Inspired by 16th century instruments, mechanical model maker UGears has created what it's calling the gem of its collection, a self assembly hurdy gurdy kit launched on Kickstarter that should appeal to wooden puzzle fans and musicians alike.
A hurdy gurdy sounds when a spinning rosined wheel comes into contact with strings running from body to neck in a similar fashion to a violinist bows a fiddle. All strings are usually sounded simultaneously, and the pitch of one or more changed by pushing buttons on the "neck" part of the instrument. The whole experience is delightfully mechanical, and in skilled hands can sound amazing.
You don't need to be a master to make music though, and UGears says its hurdy gurdy build kit should result in a 16th century-styled instrument that will sound as good as it looks. The kit comes as a number of ply boards, with patterned components ready to be pushed out and assembled. These are just snapped together in accordance with detailed step-by-step assembly instructions – no need for glue or special tools.