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The newest addition to the Earth Tones Music Garden at the Raven Hill Discovery Center is an instrument constructed of brake drums and rotors from a scrap metal yard. They weren’t tuned, just used “as found”, but the eight notes they produce when struck with a wrench, are close to a major diatonic scale.
One of our recent projects was the installation of a Sound Garden for the Petoskey Central Elementary School, in Petoskey Michigan. The garden was commissioned by the school PTO to honor retiring principal Dale Lewis.
This video shows one of the pieces, a set of eight bells made from recycled oxygen tanks.
The bells are tuned to a major scale in the key of C.
My “Toolbox Glockenspiel”, which took third place at Cycling Salamander Art Gallery’s SMART show during the summer of 2011. This metalaphone is tuned to the key of C and has two and a quarter diatonic octaves. You can see a video of one of these instruments here
Instruments at the Garoon Gateway to Science
The “Pipes of Pan” are stainless steel tubes which demonstrate resonant frequecies. Visitors to the park can place their ears to the ends of each tube, and hear specific pitches amplified.
The technical name of the “Slap Pipes” is end-struck plosive aerophones. They are played by slapping the open ends with a paddle, causing the column of air in each pipe to vibrate at a specific frequency, determined by the length of the tube. These stainless steel pipes are tuned to a C major diatonic scale.