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Picture of Micro (Geocache) Container

 This instructable will teach you how to make a small container from two bottle caps and a bottle neck. It's a great way to re-use bottles that you may have been throwing out.

I just wanted to acknowledge that this is not a completely original design. I got the idea from the Groundspeak forums, especially the user "Odie442". However, there is no existing instructable, and I'm sure that everyone will appreciate it. The pictures and text are all original though.

The container can be used as a micro geocache. If you don't know what geocaching is, check out www.geocaching.com or one of the many instructables here that can teach you what it's all about.

Besides that, these could be maracas, fishing bobbers, boxes to hold small beads, game pieces... anything you can think of! Just don't bother doing steps 4-9 if you don't want it to be a geocache.
 
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Step 1: Materials

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To make the basic container, you will need:

1.   A plastic soda bottle with cap
2.   Another soda bottle cap (short, mine is from a coke)
3.   Scissors

To make it into a geocache, you will need on top of that:

4.   A dark permanent marker
5.   A pencil
6.   A hot glue gun, with glue stick
7.   A fine toothed saw
8.   A sheet of paper

Also, other bottles, adhesives, cutting materials, etc. can be used. People have a lot of success with 1/2 L water bottles as well as gatorade bottles. Tyvek can be used in place of paper for a waterproof log scroll. However, this is all I had at the time.

Step 2: Cutting it Out

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The first step to cutting the neck off the bottle is to pierce through the side.

Then, cut a loose circle around the neck, as in picture 2. Be sure to recycle the big bottle section left.

Next, cut the bottle right at the point it begins to flare out, as in picture 3.

The piece should have a ring of straight plastic coming off of the threaded top, with a relatively smooth edge, as in the last picture.

Step 3: Combining the Top and Bottom

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Now we are going to put the short cap on to the plastic part you just cut out. I tried to put on a larger cap, similar to the one on the top of the bottle, but it did not stay on as well as this one did. Place the cap loosely on top of the upper piece.

To get the pieces together, put it under your foot, with the small cap on the bottom. In picture two, I was slowly putting weight on my heel. You do not have to stamp down on it. After hearing two clicks, the cap is snapped on. 

The result is a cap snapped on to the neck of another cap. Picture three shows you how tight it should be. At this point, the container is pretty much done.

Step 4: Weatherproofing

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 As an extra layer of defense against moisture, I used hot glue. Plug in your hot glue gun to get started.

Pipe a stream of hot glue around the seam between the small cap and the plastic of the top. Try and have it in a straight, even line around the container. Avoid large blobs of glue by rotating the container in your fingers at a steady pace.

Now you will have a container that will better keep out water, dirt, etc.

Step 5: Alternate Weatherproofing

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 Other people have suggested that pvc cement, crazy glue, or the adhesive "Lexel" will do a better job. Instead of merely coating the plastic, they will fuse the two pieces together, creating a truly watertight seal at least on the bottom. 

Hot glue has worked fine for me, and it was the only thing I had so its perfect. One suggestion though would be to apply it before crushing the pieces together so it really gets in the seam.

Step 6: Labeling

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 Label the container so people know which side to open, in which direction, and that they have found a geocache. The top, with the big cap that screws off, label "OPEN". Draw clear arrows to show them which way to twist. 

On the small cap, write "GEO" to show that it is a geocache.

Step 7: Mini Pencil

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No ordinary pencil will fit in this small container, but it is still useful to have one. First, measure the pencil, and mark where to cut it with the sharpie.

Next, saw off the tip at the sharpie mark. Because it is so small, I just pulled backwards on the saw around the pencil, then snapped it off. 

This will become the pencil people can sign the log with.

Step 8: Log Scroll

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You need a log book for the geocachers to sign. Measure the height of the container, and mark it on the paper.

Fold the paper over on that mark, then cut down the fold. Then, you will have a slip of paper the correct size to be rolled up in the container. If you want more room, consider making two or three of these and stapling them together.

Finally, label the log as in picture 3. Make sure to include instructions, the label "LOG", and a spot for the FTF (First To Find) to sign. A cache note would be good to include too.

Step 9: Final Product

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 Assemble the geocache by rolling up the paper inside, putting in the little pencil, then close it up.

All you have to do is go hide it! Make a bunch for a multi-cache, or just publish one. Be creative and see how you can camouflage it. 

Step 10: Om Nom Nom

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Also makes a delicious snack.

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Please post photos with your own creations. What else can you use these for? How did you hide/camouflage it?

Be sure to comment / rate too! This was my first instructable.
painchri58923 days ago

Great 'ible! I Love to geocache but my larger one (placed in a park) keeps getting robbed! :( So I need an idea for a small one! Great idea! Thank you!!!!!!

hmsoumis2 months ago

Nice!

SunderlandCM9 months ago

GREAT suggestion, I will try this thanks :)

arvika1 year ago
great!! made already three small ones and one slightly larger one. glue for the latter one had to be two components glue....
thx :)
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Crafts1011 year ago
Thank you :)
mortnoir2 years ago
If you glue a small neodymium magnet in the bottom you'll have your self a cheep but very versatile container
Denger2 years ago
Since reading your Instructable, I have made many of these, both in the size you show and also from the larger sportsade bottles. These little cache containers work great! It's difficult to find micro containers like these which are truly waterproof and also nearly indestructible. If one removes the little perforated plastic ring from the middle, there is a great place to tie a string or cord (hot glue in place) for securing to a tree limb, etc. FIVE STAR Instructable.
BrantFlakes315 (author)  Denger2 years ago
Good idea about removing the ring. I've actually done it myself!

Glad to see people are still helped by this instructable years later
I made a series of these containers last year for individual legs of a multi-cache, and that worked out very well. Thanks again.
I need to make a map of were I put these
wfsept3 years ago
I made ten and I am going to spray paint them brown
frogmama3 years ago
LOVE this!! I just started caching this summer and now have lots of ideas for hides, but don't want to spend $$ on containers. I think I'll try this on a bigger version, since I have kids and they love finding ones with trinkets and not "nanos"
BrantFlakes315 (author)  frogmama3 years ago
I'm glad this could be of some help. How are you planning to make this bigger? I would love to know to make some myself.
Me and my brother just placed this cache.
i made mine a little diffrently and will use it soon, look for the park bench series in north vancouver!
thelmer444 years ago
This is sooooo cool that I found this. I'm a huge geocacher myself.
nimrodblack4 years ago
Your concept has led me down another path. I took the necks of two 20oz soda bottles. Cut them off just below the neck rim with a hack saw. Used PVC cement to seal the two necks together. What I am left with is 1.2" long .8" in diameter cylinder for a log. Just a tad to small for a Signal FTF coin but the perfect size for a log. No twist directions needed as both ends can unscrew for easy log removal.
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pbrady6964 years ago
Thanks man spray painted it one brown one green thanks for the great Caches!
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pbrady6964 years ago
awesome cool cache can't wait to hide!
You can also add magnet to stick it on metal things.
Thanks so much for this. I was trying to think of a good idea on how to make a micro without spending all the money to get something shipped to me. Definitely going to try this one out.
CaseyCase5 years ago
I make similar containers out of two lids and a neck from gallon juice jugs. They are great for holding airgun pellets.
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