Some time ago I saw an Instructable on how to make PVC pipe look like real wood. I wanted to try out the technique so I decided to make this beautiful rain stick
Definition of a Rain Stick: a percussion instrument made from a dried cactus branch that is hollowed out, filled with small pebbles, and capped at both ends. When slightly tilted, it makes the sound of falling rain.
BUT I made one out of PVC pipe!
I have entered this in the PCV Pipe Contest so your vote would be appreciated
Step 1: What You Will Need
Step 5: Drill Holes Through the PVC Pipe
- Cut your PVC pipe to approximately 36 inches length (or however long you want yours)
- Begin drilling holes, making sure to drill completely through the PVC pipe
- Drill holes beginning at one end of the pipe
- Drill in a random pattern as you progress through the pipe
You can drill all of the holes (around 300) at once, but it gets a little confusing trying to find each holes exact match when there are so many holes. I found it easier to drill, insert skewer sticks, cut and glue 10 or so at a time without getting confused.
Step 6: Inserting Skewer Sticks and Gluing
- Insert skewer sticks completely through each of the drilled holes
- Using a jewelry cutter tool, cut the sticks off at the PVC pipe surface
- Place a dab of wood glue on both skewer stick ends
- Rub the glue it in and around the exposed skewer stick with you finger, but leave a bit of a glob
Step 7: Half Way Through
This is what the rain stick looks like half way through the process. Make sure to drill the holes randomly without trying to make a pattern. This will help create a more natural rain sound.
Step 8: Sanding
After drilling, inserting, cutting and gluing about 300 holes and skewer sticks, lightly sand the entire PVC pipe with sand paper until smooth.
I used an electric sander with a 100 grit sander paper, but you can hand sand it if you prefer
Step 9: Faux Wood Texture
- Begin scraping the PVC pipe with a metal file and brush
- Pull and push the file and brush in all directions, creating long and short grooves and gouges
- Use sand paper to smooth off any shavings or sharp edges
Step 10: Add the Color
- Find an oil color that matches the type of wood your trying to emulate
- Wipe it on with a rag, making sure to work it into all of the grooves and gouges
- Let it dry completely
Since I used oil-based paint, it took several days to dry completely
Step 11: Finish Off the Ends
- Cap one end of the pipe with a cork that is approximately 1-1/2 inches wide at the center and approximately 1-3/4 inches at the largest end
I bought mine at a local hobby store
- Push cork all the way in and rub in some of the same oil paint that you used to paint the PVC pipe
Step 12: Fill the Rain Stick
- Fill your rain stick with anything that makes a beautiful rain sound
I used approximately 2 cups of combined beans, peas, lentils and rice. But feel free to try other items
- Since one end of the PCV pipe has already been corked, put your hand over the other end and tilt the pipe back and forth, listening to the sound
- Keep adding or subtracting beans and such until you achieve the sound you like
If you like the sound, cap off the remaining end with a cork and paint it
Step 13: Voila
This picture does not do it justice, but I couldn't find a way to portray it's beauty. It truly is amazing considering it is made from a PVC pipe, bamboo skewer sticks and some beans.
I hope you can see it's beauty and I hope you give this Instructable a try
First Prize in the
PVC Contest 2017