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An assortment of hand crafted instruments, made from recycled, reused and readily available parts

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9.8.12

Dronemachine MKII


This latest instrument is an evolution of The Dronemachine I made a few months back. It uses the outer core of an electric fan motor as a pickup, a cassette player motor drives a piece of string which causes the musical strings to vibrate. The wooden peg looking things are actually part of the action in a Grand Piano, when you press down on the end, they raise the washers and shorten the length of the wire. It's a pretty simple concept but it's taken me ages to figure out how to put it into action! 

 

Everything in this build was reclaimed from items that were broken where I work.



 
 
 


 
   
   
   
   
   
   
 

10 comments:

  1. I love this sound! You've invented something pretty special

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  2. This is really great! Have you thought of using an electromagnetic exciter instead of a spinning pick-like trigger for the strings? Like the technology used in eBow and Fernandes' sustainer, it could smooth up the drone effect.

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    1. I have experimented with some home-made ebows in the past yeah. It worked very well with one string making one note, but as soon as I changed the pitch, it took a while for the note to get any volume again without physically hitting the string. There are probably ways around this but electronics aren't my strong point!

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  3. I have seen this whole post and also seen whole video regarding Dronemachine MKII. I absolutely try to make this types of this latest instrument. I hop its very easy to make.

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  4. Tom i've got to tell you. I'm in love with this fantastic instrument you made. Is there a chance of buying it? the issue is that I live in Argentina. If not, is there a tutorial I can follow or anything at all in order to make one?
    As I started hearing this instrument i grabbed my bass and started playing over it's unique sound. I felt hypnotised, captivated, astonished and in love, all at the same time.
    Thanks a lot and please excuse my english.

    Manu.

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    1. Hey Manu,

      Glad you like it!

      This one isn't for sale, but I've been thinking of improvements to make it more compact and more playable. If you wanted to commission me to make one for you I'd be glad to!

      If you email me we can talk more about it,

      Tom

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  5. You've made an electric hurdy-gurdy! Nice.

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  6. What motor did you used and how did you plugged the spinning string? Also, can you please explain how to make de circular mic?

    I love your work!
    Greetings from a spanish guy

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    1. Please don't explain me how to make the "circular mic" Already found it! Sorry

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