Introduction: Ladder in a Bottle Trick

Picture of Ladder in a Bottle Trick

In my country, if you're invited to take a liqueur it is quite usual that you would bring in a bottle like this. When I first saw was about 12 years old, and did not hesitate a second to figure out the trick to do it myself. In this case I used a bottle of Jack Daniels, has dimensions and perfect shapes for this. Check out the Youtube video.

What You'll Need:

• Woodworking tools
• Jack Daniels bottle
• 2x stringers 140x8x4mm
• 5x steps 50mm long (4mm diameter)

Step 1: Construction

Picture of Construction

First I clean the bottle, for this I leave in hot water about two hours, then cut all the wood pieces. The wood should be odorless and tasteless, not flavor the liquor or whatever you enter in the bottle. Better to use a ligth wood, such as spruce or pine, not use glue, to avoid contamination.

Sanded all the pieces and assemble the ladder, introduce it in boiling water ten minutes and then bend the wood to put in the bottle. Once inside, I used a stick or screwdriver to give back to form.

Step 2: Video Construction

In this video you'll see all the steps, be careful with liquor!

Youtube video


ttemple2 made it! (author)2015-12-31

I got it! Fun and rewarding project. Make it easier by buying your square and round dowels at your local home improvement or hobby shop. Thanks for uploading Paoson.

Paoson Woodwork (author)ttemple22016-01-02

amazing! you has been perfect! thanks for sharing

ttemple2 (author)2015-11-13

Does is matter if wood is kiln dried?

Paoson Woodwork (author)ttemple22015-11-23

should work, you tried?

ttemple2 (author)Paoson Woodwork2015-11-27

Not yet. First attempt broke when folding. Read online that kiln dried was not good for bending. I'll try again.

ortega18paul (author)2015-11-07

That is so cool!

thanks Ortega!

TheGeekPub (author)2015-10-19

Hey. That's pretty sweet!


Ethereo made it! (author)2015-10-19

A very funny and interesting proyect.

Thanks !!!

Paoson Woodwork (author)Ethereo2015-10-19

you has been perfect, congratulations!

dustcloud (author)2015-10-09

No problem.I will use Oak again for the legs (need that for flavoring the whiskey)then use pine for the cross pieces.
Thanks for the Idea.I'll get it right eventually :)

dustcloud (author)2015-10-09

I used oak from a wine barrel but the cross pieces all broke when I bent it after boiling for about twenty minutes.

Sorry to hear that. You should use light wood as I said in the tutorial.

milesfromneihu (author)2015-10-06

I'd like to see a picture of the ladder when bent, just as it is being inserted into the bottle.

I'm sorry, I did not had time to do it, but you can see it better on the video link!

Oh. That was the problem. I had not watched the video. It looks good in the video. Quite clear. Thanks for the tip.

FlorinJ (author)2015-10-06

Pine and spruce are highly resinous woods, there's little chance they won't at least slightly flavor the liquor, IMO. I'd go with a hardwood that I know flavors the liquor, but in a good way. Two woods that you probably won't find to buy, but which are used around where I live specifically to color/flavor home-distilled plum brandy are mulberry and plum. (Then again, if you like gin or ouzo, you'd probably find a bit of resin smell in your liquor enjoyable.)

Also, from my (very limited) experience with hardwood I'd expect it to be less springy when cooked for bending, with a lower risk of breaking - I work with light wood such as pine most of the time, and I find it somewhat difficult to bend. (I usually slice it into thin stripes, keep them in water overnight, then steam-cook them for an hour or two, and only then bend them and glue them together and tighten them in a mold, and even then it sometimes doesn't bend well.)

Paoson Woodwork (author)FlorinJ2015-10-07

Thank you for sharing your experience! wood to boil remove any remaining resin, but if you're adding flavor liquor, then you can use other types of wood, which you mention sound great!

I used softwoods for this life and I had no problems when bending, but you can try different woods, of course!

GlendonG (author)2015-10-02

I like it ! But I think I'll make one and just leave it lying around ...

"I caught a leprechaun , I did !"

"Really ?"

"Aye ! Caught 'im and stuffed 'im in a bottle ."

"So then , where is he ?"

"He's right over here on my ... Aw Crap ! He's escaped !"

ladybgood (author)GlendonG2015-10-06


Paoson Woodwork (author)GlendonG2015-10-02

jajaja, very friendly! thanks, you have to do it!

garg11 (author)2015-10-06

So Cool! I have to finish my Jack Daniel's first, then will make one.

Paoson Woodwork (author)garg112015-10-06

Do not hurry, slowly with the Jack Daniel's! :D thanks

alexkirlian (author)2015-10-05

So cool!!!!


Captain Thiele (author)2015-10-04

So cool!

Njschmaus (author)2015-10-03

This is awesome, i gotta make one now!


Kafukai (author)2015-10-04

This is so cool!

Try to color the water with some food coloring.

Paoson Woodwork (author)Kafukai2015-10-04

if you use it just to decorate, without liquor, you could color the water, of course

SpoonMax (author)2015-10-04

Excellent. Thanks!

How long before the immersed ladder starts to rot? Or does the liquor preserve it, the way it does humans?

Paoson Woodwork (author)SpoonMax2015-10-04

I've never seen rotting ladder, makes it just as humans!

skoko made it! (author)2015-10-02

Cool project i actually made one some weeks ago and was going to turn it in to an instructable but i wasn't the best and i didn't take pictures of the entire project :/ I cut mine in to pieces and assemble it in side of the bottle.It's a common thing to add figures(most common ladders) in bottles here in Bulgaria.We use special woods to add flavor and color to the alcohol.Mine is from white acacia but mulberry and grape vine trellis are also used.

Paoson Woodwork (author)skoko2015-10-03

Beautiful! Cool project friend, what a coincidence! I did not know that it is also tradition for your area... You are right, some woods can be used to add flavor and color to liquor, like Acacia. Keep it up!

waris-pardis (author)2015-10-03

Really Cool.

thanks friend

canemaker49 (author)2015-10-03

thanks for sharing this. i will have to make some of these for my grankids. i will be the cool grandpaw!! lol. but what to do with all that likker?'s a mystery!!

Hahaha, liquor only for a special holiday! thanks

Captain Thiele (author)2015-10-03

That is so genuis!


ShakeTheFuture (author)2015-10-02


That looks very cool.


manuelmasc (author)2015-10-02

Cool idea!! Ahah

thanks friend!

TheGeek1984 (author)2015-10-02

Could you leave a link for mobile viewers?


Thank you!

About This Instructable




Bio: My name is Suso Caamanho. I like doing all sorts of stuff related to musical instruments, woodworking, computer science, electronics... On my website you will ... More »
More by Paoson Woodwork:Omelette Flipper With Built-in HandleHow to Make an Olive Wood Cutting BoardBending Wood With a Bending Iron
Add instructable to: