2017 "Kick The Can" Build-Off contest - Canjos, Tin Can Guitars

"Come on, brothers and sisters, KICK OUT THE CANS!"  

For our final build-off contest of 2017, we're looking for your best canjos, cookie tin banjos and any other playable stringed instrument made from discarded metal containers.  It can have one string wired to a tin can or it could be a full size harp made from an outdoor propane tank!  The more creative, the better.

Here's the details:

Contest runs Nov. 16 - Dec. 20, 2017

Prizes:  $100 C. B. Gitty Gift Certificate for 1st place, $50 Gitty gift certificate for second and $25 gift certificate for third.

Judges:  Shane Speal, Ben "Gitty," Glenn Watt and Farley Andresen

How to Enter:

1.  In the comments section below, post up to three (3) photos and one (1) video of your entry.

2.  Add a one (1) paragraph description with your photo entry.

3.  Shake, stir, repeat.  (Yes, you can submit more than one entry!)

4.  Submissions that won previous Cigar Box Nation contests are ineligible.  

Need inspiration?  Here's Wesseh to show you how it's done...

Note:  This is the official contest entry page.  Do not use this page to post comments about other submissions.

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This was my first build and it fits the theme exactly. My daughter-in-law gave me a tin of toffee for Christmas and as soon as it was empty, I knew I had to make a CBG with it. Well, a CTU, actually  (Candy Tin Ukulele).

The neck is walnut, from a bookshelf I dismantled, with a walnut nut. Fingerboard is oak, which was some leftover trim strip from a kitchen remodeling project. Fingerboard is bound with walnut wit a walnut nut. (!) Scale length is 15", tuned Gcea low to high. The neck is attached to the tin with a heel block and a 5/16" bolt. Tuners are from an old Gibson guitar; somebody dropped it and bent one of them, so I replaced them and kept the old ones to use here. I bought a classical guitar bridge, an extravagance I later realized was unnecessary. The bracing is 1/2" aluminum L-angle, attached from the top with button-head screws.

In person it sounds a bit ... tinny ... but it records great -- sounds just like a "real" uke.

I play it in the intro to my CBG Halloween contribution.

I Put A Spell On You, Busyhands Slim and Abusing the Muse.


Hey CBN Folks,

i bult this little Uke from a tin lunch box for my 3yr old granddaughter. She loves it and is learning how to make music with it. It even has a piezo pickup.

Thomas Salas

Austin, TX.

This is my one string diddly bow and the 6th instrument I've made.
I kept it very rough and ready and knocked it up in under an hour. Luckily I had an old painted can lying around which someone had painted a 'P' on (Petrol?) Painted an old broom handle, nut and bolt for the bridge and a jubilee clip for the nut. Looks nice with my hacked 'Hacker' radio amp. As you can tell from the video clip my playing skills are as scratchy as my building skills, but it was fun!


Not sure if I missed the deadline, but here is the first CrocBite Hamtar ever made. This was a custom build for Reverend Peyton, who was extremely pleased to get this after a two year wait... those old ham cans aren't easy to come by! It features a vintage ham can, figured walnut neck, curly katalox fretboard, steel tailpiece by Old Lowe, and an Original Flatpup humbucker. This thing was tuned to Rev's strange three string tuning, and really wails!


The back is redwood, with the original plastic top over it from the can. 

Here is my entry for the kick the can contest. It is made from 2 ash can lids. An ash can is a large pale with a lid like a trash can. We use them to remove ashes from the fireplace. I was going to call it my kick your ash can jo, but that seemed a bit long. I'm calling it my Ash Kicker. One of the challenging things about this build was that the lids dome upwards, making the neck angle quite a challenge.


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