Introduction: Recycled Tri-fold Pallet Display
A Tri-fold display used for a Masters Architecture Project at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Recycled materials were used for the construction with the exception of assembly hardware. The project provided three solid surfaces to pin material to, as well as a roof structure to hang items from. It was on exhibit as a gallery piece and displayed boards pertaining to sustainable construction using recycled materials.
Four pallets the same size, 2x4's, 1x4, PVC pipe, 2 liter bottles, and Christmas lights.
Step 1: Base Construction
(Base Construction): One pallet is laid down on the ground with its longer side. Two 7 foot 2x4s are screwed to the short sides of the pallet, vertically. Two additional 2x4s are cut the same width of the pallet: one installed at the top of the construction and another just 6 inches below it.
Cut a piece of 2" O.D. 1.75" I.D. PVC into four 2 feet pieces. Drill three 1/2" holes in each piece, the holes will be aligned with one another: One on each end 4" away from the edge and the other in the middle.
Install a PVC cap on one end of each of the four pieces.
A: On the sides of the base construction mark the 7 foot vertical members, one feet above the ground. Draw another line from the midpoint of the previous line, upwards 2 feet. Align a piece of previously cut PVC (cap down) with this line, three holes facing outward. Align a drill with piloting drill bit in the 1/2" hole and drill through the opposite side of the PVC and into the wood.
B: Continue for the two additional holes in the PVC pipe.
C: Install the PVC with three 3/4" screws through the pilot holes.
Repeat steps A thru C on the opposite side of the base construction.
Step 2: Sides Assembly
Cut a piece of 1.75" O.D. PVC into two 4 feet sections.
Stand two pallets upright (3 foot sides flat on the ground) and the top sides of the pallets facing forward. Set one to the left of the base construction and the other to the right.
Next you will need to draw a line 2 feet long, starting at the top of the pallet and continuing down the edge (down the center). One line on the edge of each pallet that faces the base construction.
Place a piece of the 2 feet PVC (cap up) cut in step one, with drilled holes facing out along these lines. Drill pilot holes in the same fashion as step 1.
Install the 2 feet PVC pieces on these upright pallets with 3/4" screws.
Install a PVC cap over the top opening on both sides.
*The PVC caps of the base are facing down, the sides are facing up.
Cut a 1x4 into two 2 feet pieces. These will be installed on the upright pallets, opposite side of the PVC. Measure up one foot from the bottom and draw a line.
Lay the pallet over onto its side and place the 1x4 along this drawn line. 1 foot should extend beyond the bottom of the pallet. From the top of the 1x4 measure down 3 inches and draw a dot in the center of the 1x4. Attach the 1x4 to the pallet with one screw through this dot.
Repeat for the opposite side. (The single screw allows for rotation of this 1x4 which is a stabilizing leg)
Step 3: Attach Sides to Base
With the base standing upright place one piece of the 4 foot PVC inside of the attached 2 foot section. This will act as the pin inside of a hinge. Repeat for the opposite side of the base as well.
Lift the "right" side high enough to place the attached PVC over the PVC pin. Lowering until both the two foot sections touch one another. While one person holds the side for stability another can rotate the 1x4 downward as a leg. The one foot extension beyond the pallet should be flush with the ground. Once in place add an additional screw to stabilize the leg and keep it from rotating.
Follow the same procedure for the left side.
These sides can now move independently; in line with the base, perpendicular, or any where in between.
Step 4: Assemble the Roof
Lay the last pallet flat on the ground. Cut a 2x4 the same length as the longest side (approximately 4 feet). Attach this 2x4 aligned to the edge with four screws.
IMPORTANT: Before installing the roof make sure the sides are angle outwards 45 to 90 degrees. This will keep the construction balanced.
The edge without the 2x4 slides through the back of the 6" gap created at the top of the base construction. Use two people and a ladder to lift and slide the pallet through the opening.
The 2x4 edge rests against the frame and stops the pallet from falling through. The 6" gap allows for ease when sliding the pallet through as well as a minimal amount of pitch in the roof once installed.
Rotate the sides to their desired angle while ensuring the balance of the completed construction.
Step 5: Making the Focal Point
Above the base pallet, between the sides, and below the roof is a large open area. This can be used for a large display area and primary focal point in the display.
For my particular construction I used a series of 2 liter bottles and Christmas lights that were going to be trashed.
First I determined the best way to fill the gap with the bottles based on their size. This distance from top to bottom is 4, and the width is 12 standard 2 liter bottles.
The bottle wrappers distracted from the concept, therefore I removed the labels. This can be done with a container full of water and a minimal amount of paint thinner or alcohol to help remove the adhesive.
The bottles were both green and clear, green created a more ambient light when illuminated and clear a projected light. Align them accordingly for the desired effect, I used green on the sides to keep the light focused under the roof along with a row of clear at the top and bottom. I mixed in the middle due to the types of bottles available.
For the lights I drilled a hole in the bottom of the bottle similar to the size of the opening. Laid the bottles out in the desired pattern and began fishing the lights through them with a coat hanger. One after another until all the bottles were filled, the wires tight, and the plug on one end.
Tape the bottles (one one side) in place to hold them close to one another and flip them over carefully. Connect the bottle necks/ threads with one another using strong transparent tape. Attach the sides of the bottles to one another with hot glue.
Flip the bottles and lights over again, remove tape, and hot glue the opposite sides as well.
Step 6: Installing the Focal Point
Lastly install the bottles. They will press inside the frame created by the base construction. The pallet decking which extends beyond the frame on a standard pallet acts as a frame on the front. Attach 1x4 scraps on the rear of the framework to help hold the bottles in place.
Plug the lights in and enjoy. The display can be used as an individual art piece or a display for other forms of work and art.
The construction can also be broken down into five pieces for transport. To disassemble first unplug and remove the lights and bottles. Slide the roof back through the opening, lift the right side off the pin, and lastly the left side off the pin.
The base construction can lay flat in a truck bed. The sides next to one another on top of the base and the roof on top of that. The bottles are the most delicate and should be placed on top.
Thanks and Enjoy.