There's a ton of videos on the web of musicians playing homemade PVC instruments, but I just recently stumbled upon the impressive work of PVC pipe player Kent Jenkins, aka Snubby J. His most recent video features a duet with his faux-twin, playing "Wizards in Winter" by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Turns out, he's been a PVC maestro for awhile now and even auditioned for his inspiration, the Blue Man Group, at the age of seventeen. Though he wasn't picked, they saw potential in him and aske...
I am completely fascinated with pedal transportation. Many of us have pedalable commutes that we end up driving just because we don't like bikes. There's a whole wave of do-it-yourself pedal vehicles, from the Hennepin Crawler down to vehicles like this one.
This is all I can say...
Now how's that for alliteration? WOO! Anyway, this has already made the rounds, but if you haven't seen it yet, check this out. When you take a low-slung four wheel bike frame, a crap load of PVC pipe, miles of duct tape and about 1,000 hours, you, too can drive a Porsche without the high insurance payments.
I've been hell-bent on complete self sufficiency for a long time now. There was a point where I was living in a self-sustaining community in the mountains in Colorado, and we had a very large greenhouse there. Dragging the hose around to water plants was a real pain, and that stuck in the back of my mind even after I left the place. It would have been much easier to integrate watering into the frame at construction time than doing that hose dance every day.
PVC isn't something you want to send to the landfill. It's not going to do anything good for the ground when it's buried. It is also something you really, REALLY don't want to send to an incinerator. When burned, PVC releases some really nasty chemicals, including hydrochloric acid and dioxin.
Now, I know what you're thinking... "I need an extra sexy coffee table that is like no other."
It's about the same thing as this except you can buy it and it's painted.
This video shows how the maker of that Monster Tubulum actually put it together. Between this, the FAQ on his blog, and a whole lot of intelligence, you'll have all the information and insight you need to put together your own super awesome PVC instruments.
You're never going to see a project from me that involves straight pipe. You would have when I was a kid, but after too many years in the construction industry, I need to see a good finish. If the project doesn't look slick, I don't want to say I did it.
I know it seems a little redundant to post this when I've already posted a video, but it is kind of hard to get more than a vague idea from the video alone. I hope this sheds a little more light on the subject. I'm sure it also seems like I'm beating this idea to death, but this one concept opens doors to further innovation. After I finish this article, I'm going to put another one up that shows a hinged, raised bed house and talk about some amazing things you can do from there.
There's no how-to here, but I think anyone can figure this out. Great idea. I will probably make one for myself.
The thing about building your own stuff is that it's incredibly satisfying. There's just something about taking the time and dedication to construct something beautiful out of virtually nothing but the necessities.
With some PVC Pipe and little mesh, you too can have backyard chickens!
Not all of these involve PVC, but the majority do, and they all have their merits.
This is a build-along for making a flattened PVC pipe bow. This style of bow made with PVC is more durable than the non-flattened kind, and looks more authentic. This bow, when finished, drew about 80# at 28".
What would MacGyver do if he was stranded on a trash dump in the middle of the ocean? If he had the right supplies, chances are he'd come up with something very similar to this PVC and duct tape boat. C'mon, we all know MacGyver always has duct tape on him!
Simple, yet snappy. This is another Rolph design put together by yours truly. Everyone needs a Rolph in their life.
There's been a proliferation of pitched PVC xylophones in recent times, but a lot of them end up being somewhat cumbersome when it comes to actually get good sound quality. This guy has come up with the solution by making strange drum skins over the ends of the pipes. The result is a super cool sound coming out of a ridiculously cool-looking instrument.
Tom Price used nothing more than PVC pipes, nylon cable ties, and a large hot plate to melt together the blossoms.
Today, I'm on an art kick, and sadly (happily) I'm finding things that are cooler than the things I make. I love seeing waste turned into art!
I stumbled across this amazing structure today, titled B(h)uis. It was built by Hoogte Twee Architects, using entirely PVC tubes. I think it's beautiful, considering the simplicity of the material and construction.
This is definitely the work of a Trekkie.
Super cool DIY PVC skeleton from the Robot Group: "At this point it is not much more than a mannequin. With the recent acquisition of a lot of cool pneumatics, it should be possible to make a very interesting animated human..."
I know, I know, I've already posted one of these. Sorry, but this one's cooler than the last, so I had to put it up. This also has a great in-depth tutorial that shows exactly what to do and why you do it. There are photos for every step of the process, so you can actually make this one without too much head scratching.
PVC can literally be a life saver in the developing world, as well as in the wake of a disaster. This little article is a picture of innovation after a disaster in the developing world, and it is a perfect example of the simple ways we can do good for each other.
This guy is serious about home made dart guns. He's got some cool ones on here.
Not only am I not the only one, but I'm not the only one saying I'm not the only one!
10 self-explanatory project ideas you can expand on to bring your kids fun for less!
Super cool art installation.
Vertical Axis Wind Turbines take less horizontal space to operate, and they don't have to face any certain direction to work. Larger turbines are absolutely beautiful.
This is pretty cool here. They're using PVC pipe to make new legs and feet for amputees. Instead of paying thousands of dollars, an amputee can now get a new limb for $25.
This is actually a forum page, but they're discussing making you own finder scopes and medium power telescopes. There's a lot of information here.
I have to admit that I am an environmentalist wacko. That may sound strange, considering my life is tied up in PVC, which is considered one of the most poisonous materials on earth... but it's true. I love this planet, and I want it to be inhabitable for as long as the sun is in this phase of its life.
I'll admit it, yes, I support protesting. It doesn't matter what my opinions are about any individual protest—overall, it is a human right and the only way to avoid tyranny. We can't deify Ghandi and demonize American protesters. That shows a silly shortsightedness that we can't afford to dabble in.
This is the bastard love child of a clarinet and a saxophone. And it shows you how to make them.
If you haven't had a pile of pipe and fittings to play with before, it's hard to see what is so cool about a plain, plastic pipe. All it does in the house is carry the poop away. Really, who cares?