Step 4: Remove the Bark

Remove the bark (all in one piece) from the ring forward.

I find that if I tap on the bark a little with my knife, it will loosen up. Grasp the stick above the ring with one and and below the ring with the other hand and twist. The bark should come loose from the wood with a satisfying crack.

Slip the bark of the end and set it aside.
Your video is a bit unclear. Like its very glitchy. But good instructable. We're I live we don't have very many of those trees. What other trees work?
You'd just have to experiment and find trees where the green bark can slip off in one piece.
<p>I used fresh cut aspen and it worked fine.</p>
<p>Did anyones work?</p>
<p>I grew up in WA state and my grandpa who was born in MO used to make these for us when we would go camping. I don't think he used willow, but perhaps maple. Thanks for sharing this instructable, I needed to have all the steps in my memory bank. </p>
Ok , thanks!
I've tried this multiple times but with thinner sticks, and it hasn't been working. The sticks were about 1/4&quot; in diameter. Do you think it a bad thing that they're so thin?
I have made very thin whistles, but they are a little more difficult to get just right. You have to make a much smaller nick mark in the bark. They also tend to be more finicky about getting the bark aligned back on the stick. You may have to play around a little, but it should work with thin sticks. However, it might be good to practice with some thicker sticks.
I have no hickory trees near me, I cannot find any willow trees besides weeping which I don't believe is the one used in the video and elderberrys are poisonous I hear? Any suggestions on what to use or wish to correct me?
I have used weeping willow trees lots of times. They work great. However, it might not be quite the right time of year for making willow whistles. It is best in the late spring when you have new growth that is still green. <br> <br>
Oh that's great I know where a ton of those trees are! Thanks for the info!
my stick has a TON of knots in it, is that bad? I have been trying to "twist" the bark off, and its not coming. any help?
Sounds kinda' like trying to slip the hide off a live Wildcat to Me..HAR.! G-g
Spring time also makes the bark slip loose easier. As You say, near water is best. Thank You. G-G
Can anyone give me a list of what trees will work?
i have made them out of hickory i did not know about whillow
Are there any working trees native to Houston, Texas? Thanks.
I live about a hour north of Houston and there is Bamboo growing in a few areas, you could probably find some near or around Houston, i have also seen it grow around Spring and the Woodlands so you might be able to find some there.<br>
Thanks for bringing back memories. My maternal grandfather made us wooden whistles one summer in Minnesota. He was a great tinkerer. Would have loved Instructables. :-)
ur video is private :(<br />
thats cool, ive gotta try this<br /> <br />
I used to make willow whistles win I was a kid. But my whistles wear onaverage&nbsp;about 3in long by&nbsp;3/8in&nbsp;thick&nbsp;the smallest Iever made was 1.5in&nbsp;long &amp; 1/4in thick&nbsp;great &nbsp;jobin&nbsp;telling&nbsp;how to do it and nice photos
&nbsp;my father showed me how to do this last year... nice instructable.
does anyone know any decent tree's in england, near welwyn garden city? i will be very greatfull :) ~Operator99
When I was little my dad used elderberry branches. He would hollow them out with a coat hanger and add holes under the V cut. This allows for several different pitches. I make them for my grandkids now. What a symphony with seven out-of-tune whistles marching around the yard. We are ready to upgrade to recorders. Your video is very well done.
We did that at scout camp one summer. I had one that you could cap the end with a finger and get a different clear pitch. We destroyed an elderberry bush in a week making these. :(
As a kid, my dad showed me how to make one but have since tried but could'nt get it to work. I thank you for the reminder. I'm sure my grandkids will thank you, also. FYI, I 65.
i remember reading about these in the book my side of the mountain( great book by the way) and I've try several times to make on but didn't succeed, but i might try again with the knowledge from this structable
lol same that was an amazing book
I didn't read all the detail. The best results are in spring when the sap is running. Also if you cut the wood completely at the notch (not the bark) after reassembly you can slide it in the bark ala trombone. The soft tapping crushes the bark, squeezing slipery sap between the bark and the wood. Making it easier to slip appart. Which also means its easier after a spring rain, then a dry week.
Me too i was a LONG time ago .did you see the movie?
love that book. i studied survival skills for a week after that book. (and that's saying a lot) great instructable by the way.
There is a way to solve the drying problem: oil the wood. Just like wooden piccolos, etc. Every month for three months after you make it and then after that every sic months. You could probably find it a music shop somewhere. It's called bore oil. (You should probably ask the clerk just in case you pick up the wrong thing though.)
lots of nostalgia!
sweet another way to tourture my parents
I had no idea this could be so simple! Brilliant!
Could you whittle wholes in the bark cover to get different pitches?
I have tried a little, but could not make it work. I am sure it can be done, but I don't understand whistle physics. Anybody else care to share?
If you are looking for 'old-time stuff' check out the "Boy Mechanic" (1913) from Lindsay Publications. Fun book but some of the things could be hazardous to life and limb. 8-)
I saw a guy make one of these while we were talking (we were talking about coracles - the little traditional half-walnut shell shaped boat as found in the UK and elsewhere), but he didn't explain the steps, or why he tapped the bark and I stupidly thought it unimportant. Later I tried to replicate it, but I just couldn't get it to work. Thanks for explaining the process!
Never heard of one of these. Nice instructable!
This is pretty cool!<br/><br/>I loved the part when you said <em>They don't contribute to global warming</em>. It's pathetic that everything we do, even making a whistle, has to be said that it has nothing to do with global warming or risk being called part of the problem.<br/>
That was my attempt at humor. I agree with you that everything has to have a global warming aspect these days.
Oh. Well it was funny, so if you were going for humor, you achieved it! =p<br/>
I agree. I had a great laugh.
My dad always made these for us in the spring out of maple saplings up at the cottage. 1940's He said he used to make several of them, each year, 1915-1925 and keep them by his bedside in a glass of water so they wouldn't dry out so fast. Then in 1976, the Bicentennial year, we got him to sit at a little booth at the local festival, along with 2 of my kids, and make dozens of them for people that came to watch. Dad also made the boys each a soap box scooter in the 60's with old roller skates, and the girls got orange crate doll houses. He was a great recycler!
My Uncle Frank taught me how to make willow whistles when I was a kid 30 years ago. Every family reunion he would sit in the shade and make them for all the kids. He passed away two years ago. So, me and my cousin Brad took up the tradition last year of making them for the kids. It took both of us a few tries though before we got one to work as it had been too many years since Uncle Frank had taught us how. They sure are fun.
Wow! Thanks for bringing back the memories! When I was a kid growing up in Northern Michigan we had alot of Willow on our acreage. When Grandpa came to visit we would talk him into making willow whistles for us. While he tapped on the bark to loosen it he would sing a dutch song about something flying over the sea. I wish I could remember the song!
In the early 50's dad taught me to make these out of a hickory limb about 3/4 inch in diameter. You can also use (fishing cane) .
Very Nice, Fun Instructable! It's great to be able to make a toy out of just a stick. You do have to be careful with your stick choice- some wood tastes better than others. Keep up the good work!

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