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  • Wind Chime Metal

    I just purchased a Plasma cutter and my wife asked me to make her some wind chimes. My question is what to use for the chimes that will make a clear 'ring'. I have used stainless stock in the past and it sounds dull. Someone said to use tool steel (hardened). I don't have much experience with aluminum or copper, but I am willing to try if people think that will work. I don't really like wood or bamboo, mostly for durability.


    Anybody have any experience with this type of question?

  • #2
    mbcft42,

    Hotfoot, over on Hobart, is probably the resident authority on gongs and wind chimes.

    He's posted up quite a lot of information.

    Can't remember if he posts on the Miller board.
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    • #3
      Chimes

      I made a wind chime for my wife. I used 1" ID rigid copper tubing. There are about 5 chimes starting at about 4 ft long. Decide what type of sound you like. Long and larger diameters give a nice "dong" rather than a "tinkle" sound.
      The 5 chimes were of different lengths for various sounds. Larger chimes and clanger take more wind to sound. The old door bells with a rich ding dong used rigid thinwall brass tube of 2 different lengths. How you hang the chimes makes a big difference. You can't hold one in your hand and hit.....it will be dead as can be. Hopes this helps. You may notice most chimes are not suspended from the top but from further down so the chime gets more action as it pivots from this point.
      Nick
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      • #4
        I've used 1/2" EMT in the past and it worked fine. It's also a lot cheaper than SS or copper.

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        • #5
          But doesn't have a very good sound ....................tried it.
          Nick
          Miller 252 Mig
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          Vist my site: www.nixstuff.com
          and check out some of my ironwork and other stuff

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          • #6
            Originally posted by monte55 View Post
            But doesn't have a very good sound ....................tried it.
            That's a matter of personal opinion. I've had no complaints.

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            • #7
              This info is a little off topic here, but old, 1940s vintage, steel fire extinguishers make great gongs. I've picked up a few and some have really nice sound. The newer made ones ring more like a beer can.
              Jim

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              • #8
                Since the OP stated that he just got a NEW PLASMA cutter he wants to Cut out shapes, patterns, animals etc rather than make a Tube Chime, which can be made with a Hacksaw
                Ed Conley
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                • #9
                  Originally posted by monte55 View Post
                  I made a wind chime for my wife. I used 1" ID rigid copper tubing. There are about 5 chimes starting at about 4 ft long. Decide what type of sound you like. Long and larger diameters give a nice "dong" rather than a "tinkle" sound.
                  The 5 chimes were of different lengths for various sounds. Larger chimes and clanger take more wind to sound. The old door bells with a rich ding dong used rigid thinwall brass tube of 2 different lengths. How you hang the chimes makes a big difference. You can't hold one in your hand and hit.....it will be dead as can be. Hopes this helps. You may notice most chimes are not suspended from the top but from further down so the chime gets more action as it pivots from this point.
                  he he....he he he.....he said: dong

                  AWWW C'MON!!! YOU GUYS WERE ALL THINKING IT!!!!!!!!! Oh, Nick, btw, I'm sure it matters what gauge was the copper tubing you used for your "dong?"
                  he he....he he he.....
                  I'm not late...
                  I'm just on Hawaiian Time

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bert View Post
                    he he....he he he.....he said: dong

                    AWWW C'MON!!! YOU GUYS WERE ALL THINKING IT!!!!!!!!! Oh, Nick, btw, I'm sure it matters what gauge was the copper tubing you used for your "dong?"
                    he he....he he he.....
                    Ok I only had afew minutes before leaving for work...and I hadda say.......this made me laugh.......I guess my mind is in the gutter too..right where it feels at home LOL Jim
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Broccoli1 View Post
                      Since the OP stated that he just got a NEW PLASMA cutter he wants to Cut out shapes, patterns, animals etc rather than make a Tube Chime, which can be made with a Hacksaw
                      He never said he wanted to cut out shapes. He made us aware of two
                      facts........he just got a plasma cutter and his wife also asked him to make
                      a wind chime for her. The fact that he would rather not use bamboo which
                      are tubes or wood which neither can be cut with a plasma cutter suggest
                      to me the type of chime he meant to make. The point I am trying to make is
                      there is no point to be made
                      Nick
                      Miller 252 Mig
                      Miller Cricket XL
                      Millermatic 150 Mig
                      Miller Syncrowave 200 Tig
                      2-O/A outfits
                      Jet Lathe and Mill
                      Jet 7x12 horz/vert band saw
                      DeWalt Multi Cutter metal saw
                      Century 50 Amp Plasma Cutter
                      20 ton electric/hydraulic vertical press
                      Propane Forge
                      60" X 60" router/plasma table

                      www.youtube.com/watch?v=jTu7wicVCmQ
                      Vist my site: www.nixstuff.com
                      and check out some of my ironwork and other stuff

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Old Sporty View Post
                        I've used 1/2" EMT in the past and it worked fine. It's also a lot cheaper than SS or copper.
                        Hey Sporty.........I didn't mean they sound bad but. It really has to do with the sound one is looking for. I started with conduit but 3/4 " was the largest
                        I had. I also had some 1.125" refrigeration rigid copper used. I liked the sound a lot better. I spun the tubes and held a course grade of sandpaper on them
                        and moved quickly back and forth. It gave a nice crosshatch pattern, then I cleared them. One could also let them turn green.
                        Nick
                        Miller 252 Mig
                        Miller Cricket XL
                        Millermatic 150 Mig
                        Miller Syncrowave 200 Tig
                        2-O/A outfits
                        Jet Lathe and Mill
                        Jet 7x12 horz/vert band saw
                        DeWalt Multi Cutter metal saw
                        Century 50 Amp Plasma Cutter
                        20 ton electric/hydraulic vertical press
                        Propane Forge
                        60" X 60" router/plasma table

                        www.youtube.com/watch?v=jTu7wicVCmQ
                        Vist my site: www.nixstuff.com
                        and check out some of my ironwork and other stuff

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Bert View Post
                          he he....he he he.....he said: dong

                          AWWW C'MON!!! YOU GUYS WERE ALL THINKING IT!!!!!!!!! Oh, Nick, btw, I'm sure it matters what gauge was the copper tubing you used for your "dong?"
                          he he....he he he.....
                          OK.....dong......tinkle..............I get it
                          Nick
                          Miller 252 Mig
                          Miller Cricket XL
                          Millermatic 150 Mig
                          Miller Syncrowave 200 Tig
                          2-O/A outfits
                          Jet Lathe and Mill
                          Jet 7x12 horz/vert band saw
                          DeWalt Multi Cutter metal saw
                          Century 50 Amp Plasma Cutter
                          20 ton electric/hydraulic vertical press
                          Propane Forge
                          60" X 60" router/plasma table

                          www.youtube.com/watch?v=jTu7wicVCmQ
                          Vist my site: www.nixstuff.com
                          and check out some of my ironwork and other stuff

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I saw some made form old ski poles which are typically thin wall aluminum.
                            Millermatic 180 Auto Set

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                            • #15
                              Hey, I'm just blaming Nick for that one.....
                              I WOULD say, let's have a contest, but that wouldn't be good....too many subjective opinions.....What might sound good to me, may not sound good to others....Go to a store and look at their (or have wife look at them), find one she likes, then see what it's made out of......
                              good luck
                              I'm not late...
                              I'm just on Hawaiian Time

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