Introduction: Simple Tea Bag Extractor

Picture of Simple Tea Bag Extractor

Once a day I drink a large mug of Tea.

Unfortunately there are times when I forget to take out the tea bag and I end up with a very bad tasting tea.

There are 2 types of tea I consume, peppermint and a green tea.

I can handle a strong peppermint tea, but not over-steeped green tea.

I could set an alarm or wait in the kitchen for the tea to steep, but that's not a perfect solution.

In this Instructable, we'll make a simple Tea Bag extractor.

No more over-steeped tea!

What's needed:

If you are Interested in the video version of this Instructable and the embedded video does not appear on your mobile device, here is an alternative link

Step 1:

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I cut a hole in a Ping-Pong ball.

After heating a part of the ball with a lighter, I used a pen to make a little dent.

Step 2:

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I mixed Plaster of Paris and poured it into the ball.

Then I put a popsicle stick in the center and let the plaster set.

Step 3:

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To make the ball look more appealing, I glue a purple washer to it.

Step 4:

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I prepared popsicle sticks by drilling holes, cutting them shorter etc.

We ended up with 6 popsicle sticks

Step 5:

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The gadget was assembled on top of an "L" bracket that was attached to a wooden plate.

I used nylon nuts & bolts, because they don't loosen as easy as metal ones.


Step 6:

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I cut off the tip from a BBQ stick and glued it to the popsicle stick.

When the glue was dry, I cut off the excess.

Step 7:

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I opened an egg shaped kitchen timer and attached the base to the bracket.

Step 8:

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I put back the top piece to check where I need to drill a hole.

When that was done, I put a bolt into the hole.

Step 9:

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After making sure the gadget is calibrated, I screwed another screw into the bottom and glued both pieces of the timer together.

Step 10:

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I made a little cut in the popsicle stick, so it can hold the tea bag better.

Step 11:

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That's it!

You can steep the tea up to 1h.

When the timer reaches "0" minutes, the arm will lift the tea bag.


Cheeky_Tinkerer made it! (author)2017-12-27

Thank you for posting! This is so cool. I made one for my wife for Christmas. I used a golf ball and the base is Black Walnut and the crane is Russian Olive wood.


kooth (author)2016-11-21

Very clever and useful! Thanks for posting!

BillR85 (author)2016-11-16

I will make this, very cool and much needed. My question, the small dent is that for a resting place for the popsicle stick to hold the ball in position? Also since the screw that holds the bottom of the timer to the base now can't be used to secure the bottom of the egg timer to the top half, thats why it is then glued in place?

Thanks love projects like this that are useful.

ShakeTheFuture (author)BillR852016-11-16


Yes, the dent is there, so the stick can hold the ball in position.

I actually don't put the stick in the dent, but more like on the edge of the dent.

You are right, I glued the timer because the original hole was used to attach it to the bracket.


BillR85 (author)ShakeTheFuture2016-11-16

Thanks for follow up, let me ask what prevents the ball from dropping in the first place? I mean if its heavier then the wet t-bag how does it not put enough pressure on the stick to just push it out of position and drop without the help of the pin being hit by the bolt on the timer?

Thanks Bill

ShakeTheFuture (author)BillR852016-11-17

I attached a video. I hope that will answer your question.


BillR85 (author)ShakeTheFuture2016-11-17

You sir are awesome, I REALLY am grateful you sent that video. From my understanding because the popsicle stick is at an angle greater then 45 deg the downward pressure is forced in the direction of the stick rather then down, thanks to the little dent the stick rests on. My assumption would be without that dent the stick would slip off the ball, so the force is generated into the direction of the stick. Almost like a mouse trap. The video was great help. I have my timer ordered as well as the nylon hardware.. Will upload a photo when I am complete.. I was looking yesterday at my local hardware, the angle bracket mounted to the base, what is that size, 2", 3" and is that base about say 6 or 7 inches? Trying to get my supplies ahead of time..

For english not being your primary language, you articulate very well, never was a misunderstanding , I just like more info then most people, which you were generous to provide.. Any dimensions on the hole spacing for the hardware and out of curiosity why do you use 2 popsicle sticks together that is mounted into the ball? just for longer length then 1 stick can provide? Thanks again, you really are an awesome person.. I have looked at many of your ideas and so many I can't wait to try myself...

Thanks Bill

ShakeTheFuture (author)BillR852016-11-21

Hi Bill!

Here is some more info.

Bracket is 2"

Base 6.2"

I used 2 size popsicle sticks - 4.5" and 2.5"

Please don't take these measurements too seriously :)



BillR85 (author)ShakeTheFuture2016-11-21

Thanks much appreciated the specifics. Kinda hard to tell from photos, but got the timer today and clearly is smaller then I would have guessed or could determine from photo but seems to be perfect for this project.. Thank you!!!

ShakeTheFuture (author)BillR852016-11-18

Hi Bill!

I am away for a few days, so I can't tell you any dimensions today. I'll be back on Monday, then I'll let you know.

Just like you said, I used 2 popsicle sticks to increase the length.


spark master (author)BillR852016-11-17

the whole thing is light and perhaps there is sufficient friction to keep it raised? Perhaps a better sear is what is needed if you don't have enough friction.

trgz (author)2016-11-21

Sad to say that it's been done and marketed if this can be trusted (I just happened to find it whilst clearing my HD - the pic was from 2008):

ShakeTheFuture (author)trgz2016-11-21

Oh, that's cool.

Well, here is a DIY version :)

maspeir (author)2016-11-20

Rube Goldberg would be proud! :D

ShakeTheFuture (author)maspeir2016-11-21

Ha, ha. It does look like his type of project.

jeanniel1 (author)2016-11-19

Can add holes for different times depending on how long some like their tea steeped - or for anything that needs to me removed from the cup! Great idea - so cute.

ShakeTheFuture (author)jeanniel12016-11-21

Thank You!

Elkarin (author)2016-11-19

Very original! Excellent idea!

ShakeTheFuture (author)Elkarin2016-11-21


ShivangiY2 (author)2016-11-19

This is awesome and so simple to make!

Thank You very much!

nickraw (author)2016-11-19

That is ACE !

the egg timer is defo going on my christmas list to mod up to make one of these

ShakeTheFuture (author)nickraw2016-11-21

Thank You!

pieterg (author)2016-11-17

HAHAHA ! I love it! Great!

ShakeTheFuture (author)pieterg2016-11-19


spatial guy (author)2016-11-17

That is just fantastic. I think that's what this site is all about. Not just instructables but also inventables. I love it and I will definitely make it. I think I'll try and make the tea bag move up and down (jiggle) in the cup before pulling it out. Thanks shake!!

Thank You very much!

okkedame (author)2016-11-17

Love it! I definitely need to introduce this in our engineering company :-) (they'll all start drinking tea iso coffee..)

ShakeTheFuture (author)okkedame2016-11-19

I am glad you found it useful!


Almost50 (author)2016-11-17

I have waited almost 50 yrs for something like this.....its more than a 'fan tea see'... Brilliant! The UK is sooo ready for this one!

ShakeTheFuture (author)Almost502016-11-18

I am glad you found it useful.


Snow_Tiger (author)2016-11-17

I want to make that but there needs to be more steps so I can build the entire thing! But I love it!


Did you watch the video? It might give you more info on how to do it.


Eagleman117 (author)2016-11-17

Love it and want to make it!


JeffMustache (author)2016-11-17

This is pretty cool! I plan on making this sometime soon, probably over the next school break, but this seems like the perfect thing for me; always forgetting about my tea seeping in the kitchen :P


bo_peterson (author)2016-11-18

Best instructable ever! Will make one for my daughter, or maybe together with her.

I am glad you found it useful.


CélineM16 (author)2016-11-17

Trop chouette !

J'adore cette idée, je vais essayer de le faire pour offrir à Noël.

ClintC15 (author)CélineM162016-11-17


Too Nice! I love this idea, I will try to do it to offer [it as a] Christmas [present].

(good idea, btw. I may do that too!)

BillR85 (author)ClintC152016-11-17

Thanks for that idea, working on the first one and talking about blowing peoples minds for Christmas.. Paint them make em look nice and people will love em because like my wife only likes her tea steeped for a few minutes.. Yea Gifts for Christmas would be awesome, nobody else will have one..


BettyHill (author)2016-11-17

Muy bueno; me recuerda los mecanismos de trampas de supervivencia.

ShakeTheFuture (author)BettyHill2016-11-17


ClintC15 (author)2016-11-17

Ha! This is great idea. Looks fun to make too!

ShakeTheFuture (author)ClintC152016-11-17


And Thanks for the translation.

Swansong (author)2016-11-16

This is such a fun idea! I'd love one of these in our house. :)

spark master (author)Swansong2016-11-17

kids will want to watch it like when they gather around a cuckoo clock to see the mechanism do its stuff!!

ShakeTheFuture (author)Swansong2016-11-16

Thank You very much!

About This Instructable




Bio: Innovative Projects, Diy's, Life Hacks
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