Ank Creative makes miniature cars out of plastic. We’ve seen the DeLorean they made from a cigarette lighter, now here’s another movie-inspired ride. This time we’ve got a recreation of the Batmobile from Tim Burton’s Batman, carved from black plastic scrounged from a speaker cabinet and a few other bits and bobs.
Aluminum is one of the most readily recyclable materials used in consumer goods. In this brief video from recycling crusader Soda Can Steve, he shows what it looks like when a truck dumps 400,000 aluminum cans at the recycling center. Steve’s TikTok channel is filled with satisfying videos of the recycling process.
Coffee grounds aren’t easy to dispose of in an eco-friendly way. A startup in Kyiv, Ukraine, came up with a clever use for the waste – eyeglass frames. Business Insider shows us how OCHIS combine the grounds with plant oils and other sustainable elements, presses them until solid, then cuts them into eyeglass parts.
Looking for a fun Halloween decoration that encourages recycling? Off the Grid Makes shows us how you can transform plastic milk bottles into plastic skulls. You’ll need a heat gun and a resin skull to mold the plastic around, but then the only limit is time and how many milk jugs you have lying around.
Since the start of the pandemic, the world has been using huge amounts of personal protective equipment. The Brothers Make teamed up with recycler ReWorked to see what they could do with the plastic found in disposable face masks. They melted and extruded the resulting polypropylene granules into the parts for a park bench.
Makers Simone Giertz and Laura Kampf teamed up to release Build Dice – a fun gift item to inspire creativity through randomization. After giving the dice a few rolls, they decided to build a chair by recycling an old satellite dish. They cut and folded the metal to form a seat, then gave it hardwood arms and legs.
In 2020, more than 120 billion pieces of cardboard were used to pack and ship items in the U.S. alone. It’s also one of the world’s most successfully recycled materials. New Mind digs into the history, science, and success of the ubiquitous corrugated paper material.
We always enjoy seeing craftspeople turn one kind of object into another. Maker Jimmy Diresta shows off his blacksmithing skills by melting down a steel crowbar in his forge, hammering it into the shape of a bowie knife, and crafting a wood and brass handle. He only used about a third of the metal, so he could probably make another.
Builder Tim Sway dusted off an old drum kit he found in the trash and gave it a whole new life. What makes these drums really special is that he crafted their bodies by recycling hollow core closet doors. He then reused the old hardware and added new Remo drumheads. Tim has previously made guitars from a similar material.
We love the rainbow gradients on these mid-century modern cabinets built by Ben from Woby Design. He created the curve-fitting sliding doors by gluing strips of colorful skate decks to a fabric backing. This isn’t the first time we’ve seen him make unique furniture from used skate decks.
When is a fire extinguisher not a fire extinguisher? When it’s designed to stoke a flame instead of putting it out. Ollari’s took an empty old fire extinguisher, polished off its paint, and sliced it down the middle – turning its bottom half into a grill and its top half into its lid. The chainlink hinges are a clever design touch.
2-liter bottles are pretty good at holding air, so they work well as floatation devices. Maker Chris Notap took this idea to the next level by gluing together 280 of plastic soda bottles with silicone sealer, transforming them into a totally legitimate raft. We wonder if there’s a limit to how large a raft you could make this way.
If you happen to drive through Sumpter, Wisconsin, you might come across this incredible work of art built in the 1980s by Tom Every. He created the enormous sculpture from more than 300 tons of scrap metal. Its fantastical structures imagined the launch of its creator into the heavens on a beam of lightning.
If you’ve visited a Costco lately, you might have seen some chairs made from Polywood, a durable material produced by chopping up and melting down plastic, then extruding it into a weight-bearing and weatherproof lumber for making furniture. Popular Mechanics takes us inside the Polywood factory to see how they do it.
We always enjoy watching rusty metal objects being reworked into new ones. In this satisfying blacksmithing video from Faraway Forge, they start off with a big old industrial hook, get it fiery hot, and hammer it into a bar shape. From there, it takes huge amounts of handwork to shape and hone it into a blade for a katana.
Random Hands pulled off one of the most dramatic transformations of an object that we’ve seen. They started off with a rusty old industrial drill bit, heated it up in a forge, and reworked it into a pointy Japanese kunai. It took a whole lot of work to get it into the right shape, then they polished and finished it with a 24K gold plating.
Nike’s innovative sneakers are designed to be taken apart. Their interlocking, modular design means their materials can be easily separated for recycling when they reach the end of their useful life. The ISPA Link features earthy tones and bumpy sole pads, while the ISPA Link Axis is bold and colorful with a translucent white outsole.
There are lots of tutorials how to recycle paper to create handmade paper. XYZAidan shows how the pulp extracted from cardboard can also be molded into sturdy 3D objects. The resulting pieces are reminiscent of egg crates or Starbucks drink trays. You can download his 3D printable mold designs on Thingiverse.
Artist Blake McFarland has wowed us with his incredible animal sculptures. This time, he created a life-like sculpture of a bald eagle out of bicycle tire feathers wrapped around a metal frame and a foam body. The finished bird has an impressive 6-foot wingspan and an awesome beak and talons made from steel.
Random Hands dug into their toolbox in search of the right screwdriver – not for loosening screws, but for remaking into a flashy gold-plated bolt-action pen. Rather than melting down the driver’s shaft, they drilled out its solid center, making way for the pen’s refill and mechanism, then followed that with texturing and plating.
TheCrafsMan SteadyCraftin starts off this video with a lesson on injection molding and the different kinds of plastics which can be recycled. He then proceeds to show us how to melt down some polypropylene pill bottles, then molds them into a bunch of adorable little orange robots.
Once a car is no longer drivable, it heads to the junkyard. But before it ends up on the scrap heap, machines like the Powerhand VRS are used to rip apart the car to separate materials, maximizing recyclability of components. It looks like a great way to work out aggression too.
It’s a sad story we’ve heard before – our oceans are filled with discarded plastic that is destroying fragile ecosystems. To do his small part to help, Burls Art teamed up with 4Ocean who recovers and cleans plastic from the water. He then melted down the plastic chips and formed it into the body of a colorful electric guitar.
Even though we upgrade or replace our gadgets and computers regularly, only a small portion of old electronics ever get recycled. Business Insider takes us inside of Sims Lifecycle Services to show how they reuse, repurpose, and recycle up to 6-million pounds of e-waste every month.
More and more, manufacturers are thinking about ways to reuse and recycle their products once their useful life is over. But mannequins are made from fiberglass, which makes them difficult to recycle. Tom Scott visited Mannakin, a UK outfit who refurbishes and reuse these figures instead of letting them clog up landfills.
We throw out a whole lot of plastic, and very little of it gets recycled. Brothers Make shows us how they used ordinary kitchen appliances to melt milk bottle caps and other plastic bits to create a colorful and functional cutting board. They say the HDPE plastic they used is food-safe.