Instructables
Picture of Coffee Cup Papermaking
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Making very cool paper can be actually quite easy. This instructable shows a method I have found to work very well, even for young children or people who have never done anything like making paper.

If you happen to be on Kauai, come by Art Night in Hanapepe. Every Friday night I run a free community art project there, making paper out of all natural fibers collected from the area. You can learn more about that at http://radiantkauai.org

Since not everyone has a hau bush or banana plants in their backyard, we'll make our paper using a disposable paper coffee cup as source material.


You'll need the following:

Materials:
Paper coffee cup
Two plastic tubs with relatively flush bottoms (dish tubs work well)
Chicken wire or metal mesh,
Window screen, the non-metal kind
Waterproof foil tape, or duct tape in a pinch
two pieces of felt, or a towel or sheet

Tools:
Blender
Pot
Utility Knife
Metal Snips
 
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Step 1: Fiberize your cup

Picture of Fiberize your cup
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Get a nice sized pot of water heating up. Tear your coffee cup into little bits--the littler the better, but don't use scissors, you want a nice rough edge to soak up the water. I used the cardboard ring and all, to add a little color to my paper.

Let that boil away until all the paper is good and juicy, at least half an hour or so. Alternatively, save energy and let the bits soak overnight instead of boiling.

While that's going, it's time to make our paper mold!
winventory11 months ago
This article well explains how to recycle paper cup with illustrated steps. In industries other proper recycling and manufacturing methods will also be followed.
http://www.reeldiecuttingmachine.com/paper-cup-machine.php
buddytym2 years ago
Could you go over that drill rig? Is it a food processing bit on there?
taylooooor (author)  buddytym2 years ago
It's a special drill bit designed for stirring buckets of paint. They're dirt cheap. I got this one at ACE, I'm sure you could find one there or at any of the big box stores. They work well for all kinds of stuff in the kitchen, just make sure its food safe if you're gonna be using it on edibles.
fantastic. Thanks brotha-man!
nas duben4 years ago
 When you run this as a workshop, how do you facilitate drying the paper in time for people to bring their paper home? (Or more likely, how do you have them safely transport their still-wet paper?)
taylooooor (author)  nas duben2 years ago
Wow, took me a while to respond to this one. Sorry about that.

There's a couple ways you can handle this--one would be to give the kids a piece of felt folded over with their still-damp paper inside. Felt is really cheap if bought in big sections.

Another thing I like to do is "Make a page to take a page," the kids get to choose a page some one else made, and make a page for someone else to receive in the future.

Alternatively, the paper can be dried more quickly in an oven, but it gets a stiffness and brittle texture that I don't like as much as what you get from air-dried paper.
Very nice and inspirational! Thanks for sharing your knowledge.
When I found out about the coffee cup contest this was one of the things tha I thought of doing. Instead I got a second job. Glad to see that you did this though. You have my vote!
taylooooor (author)  foothillfrontier4 years ago
That's what I was supposed to be doing!
yoyology4 years ago
Count my vote for the Garbage Disposal->Hollander Beater instructable.  I really want to see that!
taylooooor (author)  yoyology4 years ago
It's actually pretty simple! I need to make it prettier and iron out a couple kinks but that's on the to-do list this week anyhow. As I prep the fiber for this week's paper project I'll take some photos and put something together. Thanks for the motivation!
localtalent4 years ago
 Great!  Did the plastic coating on the inside of the cups get in the way of making the paper at all?
taylooooor (author)  localtalent4 years ago
Nope! I was worried about it but it ended up breaking up quite nicely. There are a few little chunks visible but it adds to the quality to me, since this really is about a transformative deconstruction of the paper coffee cup.

I wish you could feel the paper, it has a lovely soft quality. There are a couple little tissue-paper strips of plastic visible on the surface, you can really only see it when the light is reflecting off them. Also, peeling the strips off leaves a nice little dent texture. I tried to get a picture for you.

Also, since it was on the camera, a stack of other papers made using the same technique. These are the sheets made by people in the community at my paper making project last Friday.
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