Introduction: Making Wine Corks Useful Again: As Corks

Picture of Making Wine Corks Useful Again: As Corks

Wine corks are often useless even for resealing the bottle they come out of because they can expand to be just a little bit too big to go back in the bottle ( this effect is extreme with a champagne cork ). A general purpose stopper has a taper so you can fit it in the opening and then push in for a tight fit. If you try to carve or cut down the cork you will find out just how hard cork is to work with, and will probably not produce anything useful. This instructable will show you how to nicely taper your used corks.  ( There are lots of instructables on using wine corks, try searching, but none of them seem to use them again to stopper up anything )

Step 1: Tools and Materials

Picture of Tools and Materials


  • Drill
  • High speed sanding disk or belt ( an angle grinder might also work )
  • Corks
  • 3 inch ( more or less ) sheet rock screw.


Step 2: Make It

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A high speed sanding machine makes short and pretty smooth work of shaping the cork, but we also need a nice taper. This is where the drill comes in. Take a 3 inch or so sheet rock screw and cut off the head. You can then chuck this into the drill. Being careful screw into the center of one end of the cork. Try to get it straight. ( you could make some sort of jig for this and do a better job than show here ). Now spin the cork and sand with a gentle touch. Keep going until you get the taper you want. Pull out the screw and you are done. This technique will only make a cork that is smaller than the original. You might experiment with running the drill in reverse to make one larger than original, I have not tried this yet.

Step 3: Use It

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Now the cork should fit. Press it in firmly, perhaps with a twist, reverse to remove.  Easy-peasy.



alomsimoy made it! (author)2014-12-24

Nice work!
Just perfect to do some custom fit corks.
Some tips that I just discovered:
I didn't need the sanding disk/belt since a straight sandpaper does the work.
Use a fine grit sandpaper after sanding to give the cork a smooth finish, like the original.
Use a saw to cut the cork while spinning in the drill.
Thank you!

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