Introduction: Primitive Tools From a Toilet?!

Picture of Primitive Tools From a Toilet?!

Who would imagine you could fashion primitive tools from toilet. But it is true.

Step 1: First Obtain a Toilet.

Picture of First Obtain a Toilet.

You can find these when houses are being remodeled, dumpsters, etc. You can also use old ceramic sinks.

Step 2: Start by Breaking an Old Toilet.

Picture of Start by Breaking an Old Toilet.

Start by breaking an old toilet with a rock about 1/2 the size of your fist.

Step 3: Knap the Pieces to Create A

Picture of Knap the Pieces to Create A

Use your rock to wack at the edge of a piece of your toilet. It took me about 5 hours to get it down but now I can make a ruff knife in about 10 minutes.

Knapping ... Well... ever look at the cone of missing glass on the back side of were a bb has hit. This is what you work with. That is, when you wack the edge of ceramic or glass you will get the same angle on the back side as what the bb did. If the angle you hit the glass is off one way then you do not remove much materal if off the other then the cone of fracture enters the thickness of your materal and the flake brakes or the whole chunk brakes eather way it is not what you want. but if you hit it at the right angle then you get a nice flake. You can then flip your glass over and wack it on the other side and if right you get a sharp edge. This process is repeated over and over removing materal to shape and sharpen your tool. It takes hours and a 1/4 of a tollet to begain to get the hang of it. Be sure to wear gogals and gloves are not a bad idea.

Also see: http://primitiveways.com/knapping1.html

Comments

kretzlord (author)2013-04-12

It'd be cool to see some 'in progress' shots of this, but very cool. I didn't think of using ceramic toilets to make tools! File this under prepper's tools

salishsilver (author)2011-04-14

They call this material "Thunder chert." from Thundermug.

radiorental (author)2006-04-28

In the spirit of this instructable I would like to advise the honorable maker that

rock = tool
spear head = weapon

This isnt a 'primitive tool', prmitives may have used tools to make this weapon.

Seriously, can you drill the ceramic?

In the spirit of primitive toolmakers, I would like to advise the honorable commenter that knives are TOOLS. That's right. TOOLs. Like many tools they can be used as a weapon, but the knife is first and foremost a tool, and one of the most important primitive tools our species has created. Without knives you can't cut things. You're left with banging the rocks together in in frustration or tearing the animal hides with your teeth which have unfortunately evolved to do a very poor job of it.

which is why I dislike the public school systems' general dislike of knives. I did manage to track down a multitool without a knife (and it's a great one, the multimax from swiss tech, got it from thinkgeek) but I still can't do a lot of stuff with it because of the lack of blade. I'd really rather have a small leatherman type deal.

spylock (author)radiorental2009-10-21

Yes you can,use a masonary bit,a centerpunch to tap a start,and dont apply to much pressure,let the weight of the drill do the work.

Matin (author)radiorental2006-04-29

While a weapon is a nasty tool this was intended to be a knife. However, it is true a knife can be a weapon, but then also a drill.

radiorental (author)Matin2006-04-29

For anyone who doesnt have a toilet they can break up, I present the instructables leatherman ebay auction
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=9513534901&rd=1&sspagename=STRK%3AMESE%3AIT&rd=1

somecreativename14 (author)2010-02-10

I broke a toilet and made a sharpening stone.

robo989 (author)2006-10-31

Hmmm... While you're smashing up a used (yuck) toilet, try this: take a sledgehammer to a large portion of the previously mentioned waste disposal unit, pick among the pieces, (I can imagine there will be a lot!) and compare the sharpest piece you can find, and compare it with one you chipped 'stone-age' style. Finally, tell the rest of us how your experiment went. Sounds fun.

spylock (author)robo9892009-10-21

I can tell you that a chard from a a broken sink caused my brother to get thirteen stitches in the palm of his hand,he slipped in the snow and fell on it,cut him like a razor.

spylock (author)2009-10-21

Man,Im a plumber and do a little flint knapping when I can get the flint,Id have never thought of that,I got nice supply too,this is one of the best Ive seen.

mikaelthemycologist (author)2008-11-15

I flint knapp, and in flint knapping there is a little tool called an ishi stick, or pressure flaker. You can get a thick piece of rubber, a folded sheet of leather, or some sort of really strong hand protector. Use the ishi stick to flake off the edges. The ishi stick can be substituted (though I don't thoroughly suggest it) with a phillips screw driver. This will make a more serrated, and sharper edge. Good instructable. I never though about using toilets for arrow heads.

pumpkinman (author)2008-09-01

can you put it on a handle? if so could you prehaps make an instructable of that?

pepitosbazzeguti (author)2007-11-01

Nice instructables, thank you for the link

Matin (author)pepitosbazzeguti2008-01-03

Note that some of the photos are missing you can see all the images at : http://www.primitiveways.com/pt-toilettools.html

X_D_3_M_1 (author)2007-12-01

lol this guy has the coolest stuff. id dip it in alchohol. faved and plus 1

instructables-dan (author)2006-04-29

hmm, could you add some instruction on the knapping process? i have attempted it a couple times - enough to know that is where things get interesting!

Matin (author)instructables-dan2006-04-30

Well... ever look at the cone of missing glass on the back side of were a bb has hit. This is what you work with. That is, when you wack the edge of ceramic or glass you will get the same angle on the back side as what the bb did. If the angle you hit the glass is off one way then you do not remove much materal if off the other then the cone of fracture enters the thickness of your materal and the flake brakes or the whole chunk brakes eather way it is not what you want. but if you hit it at the right angle then you get a nice flake. You can then flip your glass over and wack it on the other side and if right you get a sharp edge. This process is repeated over and over removing materal to shape and sharpen your tool. It takes hours and a 1/4 of a tollet to begain to get the hang of it. Be sure to wear gogals and gloves are not a bad idea.

RTourn (author)2006-05-04

Please wear glasses.

sometimes_steve (author)2006-05-02

Wouldn't you only want to sharpen the upper half? You need some part you can hold on to. I would think rubbing the base against a rock or concrete/cement would dull the back enough to hold with your bare hand.

Matin (author)sometimes_steve2006-05-02

This knife is not so sharp as to cut your hand, for example you need to move the edge over a cord to cut it. The other edges of the tool may function as a scraper, say for scraping paint or bark off of wood or branches. In traditional stone knives each edge of the knife often has different edges and functions.

xenobiologista (author)2006-04-30

Is this actually sharp enough to cut useful things like meat? If you tell me it is, I'll memorize this one in case civilization suddenly breaks down or something.

Matin (author)xenobiologista2006-04-30

Yes, it is. But glass like the bottom of a bottle will make a much sharper knife but at the same time a more brittle tool. Remember to always wear goggles and gloves if you work with glass.

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