The Alufone

Pure aluminum is obtained by extracting alumina from bauxite and converting it into pure aluminum using electricity. As of 2010, Australia is the largest supplier of the mineral. The remelting of aluminum products for reuse (secondary aluminum from scrap) requires little energy, only about 5% of the energy consumption in the case of primary aluminum from bauxite)

An alufone is a metallophone, a musical instrument of the group of idiophones, consisting of two rows of metal rods (keys), usually without a resonator. The aliphone consists of a frame (metal) or base plate (PVC) on which is attached a frame where the aluminum tubes are attached. The instrument is played with artificial fiber sticks (also called mallets). The dimensions of the key (length and thickness) determine the height of the tone produced, so the tubes for low notes are much larger than keys for high notes. Colors are used to indicate the different pitches.

Aluminum and the environment are often not seen as a positive combination. People are often quick to link environmental pollution with aluminum. The opposite is in fact true! Today, more than 70% of aluminum is recycled without any reduction in the quality of its mechanical properties.For this reason, it is important to return all aluminum in circulation back into the chain through collection. An even more important argument is that obtaining recycled aluminum takes 95% less energy than extracting aluminum from bauxite.

2. The aluminum tubes are cut to the correct length with a tube cutter to the millimeter. To measure the correct length of the aluminum tube, and the location of the suspension points, we rely on a calculation tool.

Metallophone is generally understood as an idiophone in which the vibration of a metal body creates the sound. Unlike the xylophone, the marimba and the vibraphone, the glockenspiel is tuned only to the keynote (by key length). Any additional tuning is done by filing. The overtones cannot be tuned because of the small thickness of the keys. This is not a problem musically, because these overtones lie at the limit of human hearing, where pitch is no longer exactly perceptible in a musical sense.

1. Each aluminum tube has a specific color. This allows young children to play this instrument without any notation system awareness. Graphic scores with colors are available.



What do you call that nice, shiny white metal they use to make sidings and airplanes out of? Aluminum, right? Aluminum, pronounced ‘uh-LOO-mih-num’, right? Anybody knows that! But do you know how the British spell it? ‘Aluminium’, pronounced ‘Al-yoo-MIH-nee-um’. Ever hear anything so ridiculous? The French and Germans spell it ‘aluminium’, too, but they’re foreigners who don’t speak Earth-standard. You’d think the British, however, using our language, would be more careful.


(Isaac Asimov)


The alufone can be used in various formulas:

-music workshops in combination with other instruments.


Tarieven en reserveringen voor aanschaf, bouw en workshops vind je hier.