Step 6: Cutting the wine bottle

Picture of Cutting the wine bottle
13. Place a drop of oil on the glass cutter wheel. There is no need to get fancy here and olive oil works fine for this project.  Score your bottle with one nice even line by laying it in the jig, as pictured, and spinning it slowly.  Listen for the slightly annoying nails-on-a-chalkboard scoring sound to know that you are applying enough pressure.   Don't try to repeat the score or reverse your spin.  Don't try to use all of your might on the score line.  Those big muscles are totally unnecessary and too much pressure might cause little chips in the glass.

14. Bottles with labels, label goo, etchings, or printed glass will not cut as well.  You want smooth, clean glass.  A little hot water or "goo gone" helps to remove labels.

15. Heat your bottle with a candle or lighter along the score line.  Now run the bottle under cold tap water at the line.  Repeat a few times then try to gently pull the two halves of the bottle apart.  

16. You now have a cup and a possible chandelier!  Now don't cut yourself before you smooth out those edges.

17. Bonus tip: a dremel with a diamond bit works great to smooth the edge, then sand with sander bits and polish up if you like.  I got a set of 20 diamond bits on amazon.com for $5. I have also hear its possible to just place your cup, top edge face down in a bowl of sand and twist in the sand.  I haven't tried this.

18. Have fun and impress your friends!

FYI. This makes glasses of one length. But without any additional construction, you can flip the cutter to the outside of the jig to make your cups about 1" taller. In addition, if you have a different size cup in mind, just build your jig accordingly (using slightly wider board-stock).
malbotia3 years ago
I love this ible. I am going to attempt a modified version of this that allows adjustment so the bottles can be cut at different lengths. I am going to use the wood piece with the V cut and glass cutter and also the back V cut piece and the solid piece it is glued to. Instead of gluing solid pieces for the sides I am gonna try to use 4 long bolts secured with nuts going through each corner of the front and back planks so that the back plank can be slid closer to the cutter by adjusting the nuts and sliding it forward then tightening the nuts again. I will post an update with results once I am finished. My only concern is that the bolts will not hold the ends straight and may allow the jig to slant.

Sort of like this:
999592 malbotia2 years ago
You can keep this design but add one board on either side screwed only to the back board that extends just slightly beyond the furthest point you plan to extend it, as well as a small board placed between the two sides about midway down on the bottom.
Alekij malbotia3 years ago
Great idea! That's exactly what I thought: "What about different bottle-sizes?"
Try using 12 nuts, 3 on each bolt. Then, you can use one to tighten to the bolt head end to keep it from being loose and the other 2 on either side of the other board to do the same. If you're worried about the nuts moving you could wrap rubber bands or tape just below/ above them to stop the extra movement. I haven't tried it, but in theory it should work.
Have You tried this with square bottles?
grammers (author)  ArtisanEclectic3 years ago
I have not tried it with square bottles. At first when I read your question I thought of course that wouldn't work. But now I'm thinking it depends on the size of the square.
godbacon3 years ago
I have made a simular jig. Mine was vertical.
To break the line you've scored on the out side of the bottle; glue a wooden beed to a length of wire coat hanger and bend it a bit. Inserts it into the bottle, and Then tap line you scored. A wine cork pushed onto the length of coat hanger can act as a stop if you are cutting all your bottles to the same length.
I like this, well presented and inspiring, well done. I've become quite accomplished at the hot kettle/cold water tap method, its really pleasing when the bottom just falls of. I think this jig will help me scoring technique now
oppie3 years ago
Having done some stained glass work in the past, one good trick is to take a piece of glass scrap and scrape it against the sharp edges. Do this sharp edge against sharp edge. Both pieces are hard and will do a good job of removing sharp edges. If you are doing any kind of grinding with a dremel or the like, keep the heat down or you will get more cracks. Short light passes folowed by cooling time. A wet saw like one used for cutitng tile is great.
Again, taking from stained glass work, adhesive backed copper foil applied over the edges gives a nice effect. Whether you let it oxidize for a nice patina or you tin it with a soldering iron and solder is up to you.
menahunie3 years ago
I did this many many years ago. To separate the bottle top after scoring it I used a hot wire.
You had to be careful because of the hot wire - same type they use in electric heaters, but straight.
Hooked the loop around where it was scored stepped on the foot switch and turned the bottle around; the halves just fell apart.
Also you have to sand the sharp edges dull around the lip.

dewexdewex3 years ago
I saw a rig at my old college for applying the heat: A small horizontal turntable with a gas jet on a stand which could be positioned to the required height. The glass was centred and spun with the flame pointed at the score line.

Thx for the instructable.
bterps3 years ago
You could also make some wood spacer blocks to adjust the distance of the cutter giving you more freedom to make different sizes.
raviolikid3 years ago
Good directions enhanced with very clear photos. I want to make one, too - but first, I gotta drink some wine.

grammers (author)  raviolikid3 years ago
That is a very good point. Drinking a bottle of wine should have been step one!
dbbd3 years ago
Very nice project. Big like!
Turning the finished cut upside down on a piece of wet/dry fine sand paper with a little water for lubricant and turning the piece in a circular motion will ensure a uniform flat edge.
I like the idea very much, and have made a similar jig using wheels.The problem that I foresee with a jig like this is that it does not give me the freedom to change the distance from the bottom of the bottle.

Under the assumption that the bottle type is the same, this is a brilliant jig.