Acoustic Harmonic Accordian!

I’ve always liked that resonance trick where you can make a wine glass “sing” by pulling a finger along its edge. I wanted to make this a dynamic system and so ended up making a few changes to big, cheap wine glass.

To recreate this you’d just do this:

  1. Get a glass.
  2. Get some tubing.
  3. Use a glass drill to (carefully) drill a hole into the base of the glass- it will help if you add some water to cool the glass while the bit is turning and take your time. Also drill from a side angle to connect that hole.
  4. Attach a tube to either that hole (or preferably) a tubing insert that is bonded into the hole. I cheated and used my lathe to turn one, but it wouldn’t be hard to use a piece of standard diameter tube bonded into a hole drilled with a standard sized drill.
  5. Attach the other end of that tube to a water supply. I used a 2.5″ tube with a plastic rib that essentially made it into a bellows pump after capping the ends. The hope was that the natural springyness of the tube would help return some of the fluid to it as needed. You could just use a bag or something and leave gravity to return fluid. It just will impact the responsiveness of the system.

That’s about it. On the subject of responsiveness (how quickly- or not) you can move fluid into the glass. My hole was like 3/8″ diameter. There is a practical limitation to the size you can achieve but that diameter is primarily what determines your flow rate. (Pressure also plays a role) So in a perfect world, you’d want as large a diameter as you can manage.

Also.. bloopers: