Introduction: Hanging Sprout Jars -- Improved
My old hanging sprout jar design included handles that were extensions of the same wire that wraps around and holds the jars. Sometimes the jar has to be mouth up, for soaking seeds, and sometimes mouth down for draining. The handles flexed and the wire eventually broke.
This new design has separate handles that hook on to either the top or the bottom of the jar. The wire for the handles is a little thicker, and since there is no flexing of the material I expect to never have problems with them breaking.
This new design also has a little water catch attached to the jar mouth, to catch drainage drips. The jars are big pickle jars, and the water catch is a nut container lid.
I also use the jars, in the mouth-up position for making rejuvelac. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rejuvelac
Step 1: Bending the Wire Cradle
I used two pieces of galvanized tie wire 7 ft. long to make the cradle that holds the jar.
Right under the mouth of the jar, there is a neck area which provides a secure place to tie onto with the wire. The jar can't escape once it is held around the neck.
Find the midpoint of the first wire wrap it around the neck of the jar and twist the wire ends around each other several times. Repeat with the other wire, putting the twists at the opposite side of the jar.
Take one wire from each pair at either side and join them by twisting. Take the remaining two wires and twist them together at the opposite side of the jar.
Repeat that process again further down the jar.
Turn the jar upside-down. Take the paired wires from both sides and join them together over the bottom of the jar as shown. Pull them tight as you twist and pinch them. Cut off the excess wire.
The jar is now securely held by the wire cradle.
The jar handle, which will be made next, has two hooks that can grab onto the wire cradle either at the top, or at the bottom of the jar.
Step 2: The Wire Handle
Use a little heavier wire to bend the handle. It's easy to make. It works either on the top or the bottom of the jar for hanging it in either position.
Step 3: The Screen
Obviously, you need a screen, or other mesh material such as cheese cloth, or mosquito screen over the mouth of the jar to hold the contents in when the jar hangs upside-down.
I made mine out of stainless steel screen, cutting the original jar lids to hold the screen in place. I cut the lids with a tool called a nibbler. You drill a hole, stick the head of the nibbler through the hole and just nibble away at the metal.
It is simpler to use the traditional method of holding cheese cloth or mosquito screen over the mouth of the jar with either string or a strong rubber band.
Step 4: The Drip Catcher
The drip catcher is a plastic jar lid a little larger than the mouth of the jar. To keep it in place, I used a little piece of spongy rubber floor mat material that just clips onto the edge of the plastic lid. It compresses a little and friction holds it in place.
There is still a little air flow that gets into the jar. I let the jars drain for a while over the sink to get most of the water out before I put the drip catchers on and put them in their regular hanging location. The drip catchers help keep the floor cleaner, since algae can grow on the floor where the water falls.