masthead
 
 

Windchime #5

About

Completed

May 2008

Current Owner

Mom

Current Location

Stanford, CA

Materials

flamed 3/4" copper tubing, walnut, copper wire & rivets

Finish

clear varathane


Background

My 5th windchime, constructed for Mother's Day, with 5 chimes tuned to a pentatonic scale (and wraparound octave). This time, the copper has been flamed (see below) for a striking effect.

Details

With an classic top plate and striker, this windchime is anything but ordinary. The feather design is a balanced "v" made from walnut. However, more impressive is the copper tubing that has been flamed to bring out striking reds, blues and greens.

The chimes are mounted at their antinode and struck at their nodes. The chimes are mounted with copper rivets (my first attempt with this way of mounting).

Construction Notes

Flaming the copper was a blast! The process was fairly simple. I started by setting the long copper tube outside on sawhorses. Then I got my trusty MAPP gas blowtorch (I figure propane would work about as well) and went to town. In this case "went to town" involved locally heating a spot on the copper tube to get it glowing and then quickly removing the heat. The resulting oxidation creates the beautiful color patterns. I repeated this all around and along the length of the tube, going over a few sections to get additional color as desired. A note for the kids out there: I made sure to wear safety goggles and welding gloves, long pants and closed toed shoes! (Oh, and a "fire extinguisher" was handy too!)

The top plate and rivet detail The walnut "v" feather
Flamed copper chimes
Flamed copper chimes