Digital Fabrication and Design of Musical Instruments


This research considers the controversy of modern acoustic instruments, and explores the use of Additive Manufacturing (AM) to design and fabrication of acoustic instruments.

The 3D Printed Flute

Credits: Amit Zoran

The goal here was to create a flute using 3D printing technologies – a flute that is compatible with a traditional concert flute, both acoustically and ergonomically. This flute is composed from several materials - a rigid material was selected for the flute’s body, a different one for the mouthpiece, and a soft material for sealing the air properly. Only springs were added manually later.

This project was fabricated with the Objet Connex machine, which can print multiple materials in a single build. The overall process took around 15 hours, creating 4 separate parts that then were assembled to a working instrument. The first step of the process started with a CAD software design, building a digital model of the flute in the computer, and totally re-designing its mechanism to so no assembly will be needed after print, and to fit the abilities of the 3d printer. Then, the final design was sent to the Connex machine, which simultaneous jets of multiple model materials to create composite Digital Materials™ on the fly.


Zoran, Amit. 2011. “The 3D Printed Flute: Digital Fabrication and Design of Musical Instruments”. Journal of New Music Research (JNMR), volume 40, issue 4, December 2011, pages 379-387.  PDF

CAD File (Rhino):


Amit S Zoran

zoran at cs dot huji dot ac dot il

Office A530, Rothberg Family Buildings, The Edmond J. Safra Campus

91904 Jerusalem, Israel

Amit Zoran


      Research      Lab and Students      Design and Research Projects      Publications      Teaching      Videos