Instructables

How to Make Guitar Picks from CDs

Picture of How to Make Guitar Picks from CDs
Quick! You're up for a gig in 5 minutes! Guitar, check. Amp, check. Picks... You don't have picks! Only a blank CD, Scissors, Sharpie, a rough surface, and an old sock...
 
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Step 1: Materials

As mentioned in the intro, to make a fast guitar pick, you will need...
-Old CD (I recomend one that doesn't have important info on it)
-Scissors
-Sharpie
-Rough Surface (NO, not your hairy arms) Sand Paper 200grit
-Sock

Note: I was about to publish this when I found that redfox1160 had already done this
so my apologies if you see this as spam.

Step 2: Draw the Pick.

Picture of Draw the Pick.
Draw your pick to be with the sharpie onto the data side of the CD. Or you can trace a pick onto it.

Step 3: Cut out!

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Now, cut out your pick, cut on the inside of the line. Or cut along the line if you hand drew it.Try not to crack your pick, it may take a few tries.

Step 4: Sand the Edges

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Now sand each side of your pick, until it no longer has any sharp edges. So it doesn't wear out your strings.

Step 5: Polish

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Now use your old sock to polish the sides of it until its really smooth. This melts the plastic so it will be really smooth on your strings. Hold down the sock to make sure you don't fling it around.

Step 6: Stylize

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Add your own style to your pick! You can remove the foil on the back, or leave it on! It's up to you! If you mess up on the design you can pour some rubbing alcohol on it. To make the flames you can grab a tack and scrape the outline onto it, then when you remove the top foil you can get really nice flames, takes practice. I have found that when you use the pick the sharpie comes off. redfox1160 solves this with clear nail polish. I never thought of that.

Have fun! Rock on.
shrinkie1 year ago
ive made a few thousand picks and i find the best stuff cd related is playstation 1 discs that i heted up with the bottom of my laptop first before cutting and they take almost a year to break tho :/ but other that that just but the perspex sheets there great
Ward_Nox5 years ago
now i admit i don't play but arnt picks made from a harder plastic than CD's
bob777 Ward_Nox2 years ago
actually my good sir i am a beginner guitar player but i know that guitar picks can vary between thicknesses
chandlersdeath (author)  Ward_Nox5 years ago
Well, no. Some picks get down to .60mm. I don't think someone could break these picks while playing.
Honestly - picks made from CD break easier than any bought in a guitar store. Tried.
IGTB4 years ago
Another idea if you wanted to get creative with this, would be to use a litescribe type CD printer which are always coming down in price. Then use a CD label template with your favorite graphics program and design your own image on these picks. I suppose a cheap ink jet would suffice with either labels or special ink. I think some of those Epson ink jets print on CD's too. Worth looking into just for creativity, not sure about practicality. However unique design and promotions for your band may be worth the effort and additional costs incurred.
corebob4 years ago
these are cool and all, but they do not compare to dunlop's Tortex, gator grips, or ultex.... although like the intro basically says "You're up for a gig in 5 minutes! Guitar, check. Amp, check. Picks... You don't have picks! Only a blank CD, Scissors, Sharpie, a rough surface, and an old sock..." yeah last resort only for me neat trick though.. never thought you could cut CD's with scissors, should be able to put my ex gf's cd's to use
TSC4 years ago
sweet!!!
Tunesrlife4 years ago

Very cool.  I'm sure there are tons of really cool, intricate things a person could do with a tack and the foil.  The flames are pretty good.

mattyuke5 years ago
Neat saves buying them Thanks :)