How to Make Bagpipes Out of a Garbage Bag and Recorders

572,519

203

75

Introduction: How to Make Bagpipes Out of a Garbage Bag and Recorders

This instructable is how to make a simple bagpipe like instrument out of basic household materials. Granted, it does not sound all too much like a bagpipe, but it works similarly and is fun to mess around with.

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: Basic Construction of Bagpipes

At the most basic level, bagpipes have 4 parts:

A bag to hold the air
A blowpipe to blow air into the bag
A chanter to play a melody
And a drone which plays a constant note

Step 2: Materials

1 Garbage Bag or large plastic bag
2 Recorders (or 2 PVC Recorders:https://www.instructables.com/id/PVC-Recorder/)
2 Pens (You can also use a decent sized straw or a piece of hose)
Scissors
Tape

Step 3: Make the Blowpipe

To make the blowpipe out of pens, just take the pens apart and tape them together.

Step 4: Trim the Bag

We wont be needing an entire garbage bag, so trim it down some, maybe 3/4 the size of a regular garbage bag.

Step 5: Attach Blowpipe to Bag

Tape the blowpipe to one side of the open bag. I like to put the blowpipe in a good inch or two into the bag to make sure no air escapes.

Go ahead and tape up 1/4 of the open part of the bag too.

Step 6: Attach the Drone

Take one recorder, which will act as the drone, and tape it near 1/4 of the bag length down from the blowpipe. Make sure you do not cover up the whistle part of the recorder and that the mouthpiece is in the bag.

Go ahead and close up the rest of the open part of the bag, making it airtight.

Step 7: Attach the Chanter

Cut a hole in the corner of the bag that is on the same side as the blowpipe.

Attach the other recorder to the hole and this will act as the chanter.

Step 8: Modify the Drone

Tape up some holes on the drone to make it sound like how you want it to. This is the part that plays a constant note, so try to make it a note that doesn't make you want to find earplugs. Covering up all the holes works the best I think.

Step 9: Have Fun

Go ahead and play with your new bagpipes. Look for videos on the internet to learn how to play, the main difference is you play the chanter like a recorder. Check for any leaks and fix them with tape.

The bagpipe in the video looks a bit different because I made it larger than the one I did in the instructable, I find it works better if it's a little on the big side. Also you will notice I have no idea how to play a recorder, but someone with some musical talent should be able to get some nice melodies out of this.


Participated in the
Art of Sound Contest

2 People Made This Project!

Recommendations

  • Tiny Speed Challenge

    Tiny Speed Challenge
  • Spring Cleaning Challenge

    Spring Cleaning Challenge
  • Trash to Treasure Contest

    Trash to Treasure Contest

75 Discussions

0
jtcorley
jtcorley

1 day ago

This has resurfaced during the covid-19 quarantine. You may be culpable in a few homicides... :)

0
tomd1
tomd1

5 years ago on Introduction

it turned out to be unplayable garbage.

maybe if you use $100 alto recorders, you may have something that wont permanently make you deaf, but it will still make your ears bleed.

0
Chuckie Highlander
Chuckie Highlander

Reply 2 days ago

Kind of like Slayer music...? I'll stick to the pipes thanks! These things are perfect but they are a fantastic introduction and learning tool. If it inspires some youngster to take up piping it is all worthwhile! Pipe on people!

0
tomd1
tomd1

Reply 1 day ago

Its like you didnt see where i said it was unplayable.... if anything its going to turn youngsters off.

0
ThistlePiper
ThistlePiper

4 years ago on Introduction

I made it! and I improved! instead of recorders I used bagpipe practice chanters and added two more chanters for the drones. I also extended the bass drone with black PVC pipe. the bag was a lawn trash bags. to maintain shape I bought a bagpipe cover. and real drone cords

0
Chuckie Highlander
Chuckie Highlander

Reply 2 days ago

Laddie.... Dr. Frankenstein would be PROUD! Well done! This lets you incorporate reeds and TUNING for your drones!

0
Reiff
Reiff

7 years ago on Step 9

How much do "good" (not homemade) bagpipes cost? I found some in the hundred dollar range but I'm not sure if they are "good".

0
OriginalPugsly
OriginalPugsly

Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

At least $1000, the hundred dollar ones are crap.
Also don't buy the plastic ones.

0
Chuckie Highlander
Chuckie Highlander

Reply 2 days ago

Cheap are cheap - yes. Better suited to drive a nail through and use as a wall hanging. That said, I have had pretty good luck with full synthetics Polypenco (think ABS plumbing material). Acoustically very close to blackwood and impervious to moisture. Traditional GHB always my first choice BUT in humid or arid climates - can't beat the Frankenpipes! A quick youtube search will get you to a piper on a tank playing these fine (Canadian made!) synthetics .

0
schaapkameel
schaapkameel

Reply 2 years ago

there is a very good man called Paul Beekhuizen who makes french and german bagpipes, not the highland ones. Might be worth checking out, all handmade quality stuff.

0
KenteKis
KenteKis

2 days ago

So, in order for it to be more like the bag pipes, take three recorders and tape off the holes leaving a different hole open on each one and have three recorders across the top, then the forth that you play... Try That!

1
Count Volta
Count Volta

1 year ago

Like a pair of cats screwing...........LOL!

1
Count Volta
Count Volta

1 year ago

Try taking it busking and see what reaction you get! LOL!

1
LenaH18
LenaH18

Tip 2 years ago on Step 9

Use a permanent marker to add the plaid to the garbage bag surface to make it extra authentic.

0
PaoY
PaoY

2 years ago

Wow this is amazing!! Id love to try making this one!! Thanks!!

0
Maker Saga
Maker Saga

2 years ago

This is so resourceful! Nice work.

0
Oldreds
Oldreds

9 years ago on Step 9

I am currently in the process of making mine, but how do I make the reed?