Introduction: DIY Bamboo Jew's Harp.

Picture of DIY Bamboo Jew's Harp.

Today I will learn you how to make bamboo Jew's harp, with the minimum of tools.

This kind of jew's harp can be great to learning, for me the only problems it's that the vibration is not so long, so you can't do really really nice melody.
But it's enought to offer at kids, or at friends, original and relatively easy to do it.

Step 1: What You Need.

Picture of What You Need.

So don't need lot of things :

_1 piece of bamboo, like in the picture.
_Sand paper.

You can also use exacto, little scisors woods, and lot of other things, but I just want to show you the base, with minimum tools.

Step 2: Flatten the Bamboo.

Picture of Flatten the Bamboo.

With your knife, you have to make the bamboo the flatest you can.

So nothing difficult, just be carefull, the side of your bamboo, will become really sharp, you can work with gloves, or just sanding little bit.

This step is short and easy, but really important, if your bamboo is not flat, you will have some problems for the following steps.

Step 3: Make It Right.

Picture of Make It Right.

For this step, you have to sanding the side of your bamboo to make make it right, well, maybe it's just opcionnal step, but I always do like this so...

You can also prune it in peak, but if it'syourfirst one, I really recommand you to make it right, it's really easier.

Step 4: Draw the Languet, and Start to Dig.

Picture of Draw the Languet, and Start to Dig.

Well it's time to take a pencil and do the most important step of this instrucable, drawing the languet.

Firstly, some explanation about the languet, it's compose by two parts, the first one is really slim, this part is attached at the frame. The second part is bigger, it permit to do vibrate the languet.

So you have to draw all your marks, the languet have to be like 1 cm width, and separe the two part more or less in the middle.

After you have to begin to dig, first follow the line of your frame with your knife, and cut very well when it's perpendicular at the fiber's sens, and after, digging, you can cut in V, or use scisors wood, but dig only the fist part, slim one.

Step 5: Sanding and Cutting the Languet.

Picture of Sanding and Cutting the Languet.

Well now you have the form of your languet, you can sand it little bit to make it nice, and after you have to cut it to separe it of the frame. You can just use your knife, or if you have, exacto, but be careful !

_don't cut every things, let the little-slim side atached at the frame.
_put tape at the extremity, your bamboo can explose when you cut the languet.

When it's separate, sand the beetween the languet and the frame, to have 1/2 mm of space.

Step 6: Finish It!

Picture of Finish It!

Now you have to chord your jew's harp, so for this, I can't really help you, each one is unique, maybe can you refine the first part of your languet, maybe the second part, but be carefull, if you do one mistake it's will be difficult to repair it!

You can also sanding little bit in the mouthpiece to be more confortable when you play.
or putting some rope at the extremity to have a good grip.
or make a little case with an other bamboo, because of course, jew's harp is nomad instrument.

Step 7: Video

Just a little video to show you how it's sound and how to play.
I'm sorry, the quality is really poor, but I haven't mic and good camera, so is better than nothing, but When I have some time, I will try to do something more... profesional.

Thank you very much, enjoy!


goneholidays (author)2015-01-29


bogdan.b (author)2013-05-12

So I read this instructable yesterday and today I decided to make a bamboo jew's harp for myself. Unfortunately I relied only on my memory and I screwed up, of course.
Actually I cut the slim part of the languet and I forgot about taping the ends of the bamboo. Of course the bamboo ripped apart and I got angry...
But, because I wanted a jew's harp, I made one from a plastic spoon's handle, BUT tomorrow I want to give the bamboo another shot :) Wish me good luck!
Thanks for the instructable, by the way!!!

aebe (author)2013-04-21

I like it ! Got some hickory around here , maybe a piece of maple . No Bamboo .
Have been trying to find something like a dan moi , a Vietnamese harp.. But your work is enough to be well begun .
Thank You , Aebe

kisses for me (author)2012-07-01

it sounds cool

spark master (author)2011-03-11

I have two steel ones this looks neat (I carve so knives are ubiquitous here, I don't leave home without one, ever), but errr Qick time won't play here, so I can't see it played can you put it in another format, like avi, (youtube type?) I like th econcept of this and bamboo is easy to find fer free, so please if you can explain more or see if it is possible to have another format. This is something I would do with boy scouts watching (but not tell them what I was up to) then just play it in front of them. No preaching , just doing, if the muse takes them they will do their own, on their own!

this is very cool indeed.


Everywhere?!?! Then how do you get through airport security?!?!?!

Knives aside, think this is sorta like a kazoo type thing. Perhaps you can use Popsicle sticks? Wood scraps?

On a completely unrelated note, perhaps you can make on out of bacon...

(best deepack chopra voice)

well my friend the use of bacon in religious ceremonies is a truely enlightening thing. to use it for musc is a wonder. But even if it is the center of the universe, bacon does not a vibrator work!! We mustignore the term makin bacon and see the truth of bacon in every scenario. Today I picked up a package of supposedly natural wholesome bacon . All natural they say, but to my chagrin I find sodium ethorbate in the ingredients sad to see bacon wthout real bacon.......pig salt sugars and smoke.

I have researched it and i THINK IT COULD BE AN ABOMINATION, LIKE........


Well that is good to think about if only in our nightmare scapes. Bacon jews harps.......oh the pain, jewish bacon musical instruments of death. I KNOW NOT!! THIS CAN ONLY BE FANCIFUL FANTASY!

I must rest now, the bacon is sleeping in the freezer, while the tomatoes are sleeping in the garden, awaiting the frying of the bacon ans slicing of the tomato.........Curiously my olive oil awaits a knowing beating, garlic cloves wince at the thought of the crushing blows, but knowing they will be reborn in aoli.....

peace be with you my friend, take two statins and call me in the morning.......


But Sir in all your wisdom perhaps does not see the true potential of bacon?
Friends, I bring to you...the Bacon Blowtorch!!!!!!

I stand in awe at the sheer energy potential of smoked pig products. Even finer then bacon, for some, proscuitto is shown in the 1 picture is the ultimate in pig , but being unsmoked welll....... anyway...But the author blashphemed as he made a veggie version using cucumbers. Cucumber is reserved only for making tsaziki sauce to be slathered over Gyro meat and other lamb products (they don't have enough fat in them), and I sometimes for festivals add crushed bacom to my sauce. Thank you again for the alert to new uses for old products..

Indeed the cucumber works but!!! it is still bacon that stands superior! Hail Bacon! King of Meats! (and meets)

elijahlucian (author)2011-04-04

how much for the girl?

1spartan95 (author)2011-03-20

Just watched Dead Poets Society, I need one of these!

coppeis (author)2010-11-07

Can you play one with braces?

Morriscow (author)2010-08-05

ITS SNOOPY!!!!!!!!!!!

hungyhipo 2 (author)2009-07-05

weird because last time I checked I never knew how to get bamboo

danm95 (author)hungyhipo 22010-03-16

I go to places with bamboo forests and  cut some!

Dr.Bill (author)2009-12-29


Pentacle (author)2009-11-14

Very cool. Nice hair, by the way.

bagyourblues (author)2009-11-05

judging by the materials, is it safe for me to assume you are also a bassoonist?

hellgator83 (author)2009-09-04

the jews harp is also known as a jaw harp.. wikipedia

Vulcanator (author)2009-08-30

UR A JEW...? or did u steal the idea from a jewish musician?

daninja (author)2009-07-07

Don't you mean Jaw Harp? Maybe it's just where i come from.

necropolian (author)daninja2009-07-11

It can be Jew's harp, jaw harp, mouth harp, or Ozark harp.

stickmop (author)necropolian2009-08-25

aka Juice Harp.

bushkiwi (author)2009-08-17

Thank you for sharing this! It sounds Great! I am going to have a go at making some with my 4 home-schooled children!! : )

same23 (author)2009-07-10

I think this <a href="">Do it yourself</a> project is a great way to invest your time. Who would have thought that you could make a harp out of bamboo?

mg0930mg (author)same232009-07-25

link fail.

Add bracket hen a space then the word diy then end bracket.


cyberpageman (author)2009-07-10

For me, the music didn't start until half way through the file, but when it did, it was great. Thanks for the instructable.

luvit (author)2009-07-03

will this attract rats? i;d like a cheap way to scare rats.

casey321b (author)luvit2009-07-10

get a gun and shoot at them... it would scare them...

Sandisk1duo (author)luvit2009-07-05

mix borax with some sort of food rats like to eat, then feed it to the rats

dpr (author)2009-07-03

how do u play the harp there is no thing that u can pluck

pedro8 (author)dpr2009-07-03

You have to catch the languet with your finger and pull it to the outside. You can see howI do in the video, but it's just my technique, I don't know if it's the better one...

Bisquick the ninja (author)2009-07-03

Does it actually make sound?

Yes of course, it's make good sound, but I can post video for this one because I offer it at one friend. In the video it's my first one, thesound is not so good but I like it.

dpr (author)2009-07-03

dangit i made it with a reed and not bamboo and it doesnt work

pedro8 (author)2009-07-03

I would like put a video, but actually I don'y really know how to do...
So I will try, but can't promise anything.
And the girl in the picture is my girlfriend, that true, she's cute

guiks (author)2009-07-02

Haha... This is just like the "berimbau de boca" that we have here on brasil...

fuzvulf (author)2009-07-02

No, no, we want to see the woman in the first picture playing it in video >:o) nice instructable.

PatchIsCooking (author)2009-07-02

Could you put a video up of how a bamboo one sounds? I know how a metal one sounds, but is there a difference in sound in a bamboo one? Also, who is the woman in the first picture? She's cute. :)

pie popper (author)2009-07-02

Yeah, pretty cool but it would be better if there was a video

oklaoma (author)2009-07-02

wahhh so awsome too bad there's no video I don't know how it sounds like

Arkarinum (author)oklaoma2009-07-02

There are some videos with it's sound in youtube, search for Jew's Harp. I just found it cool :)

Pull and Twist (author)2009-07-02

Haha... a Jew Harp.

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