What instrument can you build that starts with a 2x4 plank?  We're looking for the most spectacular, innovative, interesting and artistic creations.  Note:  This contest will also include all instruments, whether stringed, wind, percussion or keyboard.  

We're challenging you to create new and exciting instruments starting with common 2x4 planks!  You should build to impress!



  1. You must build a playable musical instrument using a common 2x4 plank* as the main component of the construction.
  2. Submit your entry by uploading two (2) different photos in the COMMENTS section below.  
  3. Add a 1 paragraph description of your instrument (parts used,building techniques, inspiration yadda yadda yadda)
  4. All submissions must be built by the person submitting them.
  5. Contest submissions end Wednesday, May 31, 2017 at 11:59 pm (Eastern Standard Time US)

*Common 2x4 dimensional lumber, aka framing stud.  The 2x4 can be construction grade or top choice quality.



First place:  $100 gift certificate from C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply

Second place: $50 gift certificate from C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply

Third place:  $25 Gift Certificate from C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply


Views: 7580

Replies are closed for this discussion.

Replies to This Discussion

Hey, Mike. How does she sound sound with the piezo? Would you have a video? Awesome, job!

that handle is a great idea.

I was trying to decide what to make for the 2x4 challenge when Shane posted his 'mystery" instruments last week. I tried for a pretty close replica. I removed a thin 1/8' plank from the top and bottom so I could hollow out the innards. After cutting the body to shape I re attached top and bottom using small brads. Zither pins for tuners. Aged with a solution of vinegar and steel wool. Here it is

No one knows for sure what exactly happened to Mr. Mayfield, but there is a story that has been going around....
The legend goes that after he’d spent the majority of his life working with wood, building instruments with attitude, one day, he just upped and quit it all. He threw all of it out into the backyard and burned it all – except for one piece of 2x4 lumber. After that, he would spend his days out in the garage, sipping whiskey, and staring at one, specific piece of wood – a lone piece of 2x4.
One Saturday, his wife, Nelda, went out to the garage looking for him. “Dinner time!” she’d yelled. She opened the garage door, and he wasn’t there. Just that darn piece of wood which Mr. Mayfield was always staring at. Poor Nelda never saw her husband again, but she kept that piece of wood close for the rest of her life. 
To whoever would listen, she would tell this story that the wood took her husband’s spirit, and this burnt image in the lumber, WAS her husband! “Are you sure that’s a person?” men who beheld the board would ask. She’d reply, “Yes! That’s my husband. His hand’s in the air, shouting hallelujah!”
After Nelda passed away, the piece of wood she cherished for her remaining years was given to a luthier, who had a dream of taking that piece of 2x4, and building it into a lap steel guitar. It’s a simple instrument: simple bolts are installed where nuts and bridges should be. It does have an alnico pickup, its origins are unknown. Six, maybe seven, coats of Tung Oil covers the lap steel, imprisoning the picture, and soul, of Mr. Mayfield.
Is he really in there?
I guess that is up to you to decide.
(lol. I hope the story made you smile. I don't think my 2x4 lap steel is as interesting as some of yours posted...but I still wanted to put mine up here. Thanks for reading and have a good one!) 

3string, lap, or standup. Hand carved scroll. 2x4 resaw from my garage frame (no i didnt remove from frame, lol was a peice in the loft left over).. My house and garage are built from lumber milled from trees that existed on the property when it was built. So this is a 70 year old 2x4. Tuners and pick up from an old strat i use for parts.There is a 3/4 thick strip of Maple down the fret board that goes from nut to bridge (offset to the right side for ease of playing).. The nut and bridge are carved from a bar of aluminum , the electronics panel is from the same 2x4, i hollowed it out, and used an old license plate for a cover. Its very loud !, fun to play


just incase you need some more ideas of inspiration....

As part of that Ukulele underground 2 by 4 challenge I built two Ukes I kind of like from a standard 8 foot 2 by 4 building stud from Bunnies (officially Bunnings- our Australian big box hardware store). A Stora Enso Baltic pine -probably a European red pine but completely unlabeled as to actual species. When I bought it, it was so green it made my car smell like fresh cut Christmas tree.

This reminds me - I have the trunk from the year before last's Christmas tree curing in my shed......

A medieval like hand carved Lute like uke perfect if your area has more medieval fairs than CBG or blues fests.

I shaped that back with a hatchet. 

The next one was a bit more rock and roll with a Gibson Flying V inspired shape

Because the Uke was a paternity leave present the headstock had a birth year coin


Here are the vids


Hope you enjoy.

Built this Beast a few years back, the 4 X 2 unknown type of Australian Hardwood was the top one of my Saw Stool’s, originally built by me from off cuts scrounged from various building sites I worked on in my former life in the Building Trade, the 4 X 2 was water blasted with a Gerni and Treated with a mixture of Linseed Oil & Turps, the Bridge Bottle was found on an old country Rubbish Dump, and shows its age by the effects of UV from the Sun, the Piano Tuners are from my trusty old recycled Piano, as is the .045PS Piano Wire String, the Bone Nut probably came a previous Dinner?, the Scale is 700mm/27.559”, and its’ tuned around A/G, a Chinese Ebay Single Coil Pickup is hardwired to the Jack, and the whole build cost me the princely sum of $6.65AUS/4.94USD.

Image may contain: plant and outdoor

Image may contain: outdoor

Tenor ukulele built from an 8' 2x4. All wooden parts are from the 2x4 except the ebony truss hidden in the neck.

This uke is pure Outlaw Lutherie. No side bending, no molds, no fancy stuff at all. I thought I'd replace the nut and saddle with bone after the competition at UU, but it sounds so good that I haven't bothered. The body is a scaled-down Status bass design.

Made some of these years ago - Had more fun designing the fret boards than making them - Fun to play - Applied the numbers to frets and transposed a few songs and posted them so people who had NO idea about reading notes could play some songs ASAP!! Got more than a few compliments...Egos must be fed REGULARLY!! Especially music and inventors egos!! - Best of luck to ALL!!!!

2by4 plank with kitchen hinge for bridge and plastic washers. To keep hing stationary. I used a hair clippers coil for pick up and mounted it above string.then I used another kitchen​ hing to mount eye bolt to make a tuner and put washer spacer to make tuning easyer.then I use price of wood to steady string.


The Essential Pages

New to Cigar Box Nation?How to Play Cigar Box GuitarsFree Plans & How to Build Cigar Box GuitarsCigar Box Guitar Building BasicsCigar Box Guitar Parts Store

Site Sponsor

Recommended Links & Resources


Fret dot recommendation

Started by Douglas Eric Marsalis in Performances, How to Play, Lessons, Concerts. Last reply by Brendan deVallance 16 hours ago. 29 Replies

My first build

Started by Calvin Harris in Building Secrets, Tips, Advice, Discussion. Last reply by Korrigan on Tuesday. 3 Replies

Sting Issues

Started by Roland Wood in Building Secrets, Tips, Advice, Discussion. Last reply by Paul Craig on Sunday. 11 Replies

Blog Posts

Do you listen to the box?

Posted by Fred Bike on January 18, 2018 at 10:42pm 0 Comments

Tinbox stickdulcimer

Posted by Kim Österberg on January 18, 2018 at 3:25pm 1 Comment

Just not quite right!?

Posted by David on January 17, 2018 at 10:02am 2 Comments


Posted by Chuck Numbers on January 15, 2018 at 9:46pm 1 Comment

Latest Activity

Downtown Vinnie commented on Erasmo Coco's video

Tricone Tube Screamer Blues - Backslider Guitars

"Maddog,You just coined my next song title..thankkkkkk you!!!"
3 hours ago
the anonymous pick commented on Uncle John's video

Winter Blows

"One good thing about snow is .... without any work , your lawn still looks as good as the neighbors…"
4 hours ago
Maddog commented on Erasmo Coco's video

Tricone Tube Screamer Blues - Backslider Guitars

"Ice is still going south on the river E :-)"
4 hours ago
Erasmo Coco commented on Erasmo Coco's video

Tricone Tube Screamer Blues - Backslider Guitars

"Thanks Vinnie !  My motto a Drive and a Delay."
4 hours ago
Taffy Evans replied to Taffy Evans's discussion Shop/homemade tools and & Jigs
"Yes they do that what I use. Taff"
4 hours ago
Taffy Evans posted a discussion

My next CBG build

Hi, I pulled this box out of a bunch of cigar boxes my wife and daughter bought me, as it shows…See More
4 hours ago
Richard Sundberg commented on Richard Sundberg's video

Two Guys With Heads Return With Sweatshirts Playing Their “G” String

"Enough to make you want to scream...I tell ya! I filmed horsetails and didn’t know it Vinnie!…"
4 hours ago
Paul Slocum commented on Richard Dean's photo

Arturo Fuente 3 string

"Awesome,awesome, awesome. really like all  the detail."
5 hours ago
Paul Slocum liked Richard Dean's photo
5 hours ago
Paul Slocum liked Richard Dean's photo
5 hours ago
Downtown Vinnie commented on Erasmo Coco's video

Tricone Tube Screamer Blues - Backslider Guitars

"Tasty like cake.Love that setup.Smokin playin as usual."
5 hours ago
Downtown Vinnie commented on Uncle John's video

Winter Blows

"Now what was the message here.I'm sorry I must've missed it.Prob that rainy 50…"
5 hours ago



© 2018   Created by Ben "C. B. Gitty" Baker.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service