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Explore the Challenges

The Challenge: Record a Sound or Voice

How did we go about making a Rough Science version?

Rough Science Phonograpgh

HORN: To collect the sound. We used a large metal funnel.

DIAPHRAGM: To hold the stylus. We used the base of a tin can.

SOUND BOX Fixed to the horn, it increases the efficiency of the transfer of sound to vibration. We made ours out of a small tin can.

STYLUS Used to transfer vibrations onto the recording cylinder. Made out of a drawing pin and pushed through the middle of the diaphragm.

RECORDING CYLINDER: The recording cylinder rotates, moves along and supports the wax on which the sound is recorded. Formed of two wooden circles mounted on a piece of studding (long thread). Held apart and fixed in place by wooden blocks.

WAX: Covers the recording cylinder and contains the impression from the stylus. We used many layers of wax and smoothed it down with a razor blade.

HANDLE: Turns the recording cylinder. Placed at one end of the studding (long thread).

HINGE: Used to fix the horn-diaphragm-stylus unit onto the base. It is able to move so that the position of the drawing pin on the wax can be adjusted.