Introduction: Transparent Guitar Pick

Picture of Transparent Guitar Pick

In this instructable, (which happens to be my first), I will show you how to make an awesome transparent guitar pick out of a few household materials.

The basic idea for making homemade guitar picks is not entirely original, but here I have tweaked the old method to make it sick nasty and see-through. Enjoy!

Step 1: Things You'll Need

Picture of Things You'll Need

Here's what you'll need:

1. An old CD
2. A pen or pencil
3. A guitar pick
4. Scissors
5. Sandpaper
6. Tape

Step 2: Taping the Pick

Picture of Taping the Pick

Make a small circle of tape that will fit onto the back of the guitar pick. Use it to secure the pick onto the CD.

Tip: If you are using a pencil, Stick the pick on the top of the CD. Pencils wont work on the back.

Step 3: Tracing the Pick

Picture of Tracing the Pick

Using the pen or pencil, trace the taped-down pick and pull it off. This will leave the outline of the pick where it was taped.

Step 4: Cutting It Out

Picture of Cutting It Out

Cut along the outline with the scissors. As you cut, little bits of shiny stuff will go everywhere, so cut over a trash can or table.

Peel all of the remaining shiny stuff off of the pick.

What you will end up with is the crude outline of a guitar pick with jagged edges. But wait! It's not quite done yet...

Step 5: Sanding

Picture of Sanding

Use the sandpaper to smooth any jagged edges and to finish shaping the pick. Taper the point slightly, like a real pick. Refer to a real guitar pick to get all the details just right.

Once you are satisfied with how it looks and sounds when strummed, you are finished!

Thank you for reading and PLEASE RATE!


fsteddie (author)2015-07-13

This project is so cool !! Thank You.

Bleachdalilah (author)2014-07-01

From what I used, it was easiest to peel the cd apart, so you had the labelled side and the reflective side, then use the reflective side (it broke less often) for the picks. The only luck I had with making them transparent was to sand them, leaving them also looks really cool. so far, I'm at four, but I plan to make a few more, so I can have some and also give a few to my guitar playing friends.

Ravirar (author)2014-01-17

I have the same sam ash pick! :)

messmaker123 (author)2013-07-24

A good way to take the shiny stuff off is by sticking a piece if tape on the pick and peel it off. The shiny stuff should come off with the tape

gtiba (author)2012-07-28

I made mine from an old Win98 CD and sanded it to make it look a little bit opalescent. Very cool idea. Thanks.

andrecl (author)2012-02-21

Thank you, that was very useful and cool :)

Danman430 (author)2012-02-17

I tried everything to take the color off...heat,boiling the cd in hot water,prying it apart,sandpaper,but nothing works,how do I get this to work? (p.s. I did each try on a different cd)

mikezuk (author)2010-12-10

Nice job.. No cost.. Gotta love it.. What I did was went to and bought a pick punch for $25.00. I don't work for them and get nothing to talk about them. But you gotta see this thing. I can get four pics from an old debit or credit card. Everyone that sees one wants one.. It is just like a hole punch but makes pics. They also sell some clear material. I have all the pics I need now. I give them away...I had an expired drivers license and lined up the punch around the photo and walla, a pic with my pic on it.. Haha..

bkennelly (author)mikezuk2011-11-06

I bought a pick punch, too - and I have no need for guitar picks. I don't play & don't know anyone who does - but I just thought it was so cool I had to have it. Now I have jars full of picks I need find a use for. Time to get crafty LOL
A recent collection from a McDonald's Arch Card

mikezuk (author)bkennelly2011-11-07

Fun stuff. Crafty is a good idea. I like the McDonalds pics you made.

If you go to an Open Mic night sometime, there are a lot of guitars players that would love a few free guitar pics. Or maybe put them in a small jar and ask the local music shop if they will buy them from you for resale. Just sell them cheap.

msmith69 (author)mikezuk2011-08-03

vinyl 45 rpm records from the thrift store work good. They make kids records out of virgin vinyl. (the old ones) they are clear blue, red or yellow. I bought a pickpunch too. I have been using bonus cards from the auto parts store and gas station. used phone cards, tupper ware works good too. Its amazing how much stuff you can find in the trash or at thrift stores or the dollar store that can be punched into picks. Some stuff you need to run under warm water and punch before it cools. warp proof records work good. they wiggle if you hold them at the edge and wave them up and down. A lot of late 70s early 80s LPs are made of this stuff. Lots of fun to try different things. I must have made over a thousand picks in the last couple weeks. I have a few nice ones with the Sunoco logo on them. LOL

nelsonguitar (author)2011-07-05

I make my plectrums from old or damaged ouster cards ,old credit cards international phonecards or bleach containers the best one I try and mi favorite is made of plastic takeaway container give it a try it's really wishes

Glockenator (author)2009-11-23

the easiest way to get the silver off is just press it to some masking or duct tape and pull it off

remssik (author)Glockenator2011-05-28

THANK YOU. This actually helped immensely.

h3llo41 (author)2011-05-18

really nice, though my pics are already hard to find as it is haha

jvdlcr125 (author)2011-01-28

Just tried this with a DVD and it doesn't work very well at all. When cutting the disk the disk just cracked.

BigBagels (author)jvdlcr1252011-02-14

and dvd's suck together, but dvd layers work better. the top layer cracks alot so dont use it!

BigBagels (author)2011-02-14

I've noticed that plain 'ol CDs are kinda stiff, and its not as easy to play with. If you are having those problems too, i suggest using DVD layers. The op layer tends to crack more and is more fragile while the bottom layer is more flexible. the only bad thing about using the bottom layer is that the ones you use for rewrites can have a blue or purple tinge to them. but its worth it!

bryce$merryman (author)2011-02-12

they shatter because some have two sides and if you split it into two the i do u could get twice as many picks i, but i use old games "ps2" and it still works great

rigel1 (author)2011-02-01

For not cracking the CD cover the surface with some tape.It works well for me.

ajleece (author)2011-01-25

I have crap loads of cds. I shall make ze picks!

labr87 (author)2011-01-10

tq for your nice and eay to do.

da animal freak (author)2010-11-23

wow great post man! i usually lose my picks every now and then and have to go to the store (which is pretty far from us) and get a new one. and its also a great way to recycle old and scratched CD's that don't work anymore. great pics and great instructable, good job!

spongebobs.killer (author)2010-10-31

my pick ended up all shiny and reflective. also it also as thin as a real one! =)

chixi96 (author)2010-10-14

HEY/ reallly worked!!! 5 STARS TO U (i actually rated u 5 stars)

Whales (author)2009-11-12

 So has anybody tried using the CD after this?

ShoopDaWhoop (author)Whales2010-09-30

Yeah, i took at random a CD and once i cutted it i saw it was epic fail 7 so i was like: D'oh and i thought i should test it and i putted it in the computer and then: BOOMM

Whales (author)ShoopDaWhoop2010-09-30

What happened in this boom?

ShoopDaWhoop (author)Whales2010-10-05

Yeah my Pc, no house, no city, no country exploded i don't know how maybe a little dust, or the nuke in my room. But i think it's the cat

twistedhairball (author)Whales2010-09-11


greatg32 (author)2010-09-28

can't do it!!!!!!!! it's not transparent!!!!!

narutome44 (author)2010-09-11

awesome but i dont know how to rate. any help?

guitargod1417 (author)2010-08-26

nice idea

Morriscow (author)2010-07-20

haha i actually do this all the time! all my cds come out purple tho... :(

Liberty Prime (author)Morriscow2010-07-30

Wipe it down with rubbing alcohol. It comes right off.

gavox (author)2010-07-30

Just made 6 picks out of a cd!! Only thing is I didn't aticipate the thickness, they are VERY thck, any help?

maxievr (author)2010-07-25

Tanx Ive made 5 plectrums with one cd :P. Ive used a transparent cd, they're more flexible.

nuckthebuck (author)2010-06-26

i didnt read these comments but hey soak the disk in hot-warm water for like 5 min dry off and then draw the pick and cut. if u use a sharpie you can draw the pick first before soaking

Paulkartking25 (author)2010-06-20

Nice work man love it!!!

ramnik5 (author)2010-05-29


alexthedude1 (author)2010-02-16

I just made like 15 picks from one cd!!! Thanks!!

TSC (author)alexthedude12010-03-21

They must have been small casue i could not make 15 picks out of one cd!!!!!!!!!

beehard44 (author)TSC2010-03-29

i cant make 1 pick.....
they shatter while cutting

TSC (author)beehard442010-03-29

whta kind of cd are you useing?

beehard44 (author)TSC2010-03-30

i gues it was the age of the CD, made it really brittle..
i used a CD from the late 90's
but the technique to cut it is by scoring the outline then heat it a bit then cut it...

TSC (author)beehard442010-03-30

wow thats old!!

beehard44 (author)TSC2010-03-31

yuh, i found a big stack of CD-Rs from 2002 i guess...
i'm using them to make picks. After all, i do not have a burner....

TSC (author)beehard442010-03-31


teapotking (author)2010-03-14

 for anyone looking for a good disc brand to use for this, try Verbatim. I'm not trying to advertise them or anything, just saying they seem to be made out of a pretty decent plastic for this project and they're nice and easy to cut after they've soaked in hot water for a minute or so. the only thing I would say was bad about them is you'll be trying to rub the silver off can be a pain sometimes, so be prepared for this to take quite a while.

beehard44 (author)teapotking2010-03-30

yuh, i have a couple of these...

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