Introduction: Stackable Organizing Tins

If you and I have anything in common, you have hundreds or thousands of tiny parts that are worthless to anyone if not reasonably well organized, and you're still accumulating neat stuff every day. In short, you're a hoarder. This 'ible points out one of the infinite different uses for a nifty steel can that is the packaging for one of the vegan cheeses at the shop just down the street from me. I probably could have summed this up in one picture, but I had the camera out, so...

Step 1: You Can Use Things Lesser Men Would Throw Away!


Cans with easily removable tops

Double sided tape

A knife

wire cutters OR scissors

Dymo label gun, or the Label Baby somebody regifted you back in the 90's

Step 2: Do the Thing to the Thing

Strip the labels off as much as is possible. I've tried soaking the paper off of these tins, but the glue isn't water soluble, so I'm just leaving it. I'm too old to shoot for perfection. Lay out some strips of double sided tape on the lids, three strips ought to do it. You could use epoxy or polyurethane glue for this, but do you want to be done before dinner, or not? ---- tech tip ---- Pictured in the lower left of figure 3 is the edge of a magical dinner tray that was presumably used in a prison. I've found a few of these in the scrap yard, and recently scored a bunch more at a thrift store. If you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up. The compartments are extremely useful for organizing parts of anything you have to dismantle and reassemble quickly. The stainless steel is easy to clean to a spotless shine with mineral spirits, making it really easy to keep bearings clean while you're working.

Step 3: Then Do the Thing to the Other Thing

The lids are thin, but if you flip an empty can over, the bottom fits neatly inside the lid, providing enough back pressure for sticking the parts together. Stick the bottom of an empty tin to the lid, and voila! Easy stuff. Repeat for all of the cans you have. Don't make the stacks so tall that they won't fit on your shelf, and make a point of filling the bottom tins with the heaviest stuff, to keep the stacks stable.

Step 4: Presto!

Get some labels on those suckers, and suddenly your life is all better. Go forth, and organize.