Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Melody Maker

This project involves a child's favorite things; noise, tools and a trip to the hardware store! We spread this out into 2 day craft and made a trip to Home Depot part of the fun. We made this over a year ago and Elliott still requests to play with it.

You will need:
  • 1/2 by 4-inch Threaded eyebolt
  • Teflon (plumber's) tape
  • 1/2-inch coupling nut
  • 1/2-inch all-thread rod, 24 to 36 inches long
  • 10 to 15 1/2-inch washers
  • 1/2-inch locknut

Overwhelmed already? If you're like me, you will have never heard of half of these items. (We had just finished remodeling our bathrooms, so plumber's tape was the only item I knew or had in stock.) I got this idea from Family Fun magazine. Go to their website for a printable diagram that you can bring right to the store. (

How to:
  1. Wrap teflon tape around the end of the eyebolt and both ends of the rod. (Prevents metal from unscrewing.)
  2. Assemble the pieces in the order listed, slide washers on and finish with the locknut.
  3. Hang the eyebolt with a rope and place within child's reach. They will push the washers up to the top and let them drop again and again and again and again.....

After assembling this rod, I felt like I could build anything! It was really fun to locate all the items at the store. And as an added bonus: I don't give my husband a blank stare if he happens to mention "washers" or "eyebolts".

Elliott really enjoyed putting all the parts together and like I said, a year later he still plays with it. A note of caution, it IS a metal rod. Probably not the best project for a child who likes to, say, swing metal rods around. This is an outside toy for that exact reason.

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