By Kyle Guess
Making Your Own PVC Didjeridu
By Johan Lundback and Matt Newby
1 – 2″ PVC, 5’/60″ length (see notes 1 and 2) = $4
2 – 2″ End Cap PVC = $3
1 – J-B Weld, 2 oz., Kwik Plastic Epoxy Putty = $4
1 – 3M, Sanding Sponge, 60 grit = $4
1 – Rattle Can of spray paint = $4
1. LENGTH – If you plan on making more than one didgeridoo, then you can purchase the 10’/120″ length. Realize that a 10’/120″ length of PVC doesn’t fit in a car, so plan ahead. 🙂 I easily fit the 5’/60″ piece in the front seat of my small car.
2. COLOR – PVC is sold in white and black. White PVC is cheaper. Black PVC, which is made for sewage, is more expensive. If you want the black PVC, then make sure that the piece you purchase hasn’t been returned to the store. 😛 Idea: Using acetone to remove the lettering on a black length of pvc would give you a glossy black didgeridoo if you want.
Reciprocating Saw or Hacksaw
Leather gloves (they saved my fingers from being sliced off when using the box cutter) %|
1. Decide what note didgeridoo you want (see resource given above).
2. Using a saw, cut the 2″ PVC to the length specified.
3. Johan and Matt suggest using acetone to remove the lettering on the PVC. If you wish to paint your didgeridoo, then you’ll want to skip the acetone (fingernail polish remover) and just sand it. Sand the tube using the Sanding Sponge until the letters and glossiness of the tube are gone. Set the tube aside until you are ready to paint all the pieces.
4. Johan and Matt used PVC fittings to reduce down to a smaller diameter for their mouth piece. Since I am on a budget, I decided to use end caps instead. This is where the drill comes into play. Mark the center of the end cap with a sharpie marker. Choose the diameter bit you want to use, place the end cap down on its flat edge, and drill the hole through the top of the end cap. I chose to drill one end cap with a 3/4″ bit and the other with a 1-1/2″ bit.
5. The 1-1/2″ bit jumped around a lot, which produced a pretty off centered, horrible looking hole. Instead of scrapping the end cap, I used epoxy putty to replace material and make a nice, smooth, and centered hole. Follow the directions on the product. I found that having damp hands helped it not stick to my fingers and made it very easy to mold on the end cap.
6. I also modified the end caps to make them look a little more polished. I took a box cutter and made the outer edge of the end cap tapered inward. After this is done, I used the Sanding Sponge to smooth the facets cut by the blade. I also put a tapper on the 3/4″ hole, removing material with the box cutter and then sanding the facets smooth.
7. Rinse all the pieces with water, DO NOT USE SOAP, to remove all the partials and dust from the surface. Allow it to dry. I purchased a rattle can of Rustoleum Satin Finish Paprika, which I think will give it a nice wood-like, earthy color. Perhaps I’ll go back and add some designs later.
Pictures will follow…