What instrument can you build that starts with a 2x4 plank?  We're looking for the most spectacular, innovative, interesting and artistic creations.  Note:  This contest will also include all instruments, whether stringed, wind, percussion or keyboard.  

We're challenging you to create new and exciting instruments starting with common 2x4 planks!  You should build to impress!



  1. You must build a playable musical instrument using a common 2x4 plank* as the main component of the construction.
  2. Submit your entry by uploading two (2) different photos in the COMMENTS section below.  
  3. Add a 1 paragraph description of your instrument (parts used,building techniques, inspiration yadda yadda yadda)
  4. All submissions must be built by the person submitting them.
  5. Contest submissions end Wednesday, May 31, 2017 at 11:59 pm (Eastern Standard Time US)

*Common 2x4 dimensional lumber, aka framing stud.  The 2x4 can be construction grade or top choice quality.



First place:  $100 gift certificate from C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply

Second place: $50 gift certificate from C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply

Third place:  $25 Gift Certificate from C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply


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Hey, Mike. How does she sound sound with the piezo? Would you have a video? Awesome, job!

that handle is a great idea.

I was trying to decide what to make for the 2x4 challenge when Shane posted his 'mystery" instruments last week. I tried for a pretty close replica. I removed a thin 1/8' plank from the top and bottom so I could hollow out the innards. After cutting the body to shape I re attached top and bottom using small brads. Zither pins for tuners. Aged with a solution of vinegar and steel wool. Here it is

No one knows for sure what exactly happened to Mr. Mayfield, but there is a story that has been going around....
The legend goes that after he’d spent the majority of his life working with wood, building instruments with attitude, one day, he just upped and quit it all. He threw all of it out into the backyard and burned it all – except for one piece of 2x4 lumber. After that, he would spend his days out in the garage, sipping whiskey, and staring at one, specific piece of wood – a lone piece of 2x4.
One Saturday, his wife, Nelda, went out to the garage looking for him. “Dinner time!” she’d yelled. She opened the garage door, and he wasn’t there. Just that darn piece of wood which Mr. Mayfield was always staring at. Poor Nelda never saw her husband again, but she kept that piece of wood close for the rest of her life. 
To whoever would listen, she would tell this story that the wood took her husband’s spirit, and this burnt image in the lumber, WAS her husband! “Are you sure that’s a person?” men who beheld the board would ask. She’d reply, “Yes! That’s my husband. His hand’s in the air, shouting hallelujah!”
After Nelda passed away, the piece of wood she cherished for her remaining years was given to a luthier, who had a dream of taking that piece of 2x4, and building it into a lap steel guitar. It’s a simple instrument: simple bolts are installed where nuts and bridges should be. It does have an alnico pickup, its origins are unknown. Six, maybe seven, coats of Tung Oil covers the lap steel, imprisoning the picture, and soul, of Mr. Mayfield.
Is he really in there?
I guess that is up to you to decide.
(lol. I hope the story made you smile. I don't think my 2x4 lap steel is as interesting as some of yours posted...but I still wanted to put mine up here. Thanks for reading and have a good one!) 

just incase you need some more ideas of inspiration....

As part of that Ukulele underground 2 by 4 challenge I built two Ukes I kind of like from a standard 8 foot 2 by 4 building stud from Bunnies (officially Bunnings- our Australian big box hardware store). A Stora Enso Baltic pine -probably a European red pine but completely unlabeled as to actual species. When I bought it, it was so green it made my car smell like fresh cut Christmas tree.

This reminds me - I have the trunk from the year before last's Christmas tree curing in my shed......

A medieval like hand carved Lute like uke perfect if your area has more medieval fairs than CBG or blues fests.

I shaped that back with a hatchet. 

The next one was a bit more rock and roll with a Gibson Flying V inspired shape

Because the Uke was a paternity leave present the headstock had a birth year coin


Here are the vids


Hope you enjoy.

Built this Beast a few years back, the 4 X 2 unknown type of Australian Hardwood was the top one of my Saw Stool’s, originally built by me from off cuts scrounged from various building sites I worked on in my former life in the Building Trade, the 4 X 2 was water blasted with a Gerni and Treated with a mixture of Linseed Oil & Turps, the Bridge Bottle was found on an old country Rubbish Dump, and shows its age by the effects of UV from the Sun, the Piano Tuners are from my trusty old recycled Piano, as is the .045PS Piano Wire String, the Bone Nut probably came a previous Dinner?, the Scale is 700mm/27.559”, and its’ tuned around A/G, a Chinese Ebay Single Coil Pickup is hardwired to the Jack, and the whole build cost me the princely sum of $6.65AUS/4.94USD.

Image may contain: plant and outdoor

Image may contain: outdoor

Tenor ukulele built from an 8' 2x4. All wooden parts are from the 2x4 except the ebony truss hidden in the neck.

This uke is pure Outlaw Lutherie. No side bending, no molds, no fancy stuff at all. I thought I'd replace the nut and saddle with bone after the competition at UU, but it sounds so good that I haven't bothered. The body is a scaled-down Status bass design.

Made some of these years ago - Had more fun designing the fret boards than making them - Fun to play - Applied the numbers to frets and transposed a few songs and posted them so people who had NO idea about reading notes could play some songs ASAP!! Got more than a few compliments...Egos must be fed REGULARLY!! Especially music and inventors egos!! - Best of luck to ALL!!!!

2by4 plank with kitchen hinge for bridge and plastic washers. To keep hing stationary. I used a hair clippers coil for pick up and mounted it above string.then I used another kitchen​ hing to mount eye bolt to make a tuner and put washer spacer to make tuning easyer.then I use price of wood to steady string.

The Valhella,,  bow.        (guillotine gopichand / diddley bow )

See ..? It’s just a sliced up 2x4   with  some dollar store hardware on it . What were  yall  worried about ?  ;-) Dual function  instrument   with one string  / divided .  The middle string area   functions as a gopichand .( don’t  know what a  gopichand is  ?  see one here . ) notes are created by  plucking the string   with one hand while squishing  and  relaxing the  2 wood  side walls  with other,  creating a boingy / springy / prongy sounding note . Flip it on it’s side and it’s a regular diddley bow  with the other half of the string running down the side  .  (pulleys are from a roller  bridge  and act as pulleys for the  string and a bridge and nut for the diddley bow side .) (guillotine blade  is from a dryer vent tube ,  tacks , carpet  nails , drywall screws , skulls, hinges , all  from dollar store .Wood  stained with  instant .coffee .  head hole acts as a slide holder.  As a surprise bonus ,the blade actually added a  real  nice  spring reverb type of resonation .   Fully functional as an instrument,  yet retains the same exact design as an actual  guillotine .   (but blade part is stationary) 

Posted as inspiration,  bragging rights, show and tell , and any offered  brownie points gladly accepted

.;-)   not an entry . thanx.

 I soo wanna see this made as a larger standup bass,  you could squish  it with your shoulder  and arm , and have  a whamola  effect bass   , 2 tones ,  with a stationary  bass  also  , and a hell of a stage prop . ;-)


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