Introduction: DIY Piezolectric Music Drum

About: We make a bunch of random stuff, mostly crafts

Steps 1-5 can mostly be done in any order, it depends on what you want to do first.

This is my first Instructable, so please tell me if anything is off! I'm sorry if any steps are mixed up, I hope you don't mind.



Arduino Uno (Other chips may work)

Piezoelectric disc

Passive buzzer

6 volt Duracell battery

Battery connector

2 female-female wires

2 male-female wires


Plastic pot

Plastic or paper plate

Paint (optional)

Tape or Hot Glue Gun


Wire stripper

Soldering iron and holder

Safety glasses

USB cable


Step 1: Attaching the Piezoelectric Disc

Firstly, if the piezoelectric discs come with unstripped wires, you need to strip them to make it easier to wire it to the Uno. You should strip the wires a bit more than you need just in case something goes wrong.

The second part of this step is attaching the disc to the Uno. Because the wires attached to the piezoelectric disc may not be long enough, and they might be hard to attach to the Uno, I would suggest attaching each of the attached wires to another wire first. Wrap the fibers of each wire around one end of a female-female wire.

After this, attach the other end of the wire attached to the red and black wires attached to the piezoelectric disc, to A0 and Ground on the Arduino Uno, respectively. (Wire attached to red -> A0, wire attached to black -> Ground)

Step 2: Securing the Piezoelectric Disc


Since the piezoelectric disc will be attached to the inside of a drum, it will be subject to a lot of pressure, and consequently, the wires may break. Therefore, it is often necessary to solder the weakest joints: where the wires directly meet the disc.

This might require two people. You may want to watch a video tutorial, for example on Youtube, about soldering first. Hold the soldering wire to the joints while using the soldering iron to melt the metal onto the joints. DON'T BREATHE IN THE SMOKE THAT COMES OUT! IT CAN BE HARMFUL! Wear a mask or simply just a wet towel around the mouth and nose if possible.


Step 3: Attaching the Buzzer

First, check if the buzzer is passive. How? If you apply a DC voltage to it and it buzzes, it's an active buzzer. Also, if the two metal pins on the buzzer are the same height, the buzzer is passive, and if they are different heights, the buzzer is active.

Next, attach the female (hole) end of male-female wire to each of the two pins (Images 1 and 2). Attach one wire to "Ground" in the "Digital" section of the Arduino Uno (It is vital that this is in the "Digital" section, don't mix it up!) and the other wire to "7", also in the "Digital" section (Image 3)

Step 4: Coding the Music Drum

You will need Arduino IDE for this project, but it might take some time to download the app. I've included my code you can tinker with.

You don't have to use my pre-existing song, a scale. You can create a new one by changing the variable "Song". The variables for durations and songs work as follows: To add a note to the song, add the duration of the note to the duration variable (2 = half note, 4 = quarter note, etc.) Then, add the pitch of the note (There are predefined variables).

To upload, connect the USB end of the USB cable to the rectangular port in the Arduino and the other end to your laptop. On the top of the screen, there should be a "tools" button. Go to Tools -> Board and then select whichever board you're using. Then, go to Tools-> Serial Port and select the correct port for your board. Finally, click the upload button, which is in the top left and looks like an arrow that points to the right.

Step 5: Using and Testing the Battery

Attach the battery to the battery connector. This will allow the battery to power the Arduino chip.

Attach the hexagonal hole of the battery connector to the circular hole of the battery and vice versa (Images 2 and 3).

To test, once you've uploaded the program from your computer to the Arduino chip, simply unplug the USB cable from the chip and plug in the battery to the other, circular port. Again, make sure you don't short-circuit the board while pulling the USB cable out. Test the same as in the last step.

Step 6: Creating the Drum

The drum can be done in two separate parts: the plate and the pot. Any medium can be used to decorate the plate and pot, but you don't need to decorate the inside of the plate or the pot, as, well, they will be on the inside of the pot. Attach the plate to the pot to make a "drum" with two pieces of tape or some other attaching material. Make sure they are on the same side, as you will still need to be able to open the drum.

Step 7: Putting It All Together

Carefully put the Arduino Uno: with the battery connected: into the drum (Image 1). MAKE SURE THE ARDUINO IS UNPLUGGED FROM YOUR COMPUTER AND YOUR BATTERY FIRST! Then, secure the piezoelectric disc to the plate with two pieces of tape, preferably in the middle, as shown in images 2-4. If the wire does not stretch far enough and the piezoelectric disc cannot reach the Arduino Uno, then extend the wires by attaching another wire. Make sure to also leave plenty of slack, or else you won't be able to open the drum again.

If you've already uploaded the program, all that's left is to plug in the battery and pound on the drum!