Introduction: How to Make Card Soldiers Out of Old Pharmacy Bottles

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For October's Creative Reuse build day - each of the Rabbit Hole [Rochester, MN hackerspace] members were tasked to work on a scene for the stop frame animation movie.  I wanted to work on the Queen's Court for the main rabbit character to go through and saw that I had saved a bunch of old Target pharmacy bottles.

What you need:
  • Old Pharmacy bottles - I used ones from Target because they have the perfect shape to them.
  • Deck of Cards
  • Random bits that can be used as heads for the soldiers
  • Spears/spear substitutes
  • Scissors

Step 1: Clean the Pharmacy Bottles!

So the first thing is to get all of the sticky stuff off of the pharmacy bottles.  You can use hot water to get the initial paper/glue off.  But to really clean it, just use mineral spirits and a paper towel and rub clean!

Step 2: Find the Heads/spears for the Soldiers

So anything can act as the head/spears for the soldiers.  I chose random items around our junk piles for the heads and I had some random tool keychains that I decided would be fun to use instead of spears.

Step 3: Install the Heads on the Soldiers

This will require scissors to put holes into the top of the pill bottles and stick the heads in.  You can use hot glue to secure them or if they're snug enough, then no need to worry about it! 

Step 4: Make the Arms for the Soldiers

So for super steady arms, you can take thick wire, bend it in half, put the loop around a screw that has been put into a 2x4.  Then, put the loose ends into a drill and spin the wire so that it's spun around itself.  Cut the length you need and put them into the bottle as appropriate.  In the picture, note the drill, the spun wire, the 2x4" and nail in board.

Step 5: Install the Arms for the Soldiers

So all you need to do is cut the length of arm you need from your spun length of wire.  And then poke them through the sides of the pill bottles.  And then attach/glue/place your spear item on one of the arms.  You may need to put some weights (ballast) into the pill bottles so they don't tip over if the spears are too heavy.

Note how soldier-y they look! (Or like mechanics :D)

Step 6: Make Them Into Card Soldiers!

Now all you need are some cards - you can choose to either take them from a broken deck, or any deck you're willing to have a few missing cards from.  You can cut them to fit, OR, like me, just tape them so that they can be easily taken off.