I call these green garbage grabbers. They are easily made from PVC pipe, recycled banding, duct tape and a rubber band.
I sit on the board of directors for a non-profit called ALPAR (Alaskans for Litter Prevention and Recycling) and help out with various commmunity clean up programs. I came up with the design a few years ago and made several dozen green grabbers for people to use at these events. They make a good project for a Scout Troop or the like.
They work great and can be used to pick up trash and many other objects. The video in step 5 shows me picking up a piece of scrap banding, a helium cylinder and a can of olives.
Follow the instructable steps or open the Word file for more detailed instructions.
Step 1: Materials & Tools needed
48" recycled banding strap (1/2" or 5/8")
PVC pipe 36" long (1/2" or 3/4")
PVC elbow (1/2" or 3/4")
small sheet metal screw
Visit the dumpster of a local lumber yard or pretty much any place that gets stuff on pallets for the banding. To make this instructable I bought a 10 foot piece of 1/2 inch PVC pipe that had a kink for a dime at Home Depot and a bag of 10 PVC elbows for $1.90. You should be able to build at least 3 garbage grabbers from one piece of pipe. Everything else can be scrounged and recycled from around the garage or house.
Rotary tool with cutoff wheel
Aviation snips or tin snips
Duct tape (it is a tool you know!) I found the roll in the picture at a campground last summer, so it is recycled too.
Use the bigger banding and pipe for a heavy duty model. The one shown in step 5 is a 1/2 inch model.