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Wind Chime Metal

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  • mbcft42
    started a topic Wind Chime Metal

    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?

  • Broccoli1
    replied
    Originally posted by monte55 View Post
    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
    Doesn't look like our OP cares anyway.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bert
    replied
    Thanks for the tips
    Again, nice job...........

    Leave a comment:


  • Daved
    replied
    Thanks for the compliment. Somebody gave me the SS tubing and it sat around for a few years waiting for me to make something out of it. Buy a $200 windchime vs make one for free was the motivation.

    That 'clapper' is made out of something very similar to corian. I don't know what it is but it was a round disk that I bought at Woodcraft for a couple of bucks. Its about 3/8" thick. I put a stiff rod through it that is about 8" long with holes pierced in each end for the hanging lines (I braided up some fishing line)

    I think corian would work just fine. I tried wood too but I wanted a more 'clangy' sound. If I remember right, the clapper should be about 1/4" away from the tubes when at rest.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bert
    replied
    WOW!! Dave, that looks awesome!!! Now that I see your "flapper", I wonder how it would sound with a piece of corian??? I got some drops they were discarding for sink cutouts at the local counter top guys (wife wants to play with some to paint some artwork on....). Flappers from different materials gotta make the sound different too, eh?

    Leave a comment:


  • Daved
    replied
    The vast majority of windchimes I have seen in stores are made out of aluminum tubing. If you search for windchimes you will find more than you ever wanted to know. I know I did.

    I even found some where the person made them out of something like 4" rigid conduit and they were in the 8-10' range. There are also formulas for cutting the length, harmonics, etc. Same for clapper size, material, etc.My tin ear can't tell the difference though over just hacking different lengths and slapping it together.

    A couple of basics (if you are worring about technicalities) are the clapper should hit each tube in its midpoint and the hanging point for each tube (I think) is 32% down from the top of the tube.

    Here is one I did out of SS tubing a few years back.
    Attached Files

    Leave a comment:


  • Bert
    replied
    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

    Leave a comment:


  • jweller
    replied
    I saw some made form old ski poles which are typically thin wall aluminum.

    Leave a comment:


  • monte55
    replied
    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

    Leave a comment:


  • monte55
    replied
    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.

    Leave a comment:


  • monte55
    replied
    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

    Leave a comment:


  • uhohjim
    replied
    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

    Leave a comment:


  • Bert
    replied
    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.....

    Leave a comment:


  • Broccoli1
    replied
    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

    Leave a comment:


  • Jim-TX
    replied
    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.

    Leave a comment:

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