Why do bell plates ring?

Australian Acoustical Society
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Acoustics Australia, 2003, 31 (2), pp. 55 - 61
Issue Date:
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Bell plates are polygonal plates which, when held in the hand and struck with a beater, produce an initial transient followed by a sustained, pure tone. The presence of the sustained tone depends sensitively on the shape. This paper addresses the question: why does a particular shape ring so well, while slightly different shapes do not? We show that, in the standard ringing shape, the nodal lines of one of the lowest modes of vibration fuse in the handle to produce a region that exerts neither vibrational force nor torque on the hand, and therefore does not transfer vibrational energy to the hand.
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