Step 5: Machine the main tubes

  • The 3 main tubes are 12.5 feet long and 5.5 inches diameter.  They are made from 6061 aluminum with 1/4" thick walls.  Our local metal supplier didn't have too much trouble getting them.
  • The sculpture uses 108 total ropes. Each rope passes through 3 holes total, so we end up with 108 holes per tube.
  • The tricky part is to calculate the location of all the holes.  The holes are spaced equally along the length of the tubes, but the angular locations need to be calculated using some non-trivial math.
  • After calculating the exact angular position of every hole, we translated that into a machining jig.  The machining jig was a semi-circle of wood that cradled the main tube.  The semi-circle had angular marks on it showing the position of every hole and distance from the end of the tube.  So, we positioned the jig and tube under a drill press and went down the length drilling all the holes at the proper angle.
  • Then we deburred all the holes.  Many of the holes have black press-fit plastic glands also, so the rope slides better.
hey can any one help me <br>i want to do it but i cannt know how many hole i should make <br>if any one can send me a vedio around it <br>i will be happy please help me fast <br>here is my email <br>ping23479233@hotmail.com
This look cool. It took a bit for me to realize what this is. I thought it was small...<br><br>But this looks great, I just wish that there was a desktop version, even if it didnt play.
you can make your own non-musical one, no problem! all you need is 3 sticks, a spool of string, and a drill. drill 3 rows of equally spaced holes down the sticks (lets say, 3 rows of 12 holes). cut string into 9 pieces. feed the string through the holes. the models we made in step 4 are done just this way. you may need to have a 2nd person hold the 3 sticks in about the right orientation while you feed the strings through. i think i'll add this as a new step.
Hey Dan, are you still looking for a museum for the &quot;Rope and Sound Interactive Tensegrity Sculpture&quot;? I'll be emailing you at your monkeylectric email with my info. Thanks. <br> <br>Regards, <br>Lic. Robert Moreno
This thing is amazing up until the part where you change hi-rezolution naturally complex signals into midi to trigger recordings of other instruments. You should be using models for re-synthesis instead. Then it will become more like a real instrument instead of another beautiful sculpture that mimics a midi-controller from the 80's.<br><br>I might like to help with that part, if you are interested. Thank you for the great instructable!<br>
yes that would make it better. we didn't do that yet because it is much harder than for a normal stringed instrument. metal instrument strings are very good at having a predictable response that changes consistently depending on the strength and timing of the plucking. the response of our ropes varies a lot given the same input stimulus. this made it a challenge just to reliably detect that they were plucked at all.
Cool sculpture , great idea . Just one thing your sculpture is based on one of Kenneth Snelson's designs . Bucky was pretty smart and cool and all that , but he got his idea from Snelson . Really look it up . Bucky was a shameless self promoter . LOL
oh thanks, i added a link to that.<br>
Ok, I'll be the first to ask - how much did this thing cost to build? It's a nice piece of artwork, but it had to be expensive!
About $10,000 in parts and materials. Labor not included.<br>
Lol, too much $$$ for musical jump-ropes tied to a girder.<br><br>It's nice though.
i've seen lots of times where a bunch of paint smeared onto a piece of cloth costs over $1 million. i mean really!<br>
You know, you have a point there. LOL!
begs for a vid of sculpture in use w/ good sound...
Nice work, a bit out of 'iblers usual league, but nice. <br><br>Is the rope commercially available ? <br>Steve
yo uneed to do an 'ible on that sweet braider you have... <br>cool 'ible and nice art
Wozers! Talented man

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Bio: Dan Goldwater is a co-founder of Instructables. Currently he operates MonkeyLectric where he develops revolutionary bike lighting products. He also writes a DIY column for ... More »
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