Introduction: DIY Headphones

Here is the headphones that I've modified to be awesome.

For this build I was using:

  • 2 bullet shells S&W .40 Cal
  • old headphones. It happens that mine fit perfect to the bullet shells without any glue. I was using TDK EB760
  • 10mm wooden dowel
  • sandpaper 400Grit and 800Grit
  • finishing sponge (You can replace it with high grit sandpaper or steel wool)
  • a hacksaw
  • a battery powered drill
  • a drill bit (diameter of the drill bit should match the diameter of the wire)
  • a soldering iron
  • a vice or a clamp to fix the bullet casing for drilling

Step 1: Drilling a Hole

Picture of Drilling a Hole

To drill the hole for a wire you need to fix the shell in a vice or clamp it to a table.

Mark the future hole using a centre punch or a nail. Then drill the hole. Brass is a very soft metal so it should be very easy to drill.

Step 2: Cleaning Up the Shell

Picture of Cleaning Up the Shell

Clamp the 10mm wooden dowel in the drill and put your shell over it, it should fit nice and tight. This whole thing will act as a simple lathe, perfect for quick sanding. I was using 400 grit and 800 grit sandpaper to clean up the shell.

Step 3: Cutting to the Size.

Picture of Cutting to the Size.

Measure 8mm from the open end of the shell. To make a perfectly straight cut, clamp the bullet shell in to the drill and cut it with a hacksaw with the drill rotating clockwise.

After sanding off the sharp edges, the length of the shell should be approximately 12mm.

After cutting you can buff the shell with high grit sandpaper (1000 or more) or use steel wool.

Step 4: Disassembling Old Headphones

Picture of Disassembling Old Headphones

Step 5: Assembling New Headphones

Picture of Assembling New Headphones

It's very important not to forget to put the wire through the hole in the shell before soldering it to the headphone speaker. I did that by mistake. =)

By some mystical coincidence the metal top of my old headphones fit perfectly snug in the .40 cal bullet shell. All I needed to do was to fit them together using the vice. However, if your headphones and bullet shells, don't have a snug fit, you can use superglue.

Step 6: Looks Awesome!!!

Picture of Looks Awesome!!!

If you like my tutorial, you will probably like other videos on my Youtube channel. Don't forget to Subscribe =)





latymcb (author)2016-08-20

i want to try this

-chase- (author)2016-08-04

It's funny to see this because as it happens I found two 358 cal bullet shells on the street with a gold/silver polished finish.
I picked them up and saved them, I guess I like shiny things.
I was wondering what I could use them for since I didn't use use them for my first idea. (thumb pads on an RC LP controller)

vermilk (author)2016-06-30

I have to try this!

In a pinch, I have used live .45's for hearing protection. The bullet portion fits into the ear canal pretty well reducing sound. Easy to take out!

Anyone tried taking these through airport security? Probably not a good idea.

No worries!

Bigslik (author)2016-06-29

How about a mini speaker, maybe a tablet or a laptop, in a 12 gauge?

windoz (author)2016-06-28

Fantastic idea and very creative; but in the land of fruits and nuts (California), you could probably get arrested for having these!!

ohoilett (author)2016-06-28

The Staff Picks brought me here. This is really creative. Great job.

packdawg1 made it! (author)2016-06-09

The vise doesn't work nearly as well as he makes it look. I used a hack saw and made a shallow cut right up next to the piece you want to take out. Then use a screwdriver or chisel to knock out the bud. Then flip it over and make a "V" cut with the hacksaw up the hole the cable comes through and you can take the bud out without cutting the wires.

BrianM11 (author)2016-06-04

What kind of vise did you use in the video

luca8theworld made it! (author)2016-05-28

Great project and instructable. Was definitely inspird to make these!

Fmendes86 made it! (author)2015-09-07

The sound is a blast !!! Great project.

jmanukonga made it! (author)2015-09-05

Made these, great fun, sadly my earphones didn't fit into the shell perfectly, so I had to flare the ends. Still look great. Thanks heaps for the Instructable

YngveS made it! (author)2015-07-31

Perfect earbuds ???

YngveS (author)2015-07-24

Made them myself. It took 1 pair of earbuds before I got them good. Just wondered, anyone knows of any headphones with mic and volume control that fits in a 9mm or .40 shell?
Thanks for an awsome diy.
Yngve (from Norway)

Wolf321 (author)2015-05-25


b_elomar made it! (author)2015-05-21

Really cool project! Made myself two pieces! :D

dilbybarts (author)2015-05-18

would I be able to use a 22250 Remington shell

bernhardus (author)2015-05-18

I cant seem to get the wiring back again correct :(

zacker (author)2015-01-21

I wonder if I can find something to fit a .380 shell? I have some spent cases and they aren't the gold colored brass, they are m ore of a silver color. I may even have some .38 in the same color... hmmmm Also, I think a .380 is roughly the same dia. as a 9MM shell case, just shorter.

jerry.ericsson2 (author)zacker2015-04-04

If I recall, you can take a .308 case, cut it down run it through a reloading press to size down the front end, trim to the size of a loaded .45ACP then prime, charge with powder, tamp down a wad, fill with bird shot, then run through a smaller die to taper the etension, cap with cardboard and cover with red nail polish. Nice snake round for those times when a hardball just won't do. We used to make a lot of those years ago as we live in rattlesnake country.

zacker (author)jerry.ericsson22015-04-06

isn't 7.62 about the same as a .308? got a lot of Mosin rounds laying around...

Msg_1985 (author)2014-12-11

The TBK earbuds are no longer available on Amazon or apparently anywhere else online. I have tried several other old pair of earbuds I had around the house, but none of them seem to fit. Has anyone made a pair using a different earbud or possibly have recommendations on what type may fit? Thanks

zacker (author)Msg_19852015-01-21

are they TDK? maybe there was a typo? I never heard of TBK, Only TDK...

jerry.ericsson2 (author)zacker2015-04-04

typo perhaps BTK? Just kidding but it fits.

andytangtsk (author)Msg_19852015-01-24

I think a TDK EB 300 should work with a 9mm bullet shell

zacker (author)Msg_19852014-12-29

are yours too small or too large to fit the shell? if its too small, try maybe putting something into the shell first to take up the extra space. or fill the shell with clear silicone and push the ear bud into it... maybe? don't know if that will work but it might. good luck!

iarthur2 made it! (author)2015-04-02

Thanks for the ible!

Digital Flame (author)2015-03-25

Hi, this is really cool, and I found my self grinning in delight with your DIY lathe! Love it!

MaxiEnglish made it! (author)2015-03-03

Cool! You should make a mini jack as well:

BrianM11 made it! (author)2015-02-18

Had fun making the bullet casing headphones. Used .40 Cal casings and beats headphones that came with the Verizon Rezound.

Buff2u made it! (author)2015-01-31

fun project had to use. 45 cal.on samsung buds but they worked great, they even made the buds sounded even better

geath8872 made it! (author)2015-01-24

made mine with .45acp

geath8872 (author)2015-01-24

DIYgiveaways (author)2015-01-05

I made two for my friends!

I used 10mm casings and a pair of $5 aluminum headphones from Wal-Mart just for practice. The issue I had was that the earbud housing that contains the nozzle was the same size as the casing. I had to cut it and sand it with a dremel to make it fit into the casing, I then used epoxy to hold it in place.

Next pair will be using a higher quality pair of earbuds.

zacker (author)DIYgiveaways2015-01-21

Next time, just try a few swigs of that JD back there in your Photo, it wont make it any easier to take the ear buds apart and make them fit but it will make the whole process more enjoyable! good job!

Looks great for a test try =) I would recommend to use hight grit sandpaper and polishing pad to make them shine =)

spudziuvelis (author)2014-12-18

I live in Europe, here weapons, bullets are hard to get. But i should get those shells easily (they could sell shells on ebay) my dad works in military so its kinda easy kinda not.

zacker (author)spudziuvelis2014-12-29

are there any gun ranges? maybe police or private nearby? maybe theyd like to donate a couple to you.

spudziuvelis (author)zacker2014-12-30

The arent any gun ranges nearby, and police i dont think the would donate them to me cause its illega to have live bullets or shells. My last hope is dad or neighbours bu they could give me only shotgun rounds.

zacker (author)spudziuvelis2014-12-30

well that stinks! you cant even have used shells, even with no bullet in it or primer? Yeah, Police probably cant do that even if they were legal to own. youd have to fly here to the states, get them, make the head phones then fly back home with them in your ears so they know its just headphones. lol Youd probably have to paint them some color like blue or yellow fisrt though so theyd look fake... then take off the paint when you get home.

spudziuvelis (author)zacker2014-12-31

I live in Europe in Lithuania, if you want to have a firearm you have to get a lot of tests passed to have right to buy a firearm about ammunition i dont know. But in Europe firearm rules are strict. I think i had couple 9mm shells but its too small :(

hey spudziuvelis mabye i can fix for you 9mm shells

I already have what i needed, i just asked dad and i got all the sizes he had in pairs

andytangtsk (author)spudziuvelis2015-01-14

I think 9mm bullet shells are okay, just need to find the right headphones. If you really want to make the headphones there is this Chinese site called where you can get 2 bullet shells for around a dollar, the trouble is shipping, I think you can tell the seller to mail the bullet shells in envelopes to make shipping cheaper. ( btw you would probably need a translation app to help you communicate)

spudziuvelis (author)andytangtsk2015-01-14

Then i'm gonna need to find those shells and search for the right headphones thank you for help

zacker (author)spudziuvelis2015-01-02

Ahhh Ok... now I see. lol yeah, here in the states you can just go buy whatever you want, well, in most places, some part you need a gun permit or ammo permit to buy ammo now. I don't know if they can ship shells from EBay to you if they are not legal to buy in your country. youd have to check that out.

spudziuvelis (author)zacker2015-01-02

Yes, ebay! But prices are like 15$ each :( i think no bullet headphones for me then.

zacker (author)spudziuvelis2015-01-02


TSJWang made it! (author)2015-01-14

Just have to say taking the earbuds apart was probably the hardest part of this whole thing...

It's hard to do it without a nice metal vice: Head up the earbud with a flame until you start smelling aluminum (it has a smell) and then use an x-acto knife to cut away at the edges.

After some cutting it loosens the glue, and you should be able to use a cheap vise and pliers (with paper towel as cushioning to prevent scratches) to wiggle the piece out.

Here are my results (2nd try)!

christine828 (author)2015-01-11

Hello - In the US we have places called a "shooting range." Maybe the UK has similar places? Certainly the police and hunters have places where they practice shooting.

I went to a local shooting range and asked for a few empty shell casings. They gave me six 40 cal. shells for free. I told the guy if it worked, I'd bring a pair to him. For my first pair, I'm using very inexpensive earbuds.

Good luck!

ztuaima (author)2014-12-20

I love the project and I've sanded the bullets and cut them but when I came to the bit of taking the earphones apart, I literally bruised my hand from pulling so hard. How you you remove it with such ease?

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