Home

Building Alphorns

BYO-Alphorn

Alphorn Events

Alphorn Music

Alphorn Schools

Resources

 

My PVC Alphorn

> Explore

> PVC Alphorns

> PVC Parts

> Mouthpieces

> Sounds

 

About Me

 

Alphorns

Third Alphorn Design

The third alphorn design added one additional intermediate size diameter pipe, which smoothed out the transitions in diameters one more level than the second alphorn design. The tone is clearer, notes are more in tune, and it is easier to play than the second design. I also used a modified version of an oak mouthpiece in which I added a pine ring for more lip contact, and smoothed the inner bowl-shape.

The alphorn tunes in F and measures almost exactly 12 feet, which about 3 inches less than the theoretical length for tuning in F.

Sections are shown below from the bell end to the mouthpiece. All parts are PVC.

Bell:

  • 4" x 3" Sewer/Drain Coupling
  • 3" 45° Street Elbow
  • 3" x 2" Reducer Coupling

Section 1:

  • Pipe: 2" diameter, 24" long
  • 2" Coupling (S x S)
  • 2" x 1-1/2" Reducer Bushing (SPG x S)

Section 2:

  • Pipe: 1-1/2" diameter, 24" long
  • 1-1/2" Coupling (S x S)
  • 1-1/2" x 1-1/4" Reducer Bushing (SPG x FPT) [end with female threads]

Section 3:

  • 1-1/4" Male Adapter (S x MPT)
  • Pipe: 1-1/4" diameter, 22.5" long
  • 1-1/4" Coupling (S x S)
  • 1-1/4" x 1" Reducer Bushing (SPG x S)

Section 4:

  • Pipe: 1" diameter, 21" long
  • 1" x 3/4" Female Adapter (S X FPT)

Section 5:

  • 3/4" Male Adapter (S x MPT)
  • Pipe: 3/4" diameter, 20" long
  • 3/4" Coupling (S x S)
  • 3/4" x 1/2" Reducer Bushing (SPG x S)

Section 6:

Pipe: 1/2" diameter, 14" (for tuning in F)

[1/2" end cap with hole only for use with a trombone or trumpet mouthpiece]

Mouthpieces:

Trombone Mouthpiece (12C)

Homemade Oak Mouthpiece with pine ring attached

Modified Oak Mouthpiece

 

 


Second Alphorn Design

It has three sections for ease of storage and transport.

 

It measures about 12 feet, 1 inch in length with a fundamental pitch of F.

 

Final tuning was a task of trial and error for the length of the pipe that attaches to the mouthpiece.
The 9-1/2 inch piece yielded the best overall pitch quality and tuning.

 

For a tight connection between my trumpet mouthpiece and the 1/2 inch PVC pipe, I used a 1/2 inch end cap and drilled a hole in it about the diameter of the middle part of the mouthpiece shaft.

 

For trials with homemade wooden mouthpieces, see here.

 

Storing the Alphorn in my office:

 

 

Header Image: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Alphorns_Grindelwald.jpg