When I was a kid, I saw spinning some contraption above his head that sounded like an aeroplane taking off.

The bullroarer, rhombus, or turndun, is an ancient ritual musical instrument and a device historically used for communicating over great distances. It consists of a piece of wood attached to a string, which when swung in a large circle produces a roaring vibrato sound.


These are incredibly simple to build and an excellent beginner project.

At a minimum you will need some string and a flat piece of wood.

For mine, I chose some some scrap Wenge about a foot long and 1/4″ thick. I cut the ends to a pleasing angle and then tapered the sides with a chamfer bit.

Drilling a hole in the end and chamfering the edges to prevent the string from breaking. In the video I used twisted nylon twine which promptly unraveled. You will want to use a braided line. I used about 15 feet of 150lb braided fishing line which you can see in the photo.

Next, fined an open space and start spinning!

As you spin, the bullroarer will begin to tumble through the air and will eventually ROAR!

Variations in the paddles length and width will change the sound created so experiment!

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My name is Adam Patterson and I am located in Canada. By day, I am a full-time web developer, but in my spare time, I love to make stuff. In my videos, you will find a variety of woodworking projects that I have created out of recycled and found materials. As a father and mountain biker, I enjoy spending time outdoors and capturing my adventures through photography.

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