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How to Make a Cardboard Cello

Cardboard has got to be one of the most versatile yet common products out there. You can make just about any craft that you please out of this fun and durable material. If you have an aspiring instrumentalist in the house, then they will love playing with this innovative cardboard cello.

Things You'll Need:

  • 1 4-Inch Long By 1 Inch Square Piece Of Wood
  • A Hack Saw
  • Duct Tape
  • Self Threading Wood Screws
  • Tape Measure
  • A Scissors
  • 1 2-Foot Long By 1 Foot Wide And Deep Cardboard Box
  • Tennis Racket Nylon String
  • 1 4-Foot 1 By 4 Board

Duct tape your box closed on all sides. Hold the edges tightly together and then overlap the duct tape so that it holds both sides securely shut.

Cut out the center top of the box so that you can insert the 4-foot piece of wood into the top and have it come out of the bottom. Your cuts should be right next to one of the sides of the box so that when you insert the board, it will lie lengthwise along the inside of the box. You can just cut a slit that is the length of the width of the board at the center of the bottom and the top of the box, then push the board through.

Attach the board, which is the backbone of the cardboard cello. Most of the board will extend out of the "top" of the cello, but you need a 2 inch overhang at the bottom for the cello to rest on. Screw the board to the cardboard using several screws in a zig-zag pattern.

Give your cello a base. At the bottom of the board, attach the 1 by 1 by 4 inch long piece of wood, flush to the end. Screw it in.

Install the cello strings. With your hacksaw, make a cut on the 1 by 1 piece of wood at the approximate halfway point, going down about ¼ of an inch. At the top of the board, make another cut in the approximate center, also ¼ of an inch deep. Knot one end of your nylon string, and push it into the bottom cut pulling the knot flush with the board. Push the nylon string into the top cut. It will be very tight, and it needs to be so because you’ll have to pull it for tuning.

Create a peg for your cello string. On the back top of the piece of wood, screw a screw in half way. Once tuned, you can wrap the nylon string around this screw to keep it in place.

Pluck your cello or get an actual violin bow, and start making music.


You can add more strings to increase the range that your cello can produce. For higher pitches just get thinner weed whacker line, or thicker weed whacker line for lower pitches. You can paint or decorate the box any way you’d like.


  • Always use a screw gun with adult supervision.
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