Lego Violin

This is a full-sized playable violin. Apart from the four strings, the violin and bow are made entirely from unmodified Lego. No glue was used and no cutting or customisation of any sort performed on the Lego pieces. The aim was to get as close as possible in both function and form to the standard Stradivarius pattern violin whilst working within these bounds. The limitations of Lego as a building material for luthierie necessitate some interesting deviations from that standard pattern. The fingerboard is not tapered and consequently the head is very wide. The head is made larger still by the very large tuning gears. Smaller sized gears do not have the leverage to tension the strings – the plastic flexes and they slip. Also, the standard tapered pegs don’t seem to be possible in Lego. There is a structural backbone which helps anchor the neck and tailpiece joints and to keep the body straight. And further structural beams triangulate the neck joint to reduce flexing and stabilize the tuning. It is fitted with normal violin strings and can be tuned up to standard pitch.

The colour scheme is inspired by classic Space Lego of the 1980s.

Lego Violin and Bow
Unmodified Lego, violin strings
645 x 207 x 135mm (violin)
551 x 47 x 17mm (bow)

Lego Violin 2020
Lego Violin 2020
Lego Violin 2020
Lego Violin 2020
Lego Violin 2020 head detail

Here is a video tour and demonstration of the Lego violin:

Build documentation.

There is also a hybrid bow which incorporates a length of horse hair embedded at each end in customized Lego components. The customised parts are highlighted in red to distinguish them from everything else, which is normal unmodified Lego. This bow can make a more pleasant tone – the rigid pure Lego bow is prone to bouncing and tends to produce harsh overtones.

Hybrid Lego Violin Bow
Lego, horse hair, glue
587 x 143 x 39mm

Lego Violin 2020 (Hybrid Bow)

Lego Violin (1999)

This earlier Lego violin was made with the exact opposite principals of construction to the 2020 violin. The Lego is glued, cut, carved and worked much as if it were wood.

Lego Violin and Bow
Lego, glue, violin strings, horse hair

Lego Violin 1999

Construction in progress.

Lego Violin 1999 (build documentation)