But then I began working with dozens of schools with very limited budgets. Orff instruments weren't an option; handbells or ukuleles - not a chance. Yet, I still needed to train teachers and their students how to play melodies and create ostinatos and chord accompaniments in a hands-on, enjoyable way. Happily, I discovered the Octavator Caps, which (1) greatly enhance the BW tone, (2) drop the pitch an octave, and (3) enable tapping the capped end on a soft surface such as the heel of the hand or carpeted floor. And I found that kneading the tubes into a round, smooth shape (and avoiding squishing them in storage) helped improve intonation.
I started experimenting with techniques I've used with resonator bells and handbells. (I'd used a color-coded system of my own for 20 years, so I simply tweaked it to match BWs.) Another 'booming' surprise has been how well my Color-Chord-inated song collections have been received by many teachers. (See my TPT listings at http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Musical-Magic.)
Anyway, after seeing these cRaZy TuBeS work well in so many situations, I must admit I'm a fan! They have enabled thousands of students in my district to engage in, explore and create music, and I've discovered some useful integrations too. (I mentor elementary classroom teachers as well as music teachers.)