Rubber Band Instrument

Introduction: Rubber Band Instrument

Make your own rubber band instrument with simple household materials.


  • Wood / wooden box
  • rubber bands
  • 10 push pins
  • A4-paper
  • 2 hinges


  • Scissor
  • Dremel
  • Dremel tools
  • Wood glue
  • Hammer
  • Sandpaper
  • Pencil
  • Protractor triangle
  • Saw
  • Pliers
  • Pair of compasses
  • Screwdriver
  • Brush / rag
  • Woodstain
  • Box cutter

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Step 1: Wood

For this project you can make your own soundboard box. I use two remaining Wooden containers to make my soundboard box.

Step 2: Draw Your Template

Measure your soundboard box. My box is 90 mm by 150 mm by 10 mm. Use the width of the box for the size of your square template.

Draw a square of 90 mm by 90 mm on an A4 piece of paper. Then draw a square of 80 mm by 80 mm in the 90 mm by 90 mm square. Make sure that the edges of the square are 5 mm thick.

Divide the size of the inner square by 9. This ensures that you get a step size to make 81 small squares in the inner square.

My step size is 80 / 9 = 8.9 mm. Make after every 8.9 mm a dot along the lines of the inner square. Connect the points that lie parallel to one another with a horizontal or vertical line to each other. If all is well you now have 81 square of 8.9 mm by 8.9 mm. Draw in the middle of the large square a cross. Using a compass make a circle with a radius of 13.35 mm.

The cricel you have drawn will become the soudhole in the box.

Step 3: Cut Your Template

Cut the large square out of the A4 paper and then cut the circle out of the square.

This will be your template for your rubber band instrument.

Step 4: Glue Your Template

Place the template with the left side against the left side of the bottom of the box. Now put a vertical line on the box where the template ends. Remove the template and put some glue on the wood. Spread the glue on the surface of the wood to the vertical line. Paste the template onto the wood.

Step 5: Saw Your Wood to Size

Saw 1 part of the box in two. Mark a line at 90 mm and saw the part in half.

Now create the soundhole of the box. Cut with a dremel a square in the middle of the circle, or drill a hole in the circle. Make the circle bigger with the dremel sanding set. Break the wooden inserts out of the square box piece with some pliers. Now break the middle wooden inserts out of the rectangular box piece.

Do the same with the second part of the box. Saw this part only not in two, just remove the inserts. Let the last two right vertical inserts intact.

Step 6: Glue the Wood

Put some glue on the square part. Now glue the square wooden part on the second half of the box

Step 7: Insert the Push Pins

Put a push pin in all the corners of the small square and push the pins through the wood. If needed you can use a hammer to get the push pins in easier. Do this for all corners.

Step 8: Attach the Hinges

Fix the rectangular wooden part with a scraf piece of wood. Put some glue on the scrap piece of wood and put the scrap piece in the rectangular wooden piece.

Put the hinges in the corners with a few screws. Tighten the two screws from the bottom hinge first in the wood. Repeat for the second hinge. Than screw the top screws into the wood.

Scrape with the blade of a box cutter the template from the wooden box.

Step 9: Stain the Wood

Stain the wooden box to get a nicer draker color.

Put some stain or wax on a rag and wipe it on the wood. After 15 minutes, you can rub the wax with a dry rag.

Step 10: Finished Instrument

Now you're done with your instrument and you can start arranging the inside of the box. In one section, I added 10 push pins and I placed five rubber bands in the second section.

Step 11: Music: Mission Impossible Tune

Put the push pins in the position like you see in the first or second photo.

Now play the tune: AABCAADD AABCAADD

I added a movie in which the mission impossible tune is played

Play the tune and have fun!

Rubber Bands Challenge

First Prize in the
Rubber Bands Challenge

On a Budget Contest

Participated in the
On a Budget Contest

Small Spaces Contest

Participated in the
Small Spaces Contest

DIY Audio and Music Contest

Participated in the
DIY Audio and Music Contest

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    4 Discussions


    Question 10 months ago

    Do the pushpins ever loosen and fly out over time?


    5 years ago

    When I was little, we used to have these things where we could change the pegs and put the rubber band to make a shape... This looks a lot like it.. Great job!!!!


    5 years ago on Introduction

    This is really cool! I remember when I was younger I used to build 'makeshift' rubber band instruments out of old tissue boxes. Your's is much more durable and finished looking! Keep it up!

    Diabolik Danger
    Diabolik Danger

    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you tomatoskins, or as we say in The Netherlands, dank je wel!