*Updated 12/13/15 I apologize for any trauma or
bodily harm inflicted by my 9th grade grammar
My friend and I attempted to build a cello for my 9th grade Science Olympiad Sounds of Music competition--these are the results.
-Body: plywood (not the most traditional material I can readily admit)
-Fingerboard: unknown, scrap railing found at Home Depot
-Strings: Stock cello strings bought from local music store.
-Tuners: An L-bracket, a washer, and a screw.
-Metal Bar: I used a metal bar for the area where the fingerboard met the peg box.
C2 to F6, the range of a normal cello
Relatively muffled but plays well for a homemade instrument
A quick timeline
1. Construction began with finding dimensions. Plans and measurements are readily accessible on the internet
2. Once plans were obtained, I mapped out a blank of the faceplates.
3. Using these blanks, I copied them onto two sheets of plywood.
4. Taking the leftover wood (save the planet!) I cut out the bouts (sides) of the cello.
5. I soaked the plywood in water overnight, this unorthodox method surprisingly worked! You will notice that the veneer of the plywood peels off.
6. I cut out two f-holes onto the faceplate using a power drill and handheld jig saw.
7. Creating the bridge was a bit more involved, I had to borrow a table saw and a belt sander from my school’s woodshop.
8. The scrolls and peg box were simplified for ease of construction. Note that the pegs are lubricated with graphite and/or bow rosin to control its coefficient of friction.
9. The Fingerboard was created (see above)
10. All the pieces were glued together using wood glue, with hot glue where needed, or with deck screws.
This cello was constructed for a retired Science Olympiad event called Sounds of Music. We had to created two different instruments of different registers, take a sound physics test, play Canon in D by Pachelbel, compose an original piece of music, and play both pieces. We placed second at states.