, with the first one being pretty close to the other end and the last one being farthest from the end, as shown below. Again, hammer the staples down.
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  8. Then bend up the ends of each bobby pin at the staple.
  9. Now test out each note. She found the shortest one to be too twangy, so we added a few staples in the middle to hold the bobby pin down better.
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  11. Use markers to decorate and enjoy your new instrument. Note: Here is a photo of the one she made when she was 5 and the one she made today. :)
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Videos

June 21, 20172 found this helpful

A piece of wood, a handful of bobby pins and a stapler is all you need to create a DIY thumb piano. Learn how to make it in this short video.

Comment Was this helpful? 2
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