InstrumentBuilding HomePage PageList

[ Music | making stuff | Links ]

Current Projects

Making Guitars

everything below here is pretty old, like the rest of this site, Its a bit like a journal, as I'm fairly certain nobody ever visits this site.
Woibe! (a univibe clone in a wah shell)

Guitars (see above)

Spanish Guitar


General Practitioner

GCSE Revision

Recreating a Springer Tempophon. some interesting research here.


Recently I've been restoring lovely lovely Teal.

(not so)Recently(4 years (now 7)of not remembering to update this site) I played a part in rebuilding the fabulous Ronnie Lane Mobile Studio and made a few roomfuls of other things, including records, guitars, gizmos, and synths but not put details on this website yet....I might

Past Projects

Ribbon Microphones (2008-now)

This is a ribbon microphone made from scratch, except for the transformer, which is a cinemag one. It's made from brass and steel, and uses very powerful Neodymium magnets, and aluminium leaf for the ribbon. More info here.

Alien Brain (2006)

This is a pocket sized analog synthesiser, for covert operations in the field of electronic music. It has three infra-to-ultra-sonic square-wave oscillators, and a resonant band-pass filter.
The Alien Brain can be purchased for 35 gbp, email for info/customizations.

The LooM USB interface (2006)

The LooM was developed to be my main interface to SuperCollider, for generating sound-material for compositions, and for live improvised performance. It is a work in progress and will likely remain so, due to the large range of options for sensor mapping and different possible playing techniques that it presents. I am keeping a log of my progress in The Great LooM Mapping Adventure.

It has 13 sensors (ten-bit), of which five are to monitor bending/pulling/plucking of the strings, five for intricate movements of the fingers on the palm-rest, and three to react to movement of the left arm as it wraps around the frame to play the strings.

The FingerFace USB interface (2005)

I started to build this interface during an internship at STEIM (NL). It has five pressure-sensors for downward finger-pressure, and a light sensor which is effected by my palm. It has been quite successful for generating quite intricate and expressive gestures in SuperCollider. My piece "Life after the feast" was made entirely with this interface and SC, live, in one take (ultra hardcore punkrock chap that I am). The casing was hand-shaped from MDF and aluminum.

Wireless Sensor Suit (2005)

I hacked a wireless game-controller to make this simple sensor-suit, which was worn by Dancer Katy Knights for a collaborative project between Choreographed dance, improvised sound-design and dance-controlled visuals.

BobbyBox (2005)

Tilt-glove (2005)

My first experiment with sensors and hardware hacking, I described the method indirectly in this article at RandomFunction. The glove was not a great interface because of the poorly placed sensors (eg. you could not use the palm's light-sensor without turning the palm upwards, thereby setting all the tilt-sensors to the same value).
Having said this it was not so bad for something made in a few hours in a state of ("hey wait a minute, if I do this+this+this I can control SC by waving and stuff") frenzy. The glove is a golf-glove, the sensors are non-mercury tilt-switches on the fingers, micro push-buttons on the fingertips (these were a complete waste of time,  bigger softer buttons would have worked), and a Light-sensitive Resistor on the palm. Everything was sewn together with needle and thread and super-glued for added (and quite unnecessary) strength.

Monster Spring Reverb (2004)

I based this on a design set out here, but made a few changes. Firstly the spring is a full-sized slinky, and hung in an arc covering ~2.5 * 1 metres. I used the DC-motor hack transducer design, which works surprisingly well, and a piezo contact mic to extract the 'verb from the spring. This design meant that I could move the mic around (bull-clipping it to the spring at different distances from the sound source), theoretically similar to moving a mic around in a physical reverb tank. The sound is like the biggest reverb room you can imagine, and is suited to quite harmonious sounds. It's an experiment worth trying, and is essentially very simple and cheap to construct.

Fretless Guitar (2001)

For my GCSE design-tech course I made a guitar, and almost finished it. It is entirely hand-carved and has an Ash body, Maple neck and Ebony fingerboard. It has a good acoustic sound, and I have used it for a sound-source in a few of my compositions. One day It will rain enough to make me stay in and make a pickup for it (it would require several hours of painstakingly winding hair-thin wire around slug-magnets encased in hot-melt glue). Then I can carry it around everywhere and play bizare folk music of my own as I wander down country roads wearing hobnail boots and a really nice waterproof/breathable/windproof jacket.  

Powered by Pawfaliki v0.5.1