The Crackpot Inventor, Bryan Mumford

The inventor, Bryan Mumford is known for some crazy inventions. That’s not how he started out though.  Originally, in the 1970’s Mumford made instruments, string instruments that is.  He made  Mountain Dulcimers, hammered Dulcimers, Hummels, Guitars, Salterios, Psalteries, Santirs, and and the non-string instruement.  The Amazing Puny Tune Miniature Flute.  The instruments were very popular with musicans such as Donovan, Joni Mitchell and others.

In 1978 , Mr Mumford went into the  computer business after purchasing a computer. Mumford Micro Systems was formed to produce and distribute  his original software and hardware. Some of his early products included tools for the Radio Shack TRs-80. In the early 1980s Mumford Micro Systems  specialized in the interface between personal computers and pre-PostScript phototypesetters. Typesetter interface programs included PostCode, PS-Translator , and Macintize. In the 90’s he moved to inventions that made use of  miniature microprocessors  for sound effects, motion, measurement and control.

But the other things this inventor, (known as Crackpot inventor even) wa sto create some fun and interesting things. I want to talk about those things. The computer things are interesting, I think the following inventors are interestinger ( I know not a word, but it should be).

The Amazing Puny Tune

The Amazing Puny Tune Miniature Flute

The Amazing Puny Tune Miniature Flute

The first one has already been mentioned. The Amazing Puny Tune is a small 4-holed whistle that can play an accurate musical scale of 13 notes.   While the Puny Tune is no longer for sale ,but they were originally made out of maple, cherry or walnut.  There was a cord to wear around your neck “while hiking or walking about town”. The small size is 4.5″ long, the large size is 6″ long. 

The Mystery Box

The Mystery Box

The Mystery Box



The Mystery Box is a cherry wood box that is placed on a pedestal made of spruce. the inside is lined with black velvet and the lid is open. Until you get too close. ^ feet is too close. The box will close it lid and will not open up no matter how hard you try to get it to open.  If you back off the box will open up just a little bit, maybe a few inches. If you approach it will close up again. However, if you back away and after some time if the box “feels safe” it will open up again. Bryan Mumford says it is a special box and there is something special in it but he wont tell you what it is.



The Frog Rock

Ever wish you had the outside inside? We can bring plants in, we can open windows. Bird sounds are easy to hear

Frog Rock

Frog Rock


Frog Planter

but what about true ambiance of the outside and bring the sounds of insects and frogs. Yes you need the Frog Rock. The frog is a natural sandstone boulder that has been hallowed out. inside is circuitry and light sensors. The rock during the daylight will intermittently make a sound of the Pacific Tree Frog. After dark it will make sounds of a pond frog or sometimes the sound of crickets. The rock decides what sounds it makes. According to the inventor hallowing out rocks is hard work so he also made a Frog Planter that does the same as the Frog Rock

 The Harminium



The Harminium is a tiny hand-held electronic musical instrument. It mimics the  Indian instrument known as the harmonium. The instrument is held in the left hand and played with the right. The keyboard is composed of three keys on top and played with the first three fingers. The instrument  is made from  Koa with a red cedar face and ebony keys.  A panel on the bottom can be removed to install a 9 volt battery, so the instrument is portable. If you want it has a jack so you can plug it into a larger amplifier for miniature, ear shattering performances.


2 thoughts on “The Crackpot Inventor, Bryan Mumford”

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    1. T Whitaker - July 6, 2015 12:58 pm

      thank you

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