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Pipephone --- Musical Toy

Piers Plowman 08 May 09 - 11:13 AM
open mike 08 May 09 - 03:58 PM
Piers Plowman 11 May 09 - 02:55 AM
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Subject: Pipephone --- Musical Toy
From: Piers Plowman
Date: 08 May 09 - 11:13 AM

Found this today at a "flea market" (actually a small shop): A toy metallophone with painted aluminum tubing from the 1950's in its original carton. There was a pair of mismatched mallets, so I bought a couple of new ones at the music store. It has a wooden frame with removable threaded and turned legs and leather strips under the pipes. It's diatonic (presumably in C) with a range of 2 octaves and a fourth!

I was at a DIY store yesterday and saw some similar tubing. It might be possible to calculate the lengths for the sharps and flats and make an "auxiliary" pipephone.

I bet my recorder students (3, nearly 6 and nearly 8 years old) will be thrilled with it (nearly as much as I am). I can't wait to get it home and give it a try. I've been wanting something like this for ages, but new metallophones are quite expensive (even the ones for children).


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Subject: RE: Pipephone --- Musical Toy
From: open mike
Date: 08 May 09 - 03:58 PM

oh i think this is like what http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metallophone

they use in Orff...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orff_Schulwerk

and they have removeable bars, so elementary

students can be given one that has only the notes that they play

(such as the 1-3-5 of a scale...)


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Subject: RE: Pipephone --- Musical Toy
From: Piers Plowman
Date: 11 May 09 - 02:55 AM

It's similar, but made out of hollow metal tubing instead of solid bars. It's just ordinary tubing that one could buy at a builders' supply store. Metallophones are used in the Orff method. Two companies that make Orff instruments are Sonor and Studio 49 and I've looked through their catalogues very thoroughly and I've seen some in music stores. They are of very high quality, but expensive.

I don't really like the Orff method and don't use it, but I love the instruments. They also have pentatonic xylophones and metallophones and my students have one, but I don't think there's that much one can do with them so I haven't used it with them at all.

The nearly-six-year-old was crazy about the pipephone and played it (and played with it) a lot yesterday. The three-year-old was interested, too, but was more interested in doing other things yesterday. I think she will probably play with it when she feels like it. The nearly-eight-year-old hasn't seen it yet.


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